Our private music teachers are excellent motivators and work patiently with students of all ages and skill levels on music of the student’s choosing.
Check out our teacher bios below and contact us to schedule your first lessons.
Jared is the owner and manager at Rockdale and teaches Guitar, Bass, Drums, Keyboard, Rock Band, Songwriting and Recording at the studio. Jared has a passion for passing on the knowledge from years of honing his craft to musicians of all ages and skill levels.
From your five year old aspiring Rock Star, to retirees looking to fulfill a life-long dream of playing an instrument; all of Jared’s lessons are catered to each budding musician’s wants and needs. New concepts are presented using songs of your choosing. Learn what you love, and you’ll love to learn! If you want to play your favorite songs a lot faster than you think, then get ready to Rock with Rockdale!
Rob is a graduate of Berklee College of Music for Guitar Performance and offers private lessons for guitar, bass, and trumpet at Rockdale. Lately, we have overheard a few of his students referring to Rob as their “cool teacher”.
In Rob’s own words “I think I’m a fun teacher, but I don’t think it’s because I’m all that “cool”… it’s because I teach “cool” stuff! I see the same musical merit in a beginning guitar player learning to read the melody of ‘Hot Cross Buns’ as there is in learning to dial up distortion and play ‘Smoke on the Water’ authentically, which must be why they think I’m cool!”
Rob teaches practically all styles of music and have a passion for all approaches of playing; you’ll never be bored! So whether you want to learn how to play ‘Hot Cross Buns’, 12-bar blues, rock out playing Led Zeppelin, master tapping, sweeping, or alternate picking, relax and strum some chords or play finger-style on an acoustic; he would love to show you how! Learning how to fine tune a guitar amp is an art unto itself; Rob will show you how to get the most out of whatever equipment you have, and how to dial in that gear to get the same tone as your favorite players.
It doesn’t matter if you are 6 or 60, Rob understands the needs of students of different ages and aspirations. All of Rob’s lessons are tailored to meet these interests and passions, but also push students in a direction where they can feel confident they are equipped with the knowledge and ability to succeed no matter the musical situation. The long-term goal for all of his students is to present the bigger picture of how all music and styles are closely related. He strives to ensure every student has these basic skills of musicianship: a sense of rhythm, time, and knowledge of theory, but also proper technique, form, and posture on that specific instrument.
Liam is a graduate of West Chester University where he studied Music Composition, Music Production, Music History, classical guitar and piano. He is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree at Rowan University where he studies production, composition, and jazz guitar.
Liam has been playing guitar since the age of 7, when he started his first private lessons. During middle school and high school, Liam focused primarily on a style focused in rock music and was able to frequently participate in rock performances.
Since graduating from West Chester University, he has performed in many concerts and recitals with multiple ensembles, performing many different genres of music such as classical, jazz, rock, and funk. With help from studying guitar, piano, and composition, he has come to
appreciate all different kinds of music that influence his style today.
Liam currently teaches private lessons in piano, guitar, bass, music theory and composition and is ecstatic to teach the next generation of rock stars.
Patrick “Packie” Cronin is a graduate of Temple University Boyer School of Music where he studied both Music Therapy and Jazz Performance, with a concentration on drumset. Within his lessons, he uses a variety of instruments and musical experiences including improvisation and songwriting. Drawing on his therapy background and training, he believes strongly that music is an expressive art, with instruments used as tools to communicate thoughts and feelings, even serving a therapeutic purpose. He has experience working with a diverse range of students including children and adults with developmental and learning disabilities, memory loss, physical disabilities, and visual impairments.
Packie currently lives in Philadelphia where he performs, teaches, and records in addition to refining his songwriting abilities. He has written, arranged and produced his own records and recorded on many music collaborations throughout the city. His experience as a songwriter, performer, and in the recording studio, gives him an assortment of skills that can encourage students who want to explore music across various ranges.
Packie’s vision as a teacher is to guide each student in a way that allows them to find their own creatively fulfilling path with music. For those about to Rock!
Nathaniel Lemisch is a Philadelphia-based music producer, audio engineer, and musician from Media, PA. He has a B.S. in Recording Arts and Music Production from Drexel University while also minoring in Music Performance on jazz guitar. He has played gigs from rooftops in NYC to World Café Live in Philly and engineered in music studios and jazz clubs around the country.
Nathaniel was once, in fact, in your shoes! 15 years ago, as a wee little toddler playing the bongos in Makin’ Music camp. Nathaniel started taking guitar lessons in 2nd grade, followed shortly by classical percussion in 4th. He’s played in award-winning high school and collegiate ensembles, marched in the Penncrest drumline, arranged and played with a 4-piece horn band, and currently produces and mixes a wide variety of artists and genres out of his home studio.
