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For beginning students I typically start with fundamentals and basic sticking or chording. For experienced students I begin with what they know and look for areas of strength.
I have been teaching students privately for over a decade, starting with teaching trombone in high school, continuning with drumming students in college, and teaching professional-leve drums and percussion, advanced trombone, and beginner guitar students. My primary passion lies in West African music, and I really enjoy bridging cultural gaps in my teaching. At the same time, I am rooted in American jazz, western classical music, and rudimentary style drumming. The combination gives my students a solid foundation in western technique and theory but with an approach that is out-of-the-box and multicultural. I have an extreme level of patience and have worked with all ages, from preschool to adult, and all abilities, including students with autism and hyperactivity. I am happy to take on any student and will make progress with any age and any level!
With each new student, I ask them what their goals are. Are they playing drums for fun? Are they in a rock band and want to learn new ways to make their drum parts better? Are they high school students preparing for college auditions? Are they learning an instrument for therapeutic health benefits? This allows me to get to know my students as individuals and helps me develop a method to help them reach their goals. I always guid my instruction according to the students' interests to keep the lessons fun and engaging, no matter what ability level the student is at when he or she first starts studying with me.
First, I'll start with the basic. I'll also helpwith the listen skills. I work with you on you developing. I never force the process.
I have been a learner of music since 1996 and an educator since 2004. My primary focus includes drumset, drumline, classical percussion, hand percussion, mallet percussion, keyboard percussion, music theory, and music composition. I have done a lot of traveling and have been fortunate to have taught private drum/percussion lessons throughout New York, Washington, California, Japan, and now here in Texas. While attending Pierce College in Tacoma, Washington, I formed the campus Percussion Ensemble; performed with the Concert Band, Jazz Band, and Choir; and also tutored Music Theory. While attending the University Of Southern California in Los Angeles, California, I performed with the USC Trojan Marching Band and the Afro-Latin American Jazz Ensemble. As a professional performer, I have had so many amazing experiences playing with the NFL Seattle Seahawks' Blue Thunder Drumline and the NFL Dallas Cowboys' Rhythm & Blue Drumline. As a director I have had led the Parish Episcopal Camp Drumline in Dallas, Texas; the Dallas ISD performance group Medrano Rock!; the Seattle Lecture Arts Program (SLAP) in Seattle, Washington; and the Pierce College Percussion Ensemble in Tacoma, Washington. Most recently, I earned my Texas Educator Certificate for Music (EC-12) while teaching Pre-K through 5th grade General Music for Dallas ISD in Dallas, Texas.
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We love adult students! We have adults who are complete beginners, some who haven't played their instrument in 10 years, and some who are more advanced students looking to take their skills to the next level. The teachers in our network have proven methods to get you the results you desire.
Taking drum lessons in-home offers a practical approach for perfecting the art of drumming! Teachers can travel to students for weekly lessons, however students should have an instrument in their home. A lot of progress can be noticed very quickly if the student is practicing daily.
Our recommended starting age for drums is around 8 for students wishing to play a drum kit. For the snare drum, the youngest recommended age is 5 or 6, as playing can prove tiresome on younger hands. The drum is an instrument that is great for all ages and skill levels, whether it's a complete beginner at age 5 or an experienced musician who wishes to study rhythm firsthand.
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.
Standard pieces of a drum kit include the high hat, crash, ride cymbal, and drum sticks. If a student is at the very beginning stages of their learning, they can also start with basic drum practice pad, which are quieter and less expensive. Other drums taught include the snare, bongos, conga, or djembe.
Review by PJ Williams
My daughter, Valarie is one of the original members of the Enrichment Center Percussion Ensemble under the guidance of Aaron. He patiently worked with Valarie as well as the other five members individually and as a group to produce music that has been shared and enjoyed locally as well as nationally. He has the ability to seek out the strengths of each student while building confidence. Through his teachings, not only had Valarie learned how to produce and enjoy music, but also responsibility and so many life skills for everyday living.
Review by Blaine Vaz
“I took drum lessons from Mark for about 7 months. I have been playing for 38 years but always thrive to learn more. He was able to provide me alternative exercises and help me gain a better understanding of my opportunities. I have been able to take my playing to another level. His approach to teaching is perfect for any level of student, beginner or advanced. He is a true professional and an outstanding person. You won't go wrong with Mark!” Blaine Vaz
Review by Shilpa
"Richard is a very talented and a patient teacher. He teaches my 6 year old daughter in the comfort of our home and he is very regular. He follows a learning book and mixes his lessons to bring difficulty and technicality while keeping it interesting for my daughter. My daughter was difficult to work with at the beginning but he was able motivate her in every possible way. As a parent I make an effort to learn with my daughter so that when my daughter practices I am able to guide and correct her and Richard is very generous to take the time to give provide me concepts. I am extremely happy with Richard and his ability to teach children."
Review by Dylan Jacinto
Jessie is the finest musician I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. I find her overall concept of approaching an instrument to be both comprehensive and effective. Each technique she has acquired has made it possible for her to tailor her method to a variety of ages and individuals. I cannot speak more highly of Miss Jessie's abilities. Her lengthy and impressive cradecials speak for themselves. I recommend no hesitation in seeking her services!
Review by Terri
Caitlyn is friendly, helpful and still holds my high-school aged daughter accountable for practicing. She also makes sure the music technique is mastered correctly during the lessons - they work hard and still have a good time together. I can highly recommend her as a flute teacher. My daughter is very happy & grateful to have found Caitlyn as a teacher.
Review by Chrystal
I was skeptical at first not knowing what I was getting my self into.. I am very happy that I forced myself to get into voice lessons because Eli is an awsome voice coach.. Very skillful and he helps you reach the goal you are trying to reach.. He is also very helpful with getting you to open up and come out of your shell and being heard.. I would and I already have recommended friends and family to sign up with Eli if they're serious about singing..
Review by Stevengournay
There are only a handful of people I count in my life who were great teachers, and Laura is one of them. Her musicianship is so secure as are her technique and personality that she zeros in on my weaknesses and devises exercises to strengthen them, and during the lesson it is not "Do this, no, do that" which is unnerving to a novice. She understands the most important part of study is relaxation, so that is easy to achieve with such a confident and compassionate human. Music is her life and she is eager to share her talent with everyone. A rare find, indeed!
Review by Shelonda
Henry is teaching my daughter how to play piano. Henry is an excellent teacher, we really like and appreciate him. His teaching style works very well for my daughter, she is comfortable which makes learning enjoyable. Henry is very patient and I can see that he is passionate about teaching music. Great teacher for sure.
Review by Andy Snyder
Giorgi has made learning cello even more fun. From the sympathetic, "It is hard" to the precise, "Be careful about the curve of the thumb" he has strengthened learning in every lesson, without being overwhelming. He started playing a little duet on only the 3rd lesson or so, which made me feel, even as a beginner, that I'm already starting to make (occasionally screachy) music. He has suggested a variety of drills and practice techniques which have also sped up the process a lot. And he has a good sense of humor and surprising amount of patience.
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