Our vision means that we don’t only teach our students to play an instrument. We give them collaborative tools they can use to excel. We work hard to develop their confidence, creativity, and collaboration.
Family-Owned and Operated Since 2016
We’re a small family-owned music teaching service in Tucson, AZ. Stuart Smith and Melissa Smith work together to create high quality music lessons. Both are expert special educators. Stuart, an advanced performing musician, delivers the lessons.
Stuart Smith, M.Ed.
Hi, I’m Stuart, the music teacher at Tucson Music Lessons. I’m so happy to have you as a member of our community! I live here in Tucson with my wife Melissa and our daughters Sally and Faye.
Before I started teaching music, I was a public special education classroom teacher. That is where I met Melissa, who was a teacher at the same school. It was a joy to teach my students, who had severe and profound special needs. I even got to work for a whole year co-teaching with my wife. While I was teaching I completed my second master’s degree. It was in educational leadership for school principals, and it gave me the skills I needed to start my own program. After nine years in public education I left my position at the school and we founded the business.
Now Melissa and I work together full time. We are able to customize my music curriculum and teach people with any kind of disabilities.
I play the drums almost every week on the worship team at Tucson’s Hope Community Church. I’ve been a member of the team since 2014.
When a parent from our church asked me to teach her son to play the drums in 2014, I began teaching lessons. Soon I had several students coming to my house each week for drums and guitar. Two years later, Melissa and I founded Tucson Music Lessons. It may sound like a quick progression but it wasn’t. My musical journey started more than twenty years earlier.
When I was in sixth grade I watched a performance on the guitar by two students at my school. At that instant I became a lifelong learner of music. I started playing the clarinet, guitar, and drums in 1995. I began performing in worship bands and garage bands.
In 2001 I went to Tulane University in New Orleans. I played drum set in the Tulane Soundwave Pep Band from 2003 to 2005. I was the Drumline Captain for the 2003 Inaugural Tulane Marching Band. I also played in the Tulane Jazz Combo. While I lived in New Orleans I met unbelievable musicians who became friends and mentors.
While I lived in New Orleans I started getting interested in recording. It’s challenging to put different instruments together into a song. I became obsessed with writing, recording, and practicing. Producing music made me curious about all different styles, and New Orleans was full of music. I gained a deep love for jazz, blues, rock, zydeco, country, bluegrass, hip hop, world musics, and EDM. These styles pervaded the atmosphere.
When I returned to Tucson in 2005 I joined a band called The Can Crushers. Over the next five years we made a lasting impression for many people, as you can see in this video.
In 2009 I began studying Logic Pro, an industry standard music recording software. Logic is very powerful and it opened a world of new possibilities. Many people say that it takes ten thousand hours to become a master of any practice. By my estimation I spent that amount of time using Logic between 2009 and 2013.
In 2013 I released an album called, “Electroflag.” It’s electronic dance music. Most of the instruments are unique sounds I created using subtractive synthesis. It is available on iTunes and Spotify under the artist name Sounds Inside.
Then I opened Studio DaVinci in 2014, a professional home studio where I record Tucson’s artists and bands. I help musicians turn their song ideas into professional releases.
I’m still working on my own music. In 2019 I will release a rock & soul album.
When we opened Tucson Music Lessons, I achieved a dream of working full time with music. It has been the best move of my life, and I wake up every day excited to teach my students. I’m excited to meet and coach some of Tucson’s newest and best musicians, including you! Please feel free to text or call me at (520) 260-8745. I offer a free lesson in case you want to see if we are a good match.
Favorite Instrument: drum set
Favorite Bands: Led Zeppelin, Hillsong, Dave Matthews Band
Favorite Musical Concepts: harmony, acceso