I started playing guitar seriously at the age of 12 and have been a guitar teacher for 22 years. My first influences were rock and metal. In my later teens, I became very interested in other music genres such as jazz, fusion and classical. I began my formal music education as a Classical Guitar performance major, ultimately obtaining a Masters Degree in Music Composition from the Queens College Aaron Copland School of Music.
The road I have taken with music has been paved with many unexpected twists and turns. Throughout my many years of learning and making new discoveries, I have now arriv
ed at a point where I am able to productively incorporate knowledge from various experiences with music and education into my own creativity and teaching. I never expect to stop learning or exploring, and I look forward to sharing my enthusiasm, valuable experiences and knowledge with my students.
James W. November 25, 2014
Marco is one of the best teacher ever, I knew him way back in 1997 when I first came in to the state. At first, one of my friend was taking the session and he didn't mind me just staying and observed. After a few classes, I decided to go with Marco. As a new immigrant, language barrier is a problem. He 's patiently teach me from a to z. Making sure I understand everything. Although, I knew some of the basic of the guitar. I was surprisingly I could learn how to read music. Be able to improvise with him during lesson. You're not just learning how to play song/guitar. You learn music theory all in a packet. I still remember one day I was playing in the local shop in HK, people was whispering this guy is good. This is a good memory that I have until now.
Myles H. November 24, 2014
I was a student of Marco's for about two-almost three years, and his excitement, love, desire, wisdom and passion for music and teaching is something that can't be described in words. Marco is a teacher that likes to have fun with whatever it is he may be teaching, but he is also very serious about it to make sure his students learn what they want in the best way possible to them. He will encourage his students if they need it and congratulate you every time you complete whatever it is you may have learned from him. I mostly learned techniques/songs from artist's such as Randy Rhoads, Angus Young, and much more from Marco. He will not let you down. He won't give up on you. I would gladly learn from him any time /any chance I'd get.
mia M. November 19, 2014
Marco has been teaching my son how to play the guitar since 2008. I feel that we were blessed having Marco as my son's first teacher. He really understood him and I was brought to tears at his very first recital when I was amazed how much he had learned in just a short few months. He is a senior in HS now and he has a love for the guitar and a passion to learn new music on his own.
Marco is an exceptional teacher who is very patient and understands his students and listens to their needs. He is extremely talented and anyone would be very lucky to have him as their music instructor. I recommend him highly. He is the best!
-Classical Guitar -Jazz Guitar -Acoustic Guitar -Resonator/Slide Guitar Genres: -Rock -Blues -R & B -Funk -Reggae -Folk -Heavy Metal
**FInger style and flat pick
Professor Nick R. (guitar, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, dobro/resonator/slide, tenor guitar, baritone resonator, bass, drums, composition) is currently the adjunct professor at Essex College, Jazz clinician for over 16 years via Kupferberg Center (Queens College) and has been on the staff at Great Neck Music Conservatory. Nick has given lectures at Manhattanville College, at Queens College and at schools, nationally.
-Just Jazz Guitar magazine interview [February 2015 issue]
-Vanity Fair magazine (August 2013) interview
"Summer of 2013, Nick R. performed at Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Ma
rtin's home. It was an honor to meet Paul McCartney and jam with him while he played toy harmonica. Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Iridium, Bluenote, Birdland, U.N., IAJE, Cape Cod Jazz Festival, NJPAC, Sweet Rhythm, Smalls, Zinc Bar, Smoke Jazz Club, internationally: Japan, Spain, Russia, Brasil, St. Kitts, Canada, France, Bermuda, Sweden, Israel
-Toured/recorded and/or worked as sideman with Jimmy McGriff, Teddy Charles, Sonny Dallas, Victor Jones and Cultur-versy, Vince Giordano & The Night Hawks, Frank Vignola/Joe Ascione, Miles Griffith, David Pleasant, Jim Nolet (former violinist for the Jazz Passengers), Anastasia Rene, Jon Weber, Mona's Hot Four, Gordon Au's Grand Street Stompers, Michael Arenella's Dreamland Orchestra, with Jesse Gelber, Raphael McGregor, Emily Asher's Garden Party, and many other groups.
-Appears in Sam Mendes Film "Away We Go"
-Movie Soundtrack: King George.
