Music Teachers in Pensacola?

We’ve got ’em, and they’re good.

Whether you want to learn how to rock out with electric guitar, drums, or bass; brush up on your country or folk with banjo, mandolin, or pedal steel; belt out a tune with voice lessons; or if you tend toward more classical instruments like violin, cello, or piano; our instructors have you covered.

Nan DeStafney
Founder of the Blues Angel School of Music
Piano Teacher

Nan has been playing piano for more than 50 years, and teaching for more than 40 of those years. Among other things, she studied piano at the University of Texas and also at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh. She has taught all over the country and describes her teaching style as participative, involving the student in every aspect of the process to make a more engaging lesson. Nan enjoys playing classical, blues, and jazz, though she has been known to rock out to some Led Zeppelin during the school’s annual rock concert which features Blues Angel School of Music students from every level of learning.

Fun Fact: Nan is a member of the Choral Society of Pensacola.


Bobby Butterfield

Bobby has been playing drums for 45 years, and teaching drummers for more than 30. Bobby comes to us from New Jersey where he studied under teachers including Charles Marseca who taught Danny Seraphine of Chicago, and Joe Morello. He taught privately and as faculty at several music schools while living in New Jersey. Bobby tailors his lesson plan around each student’s needs. He plays rock, jazz, Latin, funk, fusion, and R&B drums, but he has been known to fill in on other genres as well.

Fun Fact: Bobby was awarded Producer of Year, East Coast Rocker by Aquarian Weekly.


Michele Clark
Guitar, Banjo, Mandolin, Ukulele and many other stringed instruments

Michele got her first guitar in 1991. It was a 12 string given to her by a friend as repayment for a loan. In 1993 she moved to Mississippi to attend Mississippi University for Women. While there, she met and began taking lessons from Dana Clark. Soon after, she got a job and began working in Dana’s store giving lessons. Michele graduated from MUW with a degree in Psychology and a love of singing and teaching music. She’s been working in a music store and teaching music for more than 20 years, and wouldn’t have it any other way.

Fun Fact: Michele is one half of the duo Sweet Music. She and her spouse, Dana sing some of the most beautiful harmony in Pensacola.


Jimmy Cross
Acoustic & Electric Guitar, Ukulele, Bass, Mandolin, Lap Steel, & Stand Up Bass

Jimmy is quite a versatile musician. He has been playing guitar for 33 years, bass for 20 years, lap steel and mandolin for 8 years, and banjo for 6 years. In addition to his on-the-job training while touring with several professional bands, Jimmy studied with jazz guitarist Ari Lehtela and also completed online courses with the Berklee College of Music. “To listen to what the students’ needs are and to help them achieve their goals” is Jimmy’s teaching motto. Jimmy plays in the popular band Cadillac Attack. He likes to play rockabilly, rock, honky tonk, and country music, but his experience includes all genres of music.

Fun Fact: Jimmy does freelance work both in the studio and live with other bands in the area. He is also active as a musician with the Pensacola Little Theatre.


Daniel Kern

Daniel started playing piano 16 years ago, and has been teaching others to play piano for the last 4 years. Before joining the staff at the Blues Angel School of Music, Daniel could be found teaching at the Time to Shine Center for Performing Arts.  He earned an associate’s degree in Piano Performance from Chiopla College and a Bachelor of Arts in Piano Performance from the University of West Florida, where he studied under Dr. Hedi Salanki-Rubardt. Daniel uses method books in his teaching up through the intermediate level, and then gradually introduces repertoire to expand his students’ horizons. He enjoys playing classical music.

Fun Fact: Daniel’s playing ability comes from his long, flowing hair. Like Samson, if you cut Daniel’s hair, he will lose his powers.


Jahleel Ordonez
Violin, Viola, Cello, Double Bass

Jahleel knows his way around orchestral strings. He has been playing violin for 11 years, viola for 9 years, and he’s been playing cello and double bass for 8 years. He has been teaching all of them for the past 4 years. Jahleel caters his teaching style to the needs of each student. He enjoys playing fiddle music, rock, worship, and alternative. Before teaching here, Jahleel taught with the Emerald Coast Honors Orchestra, where he still plays.

Fun Fact: Jahleel is also a recurring member of the White Tie Rock Ensemble.


Dan Signor
Voice, Piano, Guitar

Dan came to Pensacola from New England where he’s spent the last 21 years teaching privately as well as in junior high and high school. He has been singing since he was two. He spent the last 20 years as a piano teacher and choral director and 15 years teaching guitar. Dan’s teaching style is upbeat and supportive. He enjoys teaching his students to use their voice for different styles of music and “vocal production mastery.” Of his many awards, he’ was the 2000 Northeastern District Quartet Champion, he directed the 2004 Northeastern District Small Chorus Champions, received the 2007 Outstanding Teacher Award in his school district and was the 2015 Northeaster District Quartet Champion. A Cappella is his sweet spot. Dan is a member of the Chord Sharks barbershop quartet, the Mixed Company Quartet, Fast Track Barbershop Quartet and the director of the Pensacola Bay Harmonizers. He studied vocal music education at the University of Maine and Missouri Western State University.

Fun Fact: Dan is a member of the National Association of Music Educators (formerly Music Educator National Conference) and the Barbershop Harmony Society.


Al Martin
Piano & Organ

Al has been playing piano since 1963 and he’s been playing the organ since 1965. He began teaching both in 1967. During his career, Mr. Martin has taught at other music stores, churches, as part of after-school programs, and privately in homes. Though he is versed in traditional teaching methods, he tends to veer from this in favor of doing what is in the best interest of the student. “I find that this style [traditional teaching] is not always in the best interest of the student.” says Al. He wants to be sure the students are engaged and have the confidence to go anywhere with and through music. He studied music at both Pensacola Junior College and the Berklee College of Music. Mr. Martin has played in a variety of bands from Big Band to ensemble to solo. He is comfortable playing a wide variety of styles from classical to pop.

Fun Fact: Mr. Martin has been featured in several publications including the Pensacola News Journal and the Theatre Organ Society Magazine, among other.

Mitch Smegelski
Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Classical Guitar, Ukulele, Banjo, Bass