Michael Dinallo’s teaching philosophy can be described as relaxed. He explains, “I learned a long time ago that putting pressure on a student is the worst thing an instructor can do.” He believes teaching methods should be determined by the student. He goes on to explain, “Learning can be done with traditional methods or by using alternative methods, such as the Nashville Number System, which is a great tool for ear training.”
His toolbox for teaching includes the study of harmony and melody—it helps students become more aware of the music. “Learning songs and breaking down why the particular elements of the song do what they do within the song gives students an edge”, Michael states. “The best way to get creative is to play and learn what inspires you. And, a huge part of being creative is not being afraid to take chances – go out on a limb, and try something new. It just might lead you down another creative road you weren’t expecting.”
As he says, “What makes me a unique instructor is a lifetime of touring with many road and studio stories. All that has helped me grow as a musician, instructor, and person.” His expertise embraces teaching and playing the blues, old-school rhythm & blues, soul, traditional country, folk, bluegrass, and Americana.
Michael graduated from Berklee College of Music and has taught guitar for decades in between touring and studio work. He’s the co-founder and director of Artists and Repertoire at Green River Entertainment—an artist management, consulting, and music production company. Michael served as the bandleader for the Boston-based Radio Kings and is now the lead guitarist for The Dinallos. He also co-hosts the Prine Time Podcast with Billy Prine, the brother of the late John Prine.
Michael’s performances have taken him to many parts of the US and all around the world. He speaks of such memorable ones, “Opening for John Prine, the time when I first played in front of 25,000 people at the Peer Rhythm and Blues Festival in Peer, Belgium, and playing with ex-Muddy Waters’ harmonica player James Cotton in Memphis and then having him offer me a job on the spot!”
In addition to his music career, record collecting is a huge hobby for Michael. He likes to collect books of all kinds, enjoys cooking, and hiking with his family in Down East Maine. And, what he really loves is playing music with his family!