"My teaching style is pretty laid back, especially in ear training classes, because students tend to be stressed out having to sing in front of each other—most of them aren't singers. There's a lot of joking and keeping it informal, while still trying to impart as much information as possible. But the deadlines are still there, and if they don't want to play the way we're playing I have to get stern and mean."
"There's a lot of work involved in acquiring the skills to become a creative musician. You can have the creativity, but it comes out more easily if you do the work to acquire these tools. It doesn't have to be a drag to do that work, but even genius needs help. Even Lennon and McCartney went through lots of study. They learned every song that came on the radio; they knew hundreds of songs before they became the Beatles. We're not trying to inhibit anyone's creativity; we're just trying to give them the vocabulary to express themselves."
"There's a lot of cross-pollination where students and faculty play together. It's kind of fun to show up in a big band, and there's somebody you had back in Ear Training 2, and they're really good now. I've seen this a lot working with Heavy Rotation Records or Jazz Revelation Records, too. You have somebody that had a hard time in your ear training class, but now they're really good at music business, and they're working with you in that context. People mature so quickly in four years."