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Our Experienced Music Instructors

School of Rock has experienced music instructors

Our Experienced Music Instructors

School of Rock Memphis’s music teachers are experienced musicians devoted to helping students attain musical proficiency. From singing to drums to guitar, our Memphis music instructors inspire and teach students to perform live.

Sarah Greenwald Singing Teacher

In 2010, Sarah Greenwald moved from Oshkosh, WI to Memphis, TN to pursue a music degree at Visible Music College. She achieved not only a Bachelor’s degree in vocal performance but graduated with high honors and won the vocal department of excellence award for her academic work as a student and performer. It was also during college that she earned her place as an intern at a music school in Kandern, Germany where she taught voice lessons, directed choirs and taught music theory classes. Her students were also given the chance to produce shows and record in the studio where she served as a co-director and vocal coach.
Upon completing her education at Visible Music College, she started to sing with different artists around the Memphis area as a jazz vocalist, where she was able to push herself vocally and as a performer. In addition, she has taught in a variety of different elementary schools, both as a vocal and piano teacher. She’s currently serving as a worship leader at Life Fellowship Church and is planning to pursue her Master’s in vocal pedagogy and vocal performance.

Landon Moore Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher

Landon Moore has been performing and recording professionally in Memphis for the past 10 years. Buying his first bass guitar at 18, he immediately started playing live at various venues across Memphis. Once he had established himself as a live artist he then ventured into the world of the studio musician. Landon has performed with local bands such as Ingram Hill, Rusty Lemon, This Is Goodbye, Fast Planet, Jeremy Stanfill, Craig Davis, Eric Gales and many others. He has also performed with members of such bands as The Black Crowes, Better Than Ezra, North Mississippi Allstars, Galactic, Shinedown and Saving Abel. As a studio musician he has recorded with many of the most sought-after producers and engineers in Memphis including John Hampton, Jeff Powell, Pete Matthews and Paul Ebersold. As a School of Rock instructor, Landon hopes to bring an eclectic view of music into the minds of his students; not merely teaching them how to play the music they love, but showing them where that music ultimately came from.

Chris Stephenson Singing Teacher, Piano Teacher

Chris Stephenson is a Hammond B3 player/keyboardist/vocalist from Memphis, Tennessee. He’s been a regular entertainer at BB King's Blues Club, The Rum Boogie and all around Memphis and the mid-South for the past 16 years. He’s opened for BB King four times, shared the stage with Bobby Blue Bland and toured with Shirley Brown on The Blues is Alright tour. He currently works with six different bands every week, including one that features legendary bassist Leroy Hodges, Jr. Chris has recorded with several Memphis artists, such as Brandon Santini, Victor Wainwright and Jeff Jensen at many different studios, including Ardent and Sun.

Dylan Wheeler Guitar Teacher

Dylan Wheeler has been playing guitar for over 10 years, completely self-taught for over half of that time. In 2015 he graduated from Visible Music College with a Bachelor’s degree in Guitar. Since graduating Dylan has played with numerous artists around Memphis and currently plays with School of Rock Memphis vocal instructor Laramie.

Will Presley Guitar Teacher, Bass Guitar Teacher

Will has been teaching for three years and is writing/recording his own music, using his ever-growing list of influences to shape his own unique sound. After college, Will joined a Nashville progressive rock band and toured the northeast and southeast. After leaving the band, he began teaching. Will began studying music theory in high school and majored in Music at Belmont University in Nashville, where he also studied Music Business and Audio Engineering. Will started playing the guitar at the age of 10 when he discovered Green Day. As the years went by, heavier and more progressive artists (such as Metallica, Steve Vai, Eric Johnson, Devin Townsend and Dream Theater) found their way into his repertoire.

Rodd Bland Drum Teacher

From blues royalty, the son of Bobby "Blue" Bland and godson of B.B. King, Rodd Bland rose up from the age of three learning traditional blues from his father's drummers, John "Jab O" Starks, Harold "Peanie" Portier and Rodd's brother, Tony Coleman, to become an exceptional band cornerstone rounding out any genre.

