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Fairfax, VA Banjo Lessons

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Popular Banjo Teachers near Fairfax, VA

Check out some of our most popular teachers near Fairfax, VA including Washington, Arlington, Alexandria, Silver Spring and Gaithersburg.

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About Mike T.

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Manassas, VA

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Scruggs Style Bluegrass 5-String Banjo

About Mike
I have played bluegrass banjo since I was 16 (I am now looking at Social Security). I have been instructing for eight years since semi-retiring from my day job. I use various teaching methods and aids and have participated in training programs with the finest banjo players in the country, including Sonny Osborne, Bill Emerson, Tony Trischka, Ned Luberecki, Pete Wernick, Jim Mills, Bill Evans, Charlie Cushman and Alan Munde.

My banjo philosophy is that while we may aspire to play banjo like Earl Scruggs, it is not necessary to be at that level to enjoy playing bluegrass music. The organic simplicity of bluegrass songs, the repetition of components, and the strong melody lines makes entry level playing fun and rewarding and within the reach of anyone who is willing to try.

When bluegrass musicians are jamming together, usin
g new skills, learning with and from each other, there's little chance they will give up playing music. I'd say they're hooked -- on bluegrass! More people spending less time in front of a TV, and more with each other. Wholesome fun. A bigger, thriving bluegrass community. A better world!

*** Lesson Details ***
I believe that anyone learning bluegrass should first learn the chords to favorite easy songs, and a simple way of accompanying. Playing songs smoothly in real time while using a songbook (or a fellow picker) for the words, is easy, fun, and builds a rhythmic/chordal foundation and repertoire.

Easy jamming is highly recommended and will be part of the learning program. Good sounding rhythm techniques can be added easily as they are learned. Through this process, overall technique is expanded and the music sounds more interesting. Once we have the chords and rhythm, different types of soloing can be added. The easiest method is to "fake it" by just playing simple licks and rhythm techniques while following the chord changes. The next step up might be to play an exact tabbed (a form of written banjo music) basic solo, or (better) a self-composed one featuring melody. This phase is exciting to enter, and of course it creates motivation to really improve and master those solos we all want to play. Since all students come to bluegrass banjo with their own unique skills and experience - I will design a program just for you to ensure you reach you playing goals.

*** Travel Equipment ***
Little equipment is required for bluegrass banjo other than the instrument.

*** Specialties ***
5 string Bluegrass Banjo
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Reviews
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Reed September 16, 2018
· Banjo · In home
Mike is a super musician himself, but he has met me at my true-beginning level. Mike has a way of making you feel very comfortable while imparting proper techniques and advice. He is very patient with my beginning fumbles, while challenging me to make some progress each week. I really recommend him as a teacher. In three weeks, I have three songs I am working on and four finger rolls, with advice on how to learn to be more smooth when chording. This pace was adjusted for myself, as he will adjust to your own current level. You get some funny stories too (always helps).
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Christine November 10, 2017
· Banjo · In studio
Very good at teaching technique as well as breaking songs down so they are easier to pick up.
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Chris S. November 10, 2017
· Banjo · In studio
I'm as new as they come; zero banjo experience. Mike was absolutely outstanding! In my first lesson he taught me how to tune, 3 major chords, strumming, picking, rolls, and I got my first song to practice. I highly recommend Mike!
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Mike T.

Mike T.

Manassas, VA 20109
(13)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

About Jonathan S.

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Sarasota, FL

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Fingerpicking or claw-hammer... let's get to the banjo pickin'!

About Jonathan
About

I am a Florida native, active doctoral student, teacher and practitioner. My career includes performing and recording as a guitarist and teaching subjects such as music or math. Grade-school academic strengths in mathematics represent my enthusiasm for the subject. The math equivalent in music can be considered music theory, which is another passion of mine. I hope to take these well-rounded characteristics to teach and influence others with what I have learned in my education and career thus far.

