Tag Archives: bass

Bass Instruction at Philly Music Lessons

bass lessons bass instructionAn Introduction to Bass Instruction

What should you expect when beginning bass lessons? At Philly Music Lessons, we have bass instructors who specialize in both upright and electric bass, and will help students learn to play and understand the music they love. Whether they have some level of experience and want to continue to grow as a bassist, or are just starting out on their musical journey, our teachers can help identify their needs and goals. While we work toward fulfilling these goals, our teachers will provide the appropriate bass instruction for any level of student.

For Beginning Students

A beginner bass student can expect to learn the basics of his or her instrument. This includes how to tune it and where to find the notes. Students will also learn the fundamental techniques of playing, such as:

  • fingering the electric bass
  • bowing the upright bass
  • major and minor scales
  • time signatures
  • chords and arpeggios

Depending on the goals of the student and teacher, students can learn to read traditional notation, tab, or both. In addition to one-on-one guidance during lessons, teachers will show the student how to practice effectively on their own in a way that enforces good habits and develops a steady sense of time. Together, the student and teacher will lay out fundamental skills while also learning songs to keep the lessons fun and engaging.

For Intermediate Students

An intermediate level bass student will expand on the fundamentals to explore the specific styles of music that they enjoy playing and develop their ability to write and play their best bass lines.  At this level, students will study the role of the bass in an ensemble within various genres, and learn to use their knowledge to play collaboratively with others. Advanced playing techniques that may be more genre specific such as picking, slapping, and playing chords will be studied.

The student should also expect to study more advanced concepts in music theory such as jazz harmonies and playing in advanced time signatures. Improvisational soloing in various genres will be studied theoretically and practically. A fantastic tool for this is transcribing solos from the great players of the past! You can learn so much about the music theory and creativity required to make a great improvisation by carefully looking at what has been done before.

Musical instruments can be expensive and complicated investments that can feel daunting for people who are just starting out, but our teachers are there for our students every step of the way! Our instructors can help the student put together a bass rig with the perfect tone, features, and budget for their needs, as well as help them learn how to properly maintain the instrument throughout their studies. Students of all ages and ability levels will find Philly Music Lessons a fabulous place for growth that fosters a talent that will stay with them for a lifetime. We can help guide bassists of all kinds through the most important years of their development!

Kids Music Lessons and Classes

piano lessons philadelphiaPhilly Music Lessons is a family owned and operated music school located in the heart of Fishtown, Philadelphia. We offer private lessons (all ages), baby and toddler classes (ages 0-3), big kids music classes (ages 4 -6) and group lessons for kids (guitar, violin and voice).  We have a number of teachers with extensive experience working with children. We make sure to keep each lesson or class fun and entertaining, while providing the musical foundation necessary to learn at higher levels as your child grows. Students have the opportunity to perform in biannual recitals and shows throughout the year.

Contact Us to Get Started!

Big Kids Music Classes Ages 4-6

$15/class with monthly sign-up (trial class is half-price)
$20/class Drop-In
Saturdays at 11 AM (45 minutes), ages 4-6
Fishtown, Philadelphia
(610)451-7883

Join Here!

Xylophones and PianoCovering the fundamentals of piano (keyboard instruments), ukulele (fretted string instruments), and drums (percussion instruments), our music class for kids, ages 4-6 is a creative, group approach to learning music. Children have the opportunity to gain a broad understanding of music for $15/class (45 minutes each). The fundamentals they learn will pave the way for studying a variety of instruments. Core musical concepts will be explored through experimentation and social learning.

With small class sizes, there is ample room for discussion, questions, and spontaneity. Experimentation and fun are key, and curiosity is embraced. Subjects covered include how instruments work, note reading, ear training (pitch), time, and rhythm. How sounds are made (with strings and mallets inside of the piano for example) and how pitch changes are observed through play. Art is also used to reinforce concepts, illustrating notes, finger numbers, patterns, and more. Instrument making will engage children, bringing the learning process into the home through the collection of natural materials for production.

Each child will also be able to take home their own kazoo. Kazoos help strengthen connections between the voice and ear (pitch). Learning to make noise by following patterns on piano or notes on paper is a practice they can take home week after week. Encouraging children to hum while working with their favorite songs is a great way to build ear skills! If you are interested in classes, but can’t commit to our regular schedule, you can drop in to classes for $20 with notice (contact us here).

