I hold a Master of Arts degree in Music with an emphasis in Jazz Studies. I have been teaching for 18 years in various styles including Jazz, Classical, Rock, Pop, Blues, etc... My approach entails teaching thorough knowlege of the fingerboard , technical studies for dexterity development, Music reading, music theory & composition, as well as teaching songs that speak to the student to keep their passions engaged and their inspiration to practice alive.
I love watching students grow and experience the joy that playing music can bring. At my yearly recitals i am always amazed at the progress students have made and the pride their families feel seeing them perform.
As a former student of Neil's I can vouch for his abilities as a guitar teacher. I took lessons from him for a number of years and learned a huge amount. He's got an incredible passion for music, a near-encyclopedic knowledge of music theory, and he's easy-going and likable. In short, the kind of teacher who can take just about any student as far as they want to go with the guitar, and the further the better, because he clearly enjoys seeing his students improve. I particularly enjoyed learning the secrets of good improvisation from him. Jazz guitar is his forte, but he's quite knowledgeable about a number of other styles as well. By the way, unlike many of his students, I'm older than he is, so he's a good teacher for adults too. Definitely recommend.
Neil was the perfect teacher for my child. Where to begin? First, his ability as a jazz musician alone makes him one of the best choices for your child. Second, he sees each student as an individual and approaches each lesson with an individual plan. He also really understands adolescent students. He has raised teens himself. He has a high EQ and could tell when our son was having a bad week or not that into the lessons, and could easily pivot from the "work" of jazz to the "fun" of jazz to keep my son engaged. My son took lessons from Neil for seven years. He progressed from rhythm guitar to earning a place in the school's top jazz band (of three) as a sophomore to making his own combo that booked paying gigs as a Junior and Senior. Neil was able to mentor each of these transitions. He helped my son with his audition pieces for Stanford Jazz Workshop. Finally, when applying to college, Neil helped my son with his audition pieces and helped him choose the right way to phrase the music to show his strong points. With Neil's foundation, my son was able to join his college jazz band as a Freshman and perform with Branford Marasalis. Finally, Neil was willing to give lessons in our own home. The net effect was giving my child more time to be a kid, rather than spend time in a car or waiting for his lesson to begin.
Neil is extremely passionate, talented, and patient. Neil is very flexible to focus on a wide variety of guitar music genres and helps to inspire his students to learn and progress. Highly recommended!
With my 6 years of guitar lessons, I have learned so much! I really enjoy his style of teaching. I look forward to my classes every week!
Master of Arts - Music (Jazz Studies)
$50 - 1/2 hour lesson
75$ - 1 hour lesson
Teaching group classes for the city of Capitola and then San Jose.
From young children ages 6-7 through retired adults looking to pick up a new hobby. Also i work alot with highschool and college students in Jazz bands that need help navigating their highly complex band music.
What are your musical goals. What do you want to be able to play and in what context. Do you have the time and discipline to practice at least 30 minutes to an hour 4 - 6 times weekly?