Steven Gizzi

Steven Gizzi 2

Steven Gizzi is dedicated to two passions in life – the art of musical creation, and the joy of kindling that spark in others. He is a Los Angeles-based composer, producer, performer, and educator who has focused his professional career on writing music for film, television, and video games. His goal as a musician is to weave together richly crafted webs of transformative emotion and immerse the listener within an authentic storytelling experience like no other.
 
Steven began his lifelong musical journey fourteen years ago as a classical pianist. In 2007, he became a founding member of the Richmond School of Rock in Virginia, where he helped to bring other students’ musical dreams to life through energetic band rehearsals and public rock concerts. He spent four years at the University of Miami studying under Academy Award-nominated composer Chris Boardman, and graduated in May 2015 with a degree in Media Writing & Production and a double minor in Music Business and Creative American Music.
 
In the summer of 2013, Steven composed the score for “Gwyndor”, a short film directed by David Crabtree (“Psych”, “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”). The film has gone on to receive high praise, winning the Audience Choice Award at the 2013 HollyShorts Film Festival. He is currently working under BMI TV Music Award recipient Jay Vincent as an additional composer and music editor for the much-loved Cartoon Network show “LEGO Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu”, and has also contributed music to the upcoming sci-fi film directed by Rajeev Dassani (“Covert Affairs”, “Scandal”). In March 2014, he released his debut album as a solo artist, entitled “The Terrestrial Orchestra”. It was a project of passion in which he attempted to harness the fundamental elements of nature to create a musical journey like no other. His most recent project involved collaborating with colleague David Krystal on an original soundtrack for “Catalyst” – a puzzle game app available for iPhone and Android.
 
As an educator, Steven recognizes the tremendous power of self-expression through music, and works diligently with all of his students to develop their own unique musical journey. He strives to pass on to each student a universal set of skills that will allow them to adapt to any style of music. He is always on the lookout to work with new students who share his passion!

Carla Buffa

Carla 2

 

Carla attended the Berklee College of Music and finished at The New England Conservatory of Music. She studied composition with jazz great George Russell and contemporary composer William Thomas McKinley. Carla was elected as a member into the Pi Kappa Lambda Society. She graduated with academic honors and a degree in music.

 

Carla was the vocalist, songwriter, lyricist, & lead guitarist for Earthwurm.  Earthwurm recorded 2 independently released studio CD’s, Sex & Anxiety & Blank The Same. “I Wait For You”  a track off “Blank the Same”,was chosen to be featured on a compilation called “Octaves Beyond Silence” featuring Ani DiFranco, Sarah Mclachlan & The Indigo Girls.

 

For 3 years Carla played the Chappman Stick for the off-broadway sensation, The Blue Man Group.  She was the 1st  female band member of the NYC show and the  2nd female in the entire company.

 

Carla has performed & toured as a lead vocalist and a back ground vocalist for many artists, such as: Danny Vaughn (Tyketto/Vaughn), The Party Dolls, Richie Canatta ( Billy Joel), Allison Miller (Annie DiFranco, Natalie Merchant & Brandi Carlile), Sheryl Bailey, Lucy Arnez, The Newyorkettes and many Vegas style tribute acts.

 

Carla still takes an occasional lesson and her teacher is the private vocal coach for Arianna Grande, Megan Trainer and many Broadway artists.

 

Carla and her husband PJ are the writing team known as “The Alphabet Astronauts” and they write music for TV, Film and original artists.

Derek Buechel

 Rock, Funk, Blues and Jazz Guitar

Click here to watch an acoustic performance of Derek w/ his bank “Hey You!”

Click here to watch Derek perform w/ his band at The Viper Room

Click here to watch Derek Preform

Derek John Buechel is an honors graduate of Columbia College in Chicago where he received his Bachelor of Arts degree. While attending Columbia, Derek based his studies in the jazz and rock/fusion guitar idiom, and had private lessons with Chicago greats Frank Dawson and Peter Lerner. Through his studies and training, Derek attained a solid foundation in all aspects of music including composition, theory, technique, production, sight-reading, and ear training. While at Columbia, Derek was surrounded by many of the businesses’ finest musicians including blues greats Koko Taylor and Fernando Jones, jazz greats Pat Martino, Jon Faddis, and John Pizzarelli, and funk legend Fred Wesley.

While maintaining a solid rock n’ roll foundation, Derek’s style is described as an eclectic mix of jazz, rock, blues, funk, and psychedelia. Part of the reason for his unique style is his involvement in a number of different musical outfits. Derek was a member of almost every different ensemble Columbia had to offer including Jazz Guitar, Blues Ensemble, Pop Orchestra, New Music Ensemble, and Groove Band. He was also very involved in Chicago’s theatre and comedy scene, working as Music Director for a production based out of Chicago’s legendary 2nd City and also playing lead guitar for the Apollo Theatre’s Baby Wants Candy, the most popular improv-comedy sketch in Chicago.

