RJ Smith

Banjo, Bass Guitar, Cello, Drums & Percussion, Guitar, Piano, Ukulele


I got my start in music at the young age of 7 on piano.  My mother saw ‘potential’ in me for music, so got me started on piano at age 7.   Took piano lessons until I got my Grade 6 piano and Grade 2 Theory.  In the late 60’s I got really interested in drums and started teaching myself how to play drums.  Got my first small drumset in 69, but with only a hi hat and no cymbals.  

Over the next few years I purchased a much nicer kit.  We had an ‘old’ guitar at home so I also played around with it and taught myself some chords.   The ‘action’ was terrible so I could never play long.   My dad played the violin, so I learned a bit about violin also when I was living at home.

In later years I found out that Mandolin was the same as a violin, only you used a pic, so I purchased a Mandolin and started learning it.  It was actually quite easy, having a ‘fretboard’, where as a violin has a ‘fingerboard’, no frets.

In 1996 I decided to start teaching music, since I was unable to find a job.  I started teaching one day a week at Sonrise Christian Academy, as one of my boys was attending there.  I eventually thought about teaching from home as well, so started some students at my home.  Within a few months of that I had the thought ‘why not become a traveling music teacher and take lessons to people’s homes’.   So, I began advertising lessons for the Quinte area, within 40 minutes of Picton.

Finding I had a pretty good understanding now of ‘4’ instruments, I decided to keep going and eventually picked up a Banjo.  I was actually working at a Music Store;  the banjo teacher had died, so I got asked if I would take over his students.  I took a banjo home and a book, and to my surprise got half way through the book that night.  It was much easier than I expected.

A little later at this same music store I got asked if I would take on some Bass students.  I had a ‘little’ knowledge of Bass, knowing the top 4 strings of a guitar were the same, so I quickly picked up Bass and learned it well enough to teach.

I went out west, to Alberta several years ago, as I had met a very special lady online from Fort Mac, Alberta, so went out and taught music for 7 months.  While out there, I got asked to teach Ukulele.  I had never picked one up or tried playing one, so borrowed a ukulele from the music store I was working at part time;  took it home, and went through the ukulele book, front to back, in one night.   With only 4 strings, ukulele was very easy to learn.

Awhile after coming home, I got asked if I could teach Cello.  I didn’t own one and couldn’t rent one at the time, so just studied a bunch of video’s on Youtube.  I discovered a Cello has a fingerboard the same as a Viola, so  took on a student.   I plan on either renting or purchasing a Cello in 2016, so I have one.  I like to have in my possession whatever instrument I am teaching, so I’m not just a ‘coach’.

So that has been my ‘musical journey’.  I also LOVE Music Theory and love to teach it.  I find it fascinating, and the best place to really learn music theory is on the piano.    I picked up a book on guitar theory a couple years ago, and it is also really interesting.

I guess ‘music’ is in my blood, because I LOVE teaching, and I love questions.   So, if you, or a child or someone you know is interested in learning any of the following:   drums,  piano/keyboard,  guitar,  bass,  banjo,  fiddle/violin,  mandolin,  ukulele or cello, give me a call or send me an email.  I’m a Traveling Music teacher, so I bring Lessons right to the comfort of YOUR HOME, when possible.

Lesson fees start at ONLY $40.00 a week, ALL inclusive, for a One Hour lesson, within 40 minutes of Picton.  Lesson fees can vary from 40.00/wk (ONLY 160.00 a month all inclusive)  to 75.00/wk (ONLY 300.00 a month all inclusive), depending on the distance.  The areas I cover basically are:  Napanee,  Adolphustown, Deseronto, Belleville, Trenton & Brighton.  I will travel further, if the money is offered.

My site, rjschoolofmusic.com is under construction.  My goal in 2016 is to build the site and to upload Video Tutorials to offer Online Lessons.  It will be a very low Monthly Membership fee, and you will have access to lessons on any of the 9 instruments.

I will update this as I have more info available. Call or email today for more information and too see ‘when’ we can fit you, a family member, or friend, in.   I really look forward to working with you. 



Associated With

  RJ Smith


NAME  |  RJ Smith

ADDRESS  |  52 Union Street, Picton, Ontario

PHONE  |  613-503-2065

EMAIL  |  rjschoolofmusic@yahoo.ca

WEBSITE  |  http://rjschoolofmusic.com

HOURS  |  

Monday - Friday: 10 a.m. - 9 p.m.



Joe Chithalin (Joe's M.I.L.L) played bass with a number of bands in the Kingston music scene of the 1990s, most notably J.O.Y.Y., Bloom, Weeping Tile, The Mahones, Wild Blues Yonder and Haskell & The Cleavers.

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