Eskenazi Kay J.D.. Ph.D.

Video Conference Lessons Available

Guitar, Theory

Berkeley, Marin, Sonoma

Teaches at The Magic Flute
Will Travel

Brazilian, Celtic, Classical, Folk, Jazz
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Detailed Information

Kay Eskenazi with textCaring, Experienced, Responsive Instruction in
Guitar and Music Theory
Marin, Berkeley, and Sonoma County (also at The Magic Flute).

with Kay Eskenazi, J.D., Ph.D.


Kay will help you find your unique voice on the guitar. She responds to your learning style and interests by designing custom-tailored lessons. Kay will help you develop excellent technical and musicianship skills. She teaches nylon string and steel string acoustic guitar in many styles, including:


  • Finger Style
  • Swing Jazz
  • Folk
  • Classical
  • Lead/Improv
  • Song Accompaniment
  • Celtic
  • Alternate Tunings
  • Finger Style Blues
  • Bossa Nova
  • James Taylor, Bob Dylan, Paul Simon
  • Adele, Jason Mraz, Train, Joni Mitchell
  • Patti Smith, Leonard Cohen, Antonio Carlos Jobim
  • Carole King, Bruce Cockburn, Gillian Welch
  • Cole Porter, American Songbook, MANY MORE!

 Students of all ages and levels of experience are welcome! Kids through Seniors.

Many of my students have become excellent players!

Please tell me what styles of music you want to learn (if you know), your level of experience on the guitar and any other instrument you play, and where you live. I’ll reply telling you which days I teach in your area. I look forward to helping you learn to play!

Email Kay!

Beginners: Learn basic chord fingerings, easy songs, strumming patterns, finger picking styles, easy fills and ornaments, music theory, and basic musicianship.

Intermediate Students: Learn complex chords, syncopated strumming and picking, music theory, advanced musicianship, and more challenging repertoire in many styles.

Acoustic Pop and Rock: Learn to play and sing contemporary and classic favorite songs for yourself, your family, and your friends.

Jazz Styles: (including Swing Jazz, Brazilian Jazz, and Bossa Nova): Learn jazz chords to accompany singing and other instruments. Learn the principles of re-harmonization and chord substitution. Learn right hand technique for Bossa Nova, Swing/Jazz and Chord Melody playing. Learn advanced chord theory, and the principles of jazz soloing.

Finger Style: Explore the beauty of finger style pieces from Blues, Jazz, Celtic, Folk and Brazilian traditions. Learn special right and left hand techniques used in finger style playing, and learn how to use alternate tunings.

Celtic: Learn songs from the British Isles. Kay’s Celtic repertoire includes gorgeous songs with guitar accompaniment, and instrumental guitar tunes in DADGAD and standard tunings (e.g., John Renbourn!, Pierre Bensusan, Davey Graham).

Jewish: Learn beautiful songs in Hebrew, Judeo-Spanish, and Yiddish.

Classical and Ensemble Playing: Learn how to read and play pieces from Renaissance, Baroque, Classical and Contemporary periods. Join the Guitar Ensemble!

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Here’s What Some of Kay’s Students Say About Their Lessons:

We love Kay Eskanazi! I first met her at her wonderful guitar camp for women and have had her as my guitar teacher for the last 2 1/2 years. I can’t believe how far I’ve come in that time! Kay has a knack for intuitively figuring out how to best reach her students. My children began lessons with her a year and a half ago. My daughter is 10, my son is 8–they adore her and appreciate her gentle nature. For my daughter, Kay has studied and brought her over 8 songs by Train and Adele in order to teach her various strumming patterns with songs she loves. My son’s endorsement: “She’s nice, a good teacher, but not mean, you get to pick your own songs. I like her!” My daughter’s: “Kay is going to be my guitar teacher for the rest of my life.” Kay feels like family, but always maintains her professionalism.
B.G., Marin

Hi Kay, I really enjoyed my lesson yesterday. You are such a good teacher — you make it fun and interesting and challenging too, which is not easy to do! You are really encouraging, but not hesitant to be direct about mistakes or things I could be executing better, which I really appreciate. Also you don’t make me feel guilty when I haven’t been able to put in much practice time. I feel so lucky that I found you.
S.M., Berkeley, CA

Dear Kay, I feel so lucky to have found you. You are one of the most thoughtful and giving people I have ever met. Thank you so much for your thoughts. I don’t know of any other teacher who would have spent the time and energy to explain the process. Thank you so much for that. I love the process and love getting there, frustration and all. You are right about me having music in my soul. Thank you so much for opening your heart and knowledge to me. Love and best wishes back at you.
J.K., Berkeley

With your playing and teaching talent you will always have too many people wanting you to help them play, thinking they’ll ever sound 1/2 as good as you do!
M.P., Berkeley

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Kay Eskenazi, J.D., Ph.D. teaches guitar at Bay Area colleges, and directs the Good Life Guitar Ensemble ( She is a founder and director of From Women’s Hearts and Hands Guitar Camp. Kay has studied with many fine teachers, and continues her studies at every opportunity.

Kay has been playing guitar since she was eight — that was 49 years ago. She plays many different finger style guitar forms in regular and non-standard tunings. Most recently, she has been into Brazilian jazz — especially the music of Luiz Bonfa, Laurindo Almeida, Joao Gilberto, Carlos Barbosa-Lima and Antonio Carlos Jobim. Kay also likes to arrange American and Brazilian Jazz Standards for guitar.

Kay is the director of Pass It Around!, a non-profit organization that uses music to support homeless and other disadvantaged people. In 2003, she published Pass It Around! Rounds from the Soul of a World — a collection of rounds and a cappella harmony songs from many lands and centuries.

Email Kay!