Jess Kallen (they/them) is a musical artist, instrumentalist, and educator living on ancestral Tongva land (Los Angeles). An in-demand guitarist in the LA scene, they have played with Rosie Tucker, Alex Lahey, Bella Porter, Julian Julian, Mackin Carroll, Lily Meola, Temme Scott, Pearla, Holly Blair, Vignes Rooftop Revival, and more. As a touring guitarist, they've shared support slots with alt/indie rock's The Beths, Soccer Mommy, The Marías, and The Regrettes, and performed in music festivals including NoisePop (San Francisco) and Treefort Fest (Boise). In 2021, they played bass for Olivia Rodrigo’s live “Sour Prom” performance. They are a producer with WIP, a community and monthly song contest for women and non-binary folks in the music industry.
Jess began playing classical guitar at age five, and later gravitated towards electric guitar and other contemporary styles. They moved to LA in 2014 to study Studio/Jazz Guitar and Songwriting at USC’s Thornton School of Music.
Jess @ Elysian Park. Los Angeles, 2023. Photo by Adrian Vega Albela Osorio.
Jess is a passionate music educator of over 10 years. They got their start in high school teaching guitar at Cazadero Music Camp, and still return most summers to direct the camp's Guitar Program. They've taught private lessons at Coast Music (Manhattan Beach), and group classes at the Chandler School (South Pasadena). They are currently a Teaching Artist with Young Musicians Foundation, and a private instructor out of their home studio in Echo Park.