All posts by AbsolutelyInTuned

Qualities of Good Viola Teachers

Qualities of Good Viola Teachers

So you want to learn the viola, and take beginner or advanced courses in the instrument? While many people prefer to learn by themselves either through books or through the internet, it is advisable to find a good teacher who can help you with learning the techniques properly and to guide you through the intricacies of the instrument. When seeking teachers for giving viola lessons, you should keep the following in mind.

 

Plays the viola

It often happens that violin teachers offer to teach the viola to students. Since a viola is very similar to a violin in many ways, this interchange is often done even by dedicated and sincere teachers. However, as your studies progress, you will realise that the violin and the viola are very different and you will require teachers who are well versed in playing the instrument you want to master. So make sure that the teacher you approach has some experience with the viola.

 

Teaching methods

Each teacher will follow a different curriculum and you might want to choose one who is more flexible and understanding of your needs. Some teachers will stick to the core curriculum required for a grading examination, while others would be willing to explore new pieces with you at your request, especially if you are ready for it. Choose a teacher who will help you fulfil your own musical goals rather than one who cannot think out of the box.

 

Provide inspiration

A good teacher should be able to provide inspiration to their students. Choose a teacher who can work with you according to your capabilities and help you achieve your full potential. For this, you need a teacher who is actually interested in their students and their goals and actively helps them to seek out new opportunities. With a good teacher, you can feel more confident about going out in front of the world and show off your viola abilities.

 

Ability to critique

Without timely criticism of your mistakes, you will never make a good viola player. However, many teachers do not know how to give constructive criticism. Some will be curt and unsympathetic, others can be impatient. Some might even let you get away with minor mistakes as they don’t want to push you to do better. A good teacher knows how to offer criticism without offending you or killing your enthusiasm. Viola teachers who can help you correct your mistakes and to guide you in a pleasant and disciplined manner is worth their weight in gold.

 

Experience

A music teacher is not ready to teach a specific instrument until they have had experience in different areas of music. The more your teacher knows, the more you will imbibe from them. So seek out a teacher who plays at least a couple of other instruments besides the viola, has some singing experience and has knowledge of both modern and classical music. A teacher whose musical education is well-rounded and vast will definitely bring more to the table.

Ultimately, the choice is up to you. You can make all kinds of tactical and smart decisions in choosing a teacher but if there is no chemistry, the relationship will not work. Seek out viola tutorials from a teacher whom you like and who is able to fulfil most of the criteria important to you.

Challenges After Taking Opera Singing Lessons

Challenges After Taking Opera Singing Lessons

Performing and studying any kind of art can be difficult, especially if you mean to pursue it as a full time career. A musical career is not for everyone and for the few who actually make it to the top, there are a large number of people struggling to continue their passion. Let us see what challenges a person taking opera singing tutorials can face in the future.
Pressure
Opera singing is a very high pressure career, which might impact advance level students who are already performing. If you make any mistake, it is immediately picked up and the word goes out quickly. Students are also given more exposure today to shows and events. It can be a very good thing as it helps you make connections and learn new things, but it is also a huge drain on your time and energy. The fact that you have to excel every single time means that the pressure just builds up gradually. Unless you know how to deal with this, you might face some major problems.
Throat problems
Opera singers can face muscle tension, stiffness and pain in the throat, jaws, tongue and neck. Everything from your posture to faulty singing techniques can aggravate your problem. Besides these, you have to be very careful not to put any strain on your respiratory system. Throat infections are also common among opera singers. But these are not insurmountable problems. By developing a healthy lifestyle by eating a balanced diet, exercising, doing breathing exercises and getting timely medical consultation for any problem that arises, you can prevent or limit the damage.
Expense
Opera singing can be very expensive, because it is a highly technical skill that can only be taught by trained teachers. Apart from this, students taking opera singing lessons also have to pay their way through a number of different classes including acting, language, instrument, etc. The cost adds up quite quickly, making opera singing an expensive investment. As if this were not enough, opera singers are also required to maintain a certain image onstage, so there is no going in wearing your daily clothes!
Multitasking
An opera singer’s life is full of juggling different schedules. Performance dates must be remembered and you need to show up for rehearsals. In addition, you must continue your opera singing classes because it is essential to continue working on your skill. Traveling is usually required when it comes to grabbing opportunities for being onstage. All this can leave you with very little time for your regular employment or life. Problems arising out of your hectic schedule can be managed effectively with a little discipline and making provisions in advance.
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Nowadays, apart from your singing abilities, you also need to look a certain way in order to get an audition. Audiences expect you to look the part of the role you want to fill. This is certainly a challenge as you want to explore as many options as possible. What you can do to overcome this stumbling point is to ensure you are able to act out different parts well. If you can sing with conviction, this criterion can be overlooked.
In conclusion, there are many challenges in an opera singer’s life but it is also a very rewarding one. If you are planning to go ahead with your advanced opera singing classes and work hard at it, you will definitely find satisfaction, if not great success, though that might happen too!

