LESSONS OVERVIEW & TEACHING PHILOSOPHY
SING. PLAY. AWESOMELY!
LET YOUR AWESOMENESS SHINE! You can learn to sing and play awesomely: singing~voice~vocal, acoustic & electric guitar, piano & keyboard, bass guitar and ukulele . Or any combination of awesomeness! You can also expand your awesomeness further with classes and workshops in: Mindful Music, home studio recording, kids rock band, songwriting and performance .
IT'S ABOUT YOU! LEARN WHAT YOU WANT: I make sure your lessons are about you, and your musical wishes and desires! I teach in fun, inspiring, practical, customized-to-you ways that are geared to your individual interests, goals and pace.
REAL MUSIC. REAL SATISFACTION. RIGHT AWAY! I'll help you immediately make music you enjoy! And you'll see real improvement right away! All while complimenting your unique musical journey with technical and music theory skills that are practical and relevant to you.
LESSONS FOR ALL LEVELS & GOALS: You can learn music at any age. I teach adults and kids (older than 5)... All abilities: never-ever, beginning, intermediate and advanced... And all reasons and goals: just for fun, just for yourself, just curious, hobby-ist, and pro-vocalist or pro-musician.
LEARN THE STYLES YOU LOVE: Rock, pop, folk ~ acoustic, blues, R&B ~ soul, country, bluegrass, heavy metal, Broadway ~ musical theater, singer-songwriter, alternative, world, jazz, starter classical and almost any other style you desire.
YOUR UNIQUE MUSICAL JOURNEY
THE OLD WAY...
Music is often taught abstractly. It can feel irrelevant, boring, perplexing, overly-intellectual, too theoretical, esoteric, not practical and uninspiring!
Teachers often place a lot of emphasis on abstract scales, exercises, and theory... And on uninspiring songs you've never heard of. Instruments are often taught in not-so-fun ways that don't relate to your enjoyment of music.
Learning music like this can feel like a long, arduous slog before you start to: Learn music you like... Gain a basic understanding what you are doing, why you are doing it and how to apply it... And enjoy yourself!
Understandably, many students and kids exposed to this way of teaching end up quitting with a less-than-stellar opinion of learning music.
Suffice to say, learning like that was never fun for me. So I teach differently...
THE YOU WAY!
My primary goal is to get you making music that is fun and inspiring... That meets your needs... And that has you feeling satisfied and engaged... Starting at your first lesson!
We create a customized musical path that is geared towards your unique interests, desires and goals.
We focus on music you like and care about. We only do songs you want to do, with some guidance from me to keep you challenged and learning at your potential.
We cover the most relevant-and-useful-to-you things first. So you can get see the most progress with the least amount of effort. We don't cover musical techniques that you are not interested or you'll never use.
We work to cultivate your competency, confidence, musicianship, musical problem solving skills and self-sufficiency. So you can increasingly play and learn what you want, when you want, without assistance from me.
I strive to create an experience where you finish each lesson feeling like it was effective, enjoyable and challenging-in-a-good-way... And you learned new practical knowledge and skills that you can take with you...
MY TEACHING METHOD
INNOVATIVE, EFFECTIVE, PRACTICAL, WHOLISTIC, FUN!
As a "master teacher" with over 14,000 hours of lesson time with students, I teach awesome methods I developed.
In music school, I found many of the ways I was taught to be ineffective, and sometimes even sent me backwards! And later, through my research, I realized other methods were missing critical pieces that would allow me to sing, play and teach to my potential. So...
Through over 14 years of teaching hundreds of students... Through constantly developing and refining new ways of teaching... Through a lot of self-practice, recording, performance and musical experimentation... And through keeping the effective techniques I learned along the way and knowing what not to teach...
I have developed many innovative, practical, effective, wholistic & fun methods of teaching... Techniques and practice strategies... For voice and instruments... That are easily understood, applied and integrated by anyone!
INNOVATIVE: I teach many things you won't find anywhere else, especially with singing. My methods were born from innovating past what wasn't working, and adding critical components that were missing from other methods. And with more and more teaching time, my methods continue to evolve and become more refined!
EFFECTIVE: It's one thing to innovate, but does it actually get results? In this case, yes! My methods really work! And they work very well! They are streamlined, refined, efficient and to the point. With practice, you'll actually learn what you set out to learn. I don't teach things that are ineffective, and I won't waste your time.
PRACTICAL: It might be effective, but is it useful? Again, yes! I don't waste your time teaching you things that have no practical application for you. We focus on relevant, pragmatic things that actually help you move forward and leave out things that will get in your way or make you go backwards. Or said another way via dictionary definition: "Practical: mindful of the results, usefulness, advantages or disadvantages, etc., of action or procedure."
WHOLISTIC: Learning is only effective when whatever is in the way gets addressed. In lessons, we work with the whole: Practical skills. Practice strategies. Self-empowerment. Musical feeling & expression. Embodiment and somatic awareness. Blocks to learning, practicing and goals. And whatever else you need. One of my favorite sayings is "It's not about what it's about." In lessons, I find that students, often without realizing it initially, come to learn and grow in many ways beyond just singing or playing. I help guide that process.
