Learn basics about rhythm, harmony, and melody, and how they apply to the banjo.
*Disclaimer* I'm currently not taking beginner students on voice/singing, guitar, bass, drums, piano, and ukulele. I highly recommend my studio partners Melissa though. Please check out her profile:
I've been playing with classical ensembles and rock bands since 2001. Even though I started on classical trombone and rock guitar, I have come to expand my repertoire to a variety of instruments and genres. During my time in college I performed with the University choir, orchestra, and band. I also have organized, wrote/arranged for, and performed with a variety of bands in my home state of New Mexico, as well as Japan, and the San Francisco Bay Area.
Since 2006 I have been an active teacher. This profession has taken me everywhere from working with classical guitar cla
sses in New Mexico high schools to Elementary students in Japan to a variety of private students of various musical instruments and genres everywhere I've been. Since relocating to the Bay Area in 2010, I've had the pleasure of working with lots of great students from kids to adults with a wide range of ambitions. Since 2012 I've been running my own full time studio.
Philosophy of Learning
Lessons are generally designed to work towards giving students the tools to accomplish their goals and become increasingly independent over time. While all students will study similar fundamentals regarding technique, theory, and performance, every lesson is as different as every person. What kind of music do you want to make? I'll tell you what you need to do to get there, and help you take the steps to achieve your aspirations. It's really important to know though that everyone makes their own experience. The process of learning music involves you learning as much about your own mind and body as it does any external concepts, so please keep in mind only you can move yourself forward.
I also love to help students put together a song, record, and produce it for them so that they can have a recording to share with their friends and family.
I also hold events for my students. (Check out our pictures and videos below!) Younger students have opportunities to perform for friends and family at my studio every few months. Adult students also occasionally have events where they get a chance to get together and play music as well.
Aside from in-studio lessons, students also have the option to sign up for online lessons via Skype. (*Online lessons offered during different times than in-studio lessons.)
*Unfortunately due to scheduling issues, I'm not currently accepting students for bi-weekly lessons. I can do regular weekly lessons, or occasional drop-in lessons, but bi-weekly appointments make it really hard for me to give the best scheduled times to my existing weekly students. I'm sorry for the inconvenience.
My studio is equipped with:
*A P.A. System
*Vocal and instrument microphones
*Guitars, Basses, Ukulele, Banjos, etc
*Two guitar amps and a bass amp
*Various percussion including a fully equipped acoustic drum set
*A Roland V-Drums electronic drum set
*An electric piano console and Yamaha organ
*A MicroKorg Synthesizer
*A Tuba, Trombone, Cornet, Saxophone, and Flute
*An extensive physical and virtual music library
*A recording system that students are not only welcome to use but encouraged to
*HD Webcam and condenser microphone for high fidelity online lessons via Skype
Jesse has given directions on how to successfully become a better musician. His approach and explanation on musical theories was much more understandable than what I was previously reading. Overall, I found the lessons to be very usefull.
June 28, 2019
Super kind, patient and teaches a lot in each session!
March 25, 2019
Jesse is very friendly and a fun teacher to be around.
Beginner to intermediate. Banjo can be a difficult instrument at first. It requires a great deal of patience and persistence. But it's also an extremely rewarding instrument to learn. Banjo lessons typically center on Scruggs-style rolls, as well as building chord vocabulary.
Born in Arlington, Texas, I began playing guitar and bass guitar in high school. After studying for several years under Joey Faust, I studied Jazz, Classical Guitar, and Music Theory at TCC in Fort Worth. I began teaching in my free time to friends and family in 2003; by 2008 I was teaching full time, my students ranging in age from 3 to over 70. I also play piano, mandolin, banjo, ukulele, and auto harp.
*** Lesson Details *** I believe lessons should be fun, so all lessons are tailored to the individual student, based on the student's interests and goals. Students are free to progress at their own pace, and to choose their own learning material. Styles and techniques include Rock, Country, Blues, Bluegrass, Jazz, Shred, Slide Guitar, Classical Guitar, and Slap Bass, to name a few.
*** Studio Equipment *** Lessons in my home stud
io are definitely more beneficial to the student, because I have all my toys here! Besides having all of my other instruments here for demonstrations, or being able to freely change between electric or acoustic guitar for example. I also find that students who are at home (especially the children) tend to be more distracted, whether it's from lack of privacy due to the area chosen for the lessons, or often (again, this goes especially for the kids) there are pets that they like to play with while I'm trying to talk to them. When they're guests in my home, however, I find I have their strict attention.
*** Specialties *** I am primarily a guitar player specializing in electric lead guitar and solo acoustic guitar/vocal performance. I also teach beginner to advanced bass guitar, primarily finger-style.
I have been playing and teaching banjo since 2006, and I'm always very excited to introduce new students to this unique instrument. I focus on the "Scruggs-style" method of playing 5-string banjo, and we'll work on techniques used in common bluegrass and folk tunes. As you advance, I'll help you in creating your own banjo solo breaks.
