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Last week I was elated when I received this letter from one of my students who was about to graduate High School, and will be attending Berklee in the fall. It was one of the nicest things anyone has ever done for me, and from a person who is going to be a great musician. I just had to post it.


June 1, 2009

Dear Tyler Oakleaf,

Hello Tyler, I am writing this letter to you because I wanted to invite you to my high school graduation at Symphony Hall on June 12th 2009. I wanted to reflect on how you were a very important individual in my life because you taught me well during the last two years and I have grown to new levels of musicianship because of you. My lessons with you were great. I learned about Berklee, life as a musician, and so much about music, how chords function, what is a chord, what is a melody, so many things that I needed to know to be where I am right now.

Right now I am actually in Berklee taking Ear Training 2 and Harmony 3 because my school has a dual enrollment program where I can take classes at a neighboring college on scholarship. I have also already completed Ear Training 1 and Harmony 2 in the Fall 2008 semester. I have gotten a $15,000/year scholarship from Berklee from my audition, and am competing for a Berklee Continuing Scholarship from Berklee City Music in the summer. This year at the Berklee High School Jazz Festival (2009) I have won two judges choice awards in both of my ensembles, and the incredible honor of Most Outstanding Musician (festival-wide). This year I started playing trio with bass and drums, and have competed in IAJE all state combo festival and won gold. Recently there has been a competition for Boston Public School music students to audition for the Fidelity Future Stage Boston Pops Contest, a contest where they pick four acts and we open up and play featured with the Boston Pops on May 20th, 2009.

These awards and scholarships did not come from luck. It was from hours and hours of hard work and over a year of lessons with you. Wherever I end up as a musician, I will never forget who I learned from. Thank you, Tyler, I hope to see you on June 12th!


Chris Juris


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Ok, so I’m very sorry if I’ve missed any of your emails. As it turns out my circa 2004 contact form ate it last month and it has taken me until now to find this out! As of March 12th 2009 I am getting emails again from a new and replaced contact form you can get to on the contact page. So. So. Sorry!


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Bach’s “Little” Fugue from musanim on Vimeo.

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I really can’t say enough about this one.  Just watch it.

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Still another absolutely brilliant video on the mind, education, and learning.

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Lesson prices are as follows:

First lesson is free, after which:

In Home Lessons (your home)
$50 per/lesson if located within Boston or 10 minutes thereof
$55-100 if outside of Boston (Depending on your location)

Studio Lessons in Winthrop, MA
$40 per/lesson

Volume discounts available on all lessons!


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Here’s a quick little arrangement I made of one chorus of “Footprints” last Sunday. The recording is of draft quality (3rd take sight read) but you get the idea.


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A couple of my students have written some nice things about me. You can read them below.

Tyler is an excellent teacher.  He’s helped me to get a much better grasp of the fretboard and to break out of the pentatonic box.  I feel that my knowledge of theory has come a long way since my first lesson with Tyler.  He has a real talent for simplifying seemingly complex concepts.

-John Shea

I learned so much so easy from Tyler and he’s flexible about lesson times and all that so it makes it so you can do things on your watch. He’s a nice guy so he’s always willing to help you learn whatever you want when you come into a lesson. His lessons speak for themselves, because recently I was in a room full of guitarists, half of which were taught by Tyler and you could pick out which ones he taught because they all weren’t playing the same clone-ish riffs over and over. Musically he’s the smartest person I’ve ever met but he always remains down to earth. If you wanna learn how to be a musician instead of just another guy with a guitar Tyler is definitely your best bet.

-Brian (Age 14)

(Tyler) is very good at guitar. He is patient. He takes things slow to begin but he starts to speed up a little bit. He starts off teaching easy and slow songs then he builds up to more difficult songs. He is very nice. He won’t mind if you have to cancel a lesson. He will always help you with whatever you need. He will not mind if you want to learn a specific song. He is always willing to help you on anything you need help on. I hope you have a great time with Tyler because I DO!!!

-Jacob (Age 13)

Tyler is a great teacher with unbelievably large amount of knowledge, and best of all, the ability to share this knowledge. He is not like your typical teacher who just asks you to play something; he tells you why you play what you play and what you can do to improvise. If you want to know about the theory of playing, and really improve your playing, he is the best you can have. Definitely recommend!

-Petri Nira (Business Professional: Finland)

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So now that I have a “personal blog” I decided that I may as well use it for the betterment of my students and man kind and whatnot. You can expect my entries to be a complete wash of random things that I find important with no consistency or coherence in any manner.

And so, for my first entry, I give you the most important video I’ve ever watched… this week, on the subject of intelligence.

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