Hi, my name is Mike Willard, and I've played guitar for going on 21 years after starting at the age of 7. I pretty much enjoy all forms of music in one way or another, but I suppose I really gravitate toward anything unique, technical, tasteful or otherwise demonstrating some element of virtuosity. I've been a private musical instructor for about 6 years now, and I still think to myself how lucky I am everyday to be paid to play and study the guitar, which is my main instrument along with the ole' pipes (My voice). When i get some free time however I often dabble in bass, keys, and drums as well, though Im nearly proficient enough to claim to be "good" at any of them. I do not possess a music degree of any kind, but have taken every non-major, college-level theory course I could find while attending the University at Buffalo, and for about 2 years I was privately instructed in Jazz theory by former GIT student of the year, Tony Scozzaro. His instruction helped my playing alot and really gave me direction as to the type of musician I wanted to become.
I perform in several bands at the moment with my 2 main foci being, Armcannon and Weaponex. In both projects, I sing and play guitar and am surrounded by some very talented musicians. Armcannon is a band that takes music from nostalgic sources like Video Games, movies, TV shows etc, and remixes them into live arrangements for a 5-piece progressive metal outfit. We have 2 albums, both available on Itunes, and have played all around America, mostly hitting conventions and nerd-tastic events that cater to our particular niche. It's always a blast though and we're very well received usually. Weaponex is made up of 3/5 of Armcannon, and is more concentrated on writing original progressive rock/ metal. We have yet to really make a name for ourselves, but have recently completed our first EP and have had a music video featured on MetalSucks.net.
As far as the type of students I want, I suppose the simple answer is ANY student. More deeply though I would love to teach pupils with the same passions as me for technique, theory and a general love of all styles. If you REALLY want to play, I REALLY want to teach you. Afterall, every good teacher is learning as much while instructing as the student is. Hopefully, fans of Armcannon and Weaponex get ahold of me too after checking out our music. Well, that's me in a nutshell, if you like what you hear and see lets set something up!
Band: Armcannon, Weaponex, Those Who Fight
Guitars - Schecter Jeff Loomis signature series 7-string, Ibanez Joe Satriani series JS-100 6 string
Pedals - Boss tuner, digital delay, digital reverb, MXR Microamp lead boost
Amp - Peavey 6505+