Mom’s Teachers Are Some Of The Best Musicians In The Louisville Area

With teachers available for a wide variety of instruments, Mom’s Music is able to offer music lessons geared toward your playing ability and needs!




Karsten Nelson

Guitar, Bass, Songwriting and Ukulele Teacher

Karsten has a catered to student approach that focuses on the fundamentals of reading, technique and song training. He teaches beginner to professional classes from age 7 and up. Karsten has a Bachelor’s degree in music from Bellarmine University and has recorded and performed in regional bands for over 10 years.




Joe D’Amato

Piano Teacher

Joe teaches beginner to advanced piano – specializing in Rock, Blues and Pop styles. He teaches theory and reading but also takes the approach of “close the book and put the knowledge to work”. Joe a native of Long Island, NY, studied piano with Ralph Caruso of the Ralph – Joseph Orchestra from age 5. He then majored in piano at the Nassau Community College. Joe currently performs weekly as a solo artist at restaurants, clubs and private events and as a freelance professional sound engineer and stage tech.




Rob Edwards

Drum Teacher

Rob’s teaching focuses on structured fundamentals that apply to all styles of music. He instructs all ages beginner to advanced. He has been teaching at Mom’s for over 10 years. Rob has earned his Bachelor of Music education from the University of Louisville and has studied percussion with James Rago, Kalani, Glen Caruba, Jim Chapin and Jimmy Lobb. He teaches snare drum, drum set and hand percussion at Mom’s.




Russ Wallace

Guitar, Bass, Drum, Ukulele and Vocal Teacher

Russ comes to Mom’s from Spring Field, Missouri where he attended Missouri State. He teaches mandolin, guitar, bass, drums, and vocals. Russ is also Mom’s Rock School coach. His styles include Rock n’ Roll, Blues, Metal, Punk and Pop. Russ creates a tailored personal lesson plan for students of all ages.



Billy Lease

Guitar, Bass Teacher – Rock School Coach

Billy enjoys teaching Rock, Blues, Country and Pop style of music to students of all ages using his own techniques to teach material that would match student’s preferences. Billy brings 15 years of musical knowledge and 7 years of professional touring experience to his students. With 8 years of formal music training, Billy has shared the stage with acts such as Spoon, Ok Go, Sleater-Kinney, and Biz Markie.



Cecilia Franklin ( Ms. C )

Piano and Voice Teacher

Cecilia began studying piano, voice and acting at The Karamu House and Case Western Reserve in Cleveland Ohio at age 5. A graduate of EKU with a Bachelors in Music Ed. with an emphasis in piano and voice. She began teaching privately while still in college. After graduating Cecilia taught Gen. Music at Caverna Indiana schools from 1978-1988. She started with JCPS in 1988-200 and ended her teaching career with the Archdiocese in 2005. Currently she teaches Piano and Voice at Mom’s Music and the West End. Cecilia enjoys performing solo piano and accompanying vocalists. She is choir director and pianist at Plymouth Church here in Louisville.



Chuck Marcum

Guitar Teacher

Chuck teaches Blues, Rock Blues, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, and Music Theory, along with Minor & Major Pentatonic Modes. Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughn, and Black Sabbath are a few of Chuck’s favorites to teach. Part of Chuck’s main focus is getting the student playing right away and making sure they are having fun!  He has been a regional guitarist since 1986, and he has played with the Rock Bottom Band since 1998. Chuck has opened for Molly Hatchett, Junior Brown, Leon Russell, David Allen Coe, Duke Robillard, and Willie “Big Eyes” Smith.




Shannon Vetter

Saxophone, Guitar, Piano, Voice Instructor

Shannon studied music education and saxophone performance at the University of Louisville School of Music. While attending he studied saxophone with John Moore and Mike Tracy, Piano with Dr. Oliphant, and voice with Dr. Jack Ashworth. Since leaving university Shannon has performed all over the country on a variety of instruments including saxophone, guitar, piano, mandolin, and drum set. He has recorded numerous albums with bands Gideon’s Rifle, Big Atomic, and under his own name. Shannon has eight years of formal and informal teaching experience. Teaches ages 5 and up. Offers beginner mandolin and ukulele as well.



