Russell Nebelung has been instructing students in guitar performance since 2003. In addition to extensive college teaching experience, he is skilled in teaching children of all ages as well as adults and retirees who have finally found some time for their own musical passions. From nascent beginners to skilled players, Russell is continually expanding his students’ horizons. If you did not have time to practice this week, don’t fret! There is always something he can teach you - be it honing guitar technique, understanding the instrument, music theory, or developing stage presence, his students are always learning. Being able to play the guitar is only the beginning; becoming a musician is a lifelong goal. If the path to musical excellence can be likened to scaling a mountain, then Russell will guide you along the paths most suited to you.
Russell teaches from his home in Lansing’s Westside Neighborhood, Monday-Friday: 1:00-8:00PM.
Lessons are comprised of weekly 30 or 60 minute meetings in which the student demonstrates to the instructor what they have worked on from the previous week. From there, the instructor builds upon what has been learned in terms of technique, theory, musicality, and other desired learning goals.
Your first guitar lesson with me might include the following: Students are to bring with materials they are currently working on and, perhaps, what they have previously worked on. From there a baseline can be established. New students to the instrument need only be sure they have a guitar and are ready to get to work. It is helpful to know what styles of music and bands the student finds exciting. The student should bring with any music that interests them.
A positive attitude and the desire to learn are all that it takes to be an ideal student. The teacher's profession is to educate along the unique demands of the individual. One never knows who is to receive the greatest appreciation of what the teacher has to offer. Lessons are a learning experience for both the teacher and student.
My earliest and most significant influence is Led Zeppelin. The blazing guitar work of Jimmy Page seared the guitar into my soul. The movie Crossroads, starring Ralph Machio, turned me onto classical guitar and the likes of shredders such as Steve Vai. From there, I decided a classical education was the surest way to develop the skills necessary to play any music I desired. That all being said, Jeff Beck is the most brilliant musician alive.
What I love most about teachingare the friendships I have made with my students over the year, and I take great pride in their accomplishments. I dedicate myself in my own practice and education to discovering the most efficient ways of playing the guitar and understanding music so that my students can advance at the most rapid pace possible. I make sure that my students have all of the answers to questions they did not even know to ask and are able to go in any direction they like with their music.
I gave him a brief scope of what I wanted to accomplish, and he tailored a system to get me started in the right direction. Really nice guy who is easy to get along with, and isn't condescending at all. I learned a ton!
He goes at a pace that I understand and comes back to it when I don't get it. I think he is a good instructor and would recommend him.
I met Russ at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University in 2012. Russ was the instructor of a Beginning Guitar Course I was taking. I could tell immediately that Russ was incredibly talented, knowledgeable, and passionate about music. I started taking lessons with Russ because he has a very down-to-earth teaching style. Since he had an understanding and appreciation for the style of music I wanted to learn (Blues), he was able to teach me the theory behind the playing of legends like Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix, and John Mayer. I was able to bring Russ a specific song that I loved listening to, and he was able to break it down for me. What the artist was doing, why he was doing it, and tips on how to get there. I have had many teachers in the past that could teach me how to play something, but most of them do not take the time to help you understand the theory that makes a song work. This allows you to make the song your own, to improvise over the chord progression, and to build a foundation of knowledge that will make each song easier than the last.
I like to begin by finding out what a student's goals are and what they currently know about the guitar and music. This is something that is done in the first lesson or two and allows us to begin immediately working on things that are new and interesting to the student. Topics include music theory, guitar technique, fretboard knowledge, ear training, etc.
I have a Doctorate of Music in classical guitar performance from Indiana University's Jacobs School of Music where I studied with Maestro Ernesto Bitetti. I also earned minors in jazz studies and music theory.
5 week packages
½ hour sessions: $24/lesson
1 hour sessions: $47/lesson
10 week packages
½ hour sessions: $23/lesson
1 hour sessions: $45/lesson
I first began teaching some lessons at Albion College while I was an undergraduate student. At the University of Cincinnati - College-Conservatory of Music I was a graduate assistant who taught lessons and assisted in the direction of the undergraduate guitar ensembles. While living there I taught at Music Makers and Slater Music Academy.
Upon returning to Michigan in 2006 I began teaching guitar lessons at Spring Arbor University, Albion College, and privately in Grand Ledge. In 2012 I began doctoral work at Indiana University and taught guitar classes and lessons as an Associate Instructor until returning to Michigan in the summer of 2015.
I have worked with students of all ages from the United States and many college students from around the world. I am very well versed with nascent beginners of the guitar as well as advanced students.
A student needs to find a teacher whom they enjoy learning from and who is willing and able to teach anything the student may wish to learn.
Schedule coordination between teacher and student.
Time the student intends to dedicate to practice.
Goals of guitar performance.