Colin Sapp

Jazz Guitar, Electric Guitar, Lead Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Blues Guitar, Fingerstyle Guitar, Rock Guitar
(8 reviews)
75+ lessons booked on Lessonface

Lesson Fees
from $70.00 / 30 Minutes

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I am an Associate  Professor of Guitar at Berklee College of Music. I was a faculty member at the Roland Hayes School of Music from 2008-2014 and the Guitar Coordinator at the Boston Arts Academy from 2000 to 2003. I have performed with many preeminent artists, including Blue Note recording artist Kurt Elling, Grammy award-winner Dave Samuels, pianist Aaron Goldberg, Backstreet Boys, Ally Brooke from 5th Harmony, NBC's The Voice contestant James Wolpert, and former United States Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky. I have over 100 recording credits as a guitarist, engineer, and/or producer.

My influences are (in no particular order): Jimi Hendrix, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, John McLaughlin, Eddie Van Halen, Nuno Bettencourt, Joe Satriani, Randy Rhoads, Bill Evans, Charlie Hunter, Joe Pass, Pat Metheny, Pat Martino, Bill Frisell, John Scofield, Jimmy Page, Ben Monder, Wayne Krantz, Stevie Ray Vaughan, B.B. King, Eric Clapton, Wayne Shorter, Sebastian Mueller, The Beatles, George Benson, Albert King, Herbie Hancock, Tony Williams, Slash, Kurt Rosenwinkel, and so on...

Lessons are tailored to the individual's needs and goals. The beginning of the lesson involves a short conversation about successes and challenges of the previous lesson's content. From there, the student will demonstrate their ability level with the material and I will make suggestions to help resolve any issues. The next part of the lesson involves introducing and working on new material. The final part of the lesson is to recapitulate to make sure the student understands the new material and what the expectations are for the next lesson.

I’m fascinated by the creative process, so I love working on improvisation and composition concepts with students. I also enjoy all different genres of music, and I’m always learning more by listening to things that might seem out of character for me. One thing I’ve learned over the years is that flexibility is a great asset in the business. Therefore, the style of guitar playing a student is really into isn’t a major factor to me; it’s whether or not the music they make is truly communicating something meaningful to the listener in the best possible way

I fundamentally believe that students are teachers themselves when it comes to music learning. The most valuable type of music learning occurs when students explore, experiment, and create on their own using the information a teacher gave them. Therefore, the time that is most critical is in between lessons. There must be a significant commitment on the student's part to pick up the instrument as often as possible. A music teacher's role then, is to give musical and technical information, suggest refinements in a student's playing, propose multiple approaches to concepts, and hopefully inspire the student to work hard.

Boston University - M.M. in Music Education; Graduate Assistant in jazz studies
Berklee College of Music - B.M. in Guitar Performance, summa cum laude

2020 Berklee Distinguished Faculty

Professional Affiliations
Association for Popular Music Education
Pi Kappa Lambda National Music Honor Society
The National Association for Music Education

Articles Published
“Deepening Rhythm and Groove”, Massachusetts Music Educators Journal, Winter 2020
“Comentoring in a University Jazz Ensemble”, Visions of Research in Music Education No. 25 2014
“Reading with ‘The Big 3’",Open Position Spring 2014
“Teaching Popular Guitar for Beginners: Part II - Chords", POP! January 30, 2014
“Using a Pop Music Convention to Teach Music Theory in an Urban High School”, Massachusetts Music News Vol.62, No.2 Winter 2013-2014
"Teaching Popular Guitar for Beginners: Part I - Choosing Repertoire”, POP! September 30, 2013
“Finishing Strong”, Open Position Spring 2013
“OP Meets Peter Bernstein”, Open Position Spring 2002
“OP Meets Bill Frisell”, Open Position Winter 2001
“Sheryl Bailey Contemporary Jazz Concert”, Open Position Spring 2001
“Stretching the Changes - Polyrhythmically”, Open Position Winter 2000

Guitar Techniques: Lead guitar, Rhythm guitar, Fingerstyle, Performance, Improvisation, Jamming Skills, Reading Music, Music Theory, Ear Training, Scales and Exercises, Songwriting, Recording and Production, Guidance In Equipment Selection

Lessons are tailored to the individual's needs and goals. The first lesson involves a conversation about the student's self-assessment and goals. While hearing the student play, I assess what I feel their needs are and align them with what their stated needs and goals are. From there we discuss what course of action to take.

Reviews of lessons with Colin Sapp

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