Questions? Call us at 609-888-3074

Questions? Call us at 609-888-3074

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Meet our Instructors

Dakota Bethke

Drums, Lesson Program Manager
Teaching Since:

2016

Favorite Records:

Largo – Brad Mehldau
Earth Jones – Elvin Jones
Joy as an Act of Resistance – IDLES
Family First – Mark Guiliana Jazz Quartet
Transatlanticism – Death Cab for Cutie
Sports – Huey Lewis and The News

Music Background:

I started teaching drums when I was eighteen years old. My goal is to teach students how to better communicate through their instrument. Technique, improvisation, control, and multi-limb independence are focal points of my curriculum—designed to help players of all levels find their voice on the drum kit. When I’m not teaching, I’m obsessing over 60’s era Ludwig kits and recording drum videos for my social platforms.

Favorite Piece of Gear:

1965 Ludwig Club Date in Red Sparkle

Daniel Mosovich

Guitar, Bass, and Ukulele
Teaching Since:

2008

Notable Accomplishments:

Degree in Music

Music Background:

I've been playing my main instrument (guitar) since I was 5. I was very lucky to have my father inspire me musically as I grew up. Eventually, at the age of 12, I decided to take guitar lessons and study with the late Frank Hipp. After a year or 2, I changed teachers and studied with James Kelly (amazing Jazz player). With him I studied music theory extensively and learned how to apply it to my guitar playing. Throughout my musical career, I've been in multiple bands and experienced multiple styles of music.

Favorite Band(s):

The Beatles, Jeff Beck, Clapton, Hendrix, Johnny Winter, Queens of the Stone Age, George Benson, Herbie Hancock, Robert Glasper, The Contortionists, Led Zeppelin

Favorite Piece of Gear:

Marshall JCM2000 50W head, Fender and Gibson guitars

John Spodaryk

Guitar, Piano, Bass, and Ukulele
Teaching Since:

1989

Notable Accomplishments:

Berklee College of Music: Summer Sessions 1990-1993
Bachelors of Music - Jazz Studies, Theory/Composition, Musicology/Music Education
Masters of Music Education/Performance 1994-1996

Music Background:

My teaching method is based on 30 plus years of Academic and “Real World” experience that has been tested and refined by thousands of hours in lessons with countless beginner through advanced students. I work hard at maintaining a casual approach that's fun and motivating at every stage of learning, and satisfying for all my students. I have found this to be the most enjoyable and effective way to teach students to realize their own personal goals, regardless of skill level, age, genre, or stylistic interests. My commitment is to your progress!

Alessandra Napoleon

Alto/Tenor Sax, Flute, Clarinet, Trombone, Trumpet, and Violin
Teaching Since:

2019

Favorite Records:

Soul Station – Hank Mobley
Metrople – Anomalie
The Way Up – Pat Metheny Group
Anything Beethoven
Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto in D Major

Music Background:

I have performed mainly classical music in wind symphonies, saxophone quartets, solo and chamber ensemble music. I am classically trained, but also enjoy listening to and performing jazz music. I have been a band and orchestra director and a general music teacher, so I can teach or play any wind or string instruments at a beginning level. Woodwinds are my specialty.

Favorite Piece of Gear:

For classical music I prefer the Selmer C star mouthpiece, and for jazz the Meyer 5.

Brian Casally

Drums, Guitar, Bass Guitar, Ukulele, and Piano
Teaching Since:

2002

Favorite Records:

Rain Dogs – Tom Waits
Dark Side of the Moon – Pink Floyd
Songs for the Deaf – Queens of the Stone Age
Abbey Road – The Beatles

Music Background:

Brian has a BFA from TCNJ and studied jazz guitar under Frank Hipp of Trenton, Plays in several local bands, style ranges from reggae, classic rock, klezmer and punk. Strong focus on theory, chord melody and group playing. Favorite bands include The Beatles, Radio Head and Queens of the Stone Age.

Favorite Piece of Gear:

American Fender Strat Plus Deluxe

Isaí Cortes

Drums, Piano, Trombone, Violin, and Percussion
Teaching Since:

2020

Favorite Records:

Tú Con Él - Frankie Ruiz
Oblivion- Astor Piazzolla
Mornin’ - Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers

Music Background:

Finishing BA in Music Education (spring 22). Over 17 years of percussion experience (jazz, classical, latin percussion) as well as 8 years of trombone and proficient with beginner Woodwind, Brass, and strings.