Rick Bartlett

Voice Teacher

Born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky, Rick Bartlett began his musical career at age 5 singing in church.  While in high school, Rick began performing with the Kentucky Opera Association. He attended the University of Louisville School of Music as a voice performance major.  Currently, Rick is a performer known for his rich velvet voice and talent on the piano and guitar with your favorite standards made famous by artists such as Nat King Cole, Lionel Richie and Frank Sinatra, Van Morrison, Prince and even Jim Croce! Rick has also performed with several regional orchestras including the Owensboro Symphony Orchestra as well as the Louisville Orchestra. Most nights, Rick can be found performing solo at Buck’s Resturaunt and Bar in downtown Louisville.

Contact Mom’s to inquire about lessons with “The Voice of Louisville” today!





Bradley McKinney

Piano, Saxophone Teacher

Bradley has played the piano since the age of 7 and saxophone since the age of 9. In middle and high school, he played in band and also participated in KMEA and performed in All County Band. He participated in marching band both at Louisville Male High School and also at the University of Louisville. He is pursuing a degree in Jazz Studies at UofL and is set to graduate this December. Bradley teaches piano and saxophone for jazz, rock, and pop music.



Billy McNicol

Drum Teacher

Billy’s primary teaching philosophy is to provide a safe environment where anyone can learn no matter their age, ability, or gender.

Throughout his career, Billy has performed with many unique and diverse ensembles and is fluent in: Hard Rock, Funk, Hip Hop, Jazz, Fusion, Progressive, Metal, Indie, R&B, Reggae, and Alt Country.

Billy grew up touring with his father and uncles’ band: The McNicol Bros. (A musical family group consisting of founding members of the psychedelic rock band, “The Rugbys”). The Rugbys are the first rock group from Louisville, KY to chart on Billboard’s Top 40 with their 1969 hit single “You, I”.His father, Robert McNicol, was both Drummer and Singer for the McNicol Bros. & performed in the latter years with the Rugbys. Absorbed by his father’s performances; Billy imitated him, playing drums and singing during sound-checks. As early as five years old, his parents discovered him playing the drums and singing simultaneously to his father’s set-list & record collection.Billy McNicol’s first major acclaim transpired when he became the “Featured Drummer” for the University of Louisville’s Men’s Basketball Program in 2004. On average, Billy received mass exposure, performing in front of an average of 20,000 fans per game for two consecutive Basketball seasons (2004-2005) at the historic Freedom Hall.To this day, he returns annually to Louisville, KY to deliver featured performances at the KFC Yum! Center w/ The Louisville Cardinals and is introduced to the venue’s sell-out crowds.Notable performances: On August 19th, 2017, Billy McNicol performed back to back with the Drummer from Tool: Danny Carey and his band Volto! at the iconic Whisky A Go Go in Los Angeles, CA upon invitation and received promotion on Tool’s website and Social media outlets. 



Tristen Roberts

Guitar Teacher

Tristen studied classical guitar performance at Wayne State University in Detroit Mi. She has been performing for 13 years, plays regularly in town, and has experience performing nationally and internationally. Tristen has been teaching guitar for 3 years and incorporates immediate and long-term rewards of playing into lessons. She teaches beginner to intermediate guitarists various styles including but not limited to classical, rock, folk, and percussive guitar.



