Phil Martelly Owner
A graduate of the esteemed Berklee College of Music in Boston, his passion for music is unmatched by few and is a driving force behind his bringing School of Rock to the Southern Mass/Rhode Island area. He is the definition of the word musician as he plays not one but several instruments: guitar, bass and drums. Phil has played with a lot of the area's hottest bands including Pappy Chulo as the opening act for none other than Incubus.
Shawn Garrity Owner
Shawn's musical journey began at age eleven when his dad handed him a guitar and taught him a few chords. As he grew, so did his love for music. At fifteen, he joined a band, began writing music and playing original and cover songs at clubs and venues throughout New England. He studied jazz and classical music at Western Connecticut State University and earned a B.A. in Music Industry from the University of New Haven. After college Shawn formed several bands which eventually resulted in the formation of his current band, VulGarrity. The band has completed three nationwide tours, signed an artist development deal with MySpace Records and won first place in 95.5 WBRU's 2011 Rock Hunt. Shawn has shared the stage with The Prodigals, Ra, Robert DeLong, The Heavy, Ra Ra Riot and Electric Six. Shawn continues to record music and tour with his sister and VulGarrity bandmate Tracy. With the use of loop pedals, the two play guitar, bass, drums and keys simultaneously while singing, often switching instruments during their shows, creating a unique live music experience. While Shawn enjoys listening to and playing a wide variety of music, he is most inspired by all things rock.
Christian Pearson General Manager, Music Director
Christian Pearson studied Music Theory, Theology and Film at Evangel University from 2004 to 2009. Originally from the east coast, he was in the Springfield, Missouri music scene from 2009-2015, and has played in multiple bands, including Call Me Beta, Skylines and Cityscapes, and Ships of Adamant. Now in North Carolina, Christian is a composer who uses full orchestra and guitar in a classical expression of progressive metal. He has been with School of Rock for many years and teaches guitar, bass, keys, vocals and drums, and directs multiple bands. He is our General Manager and Music Director at School of Rock Cornelius. He cites his greatest influences as Dream Theater, Haken, Devin Townsend, Ayreon, Opeth and Circus Maximus.
Joshua Marks Guitar Teacher
Joshua Marks began playing the guitar at age 11, initially learning the music of The Beatles, Aerosmith and Phish. After studying with NYC jazz guitarist Peter Mazza as a high school student, he graduated with a Music Education degree from Berklee College of Music in 2003. He has taught and performed jazz and rock music ever since in many places from Augusta, GA to New York City. His musical theater experience includes "West Side Story," "Footloose," "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels," "Grease" and "Annie."
Brandon Molhis Assistant Manager
Brandon Molhis was raised by a musical family and became interested in audio engineering in high school. After getting his Associate’s degree in Music, he went to Phoenix to attend the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences and toured nationally until he graduated in 2005. He then moved to Los Angeles to write and record music for a licensing agency. After a couple of lucky opportunities, Brandon was able to save up and relocate to Missouri to be closer to family and begin his Bachelor’s in Music Education, and in 2013 he discovered School of Rock and was soon head show director. In October 2019, he moved to Charlotte to take on the role of Assistant Manager for School of Rock Cornelius. Brandon’s main instrument is guitar, but he also plays bass, drums, keys, banjo and mandolin, and can sing in a four-octave range. He is still actively making music.
Karyn Pearson Piano Teacher, Vocal Instructor
Karyn Pearson’s love for music began as a little girl in a musical family. She started singing when she could talk and hasn’t stopped since. She started playing the piano at seven years old, viola at nine and flute at 11. A good part of her musical roots were in gospel, playing and singing for churches, choirs, schools, conventions and weddings. Karyn enjoys listening to and performing many genres of music ranging from ballads to progressive rock and has been a part of several bands over the years. Being at School of Rock Cornelius as a piano teacher and vocal instructor has been incredibly fulfilling and fun, and she loves working with the students.
John Mooney Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher
When John Mooney was 14 he picked up a guitar and couldn't put it down. This is when his interest in music began to explode. He started reading up on theory and learning the ins and outs of everything that makes music what it is. Practicing and studying every day for hours became a habit. Every inch of his free time was given up for his passion of guitar and music. He also got very comfortable with other instruments like piano, bass and drums. His biggest musical influences are Children Of Bodom, Muse, Ozzy Osbourne, Opeth, Dream Theater and many others. He is a guitar teacher and bass guitar teacher at School of Rock Cornelius.
Amber Creager Vocal Instructor
Amber Creager is a vocal instructor at School of Rock Cornelius. She has been classically trained since the age of 10 and competed with nationally ranked choirs across the country. Amber received her Bachelor's degree in Theatre, increasing her knowledge of musicals, stage performance and directing. Singing and inspiring others to sing is her biggest passion.
Jerome King Drum Teacher
Jerome King has been playing drums since 2009, as well as guitar, bass and keys since 2010. Originating from a heavy rock background growing up, his passion of music has also led him to become a music producer and audio engineer since 2016. With years of marching band experience, as well as college level drum corps at UNC Charlotte, he inspires to teach others the passion and fun of music in all aspects and genres. His greatest influences are Periphery, Avenged Sevenfold, Animals as Leaders, Tesseract, Intervals and many more artists in the progressive metal scene. He is a drum teacher at School of Rock Cornelius.
Ben Bradford Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher
Ben Bradford is a Charlotte musician with over 10 years of experience performing under his belt. At School of Rock Cornelius he is a guitar teacher and bass guitar teacher. From a family of musicians, Ben was raised on all different kinds of music, but found his niche in 90s alternative, rock, pop and songwriting. Outside of school, Ben is a touring musician and an active participant in the Charlotte music scene. In 2018 he received his BA in Music from Catawba College. Ben is now also stepping up to teach Performance groups in the Rock 101 program.