Phillip Zweig

Phillip Z.

Chandler, AZ
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100% Satisfaction Guarantee

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Lesson Details

Music Theory

Levels Taught:
Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
Some people are afraid of music theory, they think it is a bad word. However, all my instrumental students learn music theory. There is nothing to fear. Music theory is foundational, as important as learning scales and chords. It is necessary to know to play at a high level. In classical music it is an interpretive tool, in jazz it is a tool for improvising. Like note reading, it opens up entire worlds for us to explore. It is FUN!

I teach theory, composition, and improvisation to students of all instruments, even instruments I do not play. I love working with violinists, vocalists, even dulcimer players. I am also available to tutor those who are prepping for high school and college.

My basic chord function theory course is twelve lessons / assignments. With that information students have the knowledge to progress to analytical and improvisational concepts. With some time and effort, everyone I've taught has learned it happily and easily.
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Phillip teaches



Phillip passed a background check that includes a SSN verification, national criminal record check, and sex offender registry search. Learn More
Phillip delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 5+ and special needs

Teaching since:
December 1981

I teach music. The guitar, bass guitar, and ukulele just happen to be the particular instruments I choose. Music as a language, discipline, and art, is the goal. I've been teaching, performing, studying, composing, for some thirty years. I've studied and gigged in the classical, jazz, rock, blues, R & B, and country idioms. I've taught composition and improvisation to instruments other than guitar, (vocalists, fiddle, sax, piano, trumpet) I've taught all ages and levels. I currently pursue a doctorate of music in guitar at university. Students learn many things when studying with me. They learn physically how to play a particular instrument while learning music as its own language. Students learn how to learn, learn self-discipline, and access their musical expression, all potential life changing experiences. I am happy and excited to announce I am available for on-line lessons, and will now be able to work with students from all over the world, regardless of distance or location!

*** Lesson Details ***
I am laid back, but at the same time very goal directed. I like to do technique and/or vocabulary, note reading, and songs every lesson. After six months students are able to to 'jam', (improvise over chord changes such as the blues). They are well on their way to becoming literate, probably a third way through the first book. They probably can play a half dozen songs well, and are starting to strum (comp) chord progressions in a musically rhythmic way. They may even have played in a couple concerts by then.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Office studio w/ guitar, bass, amps, and seating for parents, computer with skype capability.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I bring my guitar and writing tools, extra picks, extra paper etc. Students provide their own instrument, method book, staff paper, notebook paper. Hopefully they have a music stand and their own guitar picks and other items relevant for the study of their instrument.

*** Specialties ***
Classical, jazz, rock, blues, country, bluegrass, theory/composition, improvisation

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Music Faculty
Aug 2016 - Present
South Mountain Community College

I am the guitar instructor, bass guitar instructor, and adjunct music faculty at South Mountain Community College. SMCC is part of the Maricopa County Community College system. Last year I had one individual student who is a jazz guitar performance major, and also taught a humanities class named 'Hip Hop in Culture.'

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I am currently in a doctorate program, my primary emphasis is classical guitar performance.
Aug 2014 - Present
Arizona State University

24 Reviews

Write a Review
Sunny F. Dec 20, 2018
Ukulele · Online

My first class was fantastic. Phillip cares about what I want to learn and he gives useful feedback and proper exercise/homework. I am motivated to practice everyday and look forward our my future sessions!

Mark Nov 10, 2018
Guitar · In home

Great first lesson. I felt comfortable and that Phillip was an excellent teacher.

nadine May 22, 2018
Ukulele · Online

Taking online ukulele lessons with Phillip has been a wonderful experience. He is patient, supportive and makes the lessons fun. He gives really great explanations for things. So he’s a perfect instructor for a beginner like me. I feel really lucky to have found him. I highly recommend Philip.

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Carmen & Ethan J. Jan 12, 2018
Guitar · Online

My 8 years found him funny and helpful. They got a lot out of their lesson so far and are wishing they could see him more than once a week 😊

Bonnie R. May 10, 2017
Ukulele · Online

Happy Teachers Day! You are a great ukulele instructor and make learning fun. I am having a great time. Thank you for your patience and encouragement. Keep on plucking :)

Jeri A. Mar 30, 2017
Guitar · In studio

Phillip is extremely knowledgeable in music. He is able to keep me on track of what my goal is and keeps me from wandering into areas that I am not ready for and wasting time. He stretches me in the written music, rhythm and timing. He is pulling me out of my slump.

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Guy M. Mar 24, 2017
Guitar · In studio

Great first lesson! Very good instructor

Russ Jul 9, 2016
Ukulele · Online

Just what I was looking for!

nate A. Jun 3, 2016
Guitar · In studio

We appreciated Phillip's patience and encouragement to a new and unsure student. The student left with the feeling of satisfaction that he will achieve his musical goals studying with Phillip.