Karen Miller

Guitar / Band Coaching / Music Education Director

 Karen has a love and passion for music which started at the age of 9, playing clarinet in school bands and ensembles from 3rd-12th grade. This provided a strong foundation in music theory and musicianship. In 2000, at the age of 34, she decided to pursue her interest in guitar and has been taking private lessons throughout the last 20 years. Karen has been playing out live in local cover and original bands, as lead guitarist, for the last twelve years. Her current band, Julius, released their first E.P. in August 2018 and play out regularly at several locations in Louisville. In 2018 & 2019 Karen volunteers as a guitar instructor for "Girls Rock Louisville", which continued her interest in teaching....believing that EVERY child should have access to music education and the opportunity to learn an instrument. She plans to continue working for Girls Rock in future summer sessions. In 2019, she was also asked to be an instructor as well as a "full band coach" for "Ladies Rock", an extension of "Girls Rock Louisville"; where in just 4 days, the ladies learned an instrument, wrote an original song and got to perform for a large audience in a well-known venue here in Louisville.  




Brady DeWitt


Brady holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Bellarmine University, where he studied under Craig Wagner. While attending Bellarmine, he studied jazz, funk, R&B, and Latin jazz. Before attending Bellarmine University, Brady has always enjoyed learning and playing genres such as, Metal, Rock and Blues. Brady started playing when he was 13 years old and excels at bringing the joy of playing an instrument through his teachings. Brady has a strong love for teaching and strives to help each of his students achieve their musical goals, no matter the size. Brady’s teaching philosophy is to “Inspire and educate the next generation of musicians.” Brady performs with fellow Drum Teacher, Billy McNicol, together they have an up-and-coming trio who perform around town and are always looking for opportunities to play and express their love for music.






Harris Boyer

Guitar/Bass/Jazz Band

A long-time member of the Mom's Music family, Harris employs a listening first approach to music education.  As a graduate from Bellarmine University's Jazz Studies program, he has a deep and ever-growing knowledge of guitar and music in all its facets, from technique to theory to ear training and much else.  Harris is an accomplished musician in a broad array of styles, ranging from jazz to metal and many styles in between.  With his 20 plus years of musical experience, and 5 plus years of professional experience, Harris is the guitarist for Kiana & the Sun Kings, and has shared the band stand with great acts such as Neal Francis, Phourist & the Photons, Carly Johnson, Nappy Roots, and many more.  He's currently signed to SonaBLAST! records with Kiana & the Sun Kings, and he's always looking for inspired and serious students to work with to reach their own musical goals.




Lance Oliphant



Lance has a Bachelors of Music with emphasis in jazz guitar studies and music technology from Bellarmine University.  While attending, he studied jazz and classical guitar with Craig Wagner and Chris Roseland respectively along with instrumental pedagogy, jazz harmony, jazz piano, drums and voice.  While approaching 18 years of performing experience, Lance has played in rock, hip hop, funk, jazz and classical settings.  His teaching methods are grounded in creating a comfortable atmosphere while honing technique, learning songs, reading notation, and deepening an understanding of music theory.  Utilizing students' interests, this approach results in versatile student musicians capable of navigating any musical landscape.  




Michael Stone


Hello, I’m Mike Stone! I’ve been playing drums all my life, starting when I was about 8 years old. I have experience playing in a wide variety of settings, from church, cover gigs at bars, jazz band, to full blown rock shows. Playing drums is my favorite thing to do, and I’m happy be a part of your journey as a musician! 



Terrence McCarty

Brass / Piano

Terrence teaches brass and piano performance in jazz and classical styles. He is skilled in jazz, classical, and contemporary music. He is a summa cum laude graduate of Kentucky State university. He began learning trombone at age 10 in his hometown of Detroit. Since then he has played in America’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the Circle City Classic, and many parades across the country. He has performed in cities in France, Germany, and Denmark.




