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.