Robin Stone is an associate professor in the Guitar Department at Berklee College of Music. Although she teaches many styles of music, she concentrates on the history and playing styles of classic rock guitarists, including Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, and the Allman Brothers. She has taught at Berklee since 1990, when she became the second woman ever hired by the Guitar Department.
Stone is the managing editor and web designer of Open Position, the Guitar Department's online newsletter that showcases faculty talent and provides an insider's look into the work being done in the school's largest department. She contributes "String Theory" articles, exploring harmonic concepts for guitarists. In 1993, she composed "Adagio for Oboe and String Orchestra," which was released on the MMC label. In 1996, she was awarded the Japan Foundation's Uchida Fellowship, allowing her to live in Roppongi to study the traditional Japanese instrument, the Koto.
Stone received her bachelor's degree in professional music from Berklee in 1983. She graduated with academic honors and is a member of the Phi Kappa Lambda music honors society. She received her master's degree in jazz studies from New England Conservatory in 1988, where she studied composition with William Thomas McKinley and George Russell.
- Career Highlights
- Extensive performing experience in a variety of styles
- Member of Phi Kappa Lambda Honor Society, and Master Musicians Collective
- Composed "Adagio for String Orchestra and Oboe," released on MMC Orchestral Miniatures Volume 1
- Recipient of a Uchida Foundation Fellowship to study koto in Japan
- M.M., New England Conservatory of Music
- B.M., Berklee College of Music
In Their Own Words
"Having been brought up in a household where both my parents were jazz musicians—my mother is a vocalist/pianist (also on the faculty here), and my dad played upright bass—I consider myself lucky to have been exposed to great artists such as Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett, Wes Montgomery, Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans, and many, many more. Even my grandmother was a mandolin player, and it was my curiosity concerning her mandolin, tucked away in her bedroom closet, that first influenced me to want to play the guitar. From the age of 14, I have been performing and playing the guitar in some capacity. The many years of gigging combined with over 25 years of teaching experience and six years of college has given me plenty of insight on music and music education. I greatly enjoy the fact that my life’s passion is the continuing study of this great language we call music; it is with that same passion that I emphasize to my students that the study of music is a most rewarding and challenging choice."
"I would like my students to really know the guitar theoretically and to understand how the fretboard works. I firmly believe that students should have a thorough understanding of harmony and how it works on the guitar. Because of the way the guitar is tuned, learning the fretboard can be confusing and frustrating. Most students learn by patterns and fingerings. While this method is a wonderful way to learn how to play the guitar, it leads to a situation later in one’s playing of not knowing what they are playing. I would like to be able to say that my students come away with a better understanding of how those patterns and fingerings translate into a real working knowledge of the guitar."