About Steve Raleigh

Steve Raleigh, guitarist, composer, arranger, producer, and educator, makes his home in New York’s Hudson Valley where he teaches music at his home studio in New Paltz NY, as an adjunct music instructor at SUNY New Paltz, Bard College, and Dutchess Community College. Throughout his career he has worked and toured with many groups including the Steve Raleigh trio, his quintet Inner Door, Judi Silvano, October Project, Evelyn Blake, Jay Clayton, Nick Brignola, Darmond Meader (New York Voices), Clint Holmes, and Tony Martin, as well as opening for Chuck Mangione, and Tommy James to name a few. Steve has been credited as assistant producer on two CD releases on the Evidence record label which featured Pharaoh Sanders and Sam Rivers, and produced numerous records including 2 Charles Lyonhart CD's on his own LWR Productions label. Steve has also had one of his solo guitar arrangements published in Just Jazz Guitar Magazine (Feb 2001), released his third solo CD Collage in 2001, released his 4th with his Jazz Quartet "inner Door" in 2003, a collection of 7 original compositions, the holiday CD "A Christmas Present" in 2005, and a live CD with his band The Llama Dollies in 2007. Steve is also an endorser of D'Addario strings and accessories.

Of his first release The Steve Raleigh Band, Recording Magazine’s Michael Laskow wrote "This track is great......Loved it". In the national publication Guitar World Magazine his guitar playing was described by columnist Mike Varney as "...a more fusiony Jeff Beck....brilliant sense of melody." George Fletcher of the Poughkeepsie Journal wrote "...Steve’s use of melodies and clean, classy rhythms ...is the stuff of the big boys and just plain on the mark.....fiery guitaring...terrific.." His playing has been described as "...reminiscent of George Benson or Wes Montgomery....an exciting soloist...rock solid..."; Michael Ralff, Kingston Daily Freeman. His music has "...exciting emotional depth...soulful and scintillating..."; Stephen Israel, Times Herald Record.

His experience also includes studying under John Scofield, Bill Connors, Arthur Rhames, Jack Wilkins, and Barry Galbraith; and also attending the Creative Music Studio, Woodstock, N.Y., in 1980. He graduated Magna Cum Laude with a B.A. in Music Performance from SUNY New Paltz in 1981, and with a Masters in Music from Boston University in 2011.

Steve has worked and taught extensively in the New York tri-state area, and has performed in such places as Eisenhower Hall at West Point, the first Storm King Art Center Jazz Festival, and some of New York's legendary clubs like the Rainbow Room, Glen Island Casino, and the Joyous Lake, as well as many other jazz clubs, nightspots, college and radio appearances.

Teaching Philosophy

Over the years I've come to find that teaching music and passing what I've learned on to others has been a rich and rewarding experience. My teaching approach is based not only on my 40 plus years of experience as a music educator, but as one who has sat in the seat of a student as well.

I know how to pass along and demonstrate the essential knowledge and skills that are required to play guitar effectively and intelligently. I guide students to reach their musical goals without extraneous or unnecessary information that is often part of mass produced "cookie-cutter" method books and commercial programs. No two students are exactly alike. Lesson material is tailored for each specific student and his or her particular needs and goals. I can and will give each student my absolute undivided attention and bring my extensive teaching and performance experience to bear in order to help each student get where they want to go on their instrument.

As a teacher who has been an active professional guitarist for over 40 years - including touring, recording in the studio, reading broadway shows, and leading my own bands - I have the insight and experience to know what skills and knowledge are truly necessary to play guitar in the real world.

Not only do I teach guitar and music theory to many students at my personal studio here at Village Guitar Lessons in New Paltz, NY, but I am on the teaching staff at SUNY New Paltz, Bard College, and at SUNY Dutchess County.

- Grow you skills

- Learn from a professional

- Make real progress

Steve just doesn't "teach guitar". He teaches you guitar. This means he listens and adapts his lessons to "reach" you at a level that allows you to learn and reach whatever goal you set. No drama; no anxiety. You cannot ask for more.Plus - he is a great guitarist and a great guy. I recommend him highly. - John D.


I have had the great fortune to be Steve’s student for the past ten years. Every time we get together the hour flies by. Whether we are studying theory, technique, or particular songs I always come away inspired to practice and try and be better. Under Steve’s guidance I have become a much better guitarist and I look forward to many more years working with him. - Lewis Brownstein, New Paltz, NY


Steve, I don't think I expressed very well how much I appreciated the lessons I took with you. I really enjoyed your teaching style and how you allowed it to be my journey. I was also grateful for being able to hear you and your friends play while I was living in the area. It is really hard to express my appreciation for your efforts in teaching me the guitar, but the experience has been life changing in many respects and I'm proud to say I was one of your students. While I was on leave I gave a lesson to my niece and I was actual shocked by how much I had learned and was able to explain to her.... Sincerely, Everett


As a career musician, I can say with utmost sincerity that my time studying the guitar with Steve Raleigh has been one of the best decisions I've made. I got stuck at a frustrating plateau when I was trying to improve my ability on my own, and Steve was able to help break me through and broaden my musical horizon. Ever since we began our lessons, I've reinvented myself as a player and have taken advantage of incredible opportunities that I otherwise may not have had the confidence to commit to. Now I'm heading out to Nashville to pursue my musical career with a confident head on my shoulders. Thanks Steve! - Shane Scarazzini


Steve Raleigh is a compassionate person whose teaching methods helped me immensely. He is extremely patient yet has a talent and passion that makes a student want to give 100% in their efforts. - Tim O'Leary


Steve Raleigh's tha mann! Lessons with this guy will change your life ! Give him a call ! He's taught me many things that contribute to where I am musically today. Keep swingin' babayy !! - James Hart


Thank you for being such an amazing guitar teacher and showing me what jazz is all about! I am so grateful to have had a teacher who is so kind, patient, and talented. - Camden H.