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"A lot of the material I teach is new for many of my students. I was in the same position in the early '70s, so I know how they feel. When they're having trouble with some technical aspect, I let them know that I've been there myself and there's light at the end of the tunnel."
"I demonstrate as much as possible: ways to practice, how this helps my music. . . . I might relate a story sometimes, and very often I'll demonstrate how they'll benefit from it. I also try to get them to think of themselves as musicians instead of guitarists, drummers, or vocalists. I think that ear training classes help to level the playing field so that everybody is considered simply a musician first. Then they can all can strive for equal results, regardless of their instrument."
"I think playing other instruments is great. I do recommend that people become familiar with a chordal instrument, such as piano, guitar, or vibraphone. It'll really help them with hearing chord progressions, which can be abstract to some students."
"I teach a jazz ensemble and I teach a contemporary styles ensemble, which is a lower-level ensemble that gives students the opportunity to play all kinds of things: rock, jazz, funk, Latin. . . . I think it's a good ensemble for students to feel around with styles that they may not be familiar with in a nonthreatening situation. They don't need to feel like they have to be experts. Perhaps they'll even discover some new musical interests."
"I'm entering my 11th year teaching here. I was a student here in 1973. I only have good memories from my time as a student at Berklee, and I'm still close with friends from here. As a matter of fact, my roommate and I still stay in touch and work together after more than 30 years. So when they say you can make connections in the music business for life, it's the truth."