Below you will find information about one on one Private classes and also about Online video course options.

Any time you have a question about online lessons with me, just mail me at: musicianself at gmail or using the contact form and you will get my reply within a day or two.

For example you could tell me details about your needs and ask me how I would plan a learner path for you.

You will find more details below, but before that, here are some online video courses my students have been using very successfully.

Optimized Video + Interaction

Classes are hybrid of video and interaction through video corrections or call.
All the core material is already in videos. that will be used like a text book – we won’t be spending time and money on what is already available that the student can go through at their pace. But, individual needs are corrected based on videos you send me or what you play in a call. the interaction is so that you know exactly what to correct and practice – error oriented.
One on one calls are usually 100usd per 50 minutes. As a member of a course, discounted at 35usd for 25 minutes.
Your needs can be met when you ask me questions and tell example real life situations that you want to solve, like a 3 month goal of what you really want to do and what you are familiar with.
Start here If you would like to learn raga or film song guitar, rhythm or chords with me, please start by joining:
Once you join, we will be interacting to know your needs and skill. You will get very specific practice instruction.
Content is taken for granted. we work on skill.
I have a very specific error based deliberate practice method which has been found to bring fast and sure progress to my students. It goes beyond remember and repeat methods to higher learning hierarchies that will enable the student to learn needed methods techniques and best practices making sure that the time, money and effort is used as best as possible, giving them the necessary skills and mindset to expand their repertoire as they wish.
For example: We Use songs as just a tool to learn method and technique, and to learn deliberate practice, which can be used further on anything you want to play.
Song learning has phases like: note collection, where to slide/ho/po, word level delay reduction, extend to sentence and song using fingering logic/phrasing/fretboard arrangement… While keeping the feedback loop between how we play vs how the song is meant to sound. Hence the importance of playing towards what we really like to play and are familiar with.
Similarly with chords or any specific need of yours, we will be dividing it to smaller pieces, with clear goals and practice path.
if learning to find chords for melody is of interest to you, take

Mastery courses:

If you would like to understand ragas, scales, improve playing on guitar, choose
  1. Complete Carnatic and Indian Style Playing Library Lifetime access + Guidance (Lifetime access option, monthly payment) Film song or raga song corrections included. Learn with me for 12 months to guaranteed fluency. If you have raga and carnatic interest – you don’t need to look further – this is it.
It has a monthly option. so start with that, cancel or continue as needed. as you can imagine, this is a clear situation where just 1-1 will be a waste. there is a huge library for you to go through, while getting guidance from me. 
If you would like to work on rhythm, chord theory, fingerstyle etc:
  1. Rhythm chord complete skills: Interactive course (6 months) to improve your chord and rhythm skills, work with fingerstyle or chord melody, learning to find chord on your own and everything else chord or rhythm related that you want to learn with me. Updated resources + interaction to give you custom individual content. Want to improve your chord and rhythm skills? Learn how I do my unplugged videos? Let us start interacting.

One on One private Skype classes

If you are interested in learning with me, I am guessing that you have interest in any of the following:

  • how to play Indian Raga and Film songs, fluently and efficiently as it is sung; you need specific techniques, process and mindset to play with all the details and flow.
  • how to find chords for any raga or song on your own, how to approach playing rhythm and chords methodically, including fingerstyle or chord melody, singing while playing rhythm and chords.
  • as a result, you will start developing the skill to find notes and chords on your own, being able to play songs by listening without outside help.

If you want to learn with me, write to me at: musicianself at gmail or using the contact form and let me know your needs. We will do what is best for you.

One on one classes with me are useful for you if you will benefit from direct real time interaction with me, answering your questions, guiding you through the lessons, discussing your learning path and practice strategy, keeping you accountable.

One on one classes can help keep you have a rhythm and routine and you don’t have to wait for my responses.

Beginner or intermediate

You could be a beginner Guitarist who wants to play Raga or Film Songs on the Guitar, chords and rhythm, sing while playing the guitar…

  • You want to make sure that you are on the right track,
  • that you learn the best practices and a syllabus specifically made to train you towards Raga and Film song playing, instead of a generic western approach.
  • Maybe you also want to learn chords the right way.

OR You could be someone who has been playing Guitar for sometime and

  • want to get better with playing Indian Raga or film songs – better fluency and efficiency resulting in a playing that sounds as if the song is being SUNG.
  • Maybe you are also interested in getting better with chords, finding chords,
  • being able to sing and play chords at the same time or…
  • the ultimate: playing chords and melody at the same time, using fingerpicking and arranging methods.

With me, you will be connecting your skills from where you are now, to your exact goals, while practicing music that matters to you.

Meaning, if your aim is playing Indian Raga or Film Songs on the guitar, then from day one, we will look into which songs interest you, understanding the needed theory while doing it, practising the needed guitar technique while moving towards playing what makes you feel accomplished.

Or if chords are of interest to you, it’s possible to arrange the practice so that you improve your skill from where you are, and connect as soon as possible to playing chords and rhythm so that you are able to attempt your favorite goals as soon as possible.

Who am I?

The only reason someone decides to learn with me is that they have watched my youtube videos or heard my music somehow and have seen my teaching videos. I don’t try to convince anyone to become my students. They are already convinced from my chord work or raga style playing.

I am not transactional – I care for the people I work with or teach beyond the per hour rate. I discourage merely transactional student and other relationships.

I have a background and history of being exceptionally good with learning and teaching. A traditional academic example is: IIT Madras Btech 1998- AIR 716  from a small town in Kerala, preparing using past question papers. Well, let’s say… I know how to practice and perform :).