Spending much of his time touring live, Rodd has additionally contributed to sessions with talent such as Ian Siegal, and Darren Jay and The Delta Souls. Rodd appeared alongside his father at Austin City Limits and Music Voyager, as well as in the documentary "Take Me To The River," playing with his father and Yo Gotti. He then played a Sundance Film Festival concert for the movie, anchoring the drum throne with The Hi Rhythm Band, playing behind STAX legends William Bell and Ben Cauley Jr., as well as Oscar-winning rapper Frayser Boy and Al Kapone.

As Rodd enters a new era of his life as a musician, with the loss of his father, King and Clay, he has taken the opportunity to transfer lessons he absorbed to a new generation of blues fans while carrying on the great legacy of the blues royalty. Currently Rodd stays in an active role behind the bands Brimstone Jones, Will Tucker, The Blues Player's Club, and Rodd Bland and The Members Only Band (Bobby Blue Bland Tribute), and tours internationally on festival circuits with such great artists as The Reverend Shawn Amos.

Greg Reding Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher

Greg is a veteran musician with over 40 years of experience in the music industry. In 1967, his band, The Village Sound, signed a recording contract with legendary record company Stax Records. In 1973, Greg joined the famous Southern rock band Black Oak Arkansas, for whom he played lead guitar and keyboard. In 1985, Greg wrote a song called “Against the Night” that was featured on 38 Special's "Strength in Numbers" album, selling over 1,000,000 copies and earning gold record status. He's performed locally and nationally with world-renowned artists such as legendary blues artist Albert King and Stephen Stills of Crosby, Stills and Nash. He's also worked with a wide variety of musicians and bands such as Chuck Berry, Leslie Gore, The Shirelles, Tommy Roe, Lou Christie, Del Shannon, The Drifters, The Coasters and Bo Diddley, to name a few. In 1989, Greg formed The Memphis All-Stars, a local rhythm blues band that he still owns and operates today.

Blake Rhea Bass Guitar Teacher

Blake Rhea has been teaching and performing music for the last 15 years. His career as a bassist and guitarist has crossed several genres and allowed him to play both nationally and internationally. After graduating from Rhodes College, he co-founded CYC, a band that blended rock, funk, hip-hop and jazz. CYC recorded three records and regularly toured and played on Beale Street. In 2003, Blake joined the Gamble Brothers Band. GBB, a soul and rock/pop group, beat out 1,200 bands to win the Billboard-sponsored Independent World Series in Nashville. He had the opportunity to work with producer Jeff Powell (Bob Dylan, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Big Star). In 2009, he began to tour with Austin-based singer/songwriter Charlie Mars, as well as drummer J.J. Johnson (John Mayer) and organist John Ginty (Robert Randolph, School of Rock Montclair Musical Director). Also during this time, he recorded "Rapocalypse" with local hip-hop group Lord T. and Eloise. While on tour supporting the release of this record, they had the opportunity to play for George Lucas and Seth Green at Skywalker Ranch in San Francisco, CA.
In 2011, Blake began collaborating with local blues musician Billy Gibson. In September of that year they were invited to play for the troops in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Blake has gained valuable experience both touring and in the studio. Working on these diverse projects gave him the opportunity to share the stage with Jim Dandy, Al Kapone, Eightball and MJG, Roy Hargrove, Galactic and Eric Gales to name a few. Throughout the years, he has always made time to share with students his passion for music.

Missy Shackleford Vocal Instructor

Missy has been a vocal and performance coach for over 16 years and her career has included assisting several students on "The Voice" and "American Idol" in addition to many local and regional competitions. Missy is also an accomplished songwriting instructor and has been an advocate for songwriters and artists the majority of her career. Simultaneously with teaching, she advanced her knowledge and education of the industry into music publishing and licensing. She has represented local and award winning songwriters as a Woman in Sync at several Sync Summits, including in Nashville and L.A. She has successfully licensed music for television with several networks including NBC, Bravo and HBO. Missy continues to have a heart for young creative people and passionately enjoys developing their talent for all aspects of the music industry. She is a vocal instructor at School of Rock Memphis.