- Degree in Music Theory / History from University of Wisconsin - Whitewater. - 25 years' teaching and performing experience. - Fluent in all electric styles, plus acoustic and classical.
*** Lesson Details *** I like to cover the fundamentals while focusing on your personal goals. All stages of ability are welcome, from rank novice to pro. We'll determine what you wish to learn, and build a roadmap to get there.
*** Studio Equipment *** Home Office in his Townhouse: Music stand, recording equipment, two chairs.
*** Specialties *** All types of jazz, from swing to modern. Rock, Metal, Blues and Country. Composition and improvisation.
So far so good. Very patient as mistakes after mistake was made. Corrected quite a few mistakes I was making so that my habits would be good habits from the start. Let me talk to myself as I messed up and complimented me when I was on the right track.
January 18, 2019
Great lesson! Thanks!
January 2, 2019
complete novice; adult student. First lesson very relaxed. Excellent blend through-out lesson of questions and information my goals and background as well as instructor's goals for me and his background. First "technical" part of lesson was manageable and care taken by Lyle to make sure I understood what was being presented. I left the first lesson feeling this would be a good fit between instructor and student
Nothing can beat seeing an experienced person playing banjo, except being able to ask that person questions and get answers. One on one private lessons are what I offer in a comfortable, relaxed environment. I can show you exactly how to make all the moves for playing correctly. This makes progress exponentially faster.
My name is Mike E. I am a resident of Lake Highlands. I played by ear for eleven years before starting training on music and how to teach by Mr. Terrill Gardner. Terrill took me through music from the Rolling Stones all the way through "Modern Method for Guitar" books I, II, and III from Berklee College in Boston. He was my mentor and taught me a method that he spent thirty years perfecting. It works, guaranteed. He also taught me on bass guitar and banjo. I can help you.
Lessons are customized to meet the needs of the individual, with the primary focus on playing songs as soon as possible. I am talking about playing along with the pros, not reading notes for months and playing "Mary Had a Little Lamb." I have combined my "by ear" knowledge with Terrill's training to provide a unique approach to music, chords, music theory, ear trainin
g, and more. Even piano lessons start with learning chords. Chords are what the musicians play behind the vocals.
Give me thirty minutes of your time and I will show you why students keep coming back to me, even after stopping for a while. After getting to know you, we can move to hour long lessons if warranted.
*** Lesson Details *** Note Reading provided on request only.
Beginner Guitar - We start with simple chords and eight easy one-verse songs. These teach chords, timing, hand technique, ear training, song construction, and the start of music theory.
Intermediate to Advanced Guitar - all of the above plus tablature, different styles, advanced chord theory, performance, lead guitar, and more.
Beginning Piano - We start with simple chords and go straight into the songs the students like. These teach chords, timing, hand technique, ear training, song construction, and the start of music theory. I can teach you every major chord on piano in one sentence.
Bass Guitar - We start with learning the location of notes on the neck and move immediately into major chords so you can start playing with songs. The chords are divided into their single notes, but viewed as chords because that is what the other musicians are playing during the vocals.
Banjo - I teach from the book "I Can Teach Myself Banjo" but you really need a teacher/mentor to show you all the things that seeing and being able to ask questions covers that just can't be covered in a book.
*** Studio Equipment *** Piano, amplifiers, cords, computer, free WiFi, all in a spacious room with a window for parents to view the teacher and student. Parents have a large, comfortable waiting area. Restrooms and water fountain provided.
*** Specialties *** I specialize in mentoring, being a friend as well as a teacher. I have never gotten mad at a student and never will.
I have written three books on chord theory, "Chordmaster Chord Theory for Keyboard," "Chordmaster for Beginner Piano Students," and "Chordmaster Chord Theory for Guitar." You can learn more about these online.
You can read my article for Takelessons.com at http://takelessons.com/blog/lead-guitar-tips. Just paste the address in your browser.
I have been teaching banjo since 2007 and can guide a student with folk/ bluegrass/ old timey and pop.
TEACHING MISSION: Capture the joy of playing music. Inspire continual playing and/or practice, regardless of student's lifestyle/career choices. I start the first lesson with a student wish list (songs, goals, etc) and every lesson we take significant steps towards the goals.
Derek is a very knowledgable instructor, easy to talk to, and I found his teaching technique is very motivating. He set realistic practice goals for the next session, which will require me to do my part, but that's the reason we show up, to learn how to play a musical instrument.
I highly recommend him.
March 15, 2019
Derek was very helpful! No time was wasted! Awesome 1st lesson!
I am a 8 year banjo player and teacher and studied at the Kentucky School of Bluegrass and Traditional Music. I can teach bluegrass, folk, or country banjo.
Caleb E. has been teaching music since 2005 and is available to teach at your home or his studio. Caleb has helped students from age 8 to 65 and believes that there is no age limit on learning and trying something new or even getting better. Caleb is a two year student of the Kentucky School of Bluegrass and Traditional Music with a degree as a professional recording artist. Helping students achieve goals regarding musical technique, personal creativity, and self confidence is a personal mission for Caleb and loves to teach in a personal, hands on approach.
