Dan Welby – Drums / Owner
Dan moved to Los Angeles from Massachusetts in 1999 to attend Musicians Institute, where he studied percussion. After graduating from MI, Dan started teaching and building a solid student base throughout Los Angeles and Orange County. He has enjoyed a solid schedule with an average of 40 students per week for the last 12 years.
Dan’s drumming career began back in 1992, where he was playing music with friends and studying with the local drum teacher. Since moving to Los Angeles Dan has been a part of several bands and projects. He has played live shows throughout the United States while on tour, has been involved in many music videos and has also been involved in many professional recording sessions with top notch producers in Hollywood.
Dan is currently the drummer for: Electra, Time And The Dragon, and Colin Reid. His past bands include: Hostile Groove, Hell Hath No Fury, Time Out, Damn Hippie Freaks, and Black Moon Dog.
Electra Barakos – Voice / Piano / Owner
Electra Barakos was born in Los Angeles California, but raised in Athens, Greece. Influenced by her father who is a professional Bass player, Electra started her music career from a very early age. She started playing piano when she was 6 years old, wrote her first song and recorded it when she was 8, was involved in a professional children’s choir in Greece, performed for the Greek Prime Minister, and attended a Performing arts high school in Athens. After graduating she returned to Los Angeles to continue her music studies and to pursue a music career.
Today Electra holds a Bachelors degree in Music – Opera, and is the lead singer/co-songwriter of her original rock pop band. With her original Rock – Pop, self titled ELECTRA, they have opened up for some amazing artists such as Lita Ford, Berlin, Missing Persons, Great White, Jared Lee, Dilana, and was part of the 2010 Sunset Strip Music Festival along with Smashing Pumpkins, Slash, Neon Trees, and more, and the 2011 SSMF along with Motley Crue, Public Enemy, Bush and more. They have released an Ep “Problem Child” and their debut full length album “These Times” was released in 2015. On the album “These Times” they worked with world renowned producer Mike Plotnikoff (Papa Roach, Kelly Clarkson, Halestorm), and the album includes the song “I Can’t Breathe”, which features Phil X of Bon Jovi, on guitar and bouzouki.
Aside from sharing the stage with famous artists, and being a working session vocalist, Electra is also known for being a finalist on The Voice of Greece, Season 2.
Electra has been teaching voice for over 10 years and is a certified Vocal Power Instructor. In 2016, she earned the title of Director of Vocal Power Academy, Los Angeles, founded by Elisabeth Howard. She has helped her students get on television singing competitions, accepted in prestigious music schools, and get signed to major record labels. As her students have stated “Electra works MAGIC! She helps you find your voice! A voice you never thought you had!!”
Darren McGuire – Bass / Guitar / Ukelele / Piano / Sax
“And in the end, the love you take, is equal to the love…you make.” When your parents met working together at a record shop in the ‘70s, it’s kind of hard to avoid being indoctrinated with music and eventually taking it on as a career. The Beatles, The Police/Sting, Led Zeppelin, Billy Joel, Elton John, Pink Floyd and other similar artists became the aural fabric of my life. I was filled with music from day 1; it got in me, it’s still there and it’s never going away.
From those humble beginnings in Allentown, Pennsylvania, it led me to live in places such as Brooklyn, New York and Los Angeles, where I’ve been based since 2010. It has influenced every decision in my life. I’ve been fortunate enough to tour all over the United States, and perform on cruise ships internationally, all while playing just about every style/genre of music you can imagine. I may have come up with rock, but jazz, Latin, R&B, soul, gospel, reggae, hip hop, country, classical and even musical theatre have all had a major influence on me. I’ve recorded multiple instruments on a multitude of albums. 7 different instruments to be exact, but my biggest love, the bass, is the instrument I have logged most of my work on.
However, my two most favorite things to do in music are write, and teach. Why? Because I get to utilize the vast knowledge I’ve gained along the way. I received my bachelor’s degree in Bass Performance from Musicians Institute in Hollywood, CA in 2013, receiving the Outstanding Student Award. I learned much about writing songs, music theory, and the business of music. So why not share? Music is fun, it is inspiring, and it is moving. It’s sewn into the fabric of our lives. It tells our stories, and mine is no exception. As a musician, I feel it is my duty to share what I know and pass on the great tradition of music, so that it may live on with us.
