Guitar & Strings Instructors
Get to Know Us
Richard N. Fustino
Guitar, Bass, Ukulele, and Music Composition
Richard has been teaching at Matt's Music for 54 years! He studied at Fredonia, University of Buffalo and ECCC and his majors included music composition and social studies.
Guitar, Bass, Ukulele, Banjo and Mandolin.
Craig has been teaching at Matt's for 30 years. He studied under Ernie Coralo and Ralph Parker.
Ed started his career playing in the New York City subways with famed blues musician Carolina Slim. From there, he began playing local shows with his rockabilly band, The Moonshiners. Upon graduating from high school, he pursued a Bachelor's degree in Music Education from SUNY Fredonia, which he completed in 2013.
In between national shows, music festivals, and local showcases, Ed received his Masters degree from Bowling Green State University where he studied under Jeff Halsey, David Bixler, and Chris Buzzeli.
Ed won the 2018 JazzBuffalo Poll for Best Acoustic Upright Bassist (repeat from 2017), Rising Star, and the John Hunt Jazz Artist of the Year awards. The results of these awards are decided on by residents of the city of Buffalo and all of Western New York.
Penn Watson is a classical guitarist from Buffalo, NY. He began playing guitar at age 10, fell in love with classical guitar at 15, and graduated from SUNY Fredonia with a B.M. in Music Performance in 2019. He graduated with a Performer’s Certificate — an award given to a handful of graduating students who perform two high-level, professional recitals. His past teachers have included James Piorkowski, Thomas Viloteau, Joanne Castellani, and Evan Drummond.
Performance highlights include the Mary Seaton Room at Kleinhan's Music Hall, Mannes Concert Hall at The New School in NYC, Rosch Recital Hall at SUNY Fredonia, the Louis P. Ciminelli Recital Hall at Buffalo State, and a karaoke bar in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Penn plays a guitar made by Dake Traphagen.
Gretchen is a returning classical violin & fiddle teacher to Matt’s Music after establishing her career & family. Music pastimes include directing community seasonal & fiddle groups, playing in a local classic rock band, accompanying the church praise band, and providing music for weddings, fundraisers & other celebrations. She enjoys tinkering around with the guitar, ukelele, and piano too… and is especially proud to teach her own children.
“Music can help set the tone for each moment of life. At times, caesuras can pause our life song as we wait for the Great Conductor to cue us into the next movement. Dynamics seem to exaggerate our moments that challenge our ride through emotions, guide us through change, and provide deep comfort for our soul! The fermata of faith allows us to breathe in the overwhelming collaboration of the blending sounds while preparing us for the extension of our life song. With practice, guidance & inspiration, music extends confidence, joy, and passion unique to each melody of life.”
It is wonderful to unpause & regroup with the Matt’s Music family…
Piano and Guitar
Sasha is a blues/funk musician who plays drums, bass, keys, and sings. Sasha loves all types of music and loves encouraging young people to explore all types of genres.
Madison Gibbs started playing guitar when she was 7 years old. She has played in musicals since 7th grade for many schools in the area and once with the O'Connell and Company. Madison has previously taken private lessons from Frank Gerard for almost 10 years and studied under Jared Tinkham from 6th-12th grade. She is currently studying classical guitar and minoring in Digital Music Production at SUNY Buffalo State. She hopes to one day work as a studio musician.
Bruce has been performing publicly since his teen years. With over 35 years of experience, a few thousand shows, he has honed his craft and is a serious study of the instrument. Bruce has been a fixture in the circuit and has played with notable touring musician “Big Wheelie and the Hubcaps” for several years.
Bruce has a distinct love for Blues guitar and the genre in its purity. He had some moderate record success in Europe with “Gregg Juke and the Mighty No-Stars” in the early 2000’s. That’s when he made the switch to the growing genre of country music and has been a member of WOTM since 2012.
He was awarded “Best country Guitarist” in the 2017 Nightlife Magazine Music Awards.
Bruce resides in Tonawanda, NY with his wife and two successful children.