Top Qualities Of Good Drummers You Can Develop From Drum Lessons (Part 1 of 2)

Top Qualities Of Good Drummers You Can Develop From Drum Lessons (Part 1 of 2)

An anonymous author uttered these words: “An excellent drummer can make a mediocre band sound great, and an average drummer can make a great band sound mediocre.” Hmmm…Did this quote just put pressure on you to persevere with your drum lessons? This quote about drummers may be overrated. But you could never deny the fact that a great drum playing keeps the music tight and solid.

If you were to audition as drummer of a band,, here is a checklist of the most sought-after qualities that make a good drummer:

What are the top qualities that make a great drummer?

1) Physical Technique

a) Body posture
i) A drummer should sit-up straight. Slouching is a no-no.
ii) A drummer’s stool should be set at the right, comfortable height. The height of your stool could help you set your body’s posture and movement.

b) Proper grip for drumsticks: In drum lessons, you will learn the different ways of holding a drumstick. Yet, all these stress on the correct grip. It will power-up your performance, allow bounce, movement, and control, and prevent muscle and hand injuries.

c) Developing muscle memory: Muscle memory is the level of playing where you can confidently say that you can ‘play a drum pattern in your sleep or with eyes closed’. It is ‘auto-programming’ your muscles to move by habit, without requiring too much thought or effort. This makes room for better executions of patterns, grooves, and frills. It also allows you to multi-task by focusing on your other roles as timekeeper or listening to the rhythm.

 

2) Skills Technique

a. Sticks and Pedals: A good drummer has marked a solid technique on how he handles sticks and how he attacks the pedals. As mentioned above, there are numerous grip techniques and pedal techniques that you can master over time. Use the best methods that work for you and what the song calls for.

b. Tempo : Songs have a wide range of tempo. A great drummer should be able to play at a speed required for by the song. A rock drummer may often play at full speed, but they can play rock ballads too.

c. Dynamics or volume: Drums are not always played at full volume. It takes a good drummer to know the right moments when to tone-up or tone-down.

d. Listening skills: Drummers actually don’t just bang to the beat of their own drum. They have to drive the beat. And at the same time, play in-sync with the rest of the band. Listening is crucial for you to able to do both.

e. Timing: Being touted as the ‘masters of timing’ may sound like a tall order for drummers. Yet, timing skills would really get you the job. Drummers are expected to have an ‘internal clock to keep the rhythm and tempo precise, steady, and flowing. Playing with the metronome is good to start with. However, a drummer should build inner confidence to carry the cudgels of driving and keeping time.

If you are an aspiring drummer, take your drum lessons to heart. You may be naturally gifted, but the above drumming skills are developed and honed through practice and discipline.

 

 

 

Which Pop Vocal Teacher Is For You?

Which Pop Vocal Teacher Is For You?

So many young people today are into serious singing, whether they are just doing it for personal satisfaction, or they are planning to do it professionally. The most common genre is pop music, so the demand for pop vocal teachers has multiplied greatly. But how do you know which one is for you?

 

Your vocal teacher should be an inspiration to you, not just a mere coach. They must also share your goal, and must be committed to your vocal development. Here are a few tips on what a good pop vocal teacher should have.

 

  1. Credentials

A professional singing coach is more than willing to show whatever documents they have that show their qualifications, if you ask them. Do not fret about asking, they are used to it, or should be, if they are true experienced professionals. Get this out of the way as early as you can, preferably on your first meeting.

 

You might also be better off getting a teacher who has experience performing on a professional setting. Not only will they be able to teach you the techniques of pop music singing, but also instruct you on how to carry yourself in front of an audience.

 

  1. Methodology

Your teacher’s methods should not be fixed, and not sort of a template for all students. Their approach in teaching should consider and be patterned after your vocal style and what is comfortable for you. The most effective coaching methods are best developed when both teacher and student both give their valuable inputs.

 

You should also be comfortable telling your coach to slow down, or hasten, the lessons. Keep in mind that you are not there merely to follow instructions, but to learn and be participative in the learning process.