Seth Jenkins


Seth Jenkins has been playing guitar for majority of his life, and he is here to help others find that same passion here at Mom’s Music. Seth first picked up the guitar after loving old rock n’ roll at the young age of 8, and the passion for guitar and music in general has only grown since! He has been professionally playing guitar in gigging and touring bands since 2016 while attending IU Bloomington. He is now a recording and touring guitarist for Brooks Ritter, Clayton Anderson, Bryce Fox, Sam Tinnesz, and many more. Seth has been all over the country touring with bands and has played on stages along the likes of Zac Brown Band, Dwight Yoakam, Jimmie Allen, Hunter Hayes, Carly Pearce, and countless others. He also records professionally, so let him help you get your chops good and tight! Seth can help you find the tools you need to master rock, blues, country and pop licks and songs, music theory, technique, slide guitar, achieving good tone, and plenty of other useful guitar and music knowledge, but most importantly he’s here to help you have fun and learn a new passion! Come on in to Mom’s Music and ask for Seth!




Jacob Head

Jacob Head is a local multi-instrumentalist, performer, teacher, worship leader, and board-certified music therapist. His abilities in music stem from a young age when he was gifted a set of drums for Christmas. Jacob began learning the violin at the age of 9 and continued to pursue music through the keyboard, guitar, mandolin, and various other stringed instruments. He began leading worship at LifeBridge Christian Church in 2009 while forming the Compass Quartet later that same year. He has taught a variety of instruments at Maxwell’s House of Music since 2016 and has released three albums since 2019. Jacob currently stays busy with over 20 students, a couple of music therapy clients, and a busy home life with wife Kara, son Christopher, and baby brother on the way. 




Paige Pittman

Paige has been playing guitar for 10 years. Her favorite genres include
Rock and Blues.

Paige’s music influencers are B.B. King, Buddy Guy and Motley Crue. Her favorite song to play on the electric guitar is “Stairway to Heaven.” If you are looking for a spunky, relaxed, and fun guitar instructor, she’s your person.




Tony Duncan


DJ Empty Beats (aka DJ EB) is a DJ, voice actor, radio personality, production director, editor, graphic designer, and award-winning mixer based in Louisville, Ky. I am not just a DJ, I’m an Entertainer!”

DJ EB began his career in early 2008, with the release of his first mixtape series “Step In2 the Bad Side”, highlighting independent artists and industry favorites.  Currently employed by Alpha Media, DJ Empty Beats lends his extensive talents to B96.5 (WGZB-FM/Urban), Magic 101.3 (WMJM-FM/ Urban AC) and G 105.1 (WGHL-FM/Throwback Hip Hop).  He entertains listeners each weekday with an afternoon mix starting at 5pm during “The 5:00 Trop-House Traffic Party” with afternoon personality Tropikana and every Wednesday and Friday Nights at 10pm on “Big Homie’s 10:00 Turn Up” on B96.5- Louisville’s #1 Hip Hop Station.  He has a recurring role as mixer on Sirius XM Shade45 CoreDJ’s SXM Mixshow on Friday nights from Midnight-2am.  You can also hear DJ EB’s mixes on Shaq Fu Radio.

As Alpha Media Louisville’s production director and as an independent producer, DJ EB has produced voice over work for many national and local businesses including Coke, Kroger, Meijer, T-Mobile, Sprint and Home Depot.

DJ EB has been blessed to work with many industry artists, including Beyonce’, Outkast, 2 chainz, Scarface, Rich Homie Quan, Waka FLoka, CamRon, TrillVille, Master P, Bobby Brown, MGK, K Camp, Travis Porter, Wu-Tang, Yelawolf, Too Short, Slik Rick, Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Ohio Players, Boosie, Webbie and More.

As a DJ/Mixer, DJ Empty Beats counts the following among his greatest influences: DJ Jazzy Jeff, DJ Craze, DJ Scratch, DJ Kaos, DJ Q, DJ E-Freezy and DJ Slikk, to name a few.  He is a member of several DJ Crews including The ELITEglance, Core DJs, Hittman DJs, and has contracted with companies such as Red Bull and Horseshoe Southern Indiana.

DJ Empty Beats continues to produce mixtapes and is one of the most sought-after DJs in the region. DJ EB aspires to one day have a radio mix show in multiple markets, tour with a major artist, own his own voice-over company and be a radio personality in a top 10 market.  He would like to use his influence to help young people dream their biggest dreams.