Dan Finn – Piano Teacher

Piano Performance
Specializing in Jazz
Rock, Blues, Pop, Gospel
B.M. from University of the Arts

Jazz Piano TeacherI am a professional Jazz pianist and teacher living in Philadelphia. I graduated from University of the Arts in 2015 with a BM in music and have been since working in Philadelphia as a freelance musician and piano teacher. I studied with Don Glanden, Tom Lawton, and Josh Richman while at Uarts. I am classically trained and I perform in many different styles including jazz, pop, Rock, blues, and funk. I have been playing the piano for nearly 15 years and I can teach beginner, intermediate, or advanced students of all ages. With my students I focus on creating a solid foundation of reading, technique, and music theory. My goal is to motivate students and make them as excited about learning and playing as I am.

When did you begin playing piano, and why?:
I began playing the piano when I was 8 years old. My parents had a piano in the house and my siblings and I all had to take lessons. From there I developed a love for music and playing the piano.

What are your personal goals as a musician?:
My personal goal as a musician is to be the most proficient at my instrument and be the most knowledgeable about the kind of music I play. The study of music never stops and is incredibly humbling.

Do you have a memory of a time when a musical concept or technique really clicked?  Something you’ll remember forever?:
I remember my teacher telling me that you don’t really know something unless you can play it in 12 keys. It taught me that I needed to develop a more thorough understanding of the music. Learning to transpose and practice things in all keys was the first way I learned to connect what I was doing with my hands to what I was hearing in my head.

What is your favorite piece of advice from one of your past (or current) teachers?:
My favorite advice was. Every time you pick up your instrument and every time you play you always have to give it 100%. Don’t let your ego or fear get in the way or the music will suffer.

What was your most challenging moment learning an instrument?:
The most challenging part of learning an instrument is getting through the times when you are unhappy with how you sound and being okay with sounding bad.

What is your biggest musical achievement?:
I’ve had the opportunity to play and travel with a lot of different groups and in a lot of different places, but I would say my biggest musical achievement was putting on my senior recital at University of the Arts. It marked the culmination of 4 years of study of music and began a musical career which I will continue for the rest of my life.

Favorite thing about teaching?:
My favorite thing about teaching is being about to share my passion with my students and help them find their passion as well.

What is a piece of advice you would like to share with anyone learning music?:
My biggest advice is to never give up and follow your heart, as long as you’re following the right path, you will get there eventually.

Personal music projects: i.e. bands, groups, shows, recording, etc. (if any):
I have my own group where I perform original music written by me. I’ve also had the opportunity to play with the touring jazz-funk band the Dirk Quinn Band. Currently I am a member of Ode to Omni, which is a jazz band in Philadelphia.