Our teachers are working musicians and teaching professionals.
Musicians are also available for gigs.
Donald "Duck" Bailey: harmonica, drumset (a jazz living legend available for consult and mentoring). Donald has relocated to SoCal to be near family but comes to visit once a month.
Mike Burns: piano, guitar, uke, percussion (drumset, vibes, marimba, xylophone...)
Kirah Caminos: preschool music and movement
Pete Cornell: soprano, alto, tenor and baritone sax; clarinet; flute and alto flute; piccolo; recorder
Dave Creamer : guitar (all styles, all levels)
Patricia DeVea: drumset
Vicky Grossi: electric bass, violin
Alan Hall: jazz drumming, ensemble
Will Herring: trumpet
Adam Lipansky: guitar tech, instrument clockmaker
Rafael Longa: hand drums, African percussion, balophone, vibes
Annette Loveless: owner, Early Childhood Education specialist, Kindermusik
Joe McKinley: stand up bass
John Middle: owner, audio and sound
Danny Myers: piano (jazz, imrov) beginning through advanced
Ryan Phillips: French Horn, trumpet, bugle, beginning piano, beginning rock drums, theory, composition
Melanie Rath: vocals, beginning/intermediate piano, recorder
Roland Sayn: guitar
Mario Silva: trumpet, clarinet, sax, recorder, beginning piano (English or Spanish)
Hayley Shula: piano (classical, jazz, popular) and keyboards (Fri, Sat)
Valerie Troutt: vocals (Wed, Fri, Sat)
My name is Melanie Rath and I have several openings on Thursdays for new vocal students of all levels and beginning to intermediate level piano students at Acme House of Music in the Laurel District of Oakland.
Vocal and piano students alike will receive training in technique, performance, expression, theory, note reading and ear training. The study will be tailored to each individual according to their personal needs, goals and style preference.
I have 24 years of music teaching experience (preschool through seniors), as well as performance and recording credits. I have toured and performed nationally and internationally with Bobby McFerrin’s Voicestra and the a cappella band SoVoSo. I have recorded three CDs with SoVoSo and have numerous studio vocalist credits including: “The Voice” for Chrystler’s Elite series; Britta Water and Sprint Long Distance television commercials and radio spots; and a KCSM Best of the Bay Recording. Along with my vocal work, I am the accompanist for all of my individual and vocal ensemble student recitals and a church/choir/congregational accompanist.
Guitar cognoscenti nationwide have known Dave Creamer for over two decades. George Benson said regarding Creamer in a Cadence magazine interview, "Absolutely the most fantastic guitar player alive in America…"
This legendary guitarist creates a rich blend of styles ranging from his exquisitely crafted original modern jazz compositions to his adaptations of jazz masters such as Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, and Wayne Shorter. Over the years in an expansive career, Creamer has performed and/or recorded with the great Miles Davis, master guitarist John Abercrombie, steel drummer Andy Narell, Bay Area favorite Mel Martin, Mel Torme and many more.
As a teacher Creamer has worked with many outstanding performers. Some of his former students include Tuck Andress, Rory Stuart, Joe Satriani, Berry Finnerty (Miles Davis, Crusaders, Brecker Brothers), Jason Becker (David Lee Roth) and Will Bernard (Will Bernard, T.J. Kirk).
Currently serving as a faculty member for Berkeley's Jazz School and a former faculty member of the Cazadero Jazz Camp, Creamer has presented many seminars including those for the Bruce Forman Jazz Workshop.
He has authored important educational literature and his unique improvisational concepts have been spotlighted in the Guitar Player magazine columns "Chops Builder" and "Master Series".
"Guitarist Dave Creamer is magnificently inventive and technically astute. Playing with a murky, slithery sound. Creamer flies through his solo lines, barley suggesting his influences and emerging as a towering performer."
-Phil Elwood - San Francisco Examiner
"Dave Creamer is an artistic treasure waiting to be found by the listening public."
- Berigan Taylor. - Jazz for Dummies
Years playing: 27
Years teaching: 7
Musical influences: Chappotin, Fats Navarro, Miles Davis, Manuel Guajiro Miribal, Quiny Jones, too may to list.
