James Wengrow Guitar Lessons
James Wengrow Guitar Lessons

James Wengrow Guitar Lessons

Top Pro

starting price

Interested musical styles

Responds in about 1 hour

Introduction: ***Please note that in-person lessons are available only for NYC residents. However, online lessons are available for anyone.*** ​ I currently teach for the Midori and Friends Foundation and Hudson Classical Music and am booking private students for 2023 and 2024—all ages, skill levels, and musical styles! I also encourage my in-person students to perform at events I host. ​ Lessons can be: [1] remote via Zoom [2] at my music studio (2 Prince St, Brooklyn) [3] at your home. ​ I have 20 years of experience teaching students of all levels, from beginners and group classes in school music programs to conducting jazz workshops at conservatories and teaching advanced adults regularly performing. ​ No matter the students' level, my focus is not just on WHAT to play on the guitar; I emphasize a step-by-step process regarding HOW to practice the concept, deconstruct the core issue, improve the fundamental skills, and ultimately experience a lifetime of joy that music brings. ​ Beginner students will immediately learn songs from their favorite artists while developing the correct fundamentals. Experienced students will be assisted in refining their existing techniques, understanding, and practices while still being challenged to develop new skills and update their goals. ​ Topics include: -Technique/Chops/Picking/Lead guitar/'Shred'... -Chords/Songs/Riffs/Strumming/Rhythm... -Playing genres (jazz, rock, pop, classical, metal) stylistically/blending disciplines/improvisation... -Scales/Fretboard knowledge/Reading music... -Theory/Composition/Songwriting/History... -Development of practice routines/performing and recording... ​ I am privileged to have studied and performed with some of the world's most elite musicians, with my study with late jazz guitar greats John Abercrombie and Vic Juris being experiences I am incredibly thankful for and models I emulate when helping others. Forging connections with students and assisting in their musical development is the most rewarding aspect of my work. I look forward to hearing from you!

Current Top Pro

Hired 15 times

Serves Brooklyn, NY

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1 employee

34 years in business

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Customers rated this pro highly for professionalism, work quality, and responsiveness.

Exceptional 5.0

16 reviews


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Hannah C.
Mar 16, 2023

Hired on Thumbtack

Hired on Thumbtack

I've been playing guitar for a few years by way of attempting to teach myself. I knew that I wanted to get past the plateau in my progress and I am so happy that I found James! I have gotten an incredible amount of value and growth out of my lessons with him. He has so much guitar knowledge and skill and teaches in a way that makes things click! For example, he has helped me begin to feel like I can play music and in front of groups of people and has helped me get in touch with a natural musical sense (as opposed to thinking a lot and trying really hard) while playing guitar. He has never missed or been late to a lesson and sends handwritten PDFs summarizing the lesson and things to practice after we meet. I feel like I found the best guitar teacher out there- highly recommend!

Details: 26 - 44 years old • No formal training; some self-taught experience • Yes, can read guitar tabs • Acoustic • Rock • Folk • Yes, the student has an instrument • 60 minutes • Remotely (phone or internet)

Guitar Lessons
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Steven L.
Jan 17, 2023
James has been an integral part of our three boys' musical education for more than five years. Our eldest, now 13, started with James when he was eight and our middle and youngest boys started soon after when they were just six. Whether in-person or online (online lessons were a fantastic option during COVID and even now when the boys' schedules get hectic), James not only gets the boys engaged in what they're playing, but also provides them a framework for appreciating a wide variety of musical styles. We would absolutely recommend James for folks of all ages looking to pick up the guitar for the first time as well as folks that want someone to help refine their existing skills.
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George C.
Jan 11, 2023
Several years ago, I began my journey to play guitar at the relatively late age of 63, wondering whether I really could do this. When I became James’ student, the answer started to become clear. Yes, I could. And, I believe, so could anyone, and especially anyone fortunate enough to have James as his/her guide. I began learning in person with James, and then the pandemic forced us right away into remote teaching (moreover, I relocated out of NYC). No problem! I haven’t missed a beat (first unintended pun) being a remote student for the past nearly 3 years; James can readily see my technique, and accurately hear me play (it amazes me how he hears perfectly whether I hit the correct note or strummed the correct strings). Some may find learning guitar comes naturally, but for me it requires considerable effort. Yet, it is effort that is always fun and rewarding, never feels like work, and I credit James for helping to make it so. James will tell me that I’m the one doing the work and deserve to feel proud of what I’ve accomplished, but James is totally instrumental (second pun acknowledged) in my growth. I look forward eagerly to our weekly lessons and continue to be delighted by and grateful for what James teaches me. He is gentle, patient, encouraging and inspiring, while being very clear about what I need to do to improve and firmly guiding me. There’s a comfortable space where James will both seek my input on what to work on and take me where he knows I should and can go. He has gotten me to achieve numerous “breakthroughs” in my playing ability, and most importantly, he has greatly enhanced my enjoyment of and enthusiasm for the instrument. I recently played a repertoire of songs for family and friends, and took delight in their delight. On top of it all, James is simply a warm, engaging and terrific guy, with a big heart and love for teaching. I highly recommend James as a teacher to anyone who wants to learn and grow as a musician…no matter your level or whenever you start!
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Heather F.
Jan 2, 2023
James is an amazing guitar instructor. I've been working with him for 6 months (and counting) and it's always a high point in my week. He's always energetic and fully present during our lessons. It's clear he's invested in his students and passionate about guitar, and in turn, it makes me more passionate about the craft. My weekly lessons are super convenient - he has a dedicated music space, fully equipped, located in a cute, central neighborhood in Brooklyn. He has superhuman patience with me and is very encouraging, which I so appreciate. He meets me where I'm at, skill wise, and works with me to improve from wherever my starting point is. He's helped me improve my strumming, dexterity, songwriting, and understanding of music theory. Also, he's taught me to embrace the PROCESS of learning guitar, and to take the pressure off myself to be perfect - playing guitar is supposed to be fun!
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Justin H.
Sep 14, 2023

