/learning-center/portfolio_category/raleigh/ Raleigh | Portfolio Categories | Sam Ash Learning Centers

Fernando Sicilia

Fernando has been a performing musician since the tender age of 6.
Throughout his middle/high school years, he honored his violin,viola,cello skills and later moved on to percussion, guitar, bass and voice.
Fern has trained in many genres including Rock, Heavy Metal, Heavy Funk and Latin, just to name a few. As a seasoned vocalist, he has lead many chorus groups such as, the RTP General Assembly Chorus and the Barbershop Harmony Society.
Fern has been competing vocally and instrumentally since his teens and hopes to share his experience as a musician with his students

Dontez Harris

While in High School, Dontez played in the Shaw University Marching, Jazz and Concert band. He went on to study music education at Howard University and UDC. His talent with a variety of musical instruments allowed him a rewarding teaching career with several elementary schools in Virginia.
Dontez was nominated “Washington Area Musician Association Instrumentalist of the Year.” He has won numerous WAMC awards in Washington DC with the “Black Sheep Reggae Band” and played rhythm and blues for vocalist Milie Jackson.
Dontez’s joy is teaching and performing music.

Will Batchelor

Will has shown an ear for music since the age of 5. Having grown up in a family of musicians, he was exposed to an eclectic blend of music; spanning from southern rock, classical, jazz and hip hop. Though he received instruction in piano and trumpet from a young age, his love of music did not overtake him until he received his first guitar. This sparked a self-searching journey that took him to continue his studies at East Carolina in composition. Having fostered a love in music technology in school; his efforts expanded into electronic music, djing, and a study into the relationship between instrumental and electronic genres. He hopes to learn and share his findings to others to see where we can go next.

Eric Chesson

Eric is a veteran musician with 25 years of practical music performance experience. He specializes in guitar but can also provide instruction for bass, mandolin and piano. Styles include bluegrass, rock, blues and funk. With several studio albums and thousands of shows performed, Eric can help students of all ages realize their musical goals, regardless of where they are on their musical journey. From beginner lessons to songwriting and composition and everything in between, let Eric help you get to the next level of musical satisfaction,

Greg Meckley

From fast fiddlin’ folk songs to classical concertos, Greg Meckley has performed many musical genres. Violin and mandolin are two of his greatest passions. Meckley composes bluegrass and Celtic music and spends weekends playing rock n’ roll violin with a full band. He has guided many students in developing their unique style, transforming any aspiring musician into an artist who truly enjoys playing their instrument. With his forte in composition, Gregory’s teaching style is perfect for those interested in writing their own music. His multi-instrumental background works great for those interested in playing in bands and orchestras. With over 18 years of experience, Gregory is always eager to share his love of music and help you achieve the musical skills you desire.

Ernest McHenery

Ernest is a well renowned musician who specializes in drums, congas, bongos and other percussion instruments and hasn’t stopped playing since he was ten years old. He has been teaching for over 50 years and thoroughly enjoys it. In the next phase of his career, Ernest desires to teach local youth how to build technique through the use of “Rudiments Around the Kit”. This system will equip potential drummers with the skills needed to express themselves as the music industry demands and allows them to flourish. Ernest is also currently playing with the Tune Swing Orchestra and also with his local church located here in Raleigh.

Kevin Lawrence

Kevin attended London College of Music for 2 years. He left to join Household Cavalry as a musician playing the Cello and Saxophone. After serving 6 years as a military musician, he began working as a professional musician in London for the next 10 years playing the Saxophone and Guitar. After emigrating to the USA he joined the NC State Civic Symphony and performed in many plays and musicals.  20 years ago started playing the Chromatic button Accordion.
Kevin is excited to now be an instructor at Sam Ash Music and is looking forward to sharing hgis music knowledge with his students.

Robert Whittington

Robert “Rob” Whittington is a Classically trained instrumentalist. Having studied with Suzuki School of the Arts of Hickory, NC, Celtic, Irish-Scottish at Emory & Henry, as well as ETSU. Rob trained under Jane Macmorran, the 1976 US National Fiddler Champion. Rob is currently signed to BMI, he has published and produced songs on iTunes and Spotify. Rob enjoys devoting his time to teaching and spreading the love of music to the world.

LA Whittington

LA began her musical journey at the age of 5 on violin, receiving classical instruction from Diane Ledford. She went on to study piano, voice, guitar, cello,and drums under her tutelage. She began her studies using the Shinichi Suzuki Method at the Suzuki School of the Arts and studied Celtic fiddle at East Tennessee State University. Miss Whittington is a seasoned performer who has worked with the Western Piedmont Youth Symphony, as well as, the NC State University Performance Choir. LA has experience working with young children and adults and is enthusiastic about helping all of her students achieve their musical dreams.

Ricky Abel

Ricky has played in some of New York’s top cover and original bands. He has opened for major acts such as Guns and Roses and has performed on the Howard Stern Show. He had the privilege to work with the Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra with conductor Robert Spano. He is currently playing in one of Raleigh’s top cover bands. He has taught hundreds of guitar students throughout New York and Raleigh. Styles include: rock, pop, metal, alternative, blues, acoustic and country. Students from beginners to advanced welcome. With over 30 years of experience, Ricky will teach you all the technique and theory you need to know while keeping it fun!  

Vernon Harkins

Vernon Harkins has been playing the piano for over 35 years.  He holds a Bachelors in Music Education from UNCG, with a concentration in piano.  He is a skilled teacher with over 15 years of teaching experience.  Vernon is a versatile musician who plays piano, guitar, percussion and sings. He has performed many styles including rock, classical, gospel, jazz, broadway and contemporary worship. Several highlights of his career include playing piano for Reuben Morgan from Hillsong Church in Australia and Music Director and pianist for Anthony Evans, who was on NBC’s hit show “The Voice.”  Vernon has a desire to impart his knowledge and passion for music to others. He believes it is important to play skillfully, with excellence, and to be a well rounded musician who can play in various styles and musical settings.

Timothy Jackson

Timothy Jackson received his B.A in Music and B.M in Jazz Perfor-mance, concentration in Saxophone, from North Carolina Central Univer-sity in 1998 graduating Magna Cum Laude. Mr. Jackson performed with the NCCU Jazz Ensemble from 1994 to 1998, appearing on their first two Cd’s: Central Visions and Beyond the Horizon. With the NCCU Jazz En-semble, Timothy Jackson performed at numerous collegiate jazz festivals; the 30th annual Montreaux Jazz Festival, Montreaux, Switzerland; and Disneyland Paris, Paris, France. He has also performed with numerous guest artists of the NCCU Jazz Ensemble, including: Louis Bellson, Ray Codrington, Chip Crawford and Tom Browne. Timothy started teaching in 1996. He has taught lessons on Baritone, Alto, Tenor, C Melody and So-prano Saxophones, Clarinet, Flute and Piano.