Education & Teaching Experience:

I am currently pursuing my Doctorate of Musical Arts from Shenandoah University and hold a Masters of Music from the University of Akron and a Bachelor of Music from Stetson University (all degrees with a guitar performance emphasis). I also have a temporary teaching certificate for Music K-12 fro
m the Florida Department of Education. I have taught in Florida as a preferred substitute for general music classes, K-12. In college, I have given study sessions for music theory levels ranging from 4-part writing to post-serialism.

Degrees:
Doctorate of Musical Arts: Guitar Performance; Shenandoah University, expected May 2019
Master of Music: Guitar Performance; University of Akron, May 2014
Bachelor of Music: Guitar Performance; Stetson University, 2011

While giving lessons:
I ensure that every student receives fundamental foundation pertaining to the subject. While learning the basics, I advise that the student organizes their lessons and materials in a way that displays progress over time. With the proper knowledge, we can treat the heart of a subject with refinement in order to grasp its purpose and reason---whether its music or math.

Why?
My students have grown with confidence through a sense of accomplishment. Success does not only affect a person's well-being but can also impact other dimensions of their lives.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Equipment available if needed:

Footstools
Music stands
Pencils
Complete home recording studio
Computer/tablet/smartphone w/ internet
Speakers and playback devices
Reference books

*** Travel Equipment ***
Each student is expected to bring with them (if applicable):

Notebook or log
Reference/score materials
Instrument(s) and case
Accessories
Portable sound recorder (optional)

*** Specialties ***
Classical, Jazz and Rock Styles.

Performance, Music Theory, Arranging, Composition.

Elementary Math, Pre-Algebra, Algebra, Geometry, Statistics, Trigonometry, Pre-Calc.
...
Reviews
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Gina A. August 7, 2015
· Piano · In home
Jonathan is a wonderful teacher. I would recommend him to others for lessons.
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Shanna T. July 3, 2015
· Guitar · In studio
Great instructor...very good at breaking things down to help you succeed.
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Nan Z. June 29, 2015
· Trumpet · Online
My daughter really enjoyed the lesson and interaction.
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Jonathan S.

Jonathan S.

Online
(5)
starting at
$30 / 30-min

About John B.

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Arlington, VA

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Learn how to play Banjo!

While learning the Banjo, students will learn specific rolls such as forward and backward rolls, chords strum patterns, rhythm playing and various songs such as Foggy Mountain Breakdown and Dueling Banjos. They will learn the styles of Bluegrass and Claw Hammer playing.

About John
I have been playing for about 35 years and teaching music and guitar for 25 years. I have a Bachelor of Music in Jazz and Classical guitar. I've taught at the University level and currently maintain a professional studio in Arlington, Virginia. I am very well versed in many different styles of music including, Rock, Blues, Jazz, Classical and Suzuki guitar. Students who decide to sign up with me, will have a lesson plan, a strategy for meeting their musical goals and will enjoy themselves in the process.

*** Lesson Details ***
Lessons are custom designed to meet the needs of every student, whether it is someone just starting out with the basics or for that seasoned player that wants to hone their professional skills. As a teacher, I consider myself easy going and laid back, with an emphasis on encouraging each student to do their very
best.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Guitar, instruments, keyboards recording equipment, waiting room, seating for parents

*** Travel Equipment ***
Music stand, foot stool, cables.- Teacher
Own instrument, amplifier if needed, notebook.-Student

*** Specialties ***
I have been teaching for about 25 years and am well versed in Jazz, Classical, Rock, Blues and Country genres. I focus on anything from note reading, theory, improvisation and composing.
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Reviews
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Steve October 4, 2018
· Ukulele · In studio
Very patient.
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Daniel Cook September 6, 2018
· Bass Guitar · In studio
John is very patient and knowledgeable
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Sara July 12, 2018
· Guitar · In home
Johns great. I wasn’t sure which instrument to begin and after mandolin lesson number 1... I showed up at his studio with a guitar. Lots of fun and he has lots of patience.
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John B.

John B.