Damen Easton – Piano / Vocals
Damen Easton is a Los Angeles based musician. He has earned a Masters of Music in Composition, as well as a Certificate of Teaching Artistry, from the Longy school of music. He has performed and recorded, in bands and as a solo artist, since 2001. This has included singing lead and background, song-writing/composing, arranging, and playing piano and guitar.
Damen has recorded a full length rock/pop album and a jazz-rock EP of his original material, as well as an original three-movement string quartet. Currently he is recording and releasing tracks for his next album, a work of experimental pop that blends electronica, rock, jazz, and mainstream pop. The first single from the album, entitled Other Side of the Glass, was premiered exclusively on Atwood Magazine’s website in January of 2018.
Damen has taught music for almost as long has he’s been playing it, and has worked with children as young as 7, as well as teenagers and adults. He was given a teaching assistantship in his Masters program and has spent a year as a college professor teaching sight-singing and ear-training for the music school at Portland State University. He left that position to move back to LA and record his album.
Shealeigh Atkinson – Vocals
Shealeigh Atkinson is a native of Pennsylvania and a recent Bachelor of Vocal Performance graduate from Musicians Institute in Hollywood. She began singing professionally at the age of 11 in Pennsylvania, gigging for weddings, festivals, and live events for 6 years. Around the same age, she discovered her love of musical theater and jazz, performing in over 10 musical productions and participating in national jazz choirs by the time she graduated high school. She went on to study at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia before moving to Los Angeles to pursue her original music. She attended Musicians Institute where she was awarded the Stanley Clarke Scholarship and met her band. Shealeigh currently performs as the frontwoman of her original funk band, Prussia, while performing and recording as a session singer.
William Grundler – Vocals / Piano
William Grundler earned his BM in Classical Vocal Performance at California State University, Northridge, studying with Dr. David Sannerud. During his studies at CSUN he achieved honors and awards for his many performances, both as a leader and as a solo musician*. Since beginning his musical journey at the age of 9, where he was playing and composing on the piano, William has expanded his playing and composing using guitar and bass guitar. His 7 years of practice on those instruments along with his unique left handed approach on the right handed guitar, have expanded his composing and playing into various genres including rock, jazz, film cues, modern, classical and musical theater.
William has performed his compositions, as well as timeless classics, in over 50 venues throughout southern California including “Valley Performing Arts Center” and “West Valley Playhouse”. He has performed the role of Motel in the musical classic, Fiddler On The Roof and has performed with the Ventura College Jazz Band. He composed and recorded an EP and arranged a series of successful concerts with a friend to raise thousands of dollars to build a new school in Sierra Leone.
*Achievements: Outstanding Student: Northridge Singers Award Steven M. Williams’ Memorial Scholarship Endowment Tenor solo, Olim Lacus Colueram from Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana, The Impresario in Mozart’s Der Shauspieldirektor, Tinca in Puccini’s Il Tabarro, Studio work as a vocalist for Mike Reagan, composer of Any Given Sunday, Studio work as a pianist for Our Lady of Assumption.
Louise Van Veenendaal – Vocals
Louise is a professional vocalist and songwriter. Originally from Melbourne, Australia Louise has performed on stages and recording studios worldwide. She has over 10 years industry experience in both coaching and performing professionally as a top vocalist.
Louise is most known for being a finalist on “The Voice Australia” and now regally works as a session vocalist in Los Angeles as well as running a successful working cover band. Louise has a 5 octave range and is one of the very few vocal coaches that can teach the whistle register – (Mariah Carey high notes) and develop this safely without tension. Louise trained in New York City amongst the top voice and speech coaches and is a graduate from the prestigious Atlantic Acting School. As a recording artist and songwriter Louise has written and recorded over 200 songs with established artists and many of her songs have appeared on the charts and singles signed to various labels.
She knows the ins and outs of making it in the industry and is extremely passionate about singing and helping others reach their full potential. Her students range from beginners to professional vocalists working today. Louise also mentors her students, helping them reach their goals and achieve the most out of their voice.