Education: Bachelor of Music in Jazz Performance (Trumpet)from San Francisco State University, currently pursuing Masters in Music at Mills College
Musical Projects: Pellejo Seco, The Mario Silva Trio, BangData, La Familia Son, Agua Libre
Key teaching concepts: Control, Concept, Effortless playing.
Mario is one of the finest Jazz and Latin trumpeters the San Francisco Bay Area has to offer. He has over 6 years of teaching experience, a Bachelors Degree in Music from San Francisco State University, and has been a professional musician since age 17. Mario can be heard playing trumpet in the traditional Cuban style on Despierta (featuring Grammy-nominated Sony recording artist Chuchito Valdez), the latest release from Oakland-based group, Pellejo Seco. Mario is also Artistic Director of Music Time Academy. Lessons with Mario are available in both English and Spanish.
Victoria Grossi aka Vicky the Bassplayer, performer, composer, band leader, and music-seeker, supports, leads, and influences countless San Francisco Bay Area bands and musicians. She is intuitively melodic, seriously syncopated, skillful and fun to watch. Although her training is extensive, she is best described as playing by feel.
Born in San Francisco, California, Vicky started violin lessons at six years old, but didn't know she wanted to be a musician until a Feetwood Mac concert when she was eight. Intensely studying the violin offered scholarships for private school, but she really wanted to be a singer. From six to sixteen, like many, Vicky was a pop-music fanatic.
Toward the end of high school, her family moved, and Vicky took time off from everything to have fun. Friends would ask her, "what are you going to be?" She would say "a musician." When they asked her what she played, she would say, "Nothing."
Vicky decided to go to college, and attended UC Berkeley as a pre-med major in 1990. Two years later she couldn't bear the thought of not perusing music. She changed majors and played violin and viola in the music program, eventually getting her degree. Music major friends needed to practice jazz standards, and threw the bass in her hands because she could read the changes. That was the start of bass and jazz, simultaneously. Then she practiced and took every playing opportunity for years and years. By 1999, she was playing bass full time.
The warm, acoustic-friendly sound on her fretless FBass blends with the drums, and has developed into a unique voice over years of jazz shows and gigs. She has collaborated and worked for Carl Lockett, Vince Wallace, Bishop Norman Williams and many others, playing jazz standards and originals. She has also recorded five CD's with her own group, The Blue and Tan; The Rhapsody in Tan, a collection of five interrelated songs for Jazz quartet, is her largest work to date. The piece reaches almost forty-five minutes, and offers many interesting melodic and rhythmic motifs, appearing in surprising recaps throughout. The Blue and Tan features many of her compositions, and includes long stints of recording and gigs with Andre Bush, Mitch Marcus, Alex Skolnik, Rob Rhodes, Joe Brigandi and many other great musicians.
These days Vicky works on, and seeks out groove playing in many forms. Her band, Slydini, explores odd meters and double time signatures, all the while holding danceable, sing able, fun music in the highest regard. With the great drummer Jan Jackson, saxophonist John Ingle, and guitarist Bill Wolter, this band is fantastic.
A member of Bitches Brew (voted San Francisco's best jazz group 2002), her playing experience includes countless funk and disco cover bands, plus a few more: Casino Royale (60's Go-Go), Kiss My Brass (Tower of Power), The Marshall Law Band (blues), West Coast Road Show (country). She loves many genres music. Most recently, she plays frequently with the Charles Unger Experience, and young Manuel Romero (Latin Grammy nominee 2002), and First Lady Orchestra.
Vicky often plays in two improvisational settings. Duo Referral, a high energy, electric duo with Moe! Staiano, and Moe!kestra, a large ensemble of forty, plus, conducted by Moe! Staiano.
Patty has been studying and performing dance and percussion since childhood, and began teaching percussion in high school. Patty’s drum set instruction is always individualized, and her friendly sense of humor puts students at ease. She works very attentively with each student based upon age, experience level, needs and musical goals and interests. As a role model, she loves to encourage drum set as an instrument for women and girls. Two of her primary strengths are instilling self-confidence and giving others the tools for continuing to teach themselves. She has taught students ranging in age from three to adult, and has worked extensively with children, including those with special needs and disabilities.
Patty has worked as a drum set instructor for over ten years. She has taught drums and percussion at a number of bay area schools, including Laney College summer music camps, A.L.M.A in Orinda, Fiat Music in Pinole, and Acme Music in Oakland.
