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I have been teaching in the Bristol/Southington area for over 12 years and have been playing the guitar for over 23 years.
Hello! i am a passionate music instructor who really enjoys watching a student grow in their abilities. ive been playing for nine years and teaching for three,and i can answer any and all questions pertaining to the guitar or bass guitar. i am also fluent in theory and can communicate abstract ideas into managable bits of information for a student. Being self taught myself i know everyone has the ability to learn how to play music,and i encourage anybody of any age to take the time to explore the fufilling world of music.
I am a life long musician and lover of music. I began learning viola when I was 7 and picked up guitar when I was 9. I taught as a teacher assistant at a Suzuki Strings camp for several summers while I was in high school. I attended the University of Connecticut where I studied viola with Robert Meyer, Steven Larson, and Dr. Solomiya Ivakhiv. I also studied choral conducting with the UConn Choral Director Dr. Jamie Spillane and orchestral conducting with the UConn Symphony Orchestra director Harvey Felder. I graduated in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts in Music and am now working towards my Master of Science in Music Education at the University of Bridgeport. I have been giving private lessons for a few years to students of all ages and have worked extensively with middle and high school students in developing their skills as musicians.
Nothing is more rewarding than helping someone discover their musical personality. Again, my style of teaching is partially dependent on what a student hopes to gain from lessons, but I first like to develop a rapport with the musicians I work with in order to foster a comfortable environment and healthy ambition. I think it is also necessary to set realistic goals to allow students to actively see their own progress. Most importantly, I believe learning to play music should be fun. Practicing scales and rudiments must be cerebral and disciplined, however music at its core is a joy, and keeping this in mind is fundamental to my style of teaching.
I like the Hal Leonard Guitar Method series, for guitar. I also use scales, picks, fingerstyle methods, and backing tracks to help get the students up to speed on a song or a riff they'd like to learn. It's important to understand the background of music, so I tend to also teach students the structure of a 12-bar blues progression and relate it to songs of yesterday and today. This enables students to get a well-rounded introduction to understanding timing, tempo, basic theory/progressions, improvisational ideas, and more! I also like to use a metronome for scales and some songs, to help build a solid foundation of timing and tempo.
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Young students should start on a half size or three-quarter size acoustic guitar. Older students can start on an electric guitar, as long as they are able to hold it comfortably. Many student model guitars can be purchased for $150 to $200 new. An electric guitarist will need an amplifier and cables, at additional cost. Remember, higher quality instruments are easier to play and give the student the best chance of liking it.
Our guitar students will typically learn how to hold, tune, and familiarize themselves with the components and notes of the guitar, basic playing techniques such as fretting, fingering, and strumming, and learn the various chord-types that they will need in order to play their favorite songs, such as power chords, open chords, and barre chords. Students will also get to learn music theory, and will cover aspects such as reading music, learning different scales, and how to apply these different elements together as part of a full composition. Students will learn the theory and techniques that underlie a wide range of musical genres, and will have fun developing their guitar playing during their lessons. Eventually, students will get to enjoy learning and playing along to their favorite songs!
At Musika, we offer guitar lessons to students as young as 6 years of age. Students in this age category will start off by learning to play simple tunes on the top strings of the guitar. It is most comfortable for students of this age to start off by playing a half sized acoustic guitar with nylon strings. By about 7-8 years old, students will be forming different chords and playing along to their favorite songs. When students get to about 10-12 years old, they may become interested in a specific genre (usually rock) and decide to learn on a full-sized electric guitar.
Musika offers one-on-one, in-home guitar lessons that are designed specifically for each individual student. Whether your lesson takes place in a teacher's studio or at home, students will get the exact same lesson content, with the only difference being the location. Parents will find home guitar lessons a much more convenient option for their child, as it saves the time and costs of transporting their children to and from a studio. Younger students will find that learning to play the guitar in the comfort of their own home greatly benefits their development as they are learning in a supportive, secure, and familiar environment.
Whatever your goals may be, teachers in our network can help you achieve them. Most adults want to pick up the guitar and immediately be able to play their favorite songs - this is possible with daily, focused practice. Taking guitar lessons will give you the technical skills required to steadily progress, no matter if you want to play jazz, blues, rock, classical or any other genre.
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 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 Ericcharlton
Rahsaan is an extremely talented player who relates really well with my teenagers. He has them both interested in learning. Given Rahsaan's expertise, it's clear that even though they are beginners now, they can learn from him for a long time to come. He's a real nice laid-back guy and both the boys really enjoy their time with him. I've been very impressed and pleased with the experience.
Review by Lea G
Kevin was such a fun, smart and innovative voice teacher to work with. I had the pleasure of taking lessons with him for over a year and I couldn’t have been more pleased with my time under his training. In just a few weeks I noticed my voice was stronger and I was able to apply his teaching and see the results. He explains his techniques in a way that the student is able to actually hear and feel the changes he is referring to. This allows the student to efficiently practice outside of lessons. Even further, he believed in me and truly cared about my progress. He was always energetic and focused in lessons and was continually surprised how far a song could come in just one hour of his time. Under his teaching I developed a stronger belt in my higher range, learned how to color my voice for different sounds and improved my stage presence. I wholeheartedly trust Kevin’s musical insight and was grateful that he challenged me with a wide variety of songs and styles that I hadn’t considered trying before.
Review by Wendy
Bill has been great with my 2 young children (age 3 & 6). He has integrated games into the lessons - they have enjoyed showing us how to play the games when it is time to practice piano. Bill has been easy to contact and rescheduling has not been a problem if we have a conflict at our regular lesson time.
Review by Steve Newman
My daughter began learning sax in her school band, but she didn't begin PLAYING sax until she started lessons with Debra. From scales and exercises to actual pieces, Debra coached my daughter with real insight, sensitivity, and patience. Her knowledge of the instrument and feeling for music - along with her easy-going,"kid friendly" personality - make Debra the ideal teacher and musical mentor.
Review by Queen Natalia
Lara is highly intelligent and knowledgeable in her profession. She is cheerful and personable, and has established a good rapport with students and staff alike. I have found Lara to be a highly competent, personable, patient, kind-hearted, and deeply caring person who is skilled professionally and interpersonally.
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 Scott
David is not only a great musician and educator but also a delightful human. We began using David six years ago as a piano teacher for my two boys. Since then my eldest moved on to acoustic and electric guitar and my youngest electric and stand up bass. Somewhere along the way I began to take guitar lessons also (I was David's most bearded student at age 48). David always came prepared to lead but also to follow, he often asked what we were listening to and taught us how to play it. His ability to listen to a piece of music and transcribe it always left me amazed, we have several notebooks full of songs we learned individually or played as a group. After a shoulder injury David continued to impress by teaching me music theory instead of our usual lesson. I could go on forever, David made a positive impact on my family and feel fortunate to have met him.
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