Arlington, VA 22202
(70)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

About Michelle Y.

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Rochester, NY

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-clawhammer technique
-arranging tunes in your own style
-learn to play with other musicians
-learn how to participate in a jam session
-learn to play and pick up tunes by ear or with tablature
-advanced melodic clawhammer arranging
-learn to accompany yourself while singing
-writing and arranging tunes
-history of the banjo and of Appalachian old-time fiddle music, and history of each specific tune
-basics of three-finger style
-old-time
-bluegrass
-folk

About Michelle
I am a professional banjo player/guitarist with the internationally touring band Harpeth Rising. I have a Bachelor's degree from Oberlin Conservatory of Music and a Master's degree from Eastman School of Music, both in classical guitar performance. I have extensive experience performing, recording and teaching.

I teach all levels of clawhammer banjo and guitar, from absolute beginner to advanced students and musicians. I cater each lesson to the specific student. If you want to learn to read music and understand music theory we will do that. If you want to learn by ear we can do that, and anything in between.

Banjo lessons can include:
-clawhammer technique
-arranging tunes in your own style
-learn to play with other musicians
-learn how to participate in a jam session
-learn to play and pick up tunes by ear or with tabl
ature
-advanced melodic clawhammer arranging
-learn to accompany yourself while singing
-writing and arranging tunes
-history of the banjo and of Appalachian old-time fiddle music, and history of each specific tune
-much more!

Classical Guitar lessons can include:
-fundamentals of classical guitar technique and playing
-reading music
-fundamentals of music theory and how it applies to what you're playing
-focus on getting the best sound from your instrument
-history of classical guitar music and pieces
-how to give a solo performance
-how to play cleanly with as little effort as possible
-increasing and developing your repertoire
-much more!

Bluegrass/Folk Guitar lessons can include:
-basic chords in first position and strumming basics
-advanced chords in other positions
-flatpicking basics
-advanced flatpicking techniques (cross-picking, speed and agility)
-basic and advanced fingerpicking techniques and styles
-learning to accompany yourself while singing
-learning to play with other people
-participating in jams
-basic of chord theory and structure
-reading music OR reading tablature OR learning by ear (or all three)
-much more!

Clawhammer banjo and classical/acoustic guitar are my main specialties. I am also experienced in teaching, playing and performing bluegrass and country steel string acoustic guitar (flatpicking, accompanying, comping, jamming, etc.), three-finger bluegrass banjo, old-time clawhammer banjo, beginner bluegrass mandolin and ukulele, and music theory.

**Availability notice: As I am a touring musician, my availability is flexible. For online lessons, I may need to reschedule times while I'm on tour. For in person lessons, we may need to reschedule missed lesson while I'm on tour.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I provide my own instrument, and I expect my students to have an instrument of their own.
...
Reviews
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Jim October 24, 2018
· Banjo · In studio
Michelle is a great teacher who has the knowledge, experience (and patience) to help me become comfortable playing the banjo. I look forward to my next lesson.
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Brad C. October 9, 2018
· Guitar · In home
Michelle is kind, caring and a wonderful instructor. Always on time and works well with children.
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Jordana October 7, 2018
· Guitar · In home
Michelle is a wonderful teacher who explains things with both expertise and patience. I left my very first lesson inspired to practice and looking forward to the next one. I never thought I could learn to play guitar but recently gave my first performance. I highly recommend Michelle!
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Michelle Y.

Michelle Y.

Online
(3)
starting at
$34 / 30-min

About Gio A.

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New York, NY
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I've played guitar since I was eight years old and various other stringed instruments for several years. I love the banjo sound and played a bit on my original album Heliotropism. I'd love to help novice players get their feet wet with the instrument, strumming and plucking away at their favorite songs.

About Gio
I studied music at UCF (Orlando), focusing on classical and jazz guitar, but I also have years of experience playing rock, blues, folk, hip-hop, and musical theater on both guitar and drums.