FUN! Learning can be challenging, especially if we are used to being good at most things we do. So we try not to take it all too seriously, and have fun along the way. And it might be obvious, but we also learn much more efficiently and effectively when we are relaxed, confident and enjoying ourselves.
I also recommend you read more about my non-musical origins to get insight on my teaching method.
FOR BEGINNERS: "I CAN'T SING", "I'M NOT MUSICAL" OR "I'VE NEVER TAKEN LESSONS"
Anyone can learn! At any point in their lives! No kidding!
Learning to sing and play music is like learning anything else: You can get there if you can bring a positive, yet realistic attitude and an open mind, and spend some time practicing. This is especially true when it comes to singing:
Many people believe that you are born with the ability to sing or not. This is not my experience. Some folks grow up in environments where singing is welcome, encouraged and practiced, and others simply didn't learn this skill. If you were never taught to ride a bike, you probably can't ride a bike. But you can learn at any time!
Sometimes students are hesitant to come to lessons, because they think they should know how to play before they get there. And I gently remind them, "This is why you are here. To learn. You don't need to know it in advance. We'll work with wherever you are." I understand we live in a culture that often expects us to be good at everything. And music lessons is an opportunity to practice letting go of that expectation, and learn something you've always wanted to learn, with expert guidance from an experienced teacher!
Learning how to sing and play music well is essentially a matter of building skills and habits and learning how to get out of your own way. I teach lessons for never-ever, beginner and I-haven't-taken-lessons-before students in a simple, relaxed and straight-forward way that anyone can easily understand and integrate... Even those who may think they are non-musical and can't hold a tune...
I also suggest you read about my non-musical origins and how that informs my teaching and benefits you as a student.
FOR PRO & SEMI-PRO VOCALISTS, MUSICIANS & BANDS
I've worked with many local bands, artists and singers to help them improve their vocal abilities, upgrade their musical skills, and find and enhance their own unique sound. I'm a "master teacher" with over 14,000 hours of lesson time with students of all abilities, and I teach innovative techniques that you won't find anywhere else.
Regardless of your skill level, I can help you upgrade: Perhaps you are a high level instrumentalist that wants to shift into lead singing. Or you're already a singer that wants to improve some aspect of your voice. Or you want to move into improvising on your instrument. Or you just generally want to elevate your performance skills.
Think of lessons as an investment in a high quality instrument. It's time. You're serious about your craft. And the difference between what you were using and the new piece of pro gear makes a HUGE difference!
If you are wondering if I can help you with your particular need, feel free to contact me.
SINGING & PLAYING
Most instrument students want to learn songs. And most songs have singing. And even though many new students feel unsure about their singing voices, I usually recommend that they add singing to their playing. It makes it more fun and satisfying and tends to be easier than they think! I have some very effective techniques to make this process easy! And to ease you into singing and work with you at a depth that works for your needs. Most students report that they really appreciate my nudge to add basic singing to their playing!
And of course, a lot of students come in BECAUSE I teach both singing and playing.
FOR PARENTS & KIDS
Sometimes lessons for kids can start as a great idea, but turn out to be a challenge in reality, especially when it comes to your child putting in practice time.
Sometimes parents "make" the child continue lessons and practice despite their strong displeasure. And when lessons end, they often stop playing and are left with a negative impression of learning music. Conversely, sometimes parents let the child totally drive the process, and let them stop at the first sign of challenge.
I recommend a middle path.
If you're thinking about signing your son or daughter up for lessons, let's work together to create a positive and flexible, yet bigger picture and effort oriented experience for your child. They'll learn the value and habit of sticking with something meaningful, while having it nourish and excite them along the way!
THE BUSINESS SIDE OF THINGS
I run my business like the way I'd want to be treated as a customer: The relationship part of our professional relationship comes first. I operate with fairness, honesty, transparency and integrity. All of the information about Rates, Location & Hours and Our Lesson Agreement is upfront and easily accessible. There is never a "hard sell" or hidden charges. I want you to feel like you are getting excellent value from your time and money! And that you are valued and respected!
COME SEE FOR YOURSELF WITH A FREE INTRO LESSON
Even though there is a lot of info on this website to help you decide if lessons with me are a good fit for you, I want you to be sure, without having to pay for it. So...
I offer a free, full length, introductory lesson. So you can see if it's right for you. And it's not just a consultation. It's a full lesson that usually lasts for 45 to 60 minutes.
Singing students will leave their first lesson with a clear sense of the singing process, some new things to practice and some practical knowledge that they can immediately apply and then begin to see improvement in their voices.
Never-ever instrument students will leave their first lesson being able to play a few basic chords and a basic song that they like.
And instrument students with some previous experience will leave their first lesson with some new tools, some gaps in their playing and knowledge identified and filled fill in the gaps in their playing and make sure they haven't picked up any bad habits.
Schedule a free intro lesson! I look forward to being your guide, as you cultivate your musical awesomeness!