-Guitar/banjo: "Jew Grows in Brooklyn," "Take Me Along," "The Big Apple Circus" + others.
-Banjo/Guitar Chair: "New Girl In Town" (Irish Rep Theatre)
M.A. from the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College (partial scholarship)
B.S. from S.U.N.Y. Stony Brook, graduated magna cum laude. Dean's list all semesters
-Published interview (book): A New Face of Jazz (Cicily Janus)
-Playing guitar/banjo on first episode of new PBS cartoon "Peg and Cat"
- Current adjunct professor at Essex College
-Guest lecturing professor at Manhattanville College
-Substitute adjunct professor at Queens College
-Winning participant: I.A.J.E. with Miles Griffith's New Ting 2007. Performance and educational certificate granted.
-Winning participant; part-scholarship award: 2004 International Jazz Workshop at BANFF Centre, Canada (dir, Dave Douglas)
-Winning participant; full-scholarship award of the 2001 JAS academy in Aspen Colorado (dir, Christian McBride (Down Beat Dec. 2001)
-Studying Bol (Indian rhythmic system) with tabla player, Pandit Samir Chatterjee 2006-2007; 2013-current
-Studied with Pat Martino, Billy Bauer, Ben Monder, Tony Purrone, Pete Bernstein, Dr. Stephen Salerno, Dr. David Belser
-Studying African Rhythms with drummer, Harvey Wirht
*** Lesson Details *** With over 20 years teaching experience, Nick is patient with children & adults. He has a creative, unique pedagogy emphasizing hearing through singing, ear-training & natural, organic listening. Nick instills healthy absorption of music while students have fun learning their music, sight reading, internalizing with focus on rhythm and time. As a student, you will get to work on music that you, the student select as well as work on sight-reading, technique, ear-training. We will also work out of method books and use other sources of information.
*** Studio Equipment *** Chairs, music stands, instrument stands, classical foot pedals, classical guitar pillows, guitar amps, guitar, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, drum set. Students usually provide their own instruments but it's possible to borrow an instrument during the lesson at the studio on the first lesson. (free street parking right in front!)
*** Specialties *** Nick's pedagogy emphasizes ear-training, singing, reading and truly hearing the music we are working on. Rather than rote teaching and guitar tablature, he instills natural listening, transcribing, sight-reading and proper technique. Lessons are always enjoyable as Nick observes each student's unique needs and listen's to their song preferences and musical goals. Students have the opportunity to learn pieces and genres they select and they are trained to figure out tunes by ear (ear-training) and transcribe.
-classical guitar and Brazilian guitar (nylon 6 string and nylon 7 string guitar) -acoustic steel string guitar, electric 6 string and electric 7 string guitar - jazz guitar + an eclectic mix of styles: blues, Brazilian music, Latin Jazz, Afro-Peruvian, Indian music, rock, heavy metal, funk, R & B, Motown, reggae + other genres. - tenor banjo (traditional jazz, jazz from New Orleans, Dixieland and world music) -5 string banjo (Earl Scruggs finger picking [bluegrass and country]) -tenor guitar -ukulele -mandolin -resonator slide/Dobro. -baritone resonator (slide)
Sabrina S. January 21, 2015
Acoustic Guitar ·
I started my lessons with Nick just one month. I know I am inquisitive, intense, overly involved and very detail oriented with my interests in general and I treat guitar the same way. I enjoy and immerse myself into it. I think Nick has a very broad knowledge of guitar playing and comes across as a very conscientious instructor in the way he handles my overachieving demands. I would surely recommend him.
James B. January 2, 2015
Exceptional musician. Skilled and patient teacher.
I have been taking weekly guitar lessons with Nick for nearly four months now and it has been all I hoped for and more. As a recent retiree and amateur musician one of my goals is to rapidly improve my novice guitar skills. I was looking for a teacher who would push me hard but was willing to work with the particular songs and musical questions that I might bring to him each week. I could not be more pleased. Nick is able to immediately bring his knowledge and experience to any material that I bring to a lesson and he uses it as the basis for a wide range of teaching moments – whether it be technique, harmony, or improvisational approach. What I didn't anticipate was the extent to which his holistic, listening (and singing) based approach to playing an instrument has challenged me. Nick is making me a better musician not just a better guitar player. (And it is very helpful that he types out notes on all that we discuss and sends an email following each lesson.)
