Keith Saunders

Albany, CA

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About this pro

How does your service stand out?

Every student relates to music in a different way. I make it a point to tailor my lessons to the individual. I want my students to learn music that they are passionate about. I am a jazz pianist who has studied classical music and who has played pop and R & B gigs which allows for diversity in my teaching.

Location

Albany, CA 94706

Times hired on Thumbtack

13

Reviews

8 Reviews
  • Tracy C. Oct 7, 2016
    Piano Lessons (for children or teenagers)
    Verified Review
    Excellent teaching kids!
    Keith is excellent with teaching kids. My son is 8 years old and new to piano. Within 3 lessons he is now playing simple songs. I highly recommend him!
  • Veronica S. Jul 12, 2016
    Piano Lessons (for children or teenagers)
    Verified Review
    Keith is a great teacher. He is showing my daughters a different way to understand music - to see patterns not just read notes. He is flexible, friendly and reliable. I'm so happy we found him!
  • Ian H. Mar 17, 2016
    Piano Lessons (for adults)
    Verified Review
    I am an experienced piano player but was new to jazz. Keith was great at meeting me where I was and giving me helpful assignments that helped me grow but not get too lost. He is very knowledgable and patient, and I highly recommend taking lessons with him.
  • Alex M. Feb 23, 2015
    Piano Lessons
    Verified Review
  • Winona A. Jul 16, 2014
    Piano Lessons
    Verified Review
    His knowledge of music is incredible and he makes it look so easy! Keith was great to learn from, he gave lots of good insights into improv, and yet knew classical piano very well too. He knew the right angles on how to approach a piece for the first time and helped me with nuances that I had never before heard from other teachers. Thanks Keith!
  • Alan G. Jun 21, 2014
    Piano Lessons
    Verified Review
    As an older newbie to the piano along with some medical challenges, I was somewhat apprehensive about taking lessons. I have had some piano training previously, and never thought that I would "ever get it." After only a few lessons with Keith, I am already beginning to feel more confident. Keith is a very gentle soul. He is incredibly patient and understanding, and always seems to find a different way to explain something if I don't get it the first time. He mixes music theory along with basic exercises, and of course songs to give me a very comprehensive lesson. His hourly rate is extremely reasonable. I feel very comfortable with Keith and I find myself practicing more than I ever did before with other teachers.
  • Josephine L. Apr 30, 2014
    Piano Lessons
    Verified Review
    Keith was great! He was patient and made learning the piano fun. He clearly is a great jazz Pianist and look forward to learning from him.
  • Anna F. Aug 14, 2013
    Piano Lessons
    Verified Review
    Keith is remarkably knowledgeable in music and theory - both traditional and otherwise (jazz and improvisation are his two middle names!). He understands exactly what guidance I need to learn quickly and achieve my goals, and communicates concepts very clearly. He makes learning music fun and easy! He tailors weekly exercises according to my ability and drive, and works with music pieces that are most interesting to me. I am very pleased to be Keith's student, and would highly recommend him as a teacher!

Q&A

How did you get started doing this type of work?
I began playing piano at the age of eight. At fifteen I switched over to jazz music and I loved it so much that a year later I knew that I had to be a jazz musician. After graduating from high school I reintroduced myself to classical piano lessons which led me to a deeper appreciation of music, infusing my jazz playing with more control and technique.
What advice would you give a customer looking to hire a provider in your area of work?
First and foremost my prospective students should own a piano or a decent keyboard. Music requires constant attention. Playing once a week at a lesson will only take you halfway through the beginning book. Daily pracatice is critical. I also advise patience. Some students learn faster than others but we all progress, provided we put in the time behind the keyboard. Often our progress is too slow to discern on a weekly basis, but that doesn't mean we haven't improved. Finally I advise listening to the masters. Emersion in music is important - even a beginner benifits from hearing a Beethoven concerto played by Horowitz or a Bud Powell song performed by Keith Jarrett. Not only do we gain enjoyment from the listening pleasure, we are also absorbing the harmonies and rhythm of the music.
What questions should customers think through before talking to professionals about their project?
I habe been a teacher, as well as a professional jazz musician for over thirty years. One of the things I like most about my work is the variety. Almost every night I am in a different locale working with different people. LIkewise when I teach I am among different individuals every day of the week. Each venue requires a different approach and every student requires a slightly different teaching technique. I find the variety that comes with my line of work challenging as well as stimulating.