 

Private Music Lessons

Starting at $25 for 1/2 hour
By Appointment, all ages.
In-Home Lessons throughout Philly & The Main Line
Fishtown Studio Lessons
(610)451-7883

Schedule a Lesson

Ukulele, guitar, voice, violin, piano, cello, flute, trumpet, saxophone, clarinet lessonsStarting with kids ages 4 and up, private music lessons are available for guitar, piano, ukulele, bass guitar, upright bass, drums, flute, voiceclarinet, violin, cello, saxophone, trumpetbanjo, and trombone.  Lessons begin at $25 for a half hour in our Fishtown studio (view our rates for more information). Our teachers work with kids of all ages and skill levels, making sure to keep the lessons fun and exciting. Our goal is to inspire a life-long passion for music just as our first teachers did for us! For in-home lessons, our teachers travel throughout Philadelphia, the Main Line and Lower Merion. If students have an interest in taking lessons with friends or family members, we also offer joint music lessons! Please ask about our rate difference for joint lessons of at least 2 or more children.

 

Baby and Toddler Music

$10/class with sign-up (monthly)
$15/class Drop-In
Tuesdays, Wednesdays 10 AM
Wednesdays 11:30 AM
Select Saturdays at 10 AM
Ages 0-3 yrs (Families and caregivers welcome)
Fishtown, Philadelphia
Stroller Accessible!
(610)451-7883

Join Music Classes

babies and toddlers play songs fishtownJust a walk from anywhere in Fishtown, Kensington or Northern Liberties, these music classes are a unique way to meet and play with others in the community. Fishtown is just off the Girard or Aramingo exit from I-95, or a quick spin through the city for Philly families. Tots gather weekly for sing-alongs, movement and other musical activities specially made for babies and kids. Children will have the chance to learn songs together and explore a variety of kid’s instruments: jingle bells, the piano, shakers, and more. Little babies usually enjoy sitting in mom’s lap as they listen, observe, and learn. Toddlers tune in each week to familiar friends, songs, and beloved routines. Three year olds lead, participate, and add both spontaneity and creativity to classes. Providing energetic vocals and guitar, our teacher plays plenty of classic and new children’s songs (with rhymes, hand games, and playful lyrics). These are the kinds of classes that will kick off your day with good cheer! Weekday music takes place on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10 AM and Wednesdays at 11:30 AM. Weekend music times are indicated on our calendar (typically 2-3 Saturdays per month).

Classes are $10 each when you sign up for the month (with flexible make-up options on Saturdays and select weekdays). We also welcome occasional visitors (drop-ins) for $15/class! If you want try out a class before signing up, you can always contact us to attend your first class for free.

 

Beginner Violin, Guitar, and Voice Classes

$15/class with monthly sign-up (trial class is half-price)
$20/class Drop-In
Summer classes begin in June
Multiple Times
All ages (age groups: 4-6 yrs, 7-10 yrs, 11-14 yrs, 15-19 yrs)
Fishtown, Philadelphia
(610)451-7883

Join a Class

music classes fishtown phillyOur teachers have created group classes for some of the most commonly learned instruments. Taught by our violin, guitar and voice teachers, classes focus on propelling complete beginners forward to a place where they can begin to play songs together. Students will learn their preferred instrument among peers, and can gain performance experience with recital opportunities. At $15 each, classes are organized into age groups and arranged based on availability and instrument. Classes can occur on weekday or weekend mornings, afternoons, or evenings (contact us to find out more). Our next launch of classes will be for the summer months, set to begin in June. Classes take place throughout the summer and can be extended into the Fall based on group interest. For students with irregular schedules, drop-ins can attend classes for $20 each.

Students will need to bring their own instrument. If students do not have a violin or guitar, Philly Music Lessons offers beginner violin rentals, and we can also make suggestions as to where you can rent or purchase a decent instrument.

Meet Our New Saxophone Teacher: Seth Ebersole

Sax Teachers Philly

Saxophone Teachers in Philadelphia | Philly Music Lessons

Seth teaches Soprano, Alto, Tenor and Bass Saxophone, as well as Clarinet.  He is currently a senior in the Undergraduate Jazz Studies department of the Boyer College of Music and Dance in Philadelphia. He is a saxophonist, teacher, and composer. Under the expertise of Jazz greats: Dick Oatts, Terell Stafford, and Timothy Warfield Jr., he has been privileged to study.  He has performed and recorded with the likes of Jimmy Heath, Jon Faddis, Ingrid Jensen and Christian McBride at Temple University as well as the Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia. In 2013, He was a finalist for a tenor saxophone position with a United States Army Band at West Point. In the Spring of 2014, he worked in the Diamond Peer Mentor Program of Temple University in which he co-taught an undergraduate class with a Temple Faculty Mentor.  In May of ’14, he was named the 2014 Presser Undergraduate Scholar. He is also active as a performer in styles besides jazz, including: classical, pop, rock and others.

