Phil Steffen


Contact Me

Guitar instruction

I've been playing guitar since I was nine years old. I started with the Mel Bay instructional series and a great teacher, and I still use that method to teach my beginning and intermediate students.

My lessons are in my comfortable home studio in Newton MA. 

I teach students from total newbie to advanced rock and jazz.

Lessons are tailored to the individual student. Beginning students follow a perfunctory lesson plan, but as the student advances other facets are introduced. Learning your favorite song, lick or lead line is an important stage of development.

I want to bring out the inner musician we all have in there. You can do it!


$30 per half hour

$50 per full hour

(sliding scale for financial hardship)


What's your story?

I started guitar at nine. My dad played sax in a band and he bought a guitar for me, and I suppose, for him to noodle on. I started learning pop songs pretty quickly, and played in bands in h igh school. I got serious about music in college when I met some great musicians. From there I went on the road gigging, recording, and traveling for several years. I settled down in Des Moines IA to raise a family and played every night for many years, as well as teaching during the day. I've continued playing, recording and teaching ever since. I really got into jazz and progressive rock early on, and studied with many great teachers in Chicago, Minneapolis, Des Moines, and of course here in Boston.

In 2008 I was inducted into the Iowa Rock n Roll Hall of Fame along with the Everly Brothers.



Mitch Rolling    

I was one of Phil's first students. At the time he started teaching me, I didn't even know how to play bar chords. He was not only the inspiration that motivated me highly, he certainly put me on the right path to follow my dream to become a successful guitar player. He was more than willing to help me with my teenage desire to play rock and roll, but much more importantly, he set me on a path that went way beyond that. I took lessons from him for over 3 years. During that time he not only helped me learn how to actually play, but helped me expand far beyond my goals of learning my favorite Doobie Brothers songs. He introduced me to some basic jazz concepts, that have significantly helped me develop to this day. He expanded my musical vocabulary with new scales and chords. He had patience when I needed it, and yet still "pushed" me into new directions that I would not have been able to accomplish on my own. I could go on and on, but I will conclude by saying that with Phil's guidance, I have been a professional guitarist for the last 40 years. It has been quite a ride. I sincerely rate my time with Phil as an outstanding 5 star experience.

Sun Sep 10 2017



  • Joseph Chance    
    Phil is a great teacher!
    Sat Feb 08 2020
  • Heena Pandya    
    My son enjoys taking lessons from Phil! We like his approach to learning the basics and also play to enjoy the music. The overall experience has been very positive and motivating.
    Sat Feb 08 2020