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BA, Drew University, General Music
I'm a guitarist currently based out of Bridgewater, New Jersey with 10+ years of experience, currently looking to begin a career as a guitar teacher. A guitar hobbyist since my teen years, I recently graduated from Drew University of a Bachelor of Arts degree in music. While at Drew, I also performed in the Jazz Ensemble, which greatly honed my skills in harmony, rhythm, and improvisation as well as greatly expanded my musical palette, and performed on campus at least once a semester. I have some experience performing classical guitar from private lessons in college as well, but currently my primary musical focus is Alcove, a heavy/shoegaze rock band who writes original music and have been consistently performing locally since early 2016.
I'm new to teaching on this level, but I do have some prior experience, most notably a paid tenure teaching a family friend for a summer. My student was very young and a novice, so I primarily utilized both formal methods for the understanding of fundamentals of music theory and technique, though I also helped her learn to play a few popular songs at her request. Letting students pursue their own personal interests in music in addition to teaching them the fundamentals is important to me, but with more experienced students I generally tend to focus more on improvisation and harmony as opposed to sightreading.
I was taught primarily in the William Leavitt method, and use these resources to introduce students to the basics of sight-reading, theory, and technique. My personal preference is not to adhere too strictly to any one method however, instead focusing on the application of theory within a more active musical context. Improvisation is extremely important to developing a working understanding of music in my opinion, and much of my lessons are based in actively performing progressions with students, focusing on both comping and soloing. I use jazz standards from the Real Book to enhance improvisation skills.
I have an open approach to teaching guitar, and encourage students to utilize knowledge obtained through my lessons in whatever context they prefer as opposed to gearing them towards a certain style of playing. Much of my own teaching was based in jazz, but I have managed to find myself utilizing much of what I was taught playing in a heavy, shoegazey rock band. The preferences of my students are important to me, and while setting goals for progress is important, it is important to me that students learn at their own pace and move forward on their own initiative. Working towards my own goals and achieving them in guitar lessons was always the most rewarding feeling to me as a student, and I like nothing more than to impart the same sort of experience for my own students.
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