Seth explains his musical (and life) philosophy below:

 

When did you begin playing Saxophone, and why?:

I started playing in the third grade. I’m from a musical family, my parents are both full time musicians and music was just part of growing up in our household. I chose the saxophone because I liked the way it looked! I keep playing now because the saxophone has such a wonderful range of sounds, more than most other instruments I think. Similar to the cello, a sax can really mimic the human voice.

 

What are your personal goals as a musician?:

Music helps me conceptualize other life situations. The way I think about music is similar to the way I think about life. Therefore, my goal is to find my musical identity, my niche, my voice. I think this is a worthwhile and important goal for anyone who’s learning in music. Find you!

 

Do you have a memory of a time when a musical concept or technique really clicked?  Something you’ll remember forever?:

 I think that if you’re making progress in music, you’ll sometimes have “quantum leaps”. Most recently, I remember figuring out a way to exercise my ears to hear better than I thought they could. Defining moments like this are important, but they’re often hard to get to.

 

What is your favorite piece of advice from one of your past (or current) teachers?:

 One of my teachers at Temple University pointed out that he plays his saxophone completely different from the way he did thirty years ago. He also thinks about music differently from that time. He challenged me to always keep growing. Don’t ever stop learning and discovering the next musical step for you!

 

What was your most challenging moment learning an instrument?:

Tomorrow’s practice session! Hopefully I’m always giving myself a new challenge; something more difficult than ever before to work on. However, in the past and present, sound and time are the hardest things to understand.  At my first lesson in college, my teacher showed me how much softer my saxophone playing embouchure should be. He played for me (and still does) to show me how relaxed the muscles in the face should be when playing. This is a particularly tough lesson to learn!

 

What is your biggest musical achievement?:

 I’ve been blessed to work with some legendary musicians and have some wonderful times in music. One of the most exciting was being named the “2014 Presser Undergraduate Scholar”, one of the highest honors given to an undergraduate music student at Temple University.

 

Favorite thing about teaching?:

I like coming up with analogies for music that stick in my student’s minds. When these work, a student has a “light bulb” moment that helps them really understand and dig into the concept. It helps me too. There are so many times when a simple analogy I’ve given to a student helps with something I’m working on.

 

What is a piece of advice you would like to share with anyone learning music?:

 Use your ear. Realize that your most important musical muscle can never be too strong. The more music you can hear, the better the music you play.

 

Personal music projects: i.e. bands, groups, shows, recording, etc:

 I play with a number of jazz groups, wedding/show bands as well as groups for Temple University. This past spring, I was on a new album by the Temple University Jazz Band featuring music written and dedicated to Dizzy Gillespie.

Fall 2012 Recital

Here’s a little montage from our Fall 2012 Recital.  Thanks to everyone who came out for making it such a great success!

 

Performances in order of appearance:

Philip Dilgard-Clark – “Smoke on the Water”
Ian McGrath – “Let It Be”
Julia Dickman – “Firework”
Philip Johnson – “Dust in the Wind”
Aliyah, Debbie and Teyah – “Be Alright” and “Rolling in the Deep”

New Teachers, Free Lessons!

Joe from Philly Music Lessons here.  Just wanted to give you all some updates on our teaching staff and let you know about some current promotions that we’re running.

New Teachers
The ever growing Philly Music Lessons family now has four teachers covering guitar, bass, piano and drums.  Our two newest additions are piano teacher Kira Abribat and guitar teacher Vince Guglielmello.  You can see all of our teachers bio’s and pictures under the TEACHERS tab on the website.  As always, we provide private lessons to all ages and skill levels, in the comfort of your own home, or at our studio in Fishtown, Philadelphia.

Current Promotions
You may also be interested to know how you can get some free lessons.  Well, it’s easy.  Simply refer someone to us, and your next lesson is free if they end up taking with us for a month.  Just spread the news to friends and family and start racking up some free lessons today!  We are also offering a half-priced trial lesson to anyone who has never taken with us, so no one pays full price until they know they’ve found the right teacher.