Review: Core Music Theory for String Players

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I have long been searching for an alternative theory method for my string players. There are purely theoretical methods (Ultimate Music Theory), and Keyboard Specific methods (Snell Fundamentals), but few (and incomplete) methods for the string player. The biggest hurdle for a beginning string player is understand how their instrument relates to the music written… Read more »

The Right Hand – Training for success!

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One thing I’ve noticed being a guitar instructor is the wild fluctuations of the right hands of new students. From using a pick or thumb only, or a finger-style where the hand looks painfully contorted. Often these students are coming from a class room setting or self-taught back ground where poor technique tends to flourish…. Read more »

Music Rocks

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My wife and I went on a wonder filled two-week vacation this past summer where we visited 16 National Parks in the states of Colorado, Wyoming, South Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada and Utah.  I was struck by the parks beauty and enormity.  Each park was new, different and built on multiple millennia… Read more »

What Happened to New Music and Musicians?

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Ever since companies like Napster, pirated music has created a standard of music listening that is free to consumers. As a result, consumers have valued music less and less. Bands and artists used to make all their money from CD’s and tapes and would further that revenue through concerts and performances. Nowadays, everyone has access… Read more »

Pre-School Maintenance for Stringed Instruments

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About two weeks before school starts, students and parents spend copious amounts of time and effort on back-to-school shopping. That begs the question: how many students upgrade and repair their stringed instruments before heading back to orchestra class? If you haven’t thought about it yet, consider doing a little back-to-school maintenance. Below is a list… Read more »

Ask Someone In the Business

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Last week a promising young student came in for his lesson somewhat down and despondent. A sophomore in high school, we are beginning to talk about his options for college and subjects he may want to study. Naturally, being a talented student I suggested studying music as an option and we discussed several different majors… Read more »

Fostering the Habits of a Successful Music Major

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Fostering the habits of a successful music major I often meet students who have high hopes of pursuing music on a collegiate level. Sometimes these students are elementary school students just beginning their musical studies, and sometimes they’re in high school and much closer to their college career. No matter what age, there are habits… Read more »

Substituting your Metronome

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Do your students have trouble playing in time? Years ago, when I first began teaching some part-time lessons to friend’s kids I did not have a home or studio to teach in, so I taught in each students home, driving from house to house. This gave me a bunch of great experience in seeing the… Read more »

Flipping the Classroom

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School is out, so stress levels go down, and schedules lighten….right? Not really. At least, not for teachers that continue to teach in those lazy, hazy days of summer. It can be a unique challenge to maintain student progress when schedules are in flux. Teachers are tasked with planning the curriculum around a long string… Read more »

Take a Break

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As a teacher that is constantly explaining to parents and students the importance of daily practice many are surprised when I say to a break. This is not advice I would give to a new student or a student that does not practice enough but only for advanced students that work and are playing hours… Read more »