After graduating from Cornell College with a degree in child psychology, Patty moved from the Midwest to the Bay Area, where she continued dance, including tap, ballet, modern, jazz, African, samba and partner styles. A classically trained percussionist, she also studied and performed Latin and Brazilian percussion before settling upon a long desired career as a professional drum set player.
Patty has studied drums with a number of renowned bay area teachers, and has a background in music theory and piano. In addition to performing with musical theatre and children’s theatre companies, she has been playing drums in many jazz, big band, rock, pop, funk, country western, and Cajun groups for 20 years. Lessons with Patty always include anecdotes that give a fun sense of perspective to learning music and dance.
Pete has performed with the legendary Dan Hicks, and many years with Lavay Smith and Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers, appearing on her recent CD, Miss Smith To You. He is a charter member and music director of the famed salsa band Mazacote, producing their debut CD, Timbolero.
Pete is a widely-experienced and widely-traveled musician, playing music from Japan to Prague to Italy, and has performed at the Monterey, San Jose, and San Francisco Jazz Festivals.
He currently plays with the 19-piece Pacific Mambo Orchestra (every Monday night at Cafe Cocomo), Cosmo Alleycats (every Wednesday at LeColonial), Tin Cup Serenade, Tin Cup Jazz and periodically with the Golden Gate Jazz Trio and Manteca Quartet.
Pete is available on Thursdays.
JOE HAS BEEN IN THE BAY AREA FOR OVER THIRTY YEARS PERFORMING ON STRING BASS, ELECTRIC BASS, AND TUBA. HIS VERSATILITY HAS ALLOWED HIM TO PERFORM IN VARIOUS GENRES INCLUDING: PIT BANDS FOR STAGE PRODUCTIONS, A CIRCUS OR TWO, SECOND LINE NEW ORLEANS STYLE BANDS, AND ORCHESTRAS. HE HAS ALSO ACCOMPANIED A WIDE RANGE OF MUSICIANS FROM EARL “FATHA” HINES TO SUN RA; FROM CHUCK BERRY TO JOE HENDERSON’S BIG BAND (WEST COAST VERSION); AS WELL AS JOHN HANDY, EDDIE HENDERSON, MARLENA SHAW, OSCAR BROWN JR., JIMMY WITHERSPOON, AND MANY OTHERS. HE CAN PROVIDE DUOS, TRIOS, OR WHATEVER COMBINATION YOUR SITUATION CALLS FOR.
Hayley is trained in Classical, Jazz, and Popular piano. She makes it fun as you learn to read music and chord symbols, and can also teach improvisation techniques. She composes her own music and sings, so really believes in bringing out the gift of expression inherent in each student. She nurtures student's unique taste in music by letting them choose pieces they would like to learn, along with the basic songs in the lesson books. She also teaches theory and performance, so that they are a fully well-rounded player.
Hayley began teaching piano at a YMCA in Tempe, Arizona in 2007. When she got out of work at the after-school program, she would stay after with kids to give them lessons on the old piano there. Eventually she got her own piano, and started teaching out of her home. She now lives in Oakland, CA.
Hayley began playing piano at the age of six in her hometown Swanville, Maine. Since a young age she was drawn to music, singing, and piano. Her training is primarily from private lessons continuing into college. She has also been involved in many solo artist projects, and writes her own music. Her degrees in Sociology and Business from University of San Francisco allow her to connect with a diversity of students, and offer the service in a professional and productive manner. She also just received her certificate in Sound Healing, and can implement a universal concept of sound techniques in her teaching, to relax and heal anxious students.
Valerie, a remarkable singer-songwriter, fuses R&B, soul, funk and jungle in her unique approach to Jazz and original compositions. Her ability as a Jazz vocalist and soul composer has inspired the hearts of many listeners. Valerie's accomplishments include a year long run as an artist-in-residents at the Red Poppy Art House in San Francisco and performing on the Jazz stage for the Best of East Bay Express party 2009.
