Chris Butler Music
After a 20+ year career as a professional touring and recording artist, I became a school music teacher. I have taught K-12 music in the classroom, as well as teaching private students of all ages. My experience as a professional musician combined with my teaching experience gives me a unique perspective when it comes to private music lessons. I see each student as an indivdual. I strive to make a strong connection with each student as I learn their unique needs and strengths in order to build a lesson plan for success.
When I made the switch from touring to teaching, I had no idea the impact it would have on my life. Teaching music is a very rewarding experience for me. Seeing the joy in a student as they learn and grow is just amazing.
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Frequently asked questions
What is your typical process for working with a new student?
I like to take some extra time with a new student to get to know them. What are their goals? What type of music do they like? The more I know about a new student, the easier it is to build a custom plan for that student's success.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
I have been a musician all of my life. I started playing guitar when I was about 8 years old. I played every instrument I could get my hands on growing up. After high school, I attended Musicians Institute in Los Angeles, CA. Then I spent the next 20+ years working as a professional touring and recording musician. Eventually I left the road-life behind as I entered the music classroom, where I have taught K-12 music for the past ten years. I have also been teaching private music lessons for about ten years.
Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.
My rate varies depending on the distance I need to travel, length of lesson, etc... If I am seeing multiple students from one family in the same trip, I can offer a discount.
How did you get started teaching?
I was very fortunate in finding my first teaching job. I was still performing full-time on the road, but looking for a way out. A friend knew of a new, private school opening and introduced me to the Head of School. They hired me as founding music teacher and I spent the next seven years helping to build that school and the music program. Eventually I was recruited by another young private school to come help build a vibrant music program, and that's where I have been for the past three years.
What types of students have you worked with?
I have taught beginner students from age 4 to 64. I have also taught students with varying amounts of experience and all ages.
What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?
There are many, many really good musicians out there. Not all of them are great teachers. Find somebody who you enjoy being around. Learning to play music does take work, but it should also be fun. Look for somebody who is excited and really seems to enjoy teaching.
What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?
Its a good idea to know why you want to take music lessons. What are your goals? Are you prepared to work hard for what you want? Do you have enough time to dedicate to practicing often? To really get good at your instrument, its going to take a lot of work and it is not going to happen overnight. Think carefully about what instrument you are interested in. A young student who wants to play guitar might be better off starting with ukulele, for example.