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Ventura Guitar Teacher | Hans Ottsen | Ventura, CA
"If one’s music comes from the heart, the well will never run dry. 1 honest note will always mean more than 1000 notes coming from an empty place"
Hans Ottsen

About Me

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Ventura Guitar Teacher, Piano Teacher, Ukulele Teacher – Hans Ottsen

Hans has played and studied music since birth. His mother, Linda Ottsen, soprano, sang with Leonard Bernstein and Aaron Copland, performing at Kennedy Center with Hans in the womb. In his mid-teens, he began playing guitar and pursued his formal education as a studio guitar major at the University of Southern California, continuing his studies at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City, focusing on jazz guitar, improvisation, and music theory.  His teachers include Joe Diorio, Chris Rosenberg, Frank Potenza, Pat Kelley, John Stowell, & Garry Dial.

Performance venues include , The Knitting Factory (NYC), The Thousand Oaks Center for the Arts, The Mint, Chadneys, and various other venues around Los Angeles. In the Ventura County area, he has performed at Squashed Grapes, Nicholby’s, Zoey’s, Bombay’s, J’s, Bernadette’s, The Sidecar, Franky’s, The Drink, The Deer Lodge, Cold Springs Tavern, Herzog Wine Cellars, 95.9 the Octopus, Howard Freiberg’s Ojai Jam-Band Festivals and appearances with several symphony orchestras. Hans has toured Denmark and Holland playing shows with extraordinary drummer Don Peretz and saxophonist Sam Sadigursky.  Hans’ newest projects include several jazz ensembles including the Hans Ottsen Trio, the Hans Ottsen Organ Trio with David Johnson (Hammond organ) and Adam Clark (drums), the Hans Ottsen/Randy Tico Duo, the HansOttsen/Nahum Zdybel Guitar Duo, the Harlem Holler Trio – a drummerless trio project with Phil Salazar (fiddle) and Randy Tico (bass), The WORP Trio with Jim Rankin (bass) and Aaron Winters (drums), and several other small ensemble projects, all available for bookings.  Hans also performs in other musician’s projects such as the Adam Clark Trio andCODA with Charles Levin (drums), Tom Etchart (bass), David Johnson (vibraphone), and Tom Buckner (sax).  In addition to his performing life, Hans is co-producer at Filzar Studios, owned by bluegrass master Phil Salazar.  There he has worked with artists such as singer/songwriter Jonathan McEuen, renowned drummer Jim Christie, trumpet master Jeff Elliott, and others.

Hans has been teaching guitar and piano privately since 1992. He has taught in Los Angeles, New York City, and San Francisco, as well as in Ventura County. He is the guitar teacher and piano teacher for the Golden Valley Charter School and co-owns and operates Ottsen Music Studios with his mother, Linda Ottsen. He also worked at the Steven Perren Youth Correctional Facility in Oxnard, California, teaching music to at-risk young people.

Hans’ teaching experience is pan-stylistic. Honing in on individual student passions, he helps people find their way to greater facility, and thus greater ability, regardless of their area of interest. Hans believes that any music which inspires passion in the heart of an individual can be utilized as a valid passageway to musical development, theoretical understanding, and personal growth. Hans’ specialty is jazz improvisation, music theory, and composition, however, his students have included blues, rock, classical, Celtic, bluegrass, and old time musicians. Hans believes that music has little to do with genre and much to do with musical approach, musical understanding , and musical sensitivity. His teaching style has become known as one which transcends genre. Although Hans’ main instrument is guitar, he has taught theory, improvisation, and composition to saxophonists, pianist, violinists, bassists, trumpeters, vocalists, and others.

If you are interested in finding a Ventura guitar teacher, piano teacher or ukulele teacher in Ventura, CA, contact Hans Ottsen at Ventura Guitar Lessons by calling 805-643-6363, emailing info@venturaguitarlessons.com or filling out our online form by Clicking Here.

”Every instrument has it’s blessings as well as it’s limitations: 88 simultaneous notes available to a pianist, 1 to a vocalist (2 if you‘re a Mongolian throat singer). Does this mean that piano is 88 times more valid than a beautiful voice? Or 88 times easier to master? I think not. True music does not play favorites. Ultimately, our imagination decides what is possible, regardless of which axe we might be slinging. Imagination is limitless. If one’s music comes from the heart, the well will never run dry. 1 honest note will always mean more to me than 1000 notes coming from an empty place.” –Hans Ottsen


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About Us

Though we draw students from Los Angeles and beyond, Ventura Guitar Lessons focuses its efforts on improving the musical talent in Ventura and the surrounding cities. Hans Ottsen has been offering his guitar teaching services in Ventura for over two decades. His extensive bio shows his music history and how he became the talented, successful teacher he is today.

Now under the Ventura Guitar Lessons name, Hans Ottsen is proud to reach out to all of you local musicians who want to further your knowledge of your instrument, your ability to perform/jam, your ability to play your favorite songs, and more! Hans’ current student roster includes students from age 4 to age 82 so you’re never too young or too old to start taking guitar lessons.