Hi. We’re Rick Klaras and Joel Bocek, and we want to be your Portland guitar teachers.
We offer guitar lessons customized to your individual musical goals and interests. Take lessons with us, and you’ll be surprised at how easy and fun learning the guitar can be.
Between the two of us, we’ve been playing guitar for more than 40 years, and we have nearly two decades of teaching experience. We are now accepting students of all ages and skill levels.
We teach all styles of Rock, Blues, Folk, Country, Pop, Reggae, Funk, Music Theory, Improvisation, Songwriting, Standard Notation, Arrangement, and more.
Get in Touch for a Free Intro Lesson!
Take a Look at Our Google Reviews!
I've taken lessons from Rick for almost two years now and he is a great guy and an amazing teacher. He is an awesome guitar player and is extremely knowledged in music theory. But the best part is that he is a very patient teacher and is really good at passing on what he knows in a way that is easy to understand. I learned so much from him in regards to theory and technique, both of which are challenging enough to learn let alone teach. Also, If I have a question about something throughout the week he always helps me out in an email or text. I can't recommend him enough, he is great at what he does and will help you learn quickly. Awesome teacher!6/03/2015
Rick is an extremely knowledgeable, patient and helpful guitar teacher. He breaks down the theory in a way that makes it easy to grasp and keeps the material directed towards what you are interested in. Highly recommend for any skill level.3/07/2018
My daughter has been taking lessons with Rick for some time now, and it's been a great experience! Rick is patient with children, but also really good at holding them accountable in a kind, no-nonsense manner. I also appreciate that he uses not only the sometimes dry lesson book but also teaches pop and rock songs that my daughter adores, and customizes them so they're at the right skill level when needed. This has kept lessons interesting and fresh. I would highly recommend Rick as a teacher for children or adults. My kiddo is his biggest fan!3/20/2019
My daughter is 11 and takes lessons with Rick. We could not be happier with the lessons! His communication style is perfect with kids, authentic, kind, direct and funny. My daughter loves the lessons and talks about how much she loves them with her friends. The lessons themselves a a good balance of theory, music literacy and creative invention. I also love the consistency of the lessons and how my daughter is able to work on a project from beginning to end over a a series of many lessons and to feel the success of pulling off a difficult piece completely. Rick is the best!7/05/2017
Rick has been teaching my daughter to play guitar for almost two years. She sometimes goes to the lesson a bit grumpy but always when she leaves she is upbeat and enthusiastic. He is consistently patient and kind. I’d recommend him whole heartedly. He rocks!3/11/2019
Howdy, I'm a beginner guitarist who has been taking lessons from Rick for a while now. He's a very relaxed, skilled, and encouraging teacher. I really appreciate the opportunity to give input on what types of music or specific songs I'd like to work on. Rick gives regular instruction on music theory along with technique that is very helpful the more I practice. I'd recommend Rick to anyone wanting to improve their guitar playing.1/04/2018
Rick has been such a wonderful instructor to my daughter, who expressed interest in learning ukulele but who was nervous about whether it would be difficult since she has never studied music before. Rick has made her feel so comfortable every step of the way, and I have been able to listen to them make such lovely music together sitting in on the lessons in his charming studio. Rick has a gentle, encouraging manner with kids, and my daughter has been transformed from someone who was nervous about trying music to someone who is making big plans about joining the band at school. Thank you for everything, Rick!1/03/2018
Great teachers! A fun and positve environment making it easy to learn and grow. We've been taking lessons from Joel for the last 15 months and it's been a wonderful experience.3/03/2018
Rick had been teaching our 11 year old daughter for over a year. She has made a lot of progress as a beginner--Rick is so patient with her. Beyond the fundamentals she is learning, Rick also works with her on pop songs in which she has interest. Rick is flexible and a good communicator. He also gives very good feedback to keep my daughter on track. I highly recommend Rick and learnguitarpdx!!11/03/2017
I took lessons from Rick for a couple of years. Rick was always very patient, knowledgeable, and fun! What I loved most was that he would teach technique through conventional methods but also throw in some rad songs that kept it fun. I would highly recommend him as a teacher for both children and adults.1/03/2018
I've been working with Rick for about 6 months now and I couldn't speak more highly of him as a teacher. I had wanted to learn guitar for years, but couldn't get over the fear of possibly not being good enough (so why bother?). He assured me that many people felt and overcame not only that fear but several other handicaps. In addition to learning how to read music, I'm learning chords, strumming patterns and techniques. Rick makes each lesson varied and enjoyable. We have a lot of laughs and I look forward to each session. His approach to teaching comprises patience, compassion and structure -- three things I needed for this goal to become a reality. I feel that he is as invested in helping me learn as I am in wanting to learn! Thank you for everything, Rick!1/03/2015
My daughter took ukulele from Rick for 6 months, in that time the improvement was amazing due to the fact that Rick is kind, patient and his passion is kid focused and never getting frustrated no matter how many times they had to redo the chords. My wife is a PPS teacher and she mentioned how Rick is a natural as not easy to show passion with every student. I would highly recommend him to anyone who is thinking of getting their kids into music. Very talented musician.9/19/2017
I’m retired and have time to take guitar lessons. I’m so glad to have found Rick to teach me. He is very patient, clear instructions, and knowledgeable. I would recommend Rick for any age group. Thanks Rick!3/14/2019
