Originally from Oklahoma, Max Gise has made his home in Cincinnati since 2004. Currently, Max is an adjunct professor at University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM), a guitar instructor at Cincinnati Music Academy and a guitar instructor at The School for Creative and Performing Arts in downtown Cincinnati. In 2005-2006, he was a graduate assistant at CCM, where he completed his Master’s degree in Jazz Studies in June, 2006. He began his collegiate career at University of Oklahoma in 1997 and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a bachelor degree in Classical Guitar Performance in 2002. While there, he was granted the Outstanding Classical Guitar Award as well as the Outstanding Jazz Student Award.
Max developed his love of music at a very young age. Though his parents both worked in the medical profession, his father was an expert at Scott Joplin piano rags and his mother was well versed in singing and playing folk guitar. Max started taking formal guitar lessons with Dick Gordon Jr. in Tulsa when he was thirteen. A few years later, he joined a garage rock band with his school friends. And when Max was a junior in high school, he heard the album that would eventually direct his career path: jazz legend Wes Montgomery’s Smokin’ at the Half Note.
Throughout his years in college, Max gained substantial experience in both teaching and performance. Max has taught at the CCM Preparatory Summer Jazz Camp in 2008 and 2007. He was Assistant Director of the Jazz Lab Band at CCM in 2005-2006. In the summer of 2005, he was a guitar instructor with the Northern Kentucky University Summer Jazz Camp. Before moving to the tri-state area in 2004, he taught lessons at McMichael Music Studios for three years. Notably, he was also Co-Director of the Rock Clinic, which was a program through the studio that assembled and directed student rock bands. Max also served as Youth Band Director at First Christian Church in Oklahoma City.
Max accepts students of all abilities – beginners through advanced – and is available to teach adults and children ages 10 and above. Lessons are personalized to each student’s interests and goals. Students are encouraged to select songs they wish to learn. Max teaches rock, jazz, finger-style, blues, and classical styles. Some of the other lesson subjects offered include music theory, improvisation, reading music, and composition. Max wants to help develop the creative spirit in each of his students.
You can also catch Max playing live with one of his bands or solo. He plays in the hip-hop/fusion band Eclipse, jazz trio AMP, the Northside Jazz Ensemble, and Bossa do Retro, a Brazilian/Latin jazz quintet.
What People are Saying about Max…
“I love the feeling I have leaving a lesson with Max, positive, upbeat, and I can’t wait to get home and practice. As a working adult student, practice time can be a challenge after working ten hour days, yet when I get started and get that feeling again, I remember why I love the guitar!” -Dave R.
“Max’s passion for the guitar is matched by his incredible enthusiasm for his students. As a mature student, I was able to learn quickly and set goals for myself I never thought achievable, thanks to Max’s unflagging encouragement and thorough knowledge of the guitar. Not only did he patiently guide me through the beginner phase, but as I gained confidence and acquired skill, Max championed me as a songwriter, performer and full-fledged musician – and recommended me to CMA as a teacher. I’m now proud to call him my respected colleague.” –Nancy
“Max is an excellent teacher! He has a deep appreciation and knowledge of music which he shares in each lesson. He keeps the lessons fun and challenging by engaging me in the areas that I want to explore. I’ve learned a lot about music and myself the past two years. I am very pleased that he is my guitar teacher.” -Ken