Koji Y. December 24, 2014
Jazz Guitar ·
Mr. Nick R. is an absolutely great guitar player and music instructor. I'm a young professional jazz guitarist and instructor and have been taking jazz guitar lessons with Nick R. weekly since September of 2014. Every lesson, I receive a lot of information that I didn't know before and Nick always give me proper quantity and quality of task
Many ideas, information from his suggestions, including how to practice myself and instruction that goes beyond musical and guitar technique, also including psychological and philosophical concepts from Nick's experience and knowledge. His explanations are incredibly clear and easily to follow.
I've been playing guitar over 15 years. In my experience, it's very, very difficult to find a mentor like Nick R.
I truly appreciate meeting him and have tremendous respect for Professor R.
Thanks as always Nick!!
Koji Yoneyama (professional jazz guitarist and instructor), Dec. 23, 2014
I love helping bass players with groove and understanding the bass' role in the band, find the pocket and lock in with the drummer.
"a masterful guitarist -- really, a total whiz of a rare order." --Hudson Valley Almanac Weekly
"a force to be reckoned with... sophisticated chord voicings, complex finger picking patterns, and a flurry of blues, jazz, and folk inflected riffs performed with a ringing acoustic tone and an undeniable rhythmic drive." --Wired.com
Scott is a an internationally touring guitarist and songwriter based in New York. In addition to his work as an in demand sideman for various artists and bands around the country, Scott is also an accomplished bandleader and composer with four acclaimed release
s under his belt over the last ten years.
As a guitarist, Scott brings a modern, technical approach to traditional american styles - jazz, bluegrass, country blues, western swing and chick'n pick'n country guitar - but as a songwriter he gravitates toward straightforward rock, blues and folk.
Scott's guitar playing and songwriting has landed him features from American Songwriter, CMT, and more. He holds a BFA in Studio/Composition, with a minor in Jazz Performance, from SUNY Purchase in Purchase, NY.
*** Lesson Details *** When studying with Scott, students can expect a comfortable and fun atmosphere that promotes experimentation and positive reinforcement. Employing a curriculum that is equal parts formal technique and informal playing of the students favorite music, Scott makes every lesson engaging and exciting for his students.
After 3 to 6 months studying with Scott, beginners should expect to be able to play many of their favorite songs, have a firm grasp on basic scales, chords, theory and sight reading, and can even begin writing their own songs and improvising solos!
If you're already an intermediate/advanced player, Scott will push you to find your unique voice on the guitar, and tap into advanced techniques and approaches that will help you fully realize all that the guitar has to offer.
Lessons are tailored to each individual student's particular interests and abilities. Wherever you want to take your guitar playing, Scott will get you there and beyond!
*** Travel Equipment *** I will bring an acoustic guitar with me. My student must only have a guitar of their own of any kind. If it's electric, an amp is preferable, but not necessary.
*** Specialties *** Music, Guitar, Bass, Theory, Song Writing, Composition, Improvisation, Sight Reading, Advanced Harmonic and Rhythmic Concepts, Group Playing I am schooled in Jazz, but have a passion for all styles, including rock, blues, country, funk, folk, punk, and world music.
Randall D. May 14, 2015
Bluegrass Guitar ·
Online Verified Student
My first lesson was wonderful! I have been playing guitar for 20 years, and have been in a rut for the last several. Scott has already challenged me in my first lesson and I have direction for personal practice.
barbara F. August 27, 2014
Acoustic Guitar ·
Online Verified Student
Scott is not only an amazing guitarist, but he is a superb teacher. Kind, supportive, and has an uncanny ability to break-down difficult pickings and strums into understandable and easy to follow directions. Most importantly, very patient. I was self-taught in the 70s when everyone picked up a guitar, stopped as an adult and am now re-starting it again after 30 years-and enjoying every moment. Scott is able to teach any type of music or song and intuitively understands and teaches the guitar style that the student would like to learn. Any student who studies with Scott should consider themselves fortunate. Not only does he know his stuff, he is passionate about music and passing on this musical knowledge to his students.