Rick has been teaching guitar to our teen son for a couple of years, and I would definitely recommend him. He is patient and kind while also providing enough push and motivation to keep our son continually learning and improving his skills. He has made it fun for our son and has helped him learn a few of his most favorite songs along the way. We look forward to continuing lessons with Rick for the foreseeable future.11/03/2017
Rick has been teaching guitar to our teen son for a couple of years, and I would definitely recommend him. He is patient and kind while also providing enough push and motivation to keep our son continually learning and improving his skills. He has made it fun for our son and has helped him learn a few of his most favorite songs along the way. We look forward to continuing lessons with Rick for the foreseeable future.10/10/2017
Rick is a gifted teacher, offering structure to the student's musical interest with a relaxed approach and genuine enthusiasm for the craft. He allows the student to feel comfortable with the learning process from the beginning, enabling them to grow the confidence needed to truly enjoy it. I'm listening to my son practice right now- it brings joy to my heart to hear him learning songs he always wanted to play and creating the sounds he always wanted to hear. The gift of music is a gift for life. Priceless.1/03/2016
Rick doesn't rush me to the dead corner if I can't play the thing. He's nice and supportive. I feel more comfortable picking the strings. My dexterity goes up with each exercise. Also, he plays pretty nice music. Check out on SoundCloud!10/04/2017
My 12 year old has been learning guitar from Rick for over a year now and he has learned quite a bit during this time. We are very pleased with Rick and with my son's achievement. Rick is an awesome teacher, vocalist, and guitarist and we highly recommend him. Our son is excited to learn from Rick and practices at home without being asked to; we don't have to make him do it anymore 🙂 Rick has helped him learn some songs of his choice and any kid would love that kind of tutoring and encouragement. Thank you, Rick!1/03/2018
Taking guitar lessons from Rick has been a great experience. His lessons are a highlight of my week, as he is an incredibly patient and knowledgeable teacher. I've been able to start learning how to play some of my favorite songs, which is awesome and something that felt so frustrating attempting to do on my own. I would highly recommend anyone looking to learn to play guitar, to do so through learn guitar pdx. Also, his dog is ridiculously cute.7/02/2018
Been taking lessons as a beginner guitarist for a few months with Rick,he’s an excellent teacher,highly recommend3/12/2019
My 12 year old has been learning guitar from Rick for over a year now and he has learned quite a bit during this time. We are very pleased with Rick and with my son's achievement. Rick is an awesome teacher, vocalist, and guitarist and we highly recommend him. Our son is excited to learn from Rick and practices at home without being asked to; we don't have to make him do it anymore 🙂 Rick has helped him learn some songs of his choice and any kid would love that kind of tutoring and encouragement. Thank you, Rick!11/29/2017
Rick is clear, attentive and goal oriented. I'm an adult student with a busy life. And on those weeks when my practice does not match our goals he adjusts and works to keep me moving forward. Which I appreciate. Also, I very much appreciate that RIck is an active musician. His passion comes through in his teaching.1/03/2018
Rick has a rare combination - a highly skilled guitarist AND a special teacher. He truly listens, takes notes, and then prepares for your lesson. When you arrive you feel as if he's been waiting for you all week long. I've learned so much from him. Practice is fun again!1/04/2018
Rick has been an amazing guitar teacher for our teenage daughter, and we're so happy we found him! Each week our daughter leaves her lesson excited about what she learned and practiced with Rick, and wants to share it with us as soon as we get home. Rick strikes a wonderful balance between helping our daughter master the songs she wants to play while also introducing her to new music that expands her knowledge and builds new skills. She feels comfortable sharing her singing and songwriting with him as well which speaks to his patience, kindness, and ability to connect with young people. Rick makes lessons fun and engaging, and we highly recommend him to anyone looking for a guitar teacher.10/16/2017
Rick is an amazing guitar teacher. He crafts lessons to suit your style and experience, and does an excellent job of combining theory and practice to make you not just a better guitar player, but a better musician. He is affable, organized, and very devoted to his students, even putting out a monthly newsletter for them in which he provides tips, links, advice, etc. I highly recommend.1/04/2018
I have loved music since the Sixties but I have never been a musician until lately. A few years ago I bought a ukulele and learned to play, completely self taught. I finally decided to buy a guitar a couple of months ago and I knew that I need a good instructor. The first person that I contacted never got back to me, which proved to be very fortunate, because when I searched again I found Rick and Learn Guitar PDX. Rick responded almost immediately and welcomed me to an introductory lesson. After that first meeting I knew that he was what I was looking for in a guitar teacher. He is organized, friendly and ready to lead you on your musical journey. After taking lessons for a couple of months, I couldn't be happier with my progress and my weekly visits with Rick. He is patient, detail oriented and able to connect with musicians of all ages. It feels like you're learning and playing with a friend. I would recommend Rick's lessons to anyone and I feel fortunate to have found an instructor like him.3/13/2019
I have taken classes with Rick for the last 6 or so months. Going into it I was fully prepared to begin with the most monotonous and grueling songs for the first year at least. While he does incorporate classic beginners songs, he also writes tablature that learners can understand in order for you to play your favorite songs right off the bat. I love playing and I have learned so much faster than I had expected to; and I think that my passion had a lot to do with Rick's teaching styles. He's incredibly patient and helpful, and he works around my schedule as much as he can. Also, his lessons are pretty much the cheapest you can find in the Portland area. All around this guy is a great teacher.1/03/2018