Nathaniel looks forward to sharing his knowledge in as many music-related fields as possible. He believes in taking rudimentary knowledge of musical ideas and applying them in practical ways. Most importantly, he believes that everyone learns in different ways,
but it mainly boils down to having confidence, trusting your ear, and practice (and learning a little bit of theory!)
Tierney began taking piano lessons at 7 years old and has been playing ever since. She has a bachelor’s degree in music theory and composition from SUNY New Paltz and recently went back to school to get a master’s degree in social work. She has been teaching private piano, violin, music theory, and songwriting lessons for over 10 years to students ages 4 to 80.
Throughout the Hudson Valley and now Philadelphia, Tierney has performed her original songs as a solo artist, and also in a variety of musical groups and styles including rock, classical, jazz, folk, and experimental.
Tierney believes that each person has a personal relationship with music and she creates a safe, patient, and fun learning environment in her lessons so that each person can develop into whatever musical abilities that interest them! She enjoys seeing students’ self-esteem grow as they learn a skill that they will have for a lifetime.
Brian Bruce is a drum set, bass, and keyboard instructor, gigging musician, songwriter and producer. He’s been a fixture in the northern Delaware and Philadelphia music scenes since before he could drive himself to his own gigs. (Thanks Mom!) He attended Cab Calloway School of the Arts in Wilmington, DE, and went on to study jazz performance at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia.
Brian has recorded and toured extensively in the past with indie acts Fiancé and Mean Lady, both of whom have performed at the Firefly music festival in Dover, DE, as well as major cities around the U.S. and in Europe. He is currently a member of Philadelphia noise rock quartet Tangled Up and punk rock outfit Eyebawl. When he’s not playing heavy rock n’ roll, you can hear him lending his services to Wilmington rockabilly legends The Bullets, or backing Bruce Anthony and Sam Nobles jazz/funk duo.
Brian brings an array of knowledge gained from academic musical experiences, and real world gigging and recording to his lessons. He focuses on taking the basic building blocks of music, like rudiments and scales, and applying them to performance in a way that makes rigid musical exercises come alive. He believes the most important thing to be gained from the study of music is the connections made with fellow musicians.
Zach moved to Boston, Mass. in 2006 where he attended the world renowned Berklee College of Music. While at Berklee, he studied with teachers Bob Tamagni and John Ramsay.
Finishing his degree in Jazz Performance at Moravian College in 2012, Zach studied drum set with Byron Landham, Gary Rissmiller, and Joe Bergamini; educator, author, and Senior Drum Editor for Hudson Music Publishing, Inc.
In 2019, Zach completed his Master’s Degree in Jazz Studies at Temple University where he studied with Rodney Green and Pat Bianchi.
Zach, now based in Philadelphia, has experience playing in a wide range of styles from musical theater to heavy metal and has toured semi-nationally. He has been a professional educator since graduating Moravian College, developing a unique style of teaching that draws from his experience as both a lifelong student and performer.
He is now the artist and lecturer for the drum set students at Moravian University.
Anna is a guitar instructor, gigging musician, and session musician from Media, PA. She started her musical journey as a student at Rockdale participating in Rock Camps and the Rock Band program. After playing with various bands in the Philadelphia area from 2011-2019, she moved to Nashville, TN to pursue music full-time. During her time in Nashville, Anna spent time in the studio playing on numerous records, gigging in town, and has been performing on national tours with various artists on stages throughout the country.
Anna has a passion for teaching guitar and sharing her excitement for music in order to inspire the next generation of rock stars. She knows that learning to play guitar can seem difficult at the beginning, but believes that when the challenges are met with patience and encouragement, students will gain more self-confidence and learn to celebrate each milestone throughout their growth during lessons.
Anna tailors lesson plans to each individual student and believes in teaching students the music they are passionate about and excited to play. The best way to learn is to learn from emulating our heroes.
Chris Smirnov has been an active violinist/violist and teacher in the Philadelphia and greater Philadelphia area since 2012 and has performed a variety of music styles throughout the years including Classical, Contemporary, Middle-Eastern, and various improvisational languages.
Chris attended Boyer College of Music and Dance (Temple University) to pursue a Music Education degree and currently studies there under Aisha Dossumova.
As a teacher, Chris’s pedagogical philosophy revolves around building a solid technical foundation via classical music, and in parallel pursuing general fluency in the melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic elements of music through improvisation and multi-instrumentalism.
“My mission is to give students every tool they need to help them find their own path as a budding musician. Whether it’s playing a Bach sonata with expression or ripping through a blues lick, I wish to help students expand their creativity, and grow as both artists and people!”