+ 20 years teaching experience.

All levels: beginners and up.  Middle school students, high schools students (preparing for auditions: repertoire, improvisation development, theory entrance exams), college students and adults.


Comfortable teaching different styles (jazz, classical, blues, rock, folk, pop) emphasis on jazz harmony and applied fingerstyle & picking techniques.

Lessons are flexibly tailored to accommodate individual learning styles. Musical concepts and guitar techniques are introduced based on chosen style of study.

Unlock the fingerboard and create a foundation of theoretical knowledge, technique and musicality by exploring different horizontal and vertical fingering systems of all derivatives of major & minor scales, pentatonic scales, symmetrical and chromatic scales, arpeggios, intervals, triads, 7th chords and inversions, extended harmony( 9ths, 11ths, 13ths), 4th vocings.  

Organize chord quality/scales (modes) relationship and understand and recognize harmonic progressions and modulations through combined sensory awareness (see, hear, feel, think). Train your ear while improving improvisation, chord melody style, memorization of repertoire, song writing and sight-reading skills. Sing what you play, so you can play what you hear.  Apply to all styles & develop a personal fluidness and style of playing the guitar. The study  of this material, practicing with awareness of good hand position and different guitar techniques (picking, fingerstyle), helps build your own repertoire of music to perform.

-Students are introduced to listening to classic historical recordings in a style (Jazz, Blues, Rock, etc.)  and are encouraged and guided to transcribing music for inspiration. Learn how great  players use the materials studied to cultivate their ideas and develop technical skills on the instrument. Musical ideas or phrases can be extracted from these transcriptions and used as improvisation exercises and inspiration to embellish and create our own motifs.  

I am continually developing these musical concepts myself, searching for new ways to express music, new ways to solve musical puzzles. Always looking for new artists to listen to for inspiration and ideas to share. Listening, transcribing and analysis of the musical vocabulary of great artists is like studying directly with the likes of Charlie Parker , Wes Montgomery, Miles Davis, Jim Hall, Albert King, B.B King, Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Segovia…

Over the years I have had the privilege of studying with many great artists to mold my teaching style and philosophy. Jazz guitarists: Gene Bertoncini, Dale Bruning, Jack Wilkins (Manhattan School of Music), Rich Boukas(NYU). Classical guitarists: Fred Hand, Jerry Willard, Ricardo Iznaola, Johnathan Leathwood, Alex Komodore. Chosen to perform in master classes with Paul Galbriath, Pepe Romero and David Russell.

 

 

Jerry is a no BS kind of guitarist. He has developed a full range of linear and harmonic knowledge on the fingerboard, using both plectrum and finger style techniques, jazz standards and classical repertoire. His work as a teacher/performer has involved the analysis and transcriptions of a multitude of jazz players on all instruments. He has been able to get to the root influences and creative impulses in their melodies.
This is not a surface or superficial knowledge, but one that digs deep into what makes the artists tick. To study with Jerry is to capture the essence of what motivates them musically.

Jerry comes to this, and his desire to share, from the bottom of his heart, and his students, who always stay in touch with him, know and respect this, and are inspired by it.
— Gene Bertoncini