The music classes he took as a young elementary schooler up to his young adult life, playing first and second trombone in the schools concert and jazz band had planted the seed of music in Mike Bustamante’s head at an early and impressionable age. It took up his time in the easiest way possible, a way to connect, a way to share and a way to express what was inside and around him at all times. The beautiful simplicity of a melody or dark and moody tones were always the first thing on his mind regardless if it was TV, Movies or any media that came his way. A very active and creative brain as a child allowed Mike to internalize tunes and hum them along to create something bigger in his young world, something real. When the focus shifted to becoming a working and active musician, it was as if a duck were taking to water. Suddenly the passion bled through and allowed for Mike to express himself with a number of musicians, young and old who made their livings in the booming New York City studio scene of the 80, 90s and up to today.
Mike grew up on the East Coast and its shaped his playing, his teaching and his eternal learning greatly. Spending nights kicking around the blues clubs in lower Manhattan or shaking it up in the funk scene in Plainfield NJ which produced such greats as George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic, Mike has experienced his share of live music where anything can and usually does happen. Having to take on players who can turn the coin from Rock to Fusion style playing on a dime, Mike had to keep up or get out, and with his share of adversities never lost sight of the passion that burned inside of him. He brings that passion and that energy into the lesson room, with a great understanding of music theory, notation and tablature he brings a wealth of knowledge to the young and hungry players of tomorrow. Having played up into the thousands of songs ranging from Country Western to Jazz to Metal he can provide a simple taste of these genres to the students beginning their wonderful journey on the guitar. All of the contemporaries in Mike’s career have been different, whether it was approach, technique or tone. All of them individual and Mike seeks to provide that same diversity to the student he teaches. Focusing in on fundamentals and technique should be approached for each player differently and Mike allows the player to grow into the instrument, albeit not in just physical proportions but in the intellectual and emotional aspects of taking on something as important to the world as playing a musical instrument.