Hired on Thumbtack

Hired on Thumbtack

James is an incredibly talented guitarist and teacher. He took time to get to know me and my playing, and was great at figuring out a plan of action for what to work on and how to go about it. He is incredibly knowledgeable and has a great way of explaining things that make it easy for anyone to understand. I highly recommend learning from James !

Details: 18 - 25 years old • 0 - 2 yrs of formal training • Yes, can read guitar tabs • Electric • Jazz • Classical • Yes, the student has an instrument • 60 minutes • Remotely (phone or internet)

Guitar Lessons
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James Wengrow


  • What should the customer know about your pricing (e.g., discounts, fees)?

    SPECIAL: For new students, the first two lessons are for the price of one! RATES: 60-min: $90 per single lesson / $340 per month of weekly lessons 45-min: $75 per single lesson / $285 per month of weekly lessons 30-min: $60 per single lesson / $220 per month of weekly lessons The above discounted monthly rate applies to other appointment frequencies (bi-weekly, monthly, flexible book-as-you-go, etc.)

  • What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

    FORMAL EDUCATION: (2016) Masters of Music: Purchase College State University of New York. Jazz Studies with Vic Juris, John Abercrombie, Timothy Albright, and Jon Faddis. Recipient of Jazz Department's 'Graduate Award' and the 'E&E Merit Scholarship' for all semesters. (2012) Honors Year, Bachelor of Music Performance: Victorian College of Arts University of Melbourne Improvisation Stream. Individual study with Marc Hannaford. 'First Class Honors' result for thesis 'Toward a Technique for the Performance or Two-Part Polyrhythms on Electric Guitar.' (2011) Bachelor of Music: Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University Advance Performance Major. Individual study with John Rodgers, James Sherlock, and Steve Newcomb. TEACHING EXPERIENCE IN NEW YORK (2016-2023) NYC Guitar School Individual and group guitar and bass guitar lessons to students of all ages at Upper East Side and Brooklyn locations. Adjudicator of graduation submissions. Ensemble coach for theory, songwriting, and beat-making workshops, for the adult and kids/teens rock band programs and group instructor for after-school classes at PS87 and The School at Columbia University. (2019-Present) Midori Foundation Group Instruction for an after-school program at NYC public schools. Groups consisting of 20+ kids in grades 2 to 5 for PS314M and grades 6 to 8 for MS324. (2013) Gymboree Play & Learn Early childhood (6 months to 5 years of age) classes in Music, Art, School Skills, Sports, and Play & Learn. Lessons of up to 15 children with their accompanying parent/nanny in each class. Others: (2014-2016) Harrison School of Music, (2015-2016) Douglaston Music School. IN AUSTRALIA (2020) Sessional work at Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University (Brisbane) Performance and workshop for the Bachelor of Music students in the Jazz department. (2021-2022) Our Lady of Lourdes Primary School (Brisbane) (2012-2013) Beaumaris North Primary School (Melbourne) Individual and group guitar lessons to students age 5 to 12. Assistance in the running of both school's concerts and events. (2009-2011) Saint Laurence’s College (Brisbane) Individual and group lessons for students from grades 5-12 based on classical guitar pedagogy. Individual and group lessons. Assistance in running the Junior Guitar Orchestra (approximately 40 ensemble members), extra-curricular concerts, and music camps/tours.

  • How did you get started doing this type of work?

    I started performing in the jazz scene in Brisbane, Australia, at age 13. I was also starting to give guitar lessons at that same period to fellow school students and their siblings during lunch breaks and before/after class. Since then, I have taught in numerous schools, studios, and privately in Australia and New York, as outlined below!

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