cofounder of DMSM; Electric / Acoustic Guitar, Bass and Ukelele
Dennis Murphy is a 3 time GRAMMY Nominee with international Smooth Jazz Artist Acoustic Alchemy. Since mid-eighties, Dennis has been touring worldwide with various national and international artists. He recorded or played with Greg Kihn Band, Maria Muldaur, Billy Preston, Coasters, Drifters, Shirelles, and Kenny Rankin among others.
Dennis appeared on National Prime Time Television and Nationally Syndicated Radio. His band was voted Best Of 7 Consecutive Years by Monterey County Weekly Reader’s Poll. Dennis leads various size combos including an 18 Piece Big Band in the Swing Era style. He’s recorded, produced, arranged, and/or played on more than 100 album releases, including his 3 solo CD releases (“Hit Me Hard”, “Rediscovery”, “Pentatonic”). Dennis directed Blues In The Schools program by Monterey Bay Blues Festival’s Outreach. Dennis has been a Music Clinician in 15 schools both public and private throughout Monterey County providing more than 150 workshops/sessions annually. He is a Board Member at CASA of Monterey County, Carmel Youth Center, and “Express Yourself, Inc”. Dennis is considered a master teacher and his fees are: $75 per hour and $45 per 1/2 Hour.
Cofounder of DMSM and Enrollment Administrator
Paula is cofounder of DMSM and is also founder of our Non Profit arm EXPRESS YOURSELF, Inc. which was originally conceived by her for the purpose of funding scholarships for at-risk, under privileged youth and senior citizens. Paula worked and volunteered with various organizations, including CASA of Monterey County, Meals on Wheels of Monterey Peninsula, Forest Theater Guild, National Charity League of Monterey County, ASDS, Junior League of Monterey County, Easter Seals of Monterey County, and others. She has received numerous awards including 2008 CASA of Monterey County “Volunteer of the Year”, 2006 Forest Theater Guild “Philanthropic” award, and 2003 Carmel Rotary “J O Handley” award.
Guitar, Arranging and Theory
Mike Lent was born in Santa Barbara, California. After studying piano from the age of seven, he began playing the guitar at age ten. At fifteen, he started working as a professional guitarist, performing in clubs, concerts and school dances throughout his high school years in Pacific Grove, California. Upon graduation, he attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston.
Mike has toured and recorded with many artists in his career, including Jeffrey Osborne, James Ingram, Marie Osmond, Ricky Martin, Ronnie Laws, Patti Austin, Shania Twain, and Grover Washington, Jr. to name a few. As a session musician, his credits include General Hospital, Grace Under Fire, WKRP in Cincinnati, Ally McBeal, and Walker, Texas Ranger. He has composed music for shows such as ABC’s General Hospital and Port Charles, NBC’s California Dreams, and Sweating Bullets for CBS. In addition, Mike has played guitar for the national tours of the Broadway shows, Mamma Mia, Rent, Aida, Chicago, 42nd Street and The Lion King. Mike has been performing with Barry Manilow since 1997. Mike is considered a master teacher and his fees are: $75 per Hour and $45 per 1/2 Hour.
Saxophone, Flute, Clarinet, Keyboard, Sight Reading and Band Classes
Gary Meek is one of the most in demand musicians on the West Coast. Gary has toured or recorded with Dionne Warwick, Al Jarreau, Jeff Lorber, Airto & Flora Purim, Billy Childs and Dave Weckl among others. He is currently touring with world renowned bassist Brian Bromberg. He also toured with top Brazilian Star (the late) Oscar Castro Neves. Gary is considered a master teacher and his fees are: $75 per Hour and $45 per 1/2 Hour.
Janice Perl is an accomplished Choral and Dance director who has been involved in many productions in Monterey County. Janice has appeared on a Television Special with Mikhail Baryshnikov and Liza Minelli called, “IBM Presents Baryshikov on Broadway”. She appeared on tour as a singer, dancer and Dance Captain for Dick Clark’s national tour starring Danny & the Juniors and Gary US Bonds. She has conducted choirs for Shoreline Community Church and Calvary Chapel Monterey Bay. She also choreographs and teaches Show Choir for Summer Camp at the world renowned Santa Catalina School. She served as Musical Director for the after school musicals at Colton Middle School for from 2002-2006. She is currently the Performing Arts Director at Trinity Christian High School in Monterey. Janice is available for voice and is also one of our Choir Directors. She also teaches Show Glee for DMSM Summer Camps.
Drums and Percussion
Mike Shannon is an accomplished drummer who has played with many renowned Artists including Brazilian Pianist Weber Iago, Bulgarian Guitarist Hristo Vitchev. Mike has also played with numerous local artist at The Monterey Jazz Festival as well as the Monterey Bay Blues festival. He teaches sight reading for drums along with style studies including Rock, Jazz, Latin, Pop, Funk and Blues.
Mike Marotta Jr.
Mike Marotta Jr. comes from Monterey musical royalty. Mike leads one of the most sought after bands on the central Coast and comes from a long lineage of musicians. He is considered one of the top accordionists in California. He and his father, Mike Marotta Sr, are frequent headliners at most of the Accordion Festivals in the state including the prestigious Cotati Accordion Festival. Mike teaches all styles from Italian to French and Cajun.
Mike is an accomplished Bagpiper and has played with many of the Scottish Pipe Bands in the region including The Salinas Valley Highlanders. He also initiated the BagPipes at sunset at the world renowned Spanish Bay Golf Links and continues to represent and book most of the established Pipers on the region.
“Fast” Eddie is one of the world’s premier River Boat/Dixieland Banjo players. He has toured worldwide with many artistst including Big Mama Sue. He has been a featured performer at DisneyWorld and Disneyland, where he was featured in the “Class of ’27” show at the Diamond and Golden Horseshoes.