On numerous occasions, Valerie has sung back-ups for singers Tiombe Lockhart of Cubic zirconium, Les Nubians, Crystal Monee Hall, Sabina Sciubba of Brazilian Girls, and performed with singer songwriters Jennifer Johns, Maria Muldaur, Kimiko Joy, Sista Monica Parker and Mala Waldron daughter of the late jazz pianist Mal Waldron. Valerie has performed and recorded with modern composers, Emanuel Ruffler, Howard Willey and drummer- producer Jaz Sawyer of Pursuance records. In the summer of 2008 Valerie became the youngest member of the Grammy nominated Oakland based a cappella ensemble Linda Tillery Cultural Heritage Choir and is featured on their latest album "still we rise, still we sing".
Ms. Troutt has performed in New York for the Israeli Consulate honoring Bobby McFerrin. She has written and arranged music for the Oakland Youth Chorus, The Con-gress, See.Think.Dance as a part of the Museum of African Diaspora SF, Higher Ground Neighborhood Corp. Oakland, California and The Embodiment Project Nicole Klaymoon San Francisco.
Valerie has served as an ambassador of the United States to the International Association of Jazz Schools in Santiago De Compo Stella, Spain and has also sung aboard the QE2 Transatlantic Cruise Line as a part of pianist Junior Mance's showcase.
In 2009 and 2010 Valerie participated as a principle singer in La Peña - Ayer, Hoy y Pa'lante, an original suite of music by three time Grammy nominee, Wayne Wallace with libretto by Aya de Leon. Currently Valerie is the director of "The Shepeople's" all female artists showcase. She is also a member of "The Congress" Neo Soul Orchestra lead by Trumpeter Marcus Cohen.
Valerie has graced the stages of many venues and festivals including Yoshi's Jazz Club San Francisco (SF), The Knitting Factory New York (NY), Art n' Soul Festival Oakland, CODA Jazz Supper Club SF, The Shattuck Downlow Berkeley California, Maxwell's Oakland, The Uptown Oakland, Somar Bar Oakland, The Laurel Street Fair Oakland, Slims SF, The women of color conference 2010 UC Berkeley, Theaterhaus Germany and The Makor NY.
This Oakland girl has established herself as a consummate composer with soul tinged songs that are dynamic and note worthy. Valerie's music is energetic yet heartfelt offering a taste of expression and freedom crossing many musical genres. Her ability to create an astonishing repertoire of diverse songs will make her one of the important singer-songwriters of the 21st century.
Dianne Reeves, commenting on her first musical encounter of Valerie states, "She is energetic, spontaneous and ready." Valerie Troutt is certainly a fearless force to watch for in the years to come.
Roland's first influences were the classic rock of Jimi Hendrix and Cream, and old school blues like John Lee Hooker. In highschool he joined the award winning Skyline Jazz Band, that combined with having studied with Mr Kahil Shaheed and other fantastic teachers at Oaktown Jazz, sparked his love and interest for jazz. Today, Roland plays in two bands, "A New Abyss" and "The Rogers" and gigs and teaches throughout the bay area. He speacializes in teaching Blues, jazz, metal, basic music theory, guitar techniques like, 8 finger tapping, sweep picking, and slide guitar.
Roland started as Acme's first intern and his talent, love and dedication, shall we say "obsession, with guitar playing has taken him to the advanced playing level where he is today.
Kadie has been playing piano since the age of 8. She has been playing as an accompanist and teaching for over 10 years. She is fluent in English and French. She also holds a Masters Degree from Mills College in Public Policy!
Kirah J. Caminos, MNA. has served as Director of her own bilingual (Spanish) family daycare in Oakland, acted as Director of a First Five Center in Contra Costa and served as program director for multiple youth and family service agencies throughout the Bay Area and New York. As a former Peace Corps volunteer overseas, she has also enjoyed engaging in community service projects and activities abroad. Growing up in the lower east side of Manhattan, raised by a musical family and being surrounded by some of the salsa greats encouraged a lifelong love and passion for Salsa. She has studied under some of the best instructors in salsa in the Bay Area for over 12 years.
We are so happy to announce to addition of jazz drummer, author and composer Alan Miquel Hall to our teaching roster Wednesday afternoon and Saturday mornings!! Alan has been Percussion Department Chairman at The Jazzschool, Berkeley, CA; adjunct faculty at U.C. Berkeley, Berkeley, CA and Cal State Hayward. He was assistant professor in the Percussion Department at Berklee College of Music in Boston from 1986-1993. He is author of the drum book, Internalization: A Non Reading Intensive Approach to Jazz Drum Set Phrasing and Independence.