Rory Mills Sullivan Drum Teacher

Currently Rory play drums with Marcella and Her Lovers. His father worked at Ardent Studios as a house engineer, working on albums by Alex Chilton, Tav Falco’s Panther Burns, ZZ Top, and Mudboy and the Neutrons.

Rory received his first drum set at age four, and began studying percussion at age 10 under the tutelage of instructors Cedric Keel (Billy Gibson Band, King Beez) and Paul Buchignani (The Afghan Whigs) at the world famous Memphis Drum Shop. He began playing professionally in high school. Upon graduation, he worked as both a musician and a nanny until attending college in 2005. He graduated in 2008 with an associate's degree in Early Childhood Education and again in 2011 with a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy.

Mac Gittinger Studio Coordinator

Mac Gittinger is a young music industry professional who discovered her passion for music at an early age. Graduating from the University of Memphis in 2016 with a Music Industry degree, Mac has since worked with GRAMMY Award-winning artists as tour manager, playing a vital role in each of their successes. When she's not busy routing tours, Mac spends her spare time teaching color guard for the University of Memphis marching band, The Mighty Sound of the South, and other high schools around the area. Mac is excited to join the School of Rock Memphis team as Studio Coordinator.

Josh Gross Guitar Teacher

Josh Gross has been playing guitar since he was 13 years old. He grew up in Georgia and played guitar at his church all through middle and high school. His love and passion for music really began to grow and he knew that he wanted to play music for the rest of his life. So he went to Visible Music College to expand his knowledge in music and improve his guitar playing. He received a bachelors degree in Music in 2013. After graduating Josh has recorded and performed all around the United States. Currently he is the Music Director at Life Fellowship Church where he plays, records, produces and arranges the music.

Jillian Acor Guitar Teacher

Jillian is well-known in School of Rock circles for having been the lead guitarist in the School of Rock Memphis House Band for five years. She has amazed audiences in countless performance shows and traveled on multiple tours with other School of Rock musicians each year. She recently graduated and now attends the University of Memphis as a full-time student. She continues to stay active in the Memphis music scene by performing with many veteran local bands, but she is also the first former student that has been invited to teach at School of Rock Memphis. She was one of the first (and only) two inductees into the School of Rock Memphis Hall of Legends and was given this honor for representing the passion and dedication and embodying the soul of School of Rock and rock in general. She has played a major role at our school for years and is excited to start her next chapter as a teacher, where she can share her passion and love of performing with future students in the hopes that they too can express their inner artist.

Devonte Truesdale Piano Teacher

Devonte discovered his passion for music and the piano as a teenager, and he knew right away that he wanted to take that passion as far as he could. He chose to attend Visible Music College here in Memphis, where he majored in Modern Music with a Keyboard focus. Devonte applies his knowledge and expertise in many areas around Memphis, including at Hatiloo Theater, Local 24 News performances and as Music Director at Bellevue Baptist Church (Frayser location). He also currently holds an internship at the Memphis Music Initiative. He is extremely excited to be teaching at School of Rock, where he hopes to foster a true passion for music within his students. His own experience and journey has prepared him well to teach students to internalize and understand the art of music.

Forrest Sansing Piano Teacher

Forrest Sansing has been playing piano since the age of six. He began by taking classical lessons and quickly begun showing his talents in playing recitals and earning high marks and praise from adjudicators at local piano competitions. With those strong musical fundamentals, Forrest began to explore other opportunities, such as jazz bands at school as well as the Stax Music Academy after-school program. After only a few months in the Stax program, Forrest was honored to be a part of Stax's first international summer tour through Italy as one of the youngest members of the band. Throughout his academic career at the Universtiy of Memphis, he began playing professional gigs around town with various groups and mentors. He graduated in 2015 with a bachelor's degree in Jazz Piano Performance and began instructing young piano students. You might find him behind the keyboard with a band at The Cove, Alfred's with the Memphis Jazz Orchestra or at private events around Memphis. He is a piano teacher at School of Rock Memphis.

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