Kevin M. April 29, 2014
Worlds greatest guitarist gives lessons (and he's a good guy too)
I have been taking lessons with Scott for almost 10 years. Lessons have varied from ear training to guitar to songwriting. He is one of the most knowledgable and gifted musicians/ teachers I have ever known.
Lesson structures have been both formal and informal (at my request). I take a lot of information and knowledge home from each one and plenty to practice. Whether you want to learn a song or you want to learn theory, he can explain anything clearly and comfortably meeting you on your skill level.
I was really uncomfortable with where I was musically when I first started taking lessons. Almost immediately after starting with Scott I was confident in talking with other musicians in their language.
Do yourself and anyone who hears you make music a favor, and get a lesson with Scott!
technique repertoire ear training improvisation reading music
*Note: Availability especially on the weekends can change depending on the week, lessons can be scheduled on a week to week basis
Experience: BandSeed 2014-Present Edward B Shallow Junior High School, Brooklyn, NY 2012 Joe's Music And Dance Academy, Queens, NY 2012-2014 Berklee Staff Accompanist Boston, MA 2008-2010 Pike School, Andover, MA 2010 Donn Carr Music Store Peabody, MA 2009 George's Music Store in Berwyn, PA 2003-2004
Notable Performances: Atlantic Recording Artist: Dyme-A-Duzin 2015 Grammy Award winning artist: Father Goose 2014, 2013 Tony Award winning producer: Dal
e Badway 2013 Stellar Award and GMWA Excellence Award winning artist: Kim Burrell 2013 Grammy Award winning artist: Tarey Torae 2012 Atlantic Recording Artist: Laura Izibohr opening for Brian McKnight 2012 Stellar Award and GMWA Excellence Award winning artist: Maurette Brown Clark 2012 Chris Rob (Roberta Flack, Talib Kweli) 2012 NYC venues such as The Blue Note, Lincoln Center, Irving Plaza, BB Kings, and Joyce Theater 2011
you can find more information on AlexBusbySmith.com
*** Lesson Details *** I assess where the student is at with regards to where they want to be musically and cater the lesson plan to what the student needs.
*** Studio Equipment *** 12-inch guitar amp,12-inch bass amp, 8-inch guitar/bass amp, extra guitar, extra bass guitar, Logic 9 music software and audio interface. Seating is available.
*** Travel Equipment *** If I drive I can bring a bass amp or a guitar amp. They need to have their own instrument.
*** Specialties *** Jazz, R&B, Gospel, Pop, Rock, Hip Hop, Funk
Daniel J. May 10, 2015
Bass Guitar ·
Online Verified Student
Taking lessons with Alex was awesome! He taught me a lot in just a few lessons and has given me tools for me to learn the bass on my own. I had a great experience and would definitely recommend him as a teacher.
Anthony B. April 19, 2015
Bass Guitar ·
In studio Verified Student
Alex is a great teacher.. He helped me learn new skills and reach a potential that i thought i would never reach. He works with your time and schedule. Im still learning for him so i would advise you book a lesson and try it for you self.
Cooper W. March 23, 2015
Bass Guitar ·
Alex is a great teacher. Very patient, and dedicated. I was able to learn a lot about bass very quickly from him. I highly recommend him.
Can teach beginners and intermediate. Scales, songs, exercises and more!
-Guitarist, songwriter, teacher, band-leader, all around musician, writer, photographer....been playing music for over 25 years and teaching for over 11 years. - Highlights include performances at "The House of Blues" in New Orleans and The Fox Theater in Boulder, Colorado opening up for national acts. (Jerry Garcia Band, Keller Wiiiams) -Taught numerous private and group lessons over the years. - Involved with music summer camps and guitar seminars for children. - Began studying guitar with Jeff Tillman (Westchester, NY) who has played in various jazz bands with people like Bucky Pizzarelli.
(famous jazz guitarist) -I am currently listening to artists like Ray Lamontagne, David Gray, Galactic and Medeski Martin and Wood. -Keep your mind open to all kinds of music! Lots of improvising on it for those of you interested in learning more about soloing!
