I have been vaccinated for the Corona virus! I am a Jazz Guitarist / Composer / Arranger / and Band Leader and teacher who has been working in the greater San Francisco Bay area for the past 20 years. Originally from the East Coast and Chicago I arrived in California in 1992. I hold a Master's Degree in music from San Jose State University where I majored in Jazz guitar performance and composition / arranging. I have been passionately teaching guitar for the past 20 years to students of all ages. My goal is to teach you the music YOU want to learn while expanding your musical awareness. I am a patient and understanding teacher who will attempt to inspire students while pushing them to their playing potential. In addition to teaching I lead by example performing regularly in various Jazz ensembles. I have released 2 CD's of original music “Rivers Converge" (2010) and "In Roads" (2015). *** Lesson Details *** I have played and studied extensively the styles of Jazz, Rock, Blues, Classical, electric and acoustic guitar. I begin lessons by teaching students the fundamentals of the instrument and after a basic grasp of the guitar is developed I encourage students to learn songs / styles of their choice so that the musical experience is inspiring for them. In the first few months beginning students will learn the architecture of the guitar: string names & numbers, finger numbers, fret numbers, tablature, chord diagrams, basic time signatures, strum patterns, chord charts. I divide guitar playing into 3 major principles: Lead playing / improvisation, Chord playing / accompaniment, and Melody / note reading. Lessons will reflect the development of these principles. Scales and arpeggios and music theory lead to improvisation. Chord playing, chord progressions, open chords, bar chords, & power chords are used to play rhythm guitar in songs of the student’s choice. Melody playing is developed through learning to read music. For reading studies I utilize the Hal Leonard Guitar method for beginners and William Levitt’s Modern Method for guitar for more advanced students. For Classical Guitar i work from Christopher Parkening's Guitar Method 1 & 2 as well as technique studies from The Royal Conservatory of Music series. *** Studio Equipment *** Room with Chairs, music stands, Amplifier and guitar cables. *** Travel Equipment *** students should have guitar, music stand and two arm-less chairs *** Specialties *** I specialize in Jazz, Classical, Rock, and most popular styles. I try to combine technique and music reading with the learning of songs that interest the student.
Teaches all skill levels
Teaching since 2000
Masters Degree Music (Jazz Studies)
Teaches ages 8+
Has background check
Neil is a really brilliant instructor. Very knowledgeable and friendly. I hadn't had guitar lessons since I was a teenager more than a decade ago so it was really great to get back into the swing of things and learn a bunch of new techniques and improve my musicality. Unfortunately due to work I'm having trouble finding the time to fit in lessons and practice so I had to call it quits after my 5 gifted lessons. Hopefully in the future I'll be able to get back to it.
As an educator by trade, I can state with confidence that Neil’s approach to instruction is fantastic! He is patient and willing to teach those of us with ‘0’ musical talent or experience. He does so in such a way that it is tailored to one’s musical level and taste. I highly recommend.
Kind patient teacher, planned lessons specifically for the knowledge i am seeking.