I have been teaching guitar, drums, and piano for about eight years to students of all ages. Music is what I'm passionate about and it's what I enjoy. I want to inspire that same passion into the hearts and minds of others.

*** Lesson Details ***
I am a laid-back teacher, fun, and I focus on the needs, abilities, and ambitions of the student. In turn, students must realize that learning an instrument takes a lot of work and dedication. One can't expect to learn very much if s/he only practices or thinks about the instrument during the lesson. If the student is willing to put some time into practicing, then I will help them go far!

*** Studi
o Equipment ***
I have several guitars, a drum kit, djembe, mandolin, clarinet and full-size keyboard.

*** Specialties ***
Guitar: Classical, jazz, American or Irish folk, rock and pop; lead or rhythm.
Drums & Percussion: All genres
Piano: Classical (includes sight reading)
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Reviews
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Hardy S. August 22, 2018
· Harmonica · Online
tough connecting, but success...next week will be easier
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Michelle P. January 11, 2018
· Banjo · Online
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Ian C. July 7, 2017
· Drum · In studio
1 lesson and he wants to go back so it is a win for me.. Gio is an educator and knowledgeable on many instruments.
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Gio A.

Gio A.

Online
(17)
starting at
$28 / 30-min
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About Andrew C.

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Henderson, NV
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Beginner to Advanced, from basic setup and tuning of the instrument, to all sorts of playing techniques, to some of the most significant pieces written for the instrument

About Andrew
Andrew is a multi-instrumentalist (guitar, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, backing vocals) who settled in Las Vegas in 2013. After graduating with honors from Musicians Institute in 2008, he wrote a collection of acoustic guitar pieces licensed to The Weather Channel, then spent 5 years working as a show musician and top-40 musician for 3 cruise lines.

Currently In Las Vegas, Andrew splits his time between his original band, various productions in the casino showrooms, a well-known local country cover band, teaching, running his own music copying, arranging, and orchestration company, various freelance engagements, and spending time with his amazing wife and two sons.

Andrew's original band, "Tin Toy Cars," formed in 2014 and consists of two local Las Vegas musicians and a few musicians from Cirque du Soleil. Their debut album entitle
d "Falling, Rust, and Bones" was released in January 2016 and as a result of the volume of radio play across the country, immediately set a new all-time record on the national Americana Music Association Charts for highest new artist debut. The band's first music video made it's debut in March 2016 courtesy of The Huffington Post, along with a feature article. Along with the premier article were various national press releases and articles featuring the band and the album. Their second album has been completed and will be released in early 2018.

Andrew currently plays in the orchestra for the weekly production "Brunch to Broadway" at Red Rock Resort and Casino. The show features original members of Broadway's "Smokey Joe's Cafe" and the wonderful music of Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. Band members include musicians from "Le Reve" at the beautiful Wynn Resort, as well as long time veterans of Bette Midler's Orchestra and Donnie and Marie Osmond's backing band.

Andrew also performs with local country cover and line dance band "The Voodoo Cowboys." The band can be seen almost any night in Las Vegas between the famed Gilleys at Treasure Island, Toby Keith's I Love This Bar at Harrah's Resort, and one of the three stages at the amazing Fremont Street Experience.

Andrew also plays in the band at a local church on Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings, and teaches a handful of lessons each week on his various instruments.

*** Lesson Details ***
Music Theory (Building Scales, Harmonizing Scales into Chords)
Ear Training
Single String Concepts (Scales, Arpeggios, Intervals)
Rhythm Concepts (Chords, Blending with a Band)
Learning Songs
Writing Licks, Lines, Chord Progressions, Charts, and Songs
Techniques (Pick vs. Fingers vs. Hybrid Picking)
Acoustic vs. Electric vs. Nylon String
Slide and Steel Guitar
Mandolin, Banjo, Ukulele, and Other Doubling Instruments
Playing in a Stylistically Appropriate Manner
Choosing the Right Equipment for the Gig or Project
Music Reading
How to Practice
How to Market Yourself to Acquire Work

*** Studio Equipment ***
various electric and acoustic guitars, mandolin, ukulele, banjo. A few different amplifiers, and many different pieces of effect and accessory equipment.

