Meet Mark Wilson

5 Star School for Music Founder/Instructor

Offers Guitar, Bass Guitar, Chapman Stick, Ukulele & Drums Lessons 

5 Star School for Music founder Mark Wilson is an instructor, author, recording artist and performer. He’s taught music for more than 30 years. “During this period, I created an efficient, productive and affordable music lesson system I call the 5 Star Method, that accelerates the learning progress for all students,” says Mark. “I developed the 5 Star Method for guitar, bass, ukulele, drums, vocals and the Chapman Stick.”

The 5 Star Music Method was designed with ease-of-use in mind — ideal for instructing students of all levels, from beginners to advanced. The 5 Star Music Method instructional material consists of 20 books and play-along audios.

“Our music school offers a wide variety of highly-attractive opportunities for students of all ages and levels,” Mark proudly states. “These range from private music instruction — in my opinion, one-on-one instruction has become a lost art form — to group music workshops, even recording in our studio, plus live performances.”

One of Mark’s more popular music instructional books, “Blue Grooves,” has been picked up by Truefire, a major music publisher. TrueFire has collaborated with 600+ top educators to produce what Guitar Player Magazine calls “the planet’s largest and most comprehensive selection of online guitar and video lessons.” 5 Star’s music program — books and play-along audios — has been reviewed by Guitar World Magazine. They said, “Bravo, 5 Star Music! This is a Four-Star teaching program!”

Many of Mark’s students have gone on to do quite well in the music world: one was awarded a $100,000 cash prize on a TV talent show, a few are now college music professors and others have landed jobs with Bill Graham/Live Nation Productions, and are recording engineers.

Mark’s favorite style of music to play is the Blues. He says, “I love the Blues because it’s the most flexible, expressive, and widely used song form in music. I also enjoy playing Motown, Classic Rock, Funk, Jazz, Classical and Country.”

Hobby-wise, Mark enjoys writing and recording music, hiking and doing volunteer work.


Meet Josh Gonzalez-Beban

5 Star School for Music Instructor

Offers Guitar, Bass, Ukulele, Drums/Percussion, Piano Lessons

 Meet Teacher Josh, our dedicated instructor at 5 Star School for Music, who has been an integral part of our school for over a decade. Josh teaches many music styles, ranging from pop, blues to hard rock.

Originally a student of 5 Star’s music director, Mark Wilson, for 10 years, Josh evolved from a workshop assistant and performer to a dedicated teacher. Reflecting on his journey, Josh states, “I love teaching here because the school believes that music style is subjective—an individual experience and personal taste. We never judge students on the music they like.”

Teacher Josh along with all the other teachers at 5 Star School for Music, encourages students to explore a variety of instruments, including guitar, drums, piano, ukulele, and bass guitar. This approach allows students to discover the instrument that truly resonates with them and has received positive feedback from parents.  One parent expressed, “My daughter loves coming to her lessons because it’s like a musical amusement park, and she enjoys playing the guitar, drums, and other instruments.”

At 5 Star, students have the unique opportunity to mix and match different instruments during their lessons, such as spending half an hour on piano and half an hour on guitar.  This creates a fun and engaging learning experience in our spacious teaching rooms.

Josh brings a warm personality and a gentle presence to the school. “I remember what it was like when I first started taking music classes,” he says. “So, I keep that in mind when teaching beginners. Students at any level can have their ups and downs, and I do my best to support them in their growth.”

Known for his patience, Josh is widely popular among his students. His easy-going persona fosters a bond with people through music, and he adds, “I think my enthusiasm for music is something that resonates with students. Sunnyvale attracts people from many different countries and cultures. I enjoy incorporating people’s favorite songs into the lessons, along with the fundamentals we teach with our course material.”

A versatile musician, Josh teaches guitar, drums, ukulele, piano, and bass guitar. 


Meet Kevin Rollis

5 Star School for Music Instructor

Offers Guitar, Bass Guitar & Ukulele Lessons

Kevin is a fantastic resource for Five Star’s students. He brings a great amount of professional band experience and expertise, which also includes songwriting and arranging. Known for his wit and quick to smile, Kevin says, “I think I’m easy for students to engage with because I like to have fun, especially with music. And with music, there is no right or wrong, just endless possibilities with myriad applications.”

A former student of 5 Star’s founder Mark Wilson, Kevin’s been playing music for over 25 years, including upright bass for four years in his high school orchestra. Kevin is always also eager to share his knowledge with students on the performance aspect of music.

“There’s a big difference between casually jamming with friends or a garage band and then playing a live gig,” says Kevin. “I have years and years of live performance experience and can help students to become more aware of their stage presence. All musicians and bands put out a certain type of energy, and I believe it’s important to be cognizant of that aspect.”

Kevin has played guitar or bass in several bands that have been lucky enough to win awards, including Manchester School — voted best local band of 2007 by the readers of The Metro newspaper, and The Common Men, which ended up on a top-10, post-punk albums of 2016 in Brazil of all places! Currently, Kevin is playing bass in the band Casual Vibes. Their song, ‘Saturday Night,’ was noted in a British music magazine, Classic Rock UK’s, as one of best of 2018. How cool is that?!

When asked what he likes best about teaching, Kevin says, ”Seeing a student apply a technique or a riff I’ve taught them and play it well. I like to get students to the point where they can listen to the radio or Spotify and they can figure out how to play along by knowing scales and common patterns.”

Kevin teaches guitar, bass and ukulele, and his favorite music style is Rock. When not teaching, Kevin enjoys gaming, hiking, reading, comedy and music — playing, writing and recording.   


Meet Cole Davidson

5 Star School for Music Instructor

Offers Guitar, Bass Guitar, Ukulele, Drums/Percussion Lessons

Cole has been teaching music at 5 Star School for Music for the last six years and has been a major contributor to the award-winning teaching approach at 5 Star School of Music which provides an integrated exploration of music for all students.  With a repertoire spanning Classic Rock, Pop, Blues, and Folk, Cole’s diverse approach caters to the diverse musical interests of his students.

Previously, he spent 12 years as a student at the school. As Cole’s musicianship continued to improve and mature, he then gained invaluable experience assisting at 5 Star Music as a workshop teacher’s assistant for six years.

“We provide students with exposure to a variety of instruments, including guitar, drums, ukulele, and bass guitar,” Cole states. “Our approach gets enthusiastic feedback from parents of new students, unsure of where to begin.”

The 5 Star School for Music learning method – books and play-along audio —is relaxing and comfortable, yet structured with gentle guidance that allows students to grow at their own pace. 

Reflecting on his path to teaching, Cole shares, “I initially considered teaching music because people believed in my aptitude for it. As it turns out, I enjoyed it, and students responded positively to my methods, which I developed during my time as a student at 5 Star School of Music.”

Cole works very well with children and points to his experiences as a Boy Scout and feels those life lessons prepared him to be a music teacher. He says, “I was in the Boy Scouts for six years, and it taught me leadership and teamwork skills, as well as how to adapt and work with people from all walks of life. As you get older new Scouts come in every year and it’s the older kid’s duty to help the younger kids grow.”

Asked what he liked best about teaching music, Cole says, “Watching my students grow into being better musicians and realize their full potential. I can relate to students of all ages. I like a lot of the things that both younger and older students like.

Outside of teaching, Cole indulges in hobbies such as spending time with his pets, playing video games, and of course, creating music.

Cole teaches guitar, drums, ukulele, and bass guitar.