Here's my full bio! In the past, Dan toured with The Boulevards based out of New Orleans, Louisiana. He spent about 7 years in Colorado in the 90's absorbing the music scene in Boulder and working the clubs in Denver. He first landed out west moving to Boulder, Colorado after he graduated college in 1994. Here, he met a lot of great musicians and worked with Samples producer Walt Beery at a local music store where guys like Big Head Todd and other popular Colorado musicians would stop in. He once played a gig up in Nederland, Colorado with Dave Watts (The Motet) and Erik Deutsch (Charlie Hunter Trio) among others and although got a little lost on the jazz changes, he hung in there. Now, in 2014, Dan would be more than ready to tackle that gig! For you aspiring musicians, that's what time, performance and practice will eventually do...Anyway, there was (and still is) a great music vibe in Boulder however, Dan wanted a change and moved to Denver in 1998. At the time, The Boulevards were a hard working swing and blues band playing all over the state and touring when they could. At this point, Dan was really digging into the life of a working musician, sweating it out at the clubs and eagerly anticipating the next one. (not too different from today) The Boulevards played multiple venues in New Orleans during several Jazz Fest's and Mardi Gras. Pierre Masperos, Bombay Club, Vic's Kangaroo Cafe and The Dream Palace were some of the venues, although a few no longer exist. Those were important musical experiences for Dan shaping what would be, his own funky style. After The Boulevards, he formed his own band called Rare Form who were based in Denver. He also recorded an all original cd recruiting some of Denver's finest session players. Dave Cieri the keyboardist for the popular jam band (at the time) Chief Broom did some excellent keyboard work on the album. The power trio was an all original project with LA studio musician Beto Hale on drums and Denver's own Steve Morrow on bass. That was a hot trio however, Dan was frustrated living in Denver and missed the big city. A recording at the Soiled Dove in downtown Denver was the band's highlight with "A Groove" recorded at that point. In 2001, he relocated to Long Beach, New York which had always been close to his heart and continued writing and recording music. Now, reflecting on his current New York band The DF Project, "At first the band was a trio and then a five piece. We had a keyboardist and then we didn't. That's how band's go. People come and go sometimes. Recorded at a recent performance in Manhattan at The Underscore, are two new tunes on the page. They are "Warning Sign" and a funky one called "New Orleans". Several years ago, he spent some time in the studio rehearsing with former Jason Bonham Band guitarist Tony Catania. That band never took off.. oh well they would of been hot! He's also done gigs with some of the areas finest musician's including George Panos from the popular band Mystic and Manny Focarazzo who currently plays keyboards for Alan Parson's Project. He's also jammed with Primo guitarist Dean Brown who plays with Stanley Clarke's band among others. He also has several other projects in the works he hopes to perform with in 2009. In 2005, he wanted a break from music and began painting. Some examples of his work (photography included) can be viewed under "pics" or on the picture collage. In 2007, Dan performed over 130 gigs in the New York City and Long Island area as both a solo artist and with several bands. The challenge of performing for roughly two decades now has proven positive with gigs under his belt at The Knitting Factory in Manhattan, Kenny's Castaway's (didn't Bruce play there?), The Fox Theatre in Boulder, and The House of Blues in New Orleans to name a few. Dan has opened up for such artists as Keller Williams, Jerry Garcia Band w/Melvin Seals and Jumpin' Johnny Sansone, a New Orleans blues musician. He also placed second in the LIBS solo competition in 2007. Dan has recorded over the years with a number of independent artist's. The new lineup for 2014 is exciting! With Jon Gray, Chris Gardner and William Johnson Jr now making up the band the sound is right where Dan wants it! "I'm glad we have a keyboard involved..."
*** Lesson Details *** Teaching is like anything else, you need to put in the time in order to become better at it. There is a certain method or art in teaching that through time, develops as you work at it. My attitude is this: each person deserves a custom-designed method for their individual needs.
Some people start out on their instrument knowing absolutely nothing about music. Others can remember things like sight reading or tempo from classes taken during their school years. These variables need to be recognized and a student needs to be developed using their strengths. I try and keep my lessons informative and flowing smoothly.
I keep in mind there are a lot of instructional videos floating around on the internet. I have seen some of them and there are certain benefits in watching these videos. However, I firmly believe nothing takes the place of a good lesson one on one.
Not only does it personalize the learning process, but it makes it more fun and more hands on. Sometimes, in order to keep my lessons productive, I pretend I am videotaping myself. This way, I concentrate on spending my time wisely and getting my information across as clearly and concisely as possible.
