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I started playing at about the age of three. My father was a drummer who played semi-professionally part time. I would accompany him to rehearsals and gigs. I would occasionally sub for him starting at the age of six or seven. He also coached the school band that I played in. Once out of high school, I studied with Henry Adler,who authored Buddy Rich's snare drum book, and then jazz and big band drummer Sonny Igoe. Although I was already gigging, I was very much interested in Big band, Jazz, and Fusion and wanted to sharpen my skills in reading charts and improvisation. I could not have asked for a better teacher than Sonny, who I consider my mentor. During these years of study I was gigging and recording with everyone I could. I studied music theory, guitar, and piano with several of the fine musicians I met along the way. Since then my on the job training has spread across all styles of music; rock, blues, jazz, fusion, theater, and playing with a number of big bands, including several years of touring. I also ran my own band for several years, as well as writing and arranging for other artists.
Music is my life and teaching drums and percussion is something I live for. I love sharing my passion with the rest of the world. I have been playing drums since I was 5 years old and teaching privately since my high school days. I have travelled internationally with prestigious groups such as the Children of Uganda, Spirit of Uganda, Richland Percussion Group and Santa Fe University of Art and Design's Contemporary Music Program. I have been there, done it and taught it to thousands of people that share the same passion as I do.
I'm a great muscian that loves to have fun while I'm teaching. I can teach the fundamentals as well as developing the skills of listening. I can elaborate later. I can also help with songs you want to learn that might me a challenge for you. I know gospel, contemporary, R&B, jazz, and hiphop. I can help you also develop your own type of style. I will work with you. I went to Prairie View A&M Univ. and I was a part of their Marching Band, The Marching Storm. I played trumpet and french horn. But my #1 instrument is the piano.
I have a classical background with percussion training. Now I am a few years out of college, ready to pass on my knowledge to eager students ready to learn. I have taught off and on for the past four years, with my students being anywhere from 6 to 60. I started privately with only one student, and that grew to several at the same time. I then started teaching at Guitar Center and my teaching career really took off. I hope to grow my clientele and build a studio of my own so I can one day teach from home.
I tend to wear many hats as a musician. In addition to being a drum and percussion teacher, I am also a composer of instrumental music, a director for various ensemble groups, and a developer of new innovative Music Theory concepts. I serve as an advocate of recycling and strengthening ties between local musicians and their communities and will occasionally conduct seminars on upcycling waste materials and everyday household items into percussion instruments. In my spare time, I enjoy performing with the NFL Dallas Cowboys’ Rhythm & Blue Drumline.
Since We Started
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Lessons focus on learning the technique of the instrument as well as how to read music. Focus is placed on learning the appropriate rhythms, patterns, and technique for holding the drum sticks. Beat patterns will be emphasized, as will exposing the student to various types of drumming styles.
In home lessons are a great choice for busy families and students. The only thing necessary for in home lessons is the instrument! Teachers can travel to students homes usually once a week for lessons, and students should practice their drums every day to make the most progress.
Most students would ideally start with a 5 piece drum kit in addition to a high-hat, crash, and ride cymbal, but any student can start with as little as a drum practice pad and a pair of drum sticks. A student can learn to read and play rhythms using both hands on any type of drum, including snare, bongos, conga, or djembe.
Drum lessons for children should start at around age 7 or 8. Starting younger than this is generally not recommended, as the drums are a very physical instrument requiring extensive use of the arms and hands. A child should achieve a certain dexterity before beginning to learn the drums. Also, a child should be able to reach the pedals of a standard drum kit if they are going to be learning rock drumming.
Adult drum lessons are tailor-made for your own needs and skill level. We have many adult students taking drum lessons for the first time. Drums will help you increase your level of coordination and help you achieve your musical goals.
Review by Chad H.
"Mr. Richard has been absolutely perfect for our very active two boys. He has been an excellent fit for gauging and keeping their interest far beyond what we had imagined. Our boys actually argue over who gets to go first. Mr. Richard knocks it out of the park when it comes to exceeding our expectations"
Review by Jonathan
Angela is a phenomenal teacher. She is full of charisma and is a joy to work with. Most of my experience with her has been focused on working in the Alexander Technique and she seems very knowledgeable in this study. I would highly recommend her to any prospective student. I have seen myself improve dramatically in a few short weeks with her guidance (and much practice of course!)
Review by Kate Thomas
My son enjoys his viola lesson each week with Martina. She is disciplined in her approach to teaching but always makes my son's learning experience enjoyable. She knows how to challenge him and develop excellent form. Martina is always punctual and professional. We both highly recommend her as an instructor.
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 Howard
We value Chelsea for the quality of her lessons, but also for the flexibility of her schedule. She has worked around family vacations, impromptu summer camps and the upcoming school year. Emily is better prepared to start middle school band this year due to flute lessons from Chelsea and we plan to continue the lessons for the foreseeable future.
Review by Angie Ignazzitto
Stephanie is an excellent voice teacher! Our 10-year-old daughter enjoys her lessons with Stephanie each week. She has an amazing way of connecting with our daughter through music. Stephanie knows how to offer constructive feedback in a positive way that keeps our daughter interested and wanting to learn more. I would recommend Stephanie without hesitation.
Review by Venessea Gilbert
Rebecca has been super with my son! He is 8yrs old and has mild aspergers. He has never played an instrument before but after one lesson with his teacher he could keep a beat on his drums. She is able to keep his attention and really makes it fun! She is flexible and easy going. I highly recommend her for any lessons. Very nice teacher! Thank you Rebecca for your outstanding service!!
Review by Al
Pavel is doing a great job with my 6 year old son. Pavel is doing a great job helping my son focus on technique and rhythm, which is something previous instructors weren't so successful with. Pavel is organized / structured / systematic, which is what my son needs now, but I hope he relaxes a bit as the lessons continue so that more "joy" comes through.
Review by Ryan Piveteau
Amber is personal and cares about her students. She is flexible in her schedule and maintains a professional attitude in her lessons. Her want for her students to succeed makes her excel as a teacher. She is very knowledgeable about music and extremely experienced. Additionally, she includes external activities aside from lessons for the students who wish to advance themselves externally. Really a great teacher who offers great opportunity.