Caleb has a wide music aptitude. He teaches several instruments. He is very patient working with novices like myself.
July 26, 2018
August 13, 2017
Caleb has taught me so much in only five lessons! I now can play 4 songs that I love, and I'm getting a great refresher course on music theory. He's super patient and sets very realistic expectations. I really like that he cared to ask me what songs I liked and would like to learn instead of starting with generic songs like 'twinkle twinkle' because it gave me more motivation to practice and learn. I can't wait to learn more!
I like to make learning an instrument fun and easy to fit into your schedule!
If you're an adult finally getting around to learning your dream instrument or a child following your passion of playing music I tailor your lessons specifically to you. We look at what you want to play, pick specific songs that you want to learn, and learn the techniques you need to play these songs. It sounds simple, but it's so effective and much more fun to learn this way!
And it would be my pleasure to be your music instructor.
I teach all of the fretted string instruments: Guitar | Banjo | Mandolin | Bass | Ukulele
I structure my lesson plans specifically around what you want to learn and how you want to learn it. We will go as slow or fast through the material as you'd like, focusing on playing songs and the techniques needed to get there.
If you have any questions for me, hit the "Ask Grant A Question" button above.
Julie taught herself to play clawhammer banjo, influenced by various Appalachian instrumentalists and accompanists (including Dock Boggs, Clarence Ashley, Hobart Smith, and Lily May Ledford), but her style is also influenced by years of playing with midwestern and southern-style dance fiddlers. I offer lessons in clawhammer (down-picked) banjo, from basic technique to drop-thumb style, the "Galax lick," sweeping the strings, approaches to song accompaniment, use of tunings, and much more.
I am a professional musician, specializing in traditional American and Irish music and song; I can, however, also teach classical guitar and beginning-intermediate violin. My CD, "American Stranger," has received critical acclaim and I have authored two books on DADGAD guitar for Mel Bay Publications.
I taught myself guitar at the age of thirteen, but took three years of lessons at Washington University, where I also studied English and French. As an adult I became interested in fingerstyle guitar in open tunings, especially DADGAD. I am, however, happy to teach in standard tuning--including basic guitar proficiency, classical guitar, and "folk" guitar.
I have played violin since I was eleven, taking lessons until the age of sixteen and playing in both high school orchestra and the local youth symphony. I later learned to sus
pend much of my classical technique in order to play both old-time and traditional Irish fiddle as authentically as possible; but I still retain my initial training and apply good basic violin technique to my fiddle and (of course) her violin teaching, while tailoring it to the musical idioms of each of students.
I have also studied voice, which again, however, I have never allowed to interfere with my performance of traditional songs--largely because I had developed a traditional approach to the singing of both American southern mountain repertory and traditional Irish song many years before receiving any formal instruction. This training, however, has given me greater insight into how to get the most out of your voice for almost any style.
I also taught myself to play lap dulcimer, basing my approach on the Eastern Kentucky styles associated with Jean Ritchie, Barbara Edwards, and Anne MacFie—that is, primarily using a small dowel stick or noter to sound the melody, and playing counter-melodies for song accompaniments.
My clawhammer banjo-playing is influenced by various Appalachian instrumentalists and accompanists (including Dock Boggs, Clarence Ashley, Hobart Smith, and Lily May Ledford), but my style is also influenced by years of playing with midwestern and southern-style fiddlers.
I welcome students ages 10 or above, and have learned to adapt my teaching style to the individual student, helping each one to make the most of his or her talents and enthusiasms, while emphasizing sound technique and good practice habits.
I also teach academic subjects, especially English (in which I hold a Ph.D.) and French (in which I hold a B.A.). In English, I emphasize good grammar and solid composition skills and try to get my students as excited as I am about everything from sentence structure to Shakespeare.
We had some trouble with the audio on her end, but once we got going, it went well. I spoke and understood a lot of French in my first hour! Julie is going to help me with singing in French. I'm so excited.
August 5, 2019
Many people are talented as performers but not gifted as instructors - Julie is most definitely both. She uses her keen ear to let you know your strengths, and finds productive ways to help you improve weak points. She lives and breathes traditional music and it is always a true delight to learn from her.
July 30, 2019
I have been taking lessons in classical style guitar from Julie for about two years. She has patiently brought me through increasingly more difficult technique by choosing a wide variety of challenging but enjoyable pieces to practice. I am gradually working my way up the fret towards the 5th position. She has helped me with theory, including rhythm, the major and minor scales and chord building. Her empathy is a particular blessing for me because of my poor eyesight and the arthritis in my wrists, hands and fingers.”
Loud, jangly, and twangy, the banjo is an instrument with a distinctive voice that immediately evokes the spirit of the American South. Long a mainstay of bluegrass music, banjos have recently been incorporated into pop music as well by bands like Mumford and Sons.
And, if YouTube trends are any indication, it looks like the banjo is making another genre shift!
A pack of viral videos featuring banjo covers of hard rock classics are making the rounds and proving that banjos can shred just a …