I also concentrate on keeping the lesson fun and interesting in order to stimulate the student to want to come back for the next one. I teach all styles, jazz, blues, rock, country, classical so depending on your goals, we can customize the lesson to what you want to achieve! (and have fun doing it too!!)
*** Studio Equipment *** Line 6 Guitar Amp, Fender Blues Junior III Guitar Amp. Hartke Bass Amp, Yamaha E403 Keyboard.
*** Travel Equipment *** For guitar students I expect them to bring their
own instrument. I can lend out a guitar or a bass temporarily. You
can always rent an instrument for our lesson if you don't want to
*** Specialties *** Guitar and Bass, Songwriting, Improvisation, Songs, Sightreading
Scott K. June 14, 2015
In home Verified Student
Dan balanced teaching the music theory and the right way to play with making sure I was engaged in the process and learning songs. He also helped me connect the dots on certain scales that are common in much of my favorite music.
Michael D. February 25, 2014
Guitar Verified Student
The teacher is skilled and enjoyable
I am enjoying Dan as a teacher
He is very skilled and enjoyable to learn to play guitar
He is focused and competent
Dan F. January 18, 2014
Had a lot of patience and was knowledgeable! Taught me chords, scales, songs, sightreading, music theory and more. Was a helpful instructor when I had questions.
Students are raving about their Bass Guitar instructors on TakeLessons.
Check out some of these recent reviews.
Review by Patrick graham
"Vincent and I hit it off right from the beginning. He is very knowledgable about music and the bass in particular, which is what I wanted. He also is very
comfortable to work with and has a very spacious studio to work in."
New York, NY teacher:
Review by Daniel
"Taking lessons with Alex was awesome! He taught me a lot in just a few lessons and has given me tools for me to learn the bass on my own. I had a great ex
perience and would definitely recommend him as a teacher."
New York, NY teacher:
Review by Michael
I have been studying the bass with Andrew for just over two years with a concentration on Jazz theory. Andrew uses a step by step appr
oach geared to my learning style - we have switched directions several times. Andrew's attention to detail and his desire for me to learn the right way is more than impressive. There have been lessons where I have not played a note but instead focused on reviewing different concepts. I'm fifty-seven years old and things don't come as easy as they use to and I really appreciate Andrew's patience and availability. I highly recommend Andrew for someone who is serious about learning to play the bass."
Philadelphia, PA teacher:
Review by Diane
"Jonathan is a very gifted musician and teacher. He worked very well with our shy teenage daughter teaching her the bass guitar. He is very passionate ab
out his craft and committed to his work."
Winchester, VA teacher:
Review by Miguel
"Justine is very patient when teaching, and always has great advice to give at the end of a lesson. Her sessions are concise, friendly, and very helpful. S
he was a great teacher for me, as a beginner."
San Diego, CA teacher:
Review by Steve
"Ben's bass playing is experienced and versatile, much like the way he teaches. Since he's fluent in multiple genres - from rock to jazz to ska and more -
he's able to incorporate a student's specific musical interests into their lesson and tailor the learning especially to them, which always makes his lessons interesting and exciting."
New York, NY teacher:
Review by Abraham
"Paul has been EXCELLENT. I've learned an incredible amount from him and gained much more confidence in what I knew from past training. Highly accommodatin
g and encouraging. I'd recommend him in a flash."
Chicago, IL teacher:
Review by Doug
"Great students make great teachers!
Nick was my bass student at Columbia College - he also studied with Chuck Webb. He was an excellent student, always m
otivated. punctual, enthusiastic and right on top of all the assignments.
He has turned into a terrific professional player and will make a fantastic bass teacher. He knows the instrument inside out and is an excellent communicator. I highly recommend him to teach you or your child the bass guitar.
Chicago, IL teacher:
Review by Ben
"Stelios is a great music teacher. When I was in the 7th grade (I'm a senior in HS now), my family posted a couple adds looking for someone who could teach
me the bass guitar and my brother the electric guitar. Stelios's application stood out among the rest and we chose him. He was phenomenal! My brother and I took lessons for about a year and could not have been more satisfied. He is an incredibly skilled musician himself, and in addition is one of the best music teachers I have ever had. He's a great guy and I would seriously recommend Stelios to anyone looking to learn or improve their musical talent no matter what their age."