Anna O. May 24, 2016
Classical Guitar · In home

Very good lesson. It was very enjoyable and Phillip was very encouraging.

Bonnie R. Jan 14, 2016
Ukulele · Online

Phillip is very patient and kind. Phillip gives you confidence that you are doing fine/good, which at times I don't feel like I am doing good. He takes away the frustration of learning something new and gives you the confidence that yes you can learn something new. So far so good

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Thomas C. Oct 30, 2015
Guitar · In studio

Phillip really has my son engaged in Learning new techniques on playing the guitar. We certainly picked the right teacher :-)

Tom B. Jul 17, 2015
Ukulele · In studio

real good first lesson. phillip seems like he will have the patience to teach me how to play the ukulele. phillip was even able to teach me how to play my first song. looking forward to our next lesson.

Chuck W. Jun 12, 2015
Ukulele · In studio

Phillip was very insightful and made my lesson very applicable to me!

MT Q. Feb 6, 2015
Ukulele · Online

I've been taking online lessons with Phil for almost two years now and have been enjoying every minute of it. It is very seldom you come across someone who truly loves music and shines through in teaching style. His love for music is an inspiration for me. Phil is an experienced professional, reliable, enthusiastic and his lessons are always meaningful and productive. If you're wanting to learn how to play the guitar or uke, Phil is the guy. Never to late to learn how to play an instrument. He is the best. ;-)

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Laurie P. Feb 3, 2015
Guitar · In studio

Phillip has been absolutley wonderful with my 7 year old son. He was able to teach him to play a song within the first two lessons. Since then he has laid the groundwork to build on to transform my son into a bonafide guitarist. He has worked on technique, reading music, chords, scales and keeping rhythm. He is very patient and jokes around keeping the lessons light and fun. He is very responsive to emails and is flexible with lesson times. I cannot recommend him highly enough!

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Anne C. Jun 20, 2014
Ukulele · Online

GREAT UKE teacher. Patient, Encouraging, very knowledgeable, makes good comments about how to improve my playing. Makes complex music theory simple .
Nice and flexible. Listens well. MOST of ALL, makes me want to PRACTICE more
and study more. Pure MAGIC.

Deborah F. Nov 12, 2013
Ukulele ·

Really encouraging teacher

It has been a real pleasure to have Phillip as a teacher. He is so positive and so encouraging. Although we've only just begun, Phillip has provided a good foundation (and the encouragement) to continue to experiment and improve my skills. Thank you, Phillip. I've really had fun working with you! (The next comment has nothing to do with Phillip, but I do find Skype lessons a bit awkward. But that's just me!)

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sarah K. Apr 1, 2013
Ukulele ·

Great teacher

I wasn't sure how taking lessons via Skype would work, not having that in person interaction, but it's been really great. Phil is a really good teacher and has an immense amount of patience and encouragement. Even when I haven't had any time to practice and I'm struggling with the lesson, he insists that I'm doing great and boosts my confidence. This is the first instrument I've ever played and I've appreciated the bits of music history he's thrown in to help me connect things and the lessons are always so much fun too.

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Kendall N. Sep 27, 2012
Guitar ·

Great Teacher for kids

My 11 year old son is taking lessons with Phil and he is a great teacher. He is very patient and explains thing well but doesn't dwell on things my son had already learned from a different teacher. He also does a good job of motivating my son to learn more and practice by teaching him songs that my son picked out.

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JeffP2 Jun 23, 2012


Phillip is really helping me. He has great patience and is walking me along slowly but surely. I was really worried that I would get lost in all this and give up but the exercises he gives me makes it fun and makes me want to learn more.

OndriaC Apr 26, 2012

My 7 year old son is loving his lessons. Phillip is very patient and makes it fun for him. I'm so glad we went with him for lessons.

RileyC Apr 17, 2012


My instructor is extremely knowledgable in every aspect of guitar fundamentals. He has an effective plan for myself to learn these fundamentals. I learn something new at each lesson and am very happy with my instructor.

HeathS Mar 19, 2012

I recommend, no reservation

I wanted to try Phillip as a teacher, because I gathered from his profile on Take Lessons that he has the academic knowledge and the experience credentials of a pro.I wanted to learn from someone who is an expert on guitar and who has a relaxed, yet focused and thoughtful teaching style, and that's what I've found.It's impressive to me that he has the credentials that got him accepted into the guitar Doctoral degree program at ASU. I also find Phillip to be a patient, engaged teacher who puts thought into his lessons before them and into his responses during lessons. He takes the time to suggest even the subtle things that you can do as a student to improve. Now, that's engaged teaching.I'm so enjoying discovering the science and art of the guitar and music in a relaxed, fun learning environment.

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