Mentors and tutors
At Rock Scholars all of our mentors and tutors are actively involved in the Perth music scene and bring both technical expertise and real world experience to their teaching. Most of them have been through the Rock Scholars program themselves and they are deeply passionate and knowledgeable about music. Our band mentors are multi-instrumentalists and many of them hold formal music qualifications from WAAPA or other tertiary education establishments.
All Rock Scholars staff hold current working with children clearance.
Sam has been involved in the Rock Scholars community for over 10 years. He started out playing bass as a student in our band program before moving on to guitar and vocals. He is now our busiest mentor.
Sam is an accomplished musician and song writer, and has a unique ability to facilitate band communication and growth through clear direction and encouragement.
Instruments: guitar, bass guitar, drums, vocals
John joined Rock Scholars in 2016 and has built up a large group of regular and loyal students. John specialises teaching modal and harmonic theory and particularly enjoys helping students to develop their improvisational skills. He is also an awesome band mentor.
John is currently studying contemporary music at WAAPA and plays in hardcore rock band Statues.
Sam joined our mentoring team in 2016 but as a former Rock Scholars student who spent several years playing and learning his craft here, he is now giving back some of his incredible talent and passion for music.
Sam is a renowned singer/ songwriter who performs regularly under his own name, he sings and plays guitar in Perth band Cosy along with fellow Rock Scholars mentor Oscar van Gass, plays bass in Fox Scully and also plays guitar in Noah Dillon’s band.
Instruments: guitar, bass guitar, drums, vocals
Carla is an Albany-born singer-songwriter whose captivating live show and relatable lyricism saw her win the inaugural Mojo Rising Band comp, win Best Regional Act and Best Rock Act at the WAM Awards, play stand out performances at festivals such as Falls Festival, WAMFest and more recently BIGSOUND, and support artists such as Holy Holy, Alex Lahey, Jen Cloher, Birds of Tokyo, Stella Donnelly and many others. When Carla's not super busy in the coming months playing festivals like Queenscliff and Fairgrounds, and supporting John Butler Trio, Missy Higgins, The Waifs and Pete Murray, she'll be mentoring rising young bands and teaching vocals at Rock Scholars, along with running the odd song-writing workshop.
Instruments: vocals, guitar, bass guitar
As a former Rock Scholars student, Josh has a passion for everything we do and loves sharing his considerable knowledge and technical expertise with a new generation of young musicians.
Josh draws influence from drummers such as Steve Gadd, Dave Weckl, Dennis Chambers and Art Blakey. All of whom's work he studies as a part of his bachelors degree in Contemporary Music at WAAPA.
He currently plays in Perth bands Wooly Mammoth and Lake Louise and has recently been supporting Sydnee Carter. at festivals like Groovin’ The Moo and SOTA.
Instruments: drums, bass guitar, guitar
Christiaan is a former Rock Scholars student who graduated from WAAPA with an Advanced Diploma of Contemporary Music.
He has been playing live since the age of 15 and performs both locally and nationally. He enjoys playing all styles, especially blues, funk, jazz, rock and country. He currently plays with Foxton Kings, The Hunting Birds, Elli Schoen and Georgia Reed.
Chris is very passionate about teaching, always seeking to equip students with the technical, theoretical and performance skills that are needed for them to grow into fine musicians. He bring a positive and friendly vibe to all lessons!
Instruments: guitar, bass guitar and keyboard
Christian has been behind the guitar for more than 10 years, with a wealth of live performance experience. When he’s not studying a Bachelor of Music - Contemporary at WAAPA, mentoring bands and teaching guitar at Rock Scholars, he is busy playing lead guitar in Perth-based band Wooly Mammoth and Grace Armstrong. Christian’s relaxed personality in addition to his love & passion for music make him an excellent band mentor, and for valuable and rewarding lessons.
Instruments: guitar, bass guitar, vocals
A multi instrumentalist, singer and song writer, Jake is an ex-Rock Scholars student who studied contemporary music at WAAPA. He is the smoking hot guitar player and vocalist in blues rock outfit Desert Sonnes and one half of contemporary country rock duo Sartori & Gamble. Jake’s easygoing personality and natural musicality are an asset to Rock Scholars and we love having him around the place!
Instruments: guitar, drums, bass, vocals
Sarah is a singer-songwriter who is renowned for her indie-folk sounds and earnest songwriting and has been playing music for over a decade now, on stages around Perth, regional WA and the UK. Having won awards at the Boyup Brook Country Music Festival, including most recently in the emerging artist category in 2019, and studied at Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA), Sarah is an accomplished and seasoned musician currently playing both as a solo artist and in her duo Sartori & Gamble.