Favorite Piece of Gear:

Seiko Quartz Metronome SQM-300

Michael Celentana

Guitar and Bass
Teaching Since:

1999

Favorite Records:

Greenwich Mean – Wayne Krantz
Nevermind – Nirvana
Blowout Comb – Digable Planets
Agartha – Miles Davis
Perceptual – Brian Blade Fellowship
Aja – Steely Dan

Music Background:

B.A. in Music, Berklee College of Music. My interest in guitar began around age 16 when I heard a friend play a Stratocaster. Since then, I've taught myself to also play piano, drums, a bit of flute, and currently the upright bass. I am a champion of improvised music, and I have strong interests in home recording/all-things-DAW, synths, and the intersection between analog and digital sounds.

Favorite Piece of Gear:

My Orange Rocker 15, which can make my Fender Telecaster sound fatter and rounder than any humbucker-equipped axe.

Michael Macchia

Guitar, Bass, and Music Theory
Teaching Since:

1993

Notable Accomplishments:

Bucks County Community College with Studies in Jazz Theory, Harmony, and Theory
Graduate of Musician's Institute (Hollywood, CA) with Studies in Jazz, Blues, and Rock Performance
Settlement Music School with Studies in Classical Guitar and Arrangement
Master Classes with Steve Giordano on Jazz Guitar (University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA)

Music Background:

I have studied guitar all of my life and I have taught in various establishments in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Attending Musicians Institue was the greatest experience of my musical studies. Our teachers were all the tip studio musicians in Los Angeles as well as the top players of their styles in the world. Some of my teachers were Pat Martino, Robben Ford, Stephen Morris, and Larry Carlton.

Favorite Band(s):

Steely Dan, Eagles, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones

Favorite Piece of Gear:

Gibson Les Paul Standard Guitar

In-Person Lessons Have Returned to Russo Music Hamilton

Russo Music is excited to announce the return of our in-person lesson program—we are looking forward to seeing you soon!

Lessons FAQ

Where can I take in-person lessons?

In-person lessons are held at our Hamilton location.

During what times are in-person lessons available?

In-person lessons are available Mon-Sat from 12:00p-6:00p and Sunday from 12:00p-4:30p.

Will you still offer virtual lessons?

Yes, virtual lessons remain a vital part of our program!

Are virtual lessons effective?

Yes! In fact, many benefit from the ease of scheduling and comfort of being home. Some students have also reported an increase in practice time as many families are home more often than ever! Through our virtual format, our passionate teachers can deliver the same level of support, inspiration, and information as in-person.

I live near Asbury Park/Philadelphia, do you offer in-person lessons at these locations?

While we do not currently offer in-person lessons at the locations, we are happy to get you set up with virtual lessons from one of our skilled instructors.

What do I need to start virtual lessons?

A smart phone or tablet and stable internet connection are all that are required! Lessons are offered via Skype, Zoom and FaceTime—ensuring both safety and reliable video connection.

During what times are virtual lessons available?

Virtual lesson times vary by teacher, though there are usually availabilities for lessons after 6pm.

How much do lessons cost?

Virtual and lessons are priced at $120.00 per month, which includes one 30-minute lesson per week, at the same time and day each week. A credit card is required for automatic payment—payments are processed on the First of each month.

Do you offer trial lessons?

We do! We offer a $35 half hour lesson to ensure it’s a good fit for you before committing to a full month.

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Contact Us

Finding the right learning environment can be difficult. That is why we are dedicated to explaining what makes the Russo Music Lessons program so unique. Have any questions? Feel free to reach out here:

609.888.0620

Lessons@russomusic.com

Our Story

Founded in 1960 by Lucy and Stephen Russo, Russo Music has been committed to providing a fun and exciting experience for students of all ages and skill levels. Russo Music has been a community presence for over 60 years having taught generations of families in the Hamilton area and beyond. From the beginner to the seasoned vet, our instructors are ready to teach any student and create a unique teaching curriculum designed specifically to get them where they want to be and to have fun doing it. We hope to honor the tradition that Mr. and Mrs. Russo started by continuing to grow the love for music in our community.

Welcome to Russo Music Symphonic!

You are here because you've clicked or searched something on our Guitar & Drums website that is related to band instruments. This sister site covers our Band & Orchestra products and our school rental program. Browse around and let us know how we can help!

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