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I'm a guitar and piano player who has been teaching students of all ages since 2011. I started playing guitar 17 years ago and it has been my constant companion since then. I got my music degree from Carleton College, and my senior project was on jazz guitar arranging. I have played in bands, both on guitar and bass, for many years and I love performing live. I have taught most styles of guitar, and also beginner piano and bass guitar.
For beginning piano students who are children, I typically start with the Alfred series, and supplement with basic vocabulary, flash cards, and ear training. At a first lesson, I assess the student's skill level and/or natural aptitude, then test for the most effective learning style (drawing, vocabulary, spelling, videos, games, hands-on with the piano, singing, clapping, etc.) At a beginner level for children, I believe the most important thing in music lessons is to make the lesson fun and engaging, and find the most effective way for the student to absorb the key concepts rather than push one set of books or method. We always get through the books as well, we just have more fun doing it if the child is engaged via other methods. For intermediate and advanced students in piano, I have a large repetoire of classical, jazz, pop, rock, showtunes, and musical theater pieces to help the student learn new music, styles, and grow their skill level. For beginning students who are adults in piano, I like to focus on bigger picture music concepts first because I think it's the most valuable. We focus on notes, chords, ear training, theory, and learn to play some popular songs with chord charts first, and then shift focus to reading music. This approach is often more valuable for adult students as I teach how to play popular songs and how to write songs first. This is often more enjoyable for a student who may not be interested in playing classical music. But I am flexible and open to whatever the student is interested in, regardless of ability or age. Recital performance for all students are optional and flexible. I believe that performing in front of other people, and the preparation aspect of performance is key if the student wants to perform, but there are so many other aspects of learning and appreciating music that last a lifetime without performing too, so that is always up to the student. For guitar, I teach basic techniques, strum patterns, chords, solo-ing, scales, and theory. You will be able to play popular songs, perform your own solos, and write your own songs on either acoustic or electric guitar. For voice, I teach basic techniques so you don't hurt your vocal chords, I teach how to increase your range and your power, how to warm-up your voice, good breath support, how to achieve good diction, and how to scream properly! I am not qualified to train vocalists interested in classical or operatic performance, only rock/pop/punk and musical theater. I can show you how to belt high and add rasp to your voice. I also teach how to riff, growl, and scream.
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Once you’ve met with your teacher for your risk free trial lesson, continuing with Musika is easy! If you are satisfied with your lesson, all you have to do is register with us to continue! The trial will count as your first lesson if you continue, however, with our Great Match Guarantee™ if for any reason you decide not to continue then the trial is FREE. Go ahead give it a try, you really have nothing to lose.
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The bass is a great instrument for adult students of all skill levels. Those unfamiliar with music can learn basic fundamentals, as the bass provides the backbone for many musical pieces. Soon enough, you'll be playing alongside your favorite pieces and learning more advanced techniques with teachers in our network!
In home lessons are great for both adults and children alike. Everyone has a busy schedule, and by choosing in home lessons, learning an instrument becomes extremely convenient. There is no need to spend time and money traveling to a studio when you can have the teacher come right to your home.
The teachers in our network create a customized lesson plan for every student. Many teachers will recommend a commercial method book or two full of exercises and techniques for practice, and may also bring in many supplemental materials for you to study as well. Topics covered during Musika's bass lessons may include, but are not limited to: learning the notes of the bass, proper fretting, fingering, and plucking technique, how to read music, how to create solid bass lines for rock, pop, jazz, and blues, and most importantly, how to have fun playing the bass!
Bass is a great instrument for older children to begin with. Due to the size of the instrument, and the weight of the heavier strings, younger children will not be able to work with the bass comfortably. If students are interested in playing with groups such as a school jazz band, the bass is a great option.
A common choice that students have when buying a bass is going with either a 4 string bass or a 5 string bass. A 5 string will be most useful if you are interested in heavy metal or hard rock music, as it will allow you to reach lower pitches. As a beginner student, a 4 string bass is perfectly sufficient. Reliable brands for basses include Ibanez, Gibson, and Fender.
Review by Teri Romano
Being I'm a woman, I was a little apprehensive having a male teacher (he knew this), however, after my trial lesson I realized he knows what he's doing and I had nothing to worry about!! He is very knowledgable on the piano and vocal techniques. He has a big vocal range so he is able to hit the high notes to be able to show me how I need to sing it. He is also phenomenal on the piano. I would highly recommend him for vocal and piano. Also, I don't know how to sight read music and he is teaching how to. I've been taking lessons with him for a month (my trial lesson was on 1/11) and I have already seen a huge improvement. I am an intermediate level singer looking to improve my vocal technique, breathing and improve my confidence in my singing abilities, Alex is definitely helping me do that.
Review by Tuvana
He is incredibly patient and really customizes his teaching style to the child. Both of my children are learning piano with him; they have learned so much and really enjoy the lessons. In fact, my daughter asked to learn another instrument (guitar) with him and is making great progress with that, too.
Review by Bradford Putt
Angela has been a perfect match-up for me. She is warm and welcoming, and also serious about teaching - she keeps our time focused and on track. What I truly appreciate, as a new singer anxiously preparing for an event, is the confidence she gives me. Angela is very encouraging. I enjoy coming to class.
Review by Jennifer
Lindsey has been coming to our house to give saxophone lessons to our 12 year old daughter for about a month. She is an absolute joy. She is extremely knowledgeable, flexible with her schedule, and my daughter thinks she is "fun" and "cool". We would highly recommend her to anyone wanting music lessons. A+
Review by Heather Berest
I started my 5 yr old daughter with Karleen this Fall. Karleen has a calm and honest disposition. My daughter adores her and cannot wait for her arrival. I was concerned because my daughter is not so willing to "practice" during the week. Karleen advised me to allow her habits of practicing to evolve naturally as her love and understanding of piano increases. She emphasized how nurturing my daughter's love of music is most important. This was music to my ears :)
Review by Marlo
Danette is a delightful instructor. She always brings a wealth of knowledge, excitement, and enthusiasm to piano lessons with my daughter. She is not only skilled at piano, but she has a wonderful voice quality that she uses to help convey certain techniques and to highlight various points where she intends to draw the students attention.
Review by Nicole V.
"My daughter is 10 years old and has been taking piano lessons with Mr. Dale J. for almost 4 years now. She is progressing nicely. His kind and gentle way make for a very positive learning experience. Mr. Dale J. is encouraging without being harsh or belittling. He is patient and the ideal instructor for my daughter."
Review by James F.
After my first piano lesson, Polina is easily the best teacher I could have hoped for. Extremely charismatic and excited to help YOU learn the piano. She puts a lot of effort into evaluation your learning style and will no doubt help you make tremendous strides! I'm stoked to continue taking lessons!
Review by Maria
My daughter has been taking piano lessons through her school district program for the last two years. She had learned a lot in that class but I noticed that she needed advanced classes at this point. After reviewing several websites I decided to enroll my daughter for the trial at MUSIKA. We got Mrs. Veronica B., and I am more than happy we got her as my daughter's teacher. Mrs. Veronica B. was very professional and very knowledgeable at the trial day. She was able to assess my daughter skill's level, and then she was able to give suggestions about how to improve those skills. My daughter has taken 5 classes with Mrs. Barker, and I can see she enjoys each class and she's improved a lot since day one. I can picture my daughter playing her favorites songs on the piano very soon!!! :-)
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