"In the music world, there are a lot of great teachers who aren't great players, and there are a lot of great players who can't explain what they do. Rob Mullins has managed to bridge that gap." Greg Woll, Director of Jazz Studies Fullerton College.

Rob Mullins Music Educator Biography

Rob Mullins has been a music teacher now over 30 years. He began teaching children and adults at Logan Music Center in Denver, CO when he was 16 years old. A professional big band drummer from the age of 12, Rob's career as a drummer was halted by a near fatal car accident during high school. He learned piano from his mother, a professional church pianist and also learned saxophone, bass and guitar by age 16.
At age 16, Rob toured with vocalist Dianne Reeves (Blue Note Records) to several national jazz festivals where he was proclaimed a musical genius by jazz composer Oliver Nelson. Continuing his teaching career in high school, Rob frequently ran the high school big band and went on to study at the University of Northern Colorado on a percussion scholarship, where he starred in the top three jazz bands on piano, drums, and baritone sax respectively. Rob studied theory and composition from George Russell (music theory guru to Miles Davis and John Coltrane) in New York on a National Endowment for the Arts Grant. After his time with George Russell, he went on to start his recording career as a jazz pianist and has now recorded 27 solo albums spanning three decades. Rob credits his success in a large part to the Denver Public Schools.


"I've always felt that having a teaching career was important. While I had great teachers in Ed Brown, Bill Douglass, Derryl Goes, Joe Anderies, and others over the years, I had a hard time finding material that was simple to understand that would get students sounding good quickly that was fun to do. Most of the books and many of the programs I participated in were great for their time, but I found that students were coming in to lessons asking harder questions such as 'why do I still sound bad even though I have learned all this book material?' and 'I know I am playing all the notes, but it just doesn't sound right' as well as 'I really like this song by (fill in name of artist) but I can't figure it out.'  In answering these questions and finding solutions that were easy for students to understand, my own curriculum started to take shape."

"Over the years while touring the world doing gigs, players would frequently approach me for lessons after hearing me play, and I would always teach them if there was time while I was in that city. I started to find out the common problems that players have...getting a sound, dealing with fingerings, reading vs playing by ear, getting their band to sound right, how to make an album, write good songs, etc. So I started making notes and putting material together that was much more than just studying out of the standard books people were working out of and then applying that information to private lessons. The advent of the internet made a lot of music available that was important to jazz studies and I always recommend to new students to go to iTunes and YouTube and just bring me their favorite songs and we'll start by breaking those songs down and seeing what makes them great and how to approach playing them. I have always been fast at seeing musical structures, so it can be a very quick and useful learning experience for a student to sit with me while I write out new sheet music to their favorite songs while they watch and then show them how to play it on the spot. I know of very few other teachers that do this, but it works very well and students respond enthusiastically."

"I taught my first large scale workshops at the Westwoods Jazz Camp in North Dakota when I was 18 which was my first experience dealing with a wide age range. The camp was mostly for people my own age but I found myself teaching other teachers at the camp as well and found that I was having a lot of fun explaining the theory behind composer's work as well as how to perform the pieces and do improvisations on thematic material. I didn't look back from there."

"I was frustrated with college when I attended because I didn't think that students should have to go to different departments and buildings to get the help they needed. I started integrating the computer and technology into my lessons in the 90's and now when students come to my studio, they are sitting in a high tech but friendly recording studio that has numerous resources such as more than 1000 albums of material, numerous books on a vast array of musical topics and recording, sheet music, fake books, acoustic instruments, digital workstations, Protools, mastering software, mics, and other tools. It is a fun learning and teaching environment where they can get the information of many departments, topics, and schools all at once."

"My SINGER/SONGWRITER curriculum was born in the year 2000 as a lot of students were coming in who weren't ready for the committment to jazz studies and just wanted to sing well, write their own songs, and make albums. I applied my jazz training and experience to that idiom and began organizing it into a course, and now in 2010, many students have completed the course and gone on to write well, sing better, and make their albums."

"While I operate independently of universities, many schools have sought my help over the years with difficult issues and asked my advice about how to get their students playing better including Fullerton College where I have now become a composer and producer for one of their DownBeat Award winning groups. I always enjoy the challenge of a tough educational situation, and have had success solving problems for department heads, jazz band instructors, MTAC teachers, record producers, hobbyists, and professionals. My sister is a university teacher and has given me great advice for decades about teaching. Both of us have now had hundreds of students through the doors and understand things on a level that is not reached by the typical piano teacher who has just graduated college or only understands one genre. I enjoy recording many types of music as you'll see in my discography and I can teach people about any kind of music."

"Most of the private lesson programs now in Los Angeles in 2010 are still based around the teacher's college experience and curriculum they learned to teach while getting their teaching credential. Mine is a very different sort of program where the student gets the benefit of everything I've learned from hundreds of hours of live performance with jazz and pop greats, decades of experience in professional recording studios with great session musicans and producers, 20000 hours of experience as a teacher, as well as curriculum that can be invented for them on the spot to solve problems they've had that other teachers could not solve."

CONTACT: 310-572-7245 info@planetmullins.com


Grammy Nomination for original composition "Soulscape" album 1986 (RME Records)
Congressional Award for Pubic Service to the Educational Community 2000
LA Music Awards Independent Jazz Artist of the Year 2003
Top Private Lessons Program in the US by Privatelessons.com


Jazz Piano Voicings 2004 Hal Leonard Corp.
Blues Step by Step
Jazz Piano Etudes
Let's Play Jazz


Jazz Studies Program
Singer/Songwriter Program
Technology Class
Recording Class
Music Business Class
Improvisation Class
Piano Performance Techniques


27 solo albums as composer, arranger, producer, performer.
Rob Mullins at ALL ABOUT JAZZ
Rob Mullins at ALL MUSIC GUIDE
Rob Mullins on iTunes

Rob's understanding of jazz and classical music led to teaching music teachers at Pedrini Music, Yamaha Music School, MTAC workshops, clinics and workshops in New York, Moscow, Tokyo, Los Angeles, and other cities. He now runs the top private Jazz Studies and Singer/Songwriter Privatelessons Programs in Los Angeles while continuing his other careers as a recording artist, book author, live performer, session musician, and public speaker.


Rob Mullins Artist Bio
Rob Mullins on YouTube
Rob Mullins on Google Video

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Copyright 2012 by Rob Mullins. All rights reserved.