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I began singing solos in church when I was 6 years old. I picked up the guitar when I was 10. At Montevallo, my primary instrument was voice and piano was my secondary instrument. I've been teaching professionally since 1981 -- 35 years as of this writing. My students have gone on to be professionals themseleves, but many of them just enriched their lives with music. As a performer, I've sung and played guitar in churches, clubs, local television and at weddings, funerals and I've perfomed in musicals alongside Broadway star Rebecca Luker in college. I've also been a church choir director for 35 years. I've taught in many settings. My current studio is in my home in Clay. I also maintain a studio at Five Mile Presbyterian Church in Roebuck. I also teach in students' homes.
I've taught guitar and bass in a variety of settings – a community music school, from my home, and in churches.
I savor every opportunity to bring my passion for playing guitar to each teaching session. My aim is always to develop each student's strengths and weaknesses in playing; developing their knowledge of the instrument and music; develping their creativity in approaching different types of musical expression; thereby, increasing their love of the instrument and music. I approach teaching with an emphasis on developing a student's ear for music, carefully balanced with learning practical, rudimentary knowledge and musical theory for effective, well-rounded musical development. I teach students how to practice smarter and more efficiently with the time they have available in their own schedules. I believe that good, consistent practice is the key to truly developing a student's musical abilities and potential. I also like to develop each student's abilities to perform in various musical settings: playing along to musical tracks; developing their ear; performing with bands; playing solo excursions; and enhancing their ablities and potential for bringing their skills to potential, future sessions.
I am a motivated performer and instructor that is passionate about showing musical knowledge with others. I have both a bachelors and a masters in music. I have performed with many bands throughout the world including KC and the Sunshine Band, Joe Sample, Rufus Reid, Arturo Sandavol, Jimmy Buffet, and more. I have over 15 years experience teaching all levels including colleges and high schools.
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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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Young students are encouraged to start their guitar lessons by playing half size or three-quarter size acoustic guitars. Using an electric guitar is a viable alternative for older students who are able to hold the instrument with comfort. A student model guitar bought from new will cost in the vicinity of $150 - $200. For electric guitar players, amplification and guitar cables are required, which will need to be purchased at an additional cost. As a general rule, the higher the quality of the instrument, the easier it is to play. This is important as it affords the student the best possible chance of enjoying playing and learning the guitar.
Kids just want to have one thing when they are learning how to play the guitar - FUN! Our teachers will work with you to make it as easy as possible to start learning the guitar, but it does take a lot of hard work and daily practice to improve. Students typically begin by playing easy songs on one or two strings while learning to read music. Only then, do they move on to learning how to strum chords and read chord charts.
At Musika, we highly recommend that students looking to learn to play the guitar do so with a clear goal in mind. Whether your goal is to learn to play your favorite tunes, learn to compose your own music, develop a new technique, or just to play for fun, the experienced teachers in our network can help you make those goals a reality! Learning, developing, and improving technique, co-ordination, and theory can take time. With regular lessons and plenty of practice, you will gradually start to see improvements in your guitar playing, and will be well on your way to achieving your goals.
The most important thing students learn is how to have fun when they are playing the guitar! It can be a challenge to master the basics, and it can take a lot of practice but with the proper teacher, students can be playing their favorite songs without too much trouble. Topics covered during guitar lessons include: learning notes, open chords, barre chords, finger picking, sight reading techniques, music theory as well as how to strum and pluck with the fingers.
Musika deals primarily with home lessons for students. The location is the only difference between our in-home lessons and our studio lessons. As they do not have to travel to their lessons, home guitar lessons can be highly convenient for those parents and students with a busy schedule. For younger students in particular, having guitar lessons in the comfort of their own home can be of great benefit. They will feel more safe and relaxed in familiar surroundings, allowing them to focus on learning and enjoying playing the guitar.
Review by Leslyn
Steve is an excellent instructor. My son has really connected with him and he is learning the guitar quickly. Steve is patient and never rushes through a lesson in order to make it fit within the session time limit. In addition, before he leaves, he writes notes and instructions for my son to follow. By the next lesson, my son is confident in what Steve has taught him. Most importantly, Steve builds my son's confidence in his own own ability and progress after each lesson.
Review by Cameron D.
After signing up for lessons with David L. I knew I made the right choice. Just after a couple of weeks I didn't see him as a teacher but as a best friend. There was always a relaxed atmosphere during the lessons. He was very easy to talk to and he really listen to you. If I ever had a question he would answer. He tailors to what ever you want to do in that lesson. David L. is a great teacher and a friend. I totally recommend him for anyone
Review by Brianne Hancock
Martina has been teaching our daughter violin since early 2015. Every time our daughter has a lesson she comes away in such a great mood - she really enjoys her lessons! Martina is positive and encouraging and adjusts her teaching to help our daughter learn the best way for her learning needs. We were curious about how online lessons would work, and it turns out that they work really well. The 1:1 time and ability to teach from a distance make it work just as well as in person. We've had moves and schedule changes and Martina has been very flexible for us - which made such a big difference in making violin lessons accessible. Absolutely recommend her!
Review by Sarah M
Dan gave private clarinet lessons to my daughter, Annie, for two years. During that time, she excelled as a member of the middle school band, and maintained first-chair. Dan is an excellent teacher, and Annie looked forward to having one-on-one time with him. In addition to practicing pieces with her, he helped her with scales and greatly improved her tone quality.
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 Joshua Thompson
I have known Erin since I attended graduate school at the Hartt School in Connecticut. Last year she came to the college I teach at to give a master class and talk about her experiences as a musician abroad. She has proven that she is a capable and wonderful musician and educator. I highly recommend studying with her if you're lucky enough to have the opportunity!
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 Svea Bryan
Brett is an accomplished musician, who shared his knowledge at a level that my five year old understands. He is polite and relaxed in his mannerisms but take a serious approach to focusing on the lesson. He is very patient and engaging with the attention span you'd expect from a kindergartener. His motto ever is "sometime you learn faster by going slow"
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.
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