Mervin Mendez Guitar Studio
I teach guitar, bass guitar and double bass.
I provide individualized home instruction to students ages 3 to adult.
I teach all my students how to properly change strings.
I also offer professional guitar repair and setup services.
Please inquire about my individualized Spanish immersion music sessions for children.
I love teaching people the universal language of music.
Frequently asked questions
What is your typical process for working with a new student?
I always work to access where my students are at musically and find out what are their musical tastes and interests. Why do they want to learn?
I often work with children who have very little knowledge of music and are picking up an instrument for the first time, so I also work closely with parents to communicate expectations in terms of practice time, material and progress.
While my process differs from student to student, I give all of my students practice regiments that include lesson material and exercises for the development of good technique.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
I did my undergraduate work at Northern Illinois University and my graduate work at DePaul University. I had the good fortune of learning from some great teachers. I was taught to play Blues by Jimmy ‘Maxwell Street’ Davis. I studied classical guitar with Norman Ruiz. And I learned to play Latin Jazz on the double bass with Larry Gray while at DePaul.
Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.
My rates are as follows:
$60 for 60 minutes
$45 for 45 minute
$30 for 30 minutes
Students are billed at the beginning of the month.
I have a 24 hour cancelation policy. Students are responsible for scheduling and completing makeup lessons by the end of each quarter.
How did you get started teaching?
I’ve been teaching guitar since the age of sixteen. My love affair with the guitar began when I discovered the Blues while hanging out on Maxwell Street in the early 1970’s. I knew then that I had to learn to play the guitar but I couldn’t afford lessons. So, I bought some guitar instruction books and began teaching myself the basics. After a few months, I began teaching younger kids from the neighborhood and charging them for their lessons. I then used my earnings to pay for my first formal lessons. I’ve been teaching and learning music ever since.
What types of students have you worked with?
I’ve had beginner students as young as 4 and as old as 67. I’ve also worked with more experienced students to expand their ability on the instrument. I often teach theory to the more advanced students seeking to be understand how to arrange music and interpret advanced chord charts.
I also work with students that begun learning how to play on the internet, using the many resources now available online.
Describe a recent event you are fond of.
I really enjoyed the recital we had for the Metzger guitar studio at Baker school. The faculty accompanied the students, most of whom had never played with a live accompaniment.
What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?
Look for a person you feel comfortable with. There are many guitarist that teach out of necessity and who feel teaching is a necessary evil. But there are also people who love to teach and share their knowledge with others. A good teacher should be patient, a good listener and an encourager. A flashy guitarist isn’t necessarily a good teacher.
Parents don’t let anyone tell you that children ages 3 or 4 are too young to begin studying music. Many musical prodigies, including Mozart and Yo-Yo Ma began their studies at such tender ages.
What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?
The more you learn, the more questions you will have. Beginners always ask me how long it will take to become a good guitar player. I tell them I’m still working on it. Music is a life-long endeavor.
As you grow as a musician you will begin to develop goals. You might ask a teacher how she or he can help you accomplish such goals. These goals can include learning how to improvise or read complex chord charts.