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Fun Santa Rosa Guitar Lessons with Star Tom


Have you always wanted to have fun playing guitar - especially to accompany yourself while you sing a song?  Now you can!


Star Tom is a patient guitar teacher with decades of performing experience who can help you learn the basics if you are just beginning guitar, want to remember what you used to know, or want to improve your playing. Imagine how knowing the chords you need, having new fingerpicking or rhythm styles, or adding new songs can help you gain the confidence you need for your next step.


Guitar playing can be a pleasure and lessons can be fun when you learn with Star Tom. Students appreciate his encouraging, relaxed and playful style. Individualized lessons cater to your interests and needs - no "canned" lessons here! Contact us today to get started doing something you've always wanted to do.


You can find tons of lessons online, and YouTube is a great resource for guitarists.  But having a human being in front of you makes all the difference for three reasons:  1) Having a live teacher gives you an incentive to practice and learn that NO video or online program will ever duplicate; 2) A real teacher can show you exactly what is going on - how to move your fingers, exactly where that finger is touching the string, and how to make playing as easy as possible; 3) Learning is, by it's intrinsic nature, a social activity* (and learning music even more so).  That's why movies and videos and websites didn't replace schools long ago.  Star Tom is a friendly teacher whose mission of "nurturing joy and inspiration" could be just what you need as you explore and expand your musicality.

Star Tom has been teaching guitar for 15 years, and has taught dozens of private students their way around a guitar.  He is the instructor for the Guitar for Grownups program from Santa Rosa Area Music Together. He also taught guitar for three years at Summerfield Waldorf High School.


Star Tom's regular guitar lessons are only $35 per session for personalized lessons up to an hour in length - many teachers charge as much or more for a 20-30 minute, canned lesson.  With prior arrangement, an additional family member may even be added to lessons at the same time for an additional $15 per session! One-time or occasional lessons (less than once every two weeks) are offered at $45 per lesson.  Lessons are offered in Santa Rosa, CA.  See the Contact Us page for directions.  

Want to write or record songs? Star Tom is here to guide you with the knowledge gained from over 35 years of songwriting, a published CD, and information about what works.


Star Tom offers regular lessons to students from 7 to 107 years of age. He encourages parents with younger children to attend his Music Together classes (birth to 5 years - Offered through Santa Rosa Area Music Together), and/or to arrange a one-time Star Tom lesson.


Email or Call 707-596-2818 to schedule lessons with Star Tom

* Derek Muller, on Veritasium, This Will Revolutionize Education.





Guitar Lesson Policies


Length of Lessons

Adult advertised lesson length is 45 minutes.   The initial lesson/interview usually takes about an hour.  Lesson length is likely to vary from week to week, depending upon Tom's assessment of the amount of material appropriate to cover.  Typical lesson length is 45 minutes. Lessons early in the learning process are usually shorter than 45 minutes (but no shorter than 30 minutes unless by special request of Student or special arrangement by Teacher).  Lessons later in a typical learning process are commonly 45 minutes to 1 hour.  


Children's lesson times are more typically 30 minutes, and may be even shorter early in the learning process.  Please allow up to an hour for the initial lesson/interview, though this is very often shorter since many children experience some shyness in such a new situation and are not very talkative :-).  




What Do I Do During My Child's Lesson?

Please plan to spend the first lesson your child has with us.  This is a new situation for them, and they may need your presence, as well as your help answering some questions.  But during regular lessons children tend to do best when their parents are not sitting in the room with them, simply because of the nature of the parent/child relationship.  Parents are invited to sit in the kitchen area or to stay on the farm property during lessons.  Running an errand it also just fine, as long as you are back before the lesson is complete, so your child doesn't become anxious.



What to Bring

In addition to a playable guitar, students should bring some kind of recording device (cell phone, digital recorder, etc.).  Bring a tuner: an electronic tuner is HIGHLY recommended - if the student doesn't already have a tuner, Star Tom will offer advice during the first lesson on making a good choice - if someone in the house has a smartphone, free aps are easy to download.  Students should bring any music and note sheets from the previous few lessons each week - a folder or binder is a good idea.  And bring a capo.  



Weekly lessons are offered at $35 per session.  One-time or occasional lessons (less than once every two weeks) are offered at $45 per lesson.  With prior arrangement, an additional family member may be added to lessons at the same time for an additional $15 per session.  


Payment is due during the first lesson of the month for all the weeks of the calendar month to come. Payment may be made in cash or by check.  Checks should be made payable to "Star Tom Music."


Rates are subject to change, but will not be changed except at the start of a month, with notice given to students before such change is made or payment given.  


Holidays & Days Off

Star Tom observes the following holidays (there will be no lessons on these days, except as noted.  But alternate times will be offered):

  • Christmas Day & Christmas Eve

  • Thanksgiving (all day) & Thanksgiving Eve (no lessons after 3:00pm)

  • New Year's Day

  • McCurry family birthdays

  • Halloween (no lessons after 3:00pm)

  • July 4 (no lessons after 3:00pm)



Missing Lessons  (Illness, Vacation, Schedule Conflict, Holidays, etc.)

Both Star Tom and Students are expected to make every reasonable effort to meet for lessons at the regularly scheduled time.  Lessons comprise a regular part of Star Tom’s income which ordinarily cannot be replaced with other sources of income at short notice, and are therefore billable even when student is not available for a given week's lesson.


In the event that Student is not able to attend a lesson for any reason, there are two options:


1) With at least 24 hour notice, Student may request a reschedule of a lesson for another day prior to the following week's lesson, subject to availability of time in Teacher's schedule.


2) Student may simply skip the lesson, but will still be charged the regular tuition.


If Star Tom is not available at the regularly scheduled lesson time, he will (with at least 24 hour notice) attempt to reschedule for another time before the next regularly scheduled lesson.  In the event that Star Tom  is unable to provide a lesson for a week, no fee is due and a credit will be given toward the following month's tuition.  

Victor Wooten's beautiful and wise words on music for young children.  

Lesson Length
What to Bring
Tuition Payment

“Tom is an amazing teacher and a great musician. He is one of those individuals that is earnest and honest through and through. You can count on Tom to provide a lesson that is fine tuned to your musical tastes and abilities. He is a natural teacher and, as such, is always very supportive and kind. “

Missing A Lesson

“I took guitar lessons from Tom and learned a lot. You really get 'bang for your buck' with Tom. He is very encouraging and fun to work with.”

What To Do During Child's Lesson?
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