"When I found out that Alan
offered guitar lessons on Skype,
I just jumped at the chance. Itʻs

Give it a try...
youʻll LOVE it!"

Violette Haunani Thomas
Computer Scientist (ret.)

























Why take music lessons online?

By offering music lessons via a remote delivery method like Skype, you can study with a music instructor that you might never have been able to study with otherwise.


Not being tied to a particular geographic location means you can learn from home.

checkmark It's GREEN! You save both the environmental and financial costs of burning fossil fuels.

Step-by-Step Instructions for Online Lessons:

checkmark First, you must be sure you have the correct equipment and software to make the connection work correctly. This includes a broadband internet connection, a webcam, and Free Skype software (install the most up-to-date version).

checkmark Second, payment must be completed, which includes the verification process at PayPal. Once you are a verified PayPal user, payments take place within a few days. Credit cards can also be used.

checkmark Third, we set up a time and go over details of how to connect for our first lesson. Once we are organized, it is a simple matter of making a Skype call at the appropriate time.

Step One - Equipment & Software Check

Hardware/Software Requirements - make sure you have these and know how they work:
checkmark Broadband/Highspeed Internet Connection
VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) is only possible with a fast connection.

checkmark Computer and Operating System compatible with free Skype software from
This includes all contemporary PC and MAC platforms.

checkmark Video Web Cam for visual connection
A web cam that produces clear video allows me to see what your hands are doing. There are many good models on the market with built-in microphones. Higher end models offer better quality video. Remember you get what you pay for.

checkmark2 Good audio speakers or headset
This will provide clarity and volume control for the lesson or consultation.

Step Two - Complete Payment

Payment- Please read this carefully, more than once.

checkmark2 Lessons are $35 per half-hour and $65 per hour. Get a better rate on bulk payments of 4 or 5 lessons.


Payments are accepted through PayPal Members can pay directly, and non-members can process payment using a credit card.

checkmark2 Time for payment to clear will be required (generally a few days for a U.S. payment).

checkmark2 You will be contacted once the payment is cleared via the email address used to contact me or make the payment, or another specified in advance. In order to maintain a steady lesson schedule, regular advance payments will be required, allowing time for processing.

checkmark2 Payments by PayPal require verification time. This typically takes less time than waiting for a check to clear.


Skype Online Lessons

Step Three - Get Connected

checkmark2 Once payment has been cleared, a time will be scheduled for the first lesson. All times are subject to the whims of a working musician's and family man's schedule, who lives in the HST(Hawaii) time zone.

checkmark2 I will email you my "Skype name" so you can initiate the Skype call. Be sure to test your connection prior to each session. An email account should be open throughout the lesson, preferably one that can receive .mp3 files, .pdf files and .zip files as needed.

checkmark2 Please note that while playing together might be possible when internet server traffic is very low, typically the lag time of signal transmission precludes direct jamming. In addition to existing materials, the lesson might include having an mp3 emailed to you to play along with.

checkmark2 Lessons will begin to wind down a few minutes before the end of the allotted time. For this reason, I ask that we maintain focus from the beginning of the lesson.


Once a lesson is scheduled I will be unable to schedule other students during that time slot. A certain amount of time for the student is set aside every week, every month.  Cancellation affects me greatly. I always do my best to reschedule, and work around things. However, this cannot be abused and I maintain the right to decide if we reschedule. 


It is required that a 48 hour notice is given to the instructor for rescheduling a lesson. I reserve the right to reschedule the lesson, or to have it forfeited. If the student should miss a lesson for any reason (illness, game/practice, too much homework, forgot the lesson, etc.) the payment will not be refunded. If the student is going on vacation or will be out of town for one lesson, I must be told 2 weeks in advance or the student will be charged for the missed lesson. Also, if a scenario occurs that the student must miss more than one lesson, only one may be made up.  Example: In a four-week month, if the student plans on missing two lessons, I must receive payment for three weeks. Remember: I have set aside time every week for each student.  (Basically, just come to lessons and all will be well!).  I should not have to address this on a month to month basis.

Tips for a productive lesson

checkmark2 Have all materials, audio files, instrument and equipment ready.

checkmark If you have questions or issues regarding Skype go to (Mac users under Need help? type in “Skype for Mac” and click “Search”).

checkmark Set the webcam so I can see your instrument fretboard.

Maintain focus on the lesson.