Rock Prodigy Team


The hearts and minds behind Rock Prodigy.

Tyson Butler

“Hastings, Nebraska, people — Hastings, Nebraska.” Tyson grew up playing the sport of the Gods (i.e., football) before moving to Arizona where he met his future sweetheart and wife while studying Accounting and Finance at University of Arizona. While the Heartland and the Cornhuskers will always hold a special place in he and his family’s heart, the West Coast, the Bruins and the Trojans have now won starting spots on his roster as well (except of course if they’re lined up against the Big Red or the Cats).

Although an Epiphone Dot Sunburst was his first axe, he has since been smitten by a G&L Tele.

He has extensive strategy and finance experience as a veteran of KPMG consulting and brings this wizardry to bear for Rock Prodigy. In this photo, Tyson is listening to the voices inside his head through iPhone earbuds that are telling him to visit the “ne plus ultra” of Excel sites here.

Roger Dannenberg
Ph. D.

Roger Dannenberg, PhD, is professor of Computer Science, Art and Music at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Computer Science. Dannenberg leads the University’s world-renowned Computer Music Project, is an accomplished researcher published in numerous books, articles, technical journals and holds several patents in the field of music technology.

Dannenberg is co-inventor of Music Prodigy’s revolutionary patent-pending music teaching system and method that integrates polyphonic pitch recognition and provides instantaneous performance evaluation for any instrument.

Javier Ezpeleta

In addition to having an extensive career in computer science, Javi spends every free moment performing, writing, recording music for pure enjoyment, professional engagements, and for charity and non-profit benefit events in Spain and throughout Europe. He has toured with bands after they heard Javi’s proficiency on keyboards but as you can see and hear, he’s a rare musician and human whose energy and talent shines.

Richard Gard, DMA

Richard Gard, DMA, is lecturer of Hearing and Analysis at Yale School of Music, where he is known for his innovative method of teaching musicianship, improvisation, and analysis to some of the finest music students in the world. Gard’s love of music and teaching compels him to constantly expand his mission and so Gard is also Professor of Music and Chair of the Arts Department at Naugatuck Valley Community College, where he brings the same high level of instruction and innovation to a music department whose diverse student body comes with varied levels of experience and ability.

A lifelong musician with over thirty years of performance, teaching, arranging, and composing experience, Gard continues to direct several vocal and instrumental ensembles.

Mike Georgia

Often the first to the office and last to leave, Mike helps blaze trails for Rock Prodigy’s music lesson production workflow. Not only does Mike tear it up on his Ibanez with 0.010s, he has helped standardize the tools that we use to produce and bring to life the music instruction background from the entire guitar team.

In addition to releasing his own original compositions on the CD “In The Shadow of the Sun,” more of his work can be found in Rock Prodigy, such as his guitar-laden arrangement of the First Movement of Beethoven’s Fifth.

Mike has a degree from Musicians Institute and continues to be a private instructor in the hours when we unchain him from his Rock Prodigy desk.

José Hernandez

José grew up in Spain, and his current stomping grounds are in the East Side, Eagle Rock area. José’s precise technique floats effortlessly between Rock en Español, Flamenco, Speed Metal, Rumba, Acoustic, and more. Check out him “walking” through Avenged Sevenfold’s “Beast and the Harlot” here.

His original band Sonsoles has performed for tens of thousands (including at Dodger Stadium during ¡Viva Los Dodgers!), and is a mainstay in the Southern California Rock en Español scene.

José is a graduate of both Musicians Institute and University of Salamanca, Licenciado in Musicology and History of Music/Art at Salamanca, Spain. He has taught guitar and music internationally.

Zeyu Jin

Zeyu joins Rock Prodigy while pursuing his PhD at Princeton. He is one of the named co-inventors on a patent pending for vocal instruction. He has 10-year experience in composition with two published albums and 346 opuses of music works… are you ready? 30 pieces in Celtic, 60 pieces in Piano Improvisation, 10 pieces of orchestral / chorus works, over a hundred pieces of electro-acoustic music works, etc. All works recorded.

He’s also skilled in piano improvisation and flute. Besides that, he’s the independent force behind Neume: a language for music visualization, and Comprovisor: a software for composing music by improvisation. He’s also been recognized by Sony with the Top 1 award in Nationwide Sony ExploraScience competition 2011 for creative invention (invited to Japan for technological communication).

Harold Lee

Transplanted Connecticut native, Harold successfully dropped out of Jazz studies at Berklee and Classical studies at UC Santa Barbara to tour in an acoustic rock band before getting a Musicology Bachelor’s degree from UC Los Angeles.

After playing professionally in two bands, he settled down north of Los Angeles with his wife and are raising their family of three dogs: a rescued Poodle-Terrier mix named Pepper, a rescued Pomerian-something-else-like-a-Chow-mix named Winnie, and a French bulldog named Ruby.

He can be heard trying to play heavy metal riffs on his third-hand Guild dreadnought with 0.012′s that he rescued from Cowboy Star Guitars and Oriental Rug Trading Company, a block north of State in downtown Santa Barbara.

Chris Ohno

The only Rock Prodigy employee with a name tag, Chris’s background includes music engineering at the famed Cello Studios in Hollywood, and studies at Citrus College Recording Arts.


Having played bass for bands in Southern California, he now calls Venice Beach his home.

At Rock Prodigy, Chris embodies the voice of the customer, as he is our first line of “guinea pig” for the beginner’s guitar course. He regularly abides by the motto, “We will serve no wine before its time,” except of couse in Rock Prodigy’s case, it sounds more like, “We will serve no lesson before it’s ‘ready.’”

“Ready” is defined as “being truly useful and effective in communicating a succinct, practical musical thought on guitar for beginners.”

© 2016 Rock Prodigy, Music Prodigy