*** Travel Equipment ***
various electric and acoustic guitars, mandolin, ukulele, banjo.

*** Specialties ***
All Contemporary Styles (Rock, Blues, Country and Country Rock, Mo-Town, Jazz, Latin, Latin Jazz, Fusion, Metal and Tapping Style, Theater)
...
Reviews
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Hewan .. May 26, 2017
· Guitar · In studio
it was good start
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Wes C. March 1, 2017
· Banjo · In studio
Very informational instructor!!
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John G. February 10, 2017
· Banjo · In studio
It was a great first lesson. Andrew is quite knowledgeable on banjo, and I feel it was a positive first step on the journey ahead.
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Andrew C.

Andrew C.

Online
(14)
starting at
$35 / 30-min

About David F.

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Nashville, TN
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Learn the music you want to learn! Any style, any genre!!

About David
With a Bachelor's Degree from Morehead State University and three years teaching experience I can offer you the most fulfilling learning experience!

*** Lesson Details ***
Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced players welcome! Lessons for Guitar, Banjo, Mandolin, Ukulele, or Electric Bass!

*** Specialties ***
Guitar, Mandolin, Bass Guitar, Ukulele, Banjo
...
Reviews
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Leo May 24, 2018
· Banjo · In home
David is on time, well prepared, flexible with scheduling and he tailors his lessons to his student’s wants and needs. Our 12 year old grandson enjoys his banjo lessons with David.
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Rachel March 7, 2018
· Mandolin · In home
David is a mandolin/musical magician. Anyone would be very to lucky to have him as their teacher.
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Gordon S. September 19, 2017
· Banjo · Online
It's hard to judge a man on the first meeting. He appears to be knowledgeable about music. Also, he was able to pick up on a deficiency i have playing music and recommended the best way to overcome it. I believe that David will be a good teacher for me.
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David F.

David F.

Online
(3)
starting at
$24 / 30-min

About Mel P.

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Union, MO

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5 string banjo Skruggs style bluegrass.

About Mel
I have tons of experience and formal university training in music education. I know how to take the complex and make it simple.

There are very good reasons my students rise to the top. Experience makes a difference, and I have more professional teaching experience than 99% of other instructors.

Learning the best way, helps you learn faster and have fun while you succeed!
...
Reviews
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Elizabeth Coyne August 7, 2018
· Banjo · In home
Mel is a very patient and knowledgable teacher. I feel like I fumble along at the beginning of a lesson but by the end Mel has improved my technique and timing. I would definitely recommend Mel to anyone who wants to learn or improve on their instrument!
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Lew B. February 27, 2018
· Fiddle · Online
Mel is a great listener. My first lesson was great.
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Vern B. February 20, 2018
· Guitar · In studio
He is an excellent instructor. His teacher technique are easy to understand and follow. His talent with the guitar is that of a professional. I’m looking forward in learning as much as I can from him.
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Mel P.

Mel P.

Online
(11)
starting at
$29 / 30-min

About Greg C.

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Helena, MT

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I am truly passionate about your success in becoming the best guitar player you choose to be! I like to teach with repetition (wax on wax off) and prefer to present the big picture first so that every obstacle may potentially never be an obstacle for you. I take years of teaching experience and what have been topics of frustration brought to me from students in the past... I try to smooth the road and teach you so you get the highest yield of success for your money with as little headaches as possible :) for example: I begin with bar chords not folk chords. I would LOVE to have the opportunity to explain "WHY" and show you how great you can be in WAY less time than a traditionalist guitar teacher would get you...

About Greg
Hey there! I am VERY excited to help you get to your best potential through lots of flight hours as quickly as you like! I hope you'll pick me to help you avoid common set backs in your progress. I look forward to helping you be your best on your instrument!