Instruments: vocals, keyboard, guitar
Charlie spent a number of years learning how to be in a band at Rock Scholars, crafting a passionate outlook on music. He is now giving back to the Rock Scholars community the important lessons he learnt in his time here.
Charlie has been playing guitar for 13 years and in his spare time plays drums for indie-garage rock outfit Pot Plant House Party and grunge-pop band Flossy as well as studying a Bachelor of Sound at SAE.
Charlie’s easy-going personality as well as his passion for music make him a fun, welcoming mentor and tutor.
Instruments: drums, guitar, bass guitar, keyboard
Peppa has played music for as long as she can remember. It was in a primary school rock band that she first picked up the bass guitar, and she hasn’t put the instrument down since. Peppa is currently studying bass at WAAPA and playing in rock, pop and jazz bands including Spacey Jane, Jon Stapleton and The Dizzy Gs. She has an infinite love for music that she hopes will inspire young musicians to come.
Instruments: bass guitar, keyboard
Oscar van Gass is a Perth based drummer and multi-instrumentalist with a decade's experience in live performance. A former WAAPA student, Oscar performs regularly with Mosquito Coast, The Chlorines, Kid Dingo, The Kramers & Cosy, among other groups including small jazz and corporate ensembles. With experience across a variety of genres and playing styles, Oscar's approach to teaching encourages a broader appreciation for music in all forms, seeking to develop passionate young musicians with a focus on technical facility, aural skills and musicianship within his lessons.
Instruments: drums, guitar, keyboard
Claudia mainly performs as a bass player yet originally began her musical pathway as a guitarist and drummer. She has always been a passionate music fanatic and has been gigging for around two years now, recently returning from her first over east tour with Noah Dillon. Claudia plays regular gigs with Noah and his band, alongside Scholars' mentor Samuel Rocchi, as well as Mal de Mer. She's also played with bands such as Miraud, Spacey Jane and Sydnee Carter. When she isn’t gigging with her bands, she is busy studying to become a Graphic Designer! After helping out with mentoring holiday jam sessions for a while, Claudia officially joined the team as a band mentor in July 2019.
Instruments: bass guitar, drums, guitar
Dan Harper has been a working drummer and drum teacher for 10+ years. He has a Certificate IV in Music Business and a Bachelor of Music specializing in Contemporary Performance from WAAPA. Dan is an endorsee of Yamaha Drums Australia and currently plays for alternative rock band Shangrila, post rock band Absent Hearts, metalcore band Displacement and R&B/Hip Hop corporate band Neapolitan. Dan is very excited to share the joy and love he has for music with every student and band he comes across.
Rory has been playing guitar in live performance settings since the age of 15. With a background in drums and bass, Rory takes influence from a wide range of musical genres. He is currently completing the final weeks of his fourth year of a Bachelor in Contemporary Music at WAAPA in guitar 👏👏 whilst also playing professionally and teaching. Rory plays bass in local band South Ceiling and you can also catch him playing guitar in many other outfits around Perth.
Instruments: guitar, bass, drums
Daryl is the vocalist/bassist for Perth band Homebrand. When he’s not busy playing in and managing the band who have recently toured WA in support of acts such as Polish Club and Pist Idiots and released music that has scored them a WAM nomination and multiple top 5 spots on the Triple J Unearthed Indie charts, he is studying an Advanced Diploma of Music Industry at WAAPA. Like many of our mentors and tutors, Daryl is Rock Scholars alumni, having enrolled in our band program when he was 10yrs old and he’s been playing in bands ever since. His caring and bubbly personality paired with a passion for music creates a safe and enjoyable space for any student wanting to start out on bass or improve their playing.
Instruments: bass guitar
Sam is the joint owner of Rock Scholars with his wife Karen, he is passionate about all forms of music as long as it includes guitars. And drums.
Sam is a lifelong musician and has played guitar in lots of bands all over the world. He is currently teaching beginner and intermediate one-on-one guitar lessons and also mentors bands in our program.
Instruments: Guitar, Bass, more guitar
Karen is the joint owner of Rock Scholars with her husband Sam, and manages all of our day to day operations, marketing and customer service.
Karen is passionate about what we do having seen first hand the benefits of our Band Program being the parent of a former Rock Scholars student herself. Her step-son Billy plays in the Perth band Homebrand.