WHAT I TEACH
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The piano is such an important instrument for a musician to comprehend (and arguably the easiest to begin learning). Within its 88 keys lie the ranges of every other instrument in orchestras, bands, and choirs (including the human voice). It can be a wonderful instrument to use as a sketchpad for songwriting and composing, and it is a complete and powerful force unto itself. Its keyboard is literally music in black and white, but the piano encapsulates almost every version of sonic color imaginable.
The ukulele is one of the smaller cousins of the guitar. It is lightweight, portable, easy to hold, and generally less expensive than other instruments. This makes the ukulele a popular choice for younger students and for those who like to take an instrument when traveling by plane. The ukulele has seen a resurgence in popularity over the past decade and is now a staple in most music stores. A versatile instrument, and by no means a toy, it can provide a quick break to its owner and offer contrasting colors to any ensemble.
GUITAR and BASS
The guitar and the bass are essential to every band on the planet. Guitars can easily jump from providing rhythmic stability and background harmonic texture to delivering fiery lead solos and vivid riffs. Likewise, the bass can live as the foundation for everything else happening on stage while maintaining the ability to emerge with head-turning sounds and grooves that will ignite the entire dance floor. Understanding the basics of one will give you a head start on the other.
As the only instrument made entirely of soft tissue it is incredibly important to understand how your voice sits in your throat. Knowing how to practice this unique instrument is crucial not only to developing accuracy and tone, but also to ensuring that you will be able to maintain it and keep it for decades. Your voice is the most human musical connection on the stage. You tell the stories. You can make audiences cry and you can make them smile again. You are the face of the band.
Songwriting allows you to express yourself using what you know and understand about music, and it isn't as hard as you might think. If you have an instrument and know a few chords or scales, you can already write your own songs. By knowing how to analytically listen to your favorite songs by other artists and apply their methods to your music, you can take your songwriting to the next level. You will automatically learn advanced music theory in these lessons.
Do you want to write music for the orchestra? How about a piano sonata? Do you find yourself writing music that doesn't seem to fit what you hear other people playing or singing? Odds are, you're a composer in the making and music composition is what you're interested in. Through the study of counterpoint, orchestration, applied music theory, and various forms, you will begin to realize your artistic voice. Composition students should have a basic understanding of clef reading and note values. You will automatically learn advanced music theory in these lessons.