Greg is a cutting edge multi instrumental musician, accomplished on electric bass, upright pizzicato bass, electric and acoustic guitar, drums, and vocals. He performs in a large variety of ensembles, combos, bands, and performs as a solo bassist. He has helped thousands of private students step into a life of music since his first student in 1989. Greg’s talent and ability have been recognized frequently. In 1994 he was one of ten finalists worldwide in Bass Player Magazine’s Billy Sheehan scholarship contest, that same year he became a key volunteer staff member at the annual B
ozeman Bass Bash.

Greg has shared the bill and / or performed along side: Bob Babbitt, Victor Bailey, Jean Baudin, Jeff Berlin, Blondie, Suzy Bogguss, Brian Bromberg, Oteil Burbridge, Yves Carbone, Christopher “C3” Cardone, Anthony Cox, Billy Dickens, Emerson Drive, Sean Feucht, Foghat, Marc Grabowski, Wylie Gustafson, Carol Kaye, Geno Kreis, Rob Kohler, Michael Manring, Stewart Mckinsey, Darren Michaels, Brady Muckelroy, Vince Neil, Adam Nitti, Dave Pomeroy, Psycadelic Furs, Benny Reitveldt, Kelly Roberty, Rich Ross, Billy Sheehan, Russell Smith (of the Amazing Rhythm Aces), Norm Stockton, Randy Tico, Eddie Tsuru, Twisted Sister, Michael Tyrrell, Gerald Veasley, Trip Wamsley, Doug Wimbish And Neil Zaza.
...
Reviews
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David Bohler November 5, 2018
· Acoustic Guitar · In studio
Greg was very knowledgea and nice.
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Eric October 31, 2018
· Electric Guitar · In studio
Greg is a best-in-class and excellent musician, and more importantly, he is able to translate those skills to his students in an easy-to-understand manner. I wholeheartedly recommend him to anyone looking for lessons, beginner or more, young or old.
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Cliff October 25, 2018
· Bass Guitar ·
As a music instructor, Greg is among the best in the business. He combines decades of musical knowledge with years of real world playing experience. He is a dedicated instructor with a real passion for teaching, and I highly recommend his music teaching services.
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Greg C.

Greg C.

Online
(21)
starting at
$18 / 15-min

About Jon B.

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Morrisville, NC
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The banjo is a beautifully versatile instrument and I can help you find the sound you are looking for with it!

About Jon
I am the guitarist and lead singer in my own band that plays in the Triangle area! I love music and have played instruments and sang since I was a little kid. I have found so much joy in music throughout my life and my ultimate goal is to spread that joy to others.

A little more about me, I graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill this past Spring studying Exercise and Sport Science and Music. I also enjoy working out, baking, and rereading my Harry Potter books again and again...
...
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Jon B.

Jon B.

Online
starting at
$42 / 30-min

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Banjo Lesson Reviews from Students

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Recent Banjo Articles from the Blog

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Are Heavy Metal Banjos The Next Big Thing?

Are Heavy Metal Banjos The Next Big Thing?

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 … Read More

Are Heavy Metal Banjos The Next Big Thing?
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
6 Destructive Beliefs That Hold Beginner Musicians Back
Do you ever wonder how good your skills would be now if you started practicing a year ago? A question like this should motivate, not dishearten you. In this article, guest writer Elizabeth Kane will take you through six destructive beliefs you might face as you're learning how to become a musician, and how you can overcome them...   Mind Over Matter Your mind is a powerful tool. Your thoughts dictate just about every conscious decision you make. Whether you're a beginner guitari
Here's What to Know Before Buying an Instrument
Thinking about buying a new instrument? It's a big decision, as an instrument is truly an investment -- especially if you're spending several hundred dollars (or more, for higher-end brands and models) on it. Before making your purchase, you'll want to do some research. But where do you start? With so many brands out there, how do you know which ones are worth the money? What do you really need to ensure years of playing and practicing? We came across a great article over on Donna Schw

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