Private Instruction

Hey everyone,

Welcome to my Piano Studio!  It features a Yamaha CP-70 Electric Grand Piano, Casio CGP-700, Hammond XK-3c Organ, 2 Korg PA professional arrangers, and Wurlitzer 200A Electric Piano.  When I'm not on the road or in the studio you can usually find me here.  There's an Alesis SR18 drum machine to create a groove (only if a rhythm section is absent, of course), various instruments and amps to play, and Studiotrack software to make recordings.  It's also where I teach piano lessons...  

I’ve been playing professionally for 25 years.  It’s amazing how many people have approached me after shows and stated that they were former piano players who wished they could still play.  The conversation goes something like this: “I tried to learn how to play classical piano but I didn't like my piano teacher…” or “I took years of classical lessons, but never learned any songs that I liked…” or “I played until I was a teenager, but I lost interest…” or “Learning how to read music is really hard!”

Most of the best musicians that I know play by ear!

I started taking classical piano lessons when I was 5 years old.  If I didn’t practice, I couldn't watch TV.  “You’ll thank me when you get older”, my Mom would say.  I trudged on despairingly.  When I was 11 yrs old she promised to buy me a keyboard if I continued with one more year of classical lessons.  I barely got through that year, but she came through on her promise.  With my new Roland Juno-106 synthesizer (and a bonus Boss drum machine), I was able to learn Van Halen's "Jump" and that's when things started to roll... :)

Music is supposed to be fun!

Although there is no easy way to become a good piano player, my approach is to make the learning experience as enjoyable as possible.  You do not have to read sheet music to be able to play the piano.  Playing well does take hours of practice, repetition, dedication, and patience.  However, my goal is to help you develop the skills necessary to play the types of songs and genres that interest you.  That is the only way that music will stay with you forever.

Beginners: I like to teach from the Piano Adventure books by Nancy and Randall Faber.  They do a great job of introducing the new student to the "basic piano method".   We will also learn early Hanon exercises and focus on proper form and fingering techniques; how to count phrases and form chords.

Intermediate:  Major and minor triad chord positions, arpeggios, scales and rhythms. There will be a major shift towards ear training: We will learn how to find the root and key of a song and how to identify its chords.  We will strat to learn the songs that you want to play!

Advanced:  How to voice advanced chords (7ths, 9ths, augmented, diminished, flatted-5ths), and how to play advanced scales (Blues, Harmonic Minor, Dorian, etc.); how to read chord charts from music books.  Advanced ear training will include learning songs entirely by ear and improving your relative pitch.

Performance:  Learn to play Boogie-Woogie, New-Orleans, Gospel, Country, and Blues Licks; how to improve your improvisation and solo skills. We will learn beginning Jazz theory and how to voice chords in your left hand while soloing with your right.

If you have any questions or want to discuss rates and availability, please contact me HERE.  I look forward to hearing from you!    -Jason