 

  1. Goal setting

Do not go through the vocal lessons blindly. Your vocal coach should set a goal for you, if you have not set one yourself. Aside from the ultimate goal of perfecting your singing, your teacher should put up milestones for you to achieve, sort of mini-goals. Maybe perfect a certain tone, reach a higher octave on the scale, or just simply improve your breathing. Not only does this make the lessons more challenging, it keeps it from being repetitive and boring.

 

Not only should there be goal setting, but your progress should also be properly tracked, and preferably documented. This should be regularly discussed to you by your teacher, usually at the end of each session. The succeeding lessons, and maybe even the rest of the course, should consider your progress, and it should be adjusted or modified accordingly.

 

  1. Up to date

Since you are learning to sing popular and current songs, your teacher should be familiar with pop songs and music of the current generation. Pop music often go through changes in style every few years. It is always good to be on top of, and maybe even be ahead of, the trends in pop songs.

 

It may seem that singing pop music is simple and uncomplicated, but as with any other music genre, it has its own peculiarities. You may think it is unnecessary for you to get the service of a pop vocal teacher, but learning from a professional is the quicker, better, and more effective way to achieving your dream of being a professional yourself.

Things To Get You Started On Your Violin Lessons

Things To Get You Started On Your Violin Lessons

 

There are thousands of free resources on the Internet that you can get about violins. But there really is not better way to learn than to enroll in formal and professional violin lessons. But they are quite expensive, especially if you start from the really most basic knowledge and work your way up to even just the beginner’s stuff. To help you save on the basic parts, let us discuss here the necessary equipment to start you off, and to help you prepare for those lessons.

 

Let us start with the basic:

 

  1. Violin

Get the full sized one, but just the ordinary but decent one. nothing special yet, just your basic beginner’s violin. Your learning will not be quicker even if you have the best violin your money can buy. Just make sure it is a respectable quality, so you won’t have to worry about it being out of tune, or easily breaking.

 

  1. Bow

The bow usually comes as part of a standard violin set, although you can buy one separately if you do not get the standard set. Despite the bow’s simple and very basic appearance, it can also be costly, so watch out on the quality. Make sure the hairs are not stained or ashen, and that they are just correctly tight. As a beginner, you may only need to re-hair the bow once a year.

 

  1. Shoulder rest

You will see a lot of violinists playing without a shoulder rest, and in fact there will be professional players who swear off using it. But as a beginner, I suggest you use a comfortable one. You can make one using just a sponge and a bit of string, or you can buy those attachable ones. Whatever you prefer, it is best you use one when you begin your violin lessons, as it will lessen the chance of having pain on your collar bone. It also allows you to relax your neck shoulder, and not raise or clench them.

 

  1. Rosin

Do not get the cheap ones, go for the $10 price range since it will last you for years anyway. You will not get a sound from you violin if you do not put rosin on your bow, and new bows usually do not have rosin on it, so make sure you apply rosin on new bows. Do not put too much though, as it also affects the sound quality. You’ll know you out too much when the bow seems to be dusty or flaky.

 

  1. Strings

Always have extra sets of strings with you. Violin strings are usually sturdy and lasts a long time, but you don’t want to lose momentum on your learning when you lose a string, so have a replacement ready at all times.

 

  1. Casing

Take care of your violin and peripherals buy buying a case. Again, nothing fancy, just make sure it provides sufficient protection against normal bumps and hits. There are a lot of types that have lots of pockets inside, those are always a good choice.

 

You can also buy a soft cloth (to clean your violin and bow), a metronome so you can be good with beats and tempo, and a book for your reference especially when you practice at home. But these are just extras, and you can definitely start and progress on your violin lessons without them.

Learning the Basics to Prepare for Bass Guitar Lessons

Learning the Basics to Prepare for Bass Guitar Lessons

Despite much similarity in appearance, playing the bass guitar is distinct and separate from playing an ordinary or acoustic guitar. Keep this in mind when you decide to go for bass guitar lessons. Do not get caught up in trying to capture the correct way of bass guitar playing. There is no single correct way, there is no single technique. What you really should be more focused on is the result of whatever technique you use.

 

Result vs Technique

 

There will be many players who will tell you their technique in playing the bass guitar, and maybe even encourage you to use the same method or skill. You may or may not follow their example, it does not really matter. Listen to the music and sound they create, listen to their results, and focus on that. If you can achieve the same good results by using a different technique, or from a method of your own, then that is what matters, isn’t it?

 

Focusing your effort on the technique really just limits your creativity and freedom. Feel free to experiment.

 

If you watch and listen to the best and popular bass players in the industry, you will probably not see anybody having the same style as the other one. They became great because they developed and used their own technique. These distinctive methods are now what are being copied and studied by other lesser known bass players.