Since moving to Los Angeles in late 2008, Derek has built a solid musical foundation for himself through teaching lessons, and his rock band, Hey You!. Hey You! has been lighting up Hollywood, constantly playing some of L.A.’s best venues such as the House of Blues, Key Club, Viper Room, and the Troubadour, and has even won a couple of awards along the way (RAW Artist Musician of the Year, Project Rock Warrior winners). The band happened to catch the ear of Producer/Engineer Mike Clink (Guns N’ Roses, Heart, Metallica), and is currently in the studio recording their debut album with him.

While performing with Hey You!, Derek has still kept his love for teaching alive. He has received much praise for his teaching of all age groups, but specifically with children. He has been involved with childcare and education since high school, and this can be seen in his teaching style with kids. Some of his students have even given him the nickname “Happy”.

Derek is available for private guitar and piano lessons on Mondays and Wednesdays.

PJ Zitarosa

PJ

Pj studied jazz performance & music theory at City College in New York City. Some of his mentors include Joe Giglio, Vic Juris, Alex Skolnick, Metal Mike Chlasciak, Oz Noy & Greg Harrison. Pj has toured the globe with such artists as: Tyketto, Danny Vaughn, Brother Love, Jon Jones, The Bobby Lynch Band, New Power Soul & Garden State Radio. While with these bands Pj has shared the stage with: Motorhead, ZZ Top, AC/DC, Don Felder, Dream Theater, Killswitch Engage, As I Lay Dying, Kris Allen, Barenaked Ladies, 3 Doors Down, Michael Franti, & Joe Piscopo.
Pj has recorded numerous recordings & promotional videos and has been a featured artist online with Guitar World Magazine, Guitar Player Magazine & Premier Guitar Magazine demonstrating numerous efx pedals from: Maxon, TWA, Guyatone, Emma, Providence & HAO.
Pj has also been a featured artist for the past 5 years at the Winter NAMM show in Anaheim California &
 is proudly endorsed by- ENGL amps, Marshall amps, Music Man Guitars, Ernie Ball Strings, V-picks, EMG pickups, Gator Cases, Godlyke Distribution, Providence, Maxon, Guyatone, Emma, TWA, HAO, Get’m Get’m Straps & Loxx strap locks.

Andreas Farmakalidis

Bass

Check out more media and info on Andreas’ Website!

Andreas Farmakalidis is a professional performing musician, published musical author as well as educator with national as well as international touring experience.

He is primarily known as an electric bass player. He was fortunate enough to record with notable musicians such as Grammy award winning guitar player Marty Friedman,Megadeth, aika (J-pop top10), Neilaproductions, among others. In addition, he supported many well known artists and he has shared the stage with the likes of Chaka Khan, Stevie Wonder, WAR, Greek x factor and super idol artists among many others.

He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Professional Music from Berklee College of Music as well as a MA degree from Brandeis University . In addition, Andreas is a Rotterdams Conservatory alumnus, where he was studying Jazz bass Performance as well as Music Pedagogy. Moreover, he has a performance grade degree in piano from Trinity College in the UK.

Lastly Andreas is a staff writer for the renowned bass magazine. His First music book, which is published through academic publishing, focuses on observations and analyses in the music of Ornette Coleman. His second book (hip hop bass lines), which is going to be published through bassline publishing, will be out early 2012.

Andreas is available for private lessons on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Alexis Stone Lopez

Beginning & Intermediate Guitar

Alexis was born in August 1984 in Modesto, CA. She attended Woodrow Elementary, Somerset Middle School, and Fred C. Beyer High School.

Shortly before graduation from high school, she decided to audition for the first season of American Idol. So, at 17, she skipped school just before finals to drive more than 300 miles alone to Los Angeles for a 40-second audition. Although competing with more than 10,000 Idol-hopefuls, she made it all the way to the final Wildcard competition, before leaving the show.

After graduation, she moved to Los Angeles to pursue her music interests. She attended Pierce College in Woodland Hills, CA, where she studied Linguistics and Music, and then went on to earn a full scholarship to the Musicians Institute in Hollywood, CA.

Alexis has been working in recording studios since she was 14 years old, not only as an artist and studio vocalist, but also as a recording engineer and a producer. Although her primary focus has been on her education, she has also managed to tour with several major acts at venues including MGM Grand, Cal Expo, Universal Amphitheater, and other major locations across the U.S.

She is currently back in the studio full time, working to complete a volume of songs, to draw from for her upcoming album.

Alexis is Available for Private Lessons Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Andy Perez

andy perez

My name is Andy Perez, I am musician based out of the San Fernando valley. I can play a wide range of instruments, from playing the guitar to playing the accordion. I  have been playing for about 9 years and experimented with versatile styles of playing. My passion for music started at a young age. I began playing the accordion and took lessons at a local music school where I learned to read music and developed the skills needed to become a more rounded musician. I then switched over to the guitar when I began taking lessons at powerhouse music now know as monster music lessons. I also learned how to play other instruments such as the piano, violin, viola, saxophone, bass guitar, and a little bit of drums. I started to play with many local bands where I learned to work with other musicians in a band environment. As time went by I took on the decision to start teaching music so I could  spread the joy of playing and learning music to other people. I worked for an old teacher of mine at a local music school teaching a group of 9 students at a time for about a year. I soon retired from teaching at that music school, now I’ve currently been giving private lessons at the comfort of my home.