I started playing music at the age of 11. Luckily since the age of 12 I have known world class musicians (who now play with the best of famous Indian musicians) giving me all the chance to imitate and model them.

They were mainly great performers from whom one could teach oneself. The way you see me play and interpret music was mostly self taught through patient trial and error. Now you can use my experience too, saving yourself the trouble.

At times the discussion does move to other topics, based on student request, because of my experience with business and related (+ I read around a 100 books a year on business, pyschology, life etc, assimilate and help solve others problems). 

I will help you make learner paths specifically for you. Not only does that keep your motivation alive, but also saves you time and money in the long run, preventing frustration and chances of giving up. You start seeing the context, the why of what you are practising and how it moves you fast and safe to what you want to play, while building technique and theory that will bring you lifelong musical independence.

You think you will benefit by learning with me?

Shyam is a gifted musician and a teacher who knows precisely how to teach Indian music on guitar in such a way that anyone with interest can start making progress very quickly.

In less than 2 months, I am learning to play film songs, geethams and even a keerthanai. This is more progress than i have ever made in the several years of trying to figure things out myself or trying to learn from other resources.

I am truly delighted to have started this musical journey and becoming a student of Shyam Monk.
Sarvesh, San Jose, California


50 minute sessions at 100USD per meeting.

Paypal or other transfers are possible. Will decide after the first class.

  • Write to me first with your needs and goals. Based on that I can suggest if we will be a good match.


Why me

Students start to learn with me having seen my playing or tutorial videos, and they continue with me seeing how effective my teaching method is to help them reach where they want to, clear and sure, saving them time, money, effort.

My students stick with me also because, you see, I am good to talk to and deal with. 🙂 With whom my students talk life, philosophy, business etc if they feel the need.

Whatever your current skill level and interest, I focus on the next 1% of your growth. Starting from where you are with what you have.

Not a bunch of notes, but the underlying skills and abilities that set you free, while enabling you to play real life music. While practising towards what interested you in music, or what will make you feel accomplished, we learn the needed skills that you can use to play more of what you like.

Among other reasons, my students make quick and sure progress since I use process modeling. If we can know what a very good player does when playing perfectly, what they are focusing on and ignoring, sequentially or simultaneously, then YOU can use the same to dramatically improve your playing in a very short time.


I have learned guitar from Shyam for over a year via online classes and also from his videos online.

Simply put, Shyam is the best guitar teacher you can find on the internet if you want to learn to play indian film music on acoustic or electric guitar.

He customizes his teaching based on your interests and is patient with answering any questions you have during the class.

Within the spin of year i was able to learn roughly a dozen indian songs starting from ground zero and learnt techniques to play any scale anywhere on the fret board.” – Hari Krishnan, California, USA

An example response after one class with me:

“…whatever you taught me on the first class has changed the course of my guitar learning’s all starting to make sense now 🙂

I was so confused about my guitar abilities and the way i understand guitar patterns…i was even worried and thinking if i had to unlearn whatever i learned so far and start from the scratch to understand the entire concept with better clarity!

Simple concepts like transposing…creating chord progression for any song from the notes…learning notes for every fret! I just realized i’m not lost and on the right track!

I just realized i’m not lost and on the right track! I truly value your lessons and love the way you make me find patterns.”

Skype class – Is it effective?
Jayashankar C, Houston says:

I think our classes are going great. It is opening up an endless array of possibilities.

Now i guess, i can gather the courage to look up at the chords of a song rather than looking up instructional lessons on how to play a song.I think i am growing now.

Most guitar classes are suited based on the instructors judgement rather than the student but i think our class is open to choices. It’s like we have an improvised class with a set of goals at the end of each lesson.

Moreover you get the students attention at every moment of the class. It’s that feeling that you have something to look forward to every weekend.

Before even though i used to play, i hit the brick wall very often. But now it is a sort of new experiment all the time. The joy of finding those melody lines is a very good reason not to hit the brick walls again.

I think you are a very good teacher who has that innate patience to share the knowledge and above all always encouraging.

Thanks for all the lessons and motivation.

Sundar Krishnamurthy says:

When I decided to learn to play the guitar, I didn’t even consider Skype-based teaching.

I was looking for someone who can teach Karnatic music on guitar but couldn’t find anyone in the US. Searching online, I stumbled upon Shyam’s website and decided to reach out.

Turned out to be a great move on my part!

Shyam was willing to teach Karnatic music, especially on a guitar.

I wasn’t sure if Skype will help communicate the instructions, especially the frets to play, the techniques to use such as hits, pull-offs and slides, etc. But it turned out alright.

Shyam is persistent, detail oriented and above all patient and that makes learning that much more easier, and fun!
* Sundar uses swaras to play Indian songs, mainly classical based, using slides, hammer ons and pull-offs, giving him something satisfying to work with, trying to emulate the vocal movements on the guitar. 

Nancee M -Atlanta, GA USA (Musician/Singer/Songwriter/Recording Artist) says:

I needed to learn basic music production and came upon Shyam’s website, and I emailed him with questions.

He responded quickly and cordially,- with a sense of humor!-and we met on Skype very soon after the first email. He helped me tremendously during that first session!

He is very smart and intuitive and helped me get to where I needed to be with easy to understand and creative explanations, AND he emailed me more information relative to what we were working on, a nice bonus!

I would highly recommend him to anyone needing a great teacher for the services he is offering.

*I am no more teaching recording or sound engineering as the sole topic, although students who are into recording, making videos etc take help from my experience


Not sure?

Write to me. I can assure you that the way I will help you is not something you will see often in music teachers. Customized syllabus, growth oriented coaching, how vs just what etc are accessible only through long years of dedicated and aware practice and experience.