 

But this is not to say that technique should be set aside. Still, good bass techniques are essential to your playing, especially as you embark on that bass guitar lessons. Techniques help you a lot in these areas:

 

  1. Tone quality

Even at your best, you are bound to make errors, and your technique should steer you away from most of it. Each sound you make from your bass guitar should be full and crisp. There should be no unnecessary sounds or buzzing coming from your notes.

 

  1. Efficiency

It is best to use as little energy as necessary when playing your instrument, but still achieve the results you desire. If you do get to play in a multi-set live performance, you will see that this is very helpful.

 

  1. Precision

The old adage “Practice makes perfect” is very true in guitar playing. You need to be precise in the placement of your fingers on the frets to perfect your technique, your tone and your rhythm. Without looking at your bass guitar, you should be able to play it and produce the tones exactly the way you want to. This can only come is you are precise and accurate in your technique.

 

You have to be very patient to be precise. Do not be discouraged if at the start you can’t seem to perfect this part. Remember, practice will develop this skill as it becomes second nature to your playing.

 

 

  1. Preventing injury

Constant and long hours of playing (and you will definitely need to do a lot of this) tend to cause harm to your muscles and joints on your hand, wrists, shoulders, and back. A proper technique with posture and guitar handling will save you from these harms.

 

Keep in mind these few pointers as you journey through your bass guitar lessons. Ultimately, balancing of desired results and the techniques to achieve it will lead you to a fruitful career in bass guitar playing.

Why to Take Electric Guitar Lessons from a Good Teacher

Why to Take Electric Guitar Lessons from a Good Teacher

 

Guitar players have often been assayed with the legends of self-taught guitarists like Eric Clapton or Prince, and many believe that they too could teach themselves. With a growing number of online sites offering materials on every aspect of playing the guitar, this belief has only solidified. There are many who feel that there is no need to pay for good electric guitar teachers, because they can do it on their own. This is only true for a miniscule number of people, however. For most people, learning guitar with a teacher makes more sense.

Complicated instruments

The electric guitar is a versatile instrument, which can play many different styles and has a large number of sounds with which you can work. Apart from the actual music, it can be very daunting to just handle an electric guitar for beginners. If you don’t know what each part of the instrument is, what it does and how you should use it for best effect, having a teacher explain in detail to you will be very helpful. A complicated instrument, the electric guitar needs a lot of practice and guidance which books, CDs and online videos will not be able to provide to the full extent of your requirement.

Personal attention

If you are seriously considering a career in music, then you need a teacher who will give you personal attention. The only way your playing can be evaluated and suggestions made for improvement is if you are interacting on a regular basis with someone who has knowledge and understanding of the music world. Without a teacher, you will end up repeating the same mistakes again and again, without even realising you are making a mistake. Once you get into a bad habit, it is very hard to get out of it again.

Answering trivial questions

Once you start electric guitar lessons, there will always be questions and doubts cropping up. The more you learn, the less you feel you know. This is true for almost any subject and this is where the value of a good teacher is priceless. Your questions pertaining to your own special experience can be answered in detail by your teacher, who will also take the opportunity to guide you through your problems and come through as a better player than before. Small things can make a big difference and your teacher can certainly help you there.

Reaching musical goals

When you set out to learn guitar, you will learn the basics at first. For this, you can go to any generic teacher who can teach you. But as you progress, this will no longer be useful. Forget learning without a teacher, you will require teachers who are experts in the style of music in which you want to progress further. If you want to study rock in depth, it’s best to learn from a rock guitarist and so on. You need to learn from a guitarist specialising in your own style of music for best results.

If you have a good rapport with your teacher and he or she is able to understand your goals and work with you on achieving them, you are in a great position with regards to learning how to play the electric guitar. A good teacher enhances your knowledge and experience of music through electric guitar tutorials and makes a better player out of you.

Qualities of a Good Classical Singing Teacher

Qualities of a Good Classical Singing Teacher

Classical singing is a style of singing that was perfected over decades and is now held to be the standard. Most students want to start off and train their voice with some classical singing before moving on to whatever they are really interested in. Most voice teachers too endorse this approach since it is felt that classical singing lessons help in training the voice. But for this, you must have a good teacher.
Understands the genre
A good teacher will understand the genre you want to learn. It is better to choose one who has had training in classical singing themselves. It is the only way they will be able to teach you the techniques that you want to learn. Ensure that he or she has either certification or experience in classical singing, or both. Don’t go to the first teacher who shows up or join classes with a teacher because it is cheap. Once your voice is trained the wrong way, it is difficult to correct it.
Demonstrate rather than tell
When you