Mike Stockbridge started his professional journey in music over twenty years ago. Over that time his many experiences have shaped his unique view on writing, performing and teaching music. In the mid nineties he attended Berklee College of Music, leaving the school to work with touring blues artist Richard Roquemore. After his time with Roquemore had come to an end, he returned to his native New Hampshire and began teaching privately in the Mount Washington Valley. During this brief time he was mentored by seasoned jazz musician Charles Toor - a retired pianist from New York who had worked with a long list of luminaries in the NYC jazz scene during the 50’s and was an active participant in the loft scene of the 70’s. In 2000 Stockbridge relocated to central Maine and enrolled at the University of Maine at Augusta to focus on following through with his education in music, receiving a Bachelors of music in jazz and contemporary music. Along the way he developed a friendship/mentorship with noted drummer and composer Steve Grover, citing Grover’s writing as an influential influence on his own writing style. For the next decade or so he worked as an in demand guitar/music educator all over Maine and New Hampshire. During this time he also performed as an active member in the Maine Jazz/music scene releasing two albums under his name with his two musical compatriots Shawn Boissonneault and Duane Edwards. His second album ‘Ama’ gained high accolades from allaboutjazz.com:
"Just two albums into his recording career and Mike Stockbridge is solidifying his reputation as one of the East Coast's most promising jazz guitarists. Stockbridge's second effort, Ama, jolts the imagination with his inventive and compelling playing. Stockbridge released his self-titled debut in 2009; two years later, Ama finds Stockbridge gaining confidence and focus, creating a work of bold experimentation and stunning precision."
Mike always maintains a strong roster of students of every ability. He is currently the general music instructor at Polaris Charter School and is a faculty member of the Nashua Community Music School. Which ever capacity he is working in, it is clear that his consummate abilities in private and classroom education have allowed him to forge his path with much confidence. His resume also includes time spent at many other wonderful institutions such as Phillips Exeter Academy, Rivertree Arts, Music & Arts, the Tony Boffa School of Contemporary Music, the Robert Frost Charter School and for the city of Newburyport, MA.
While Mike specializes in guitar lessons specifically, lessons are also available for bass, banjo (both claw hammer and Scruggs style), mandolin, drum set, piano, and ukulele. For the last fifteen years or so he has conducted numerous classes and ensembles finding much fulfillment in helping people of all ages learn to create music together.
“Having been a private music educator for so long now, I can honestly say that being able to help someone learn how to understand music and their instrument, makes me very happy. I am so passionate about music and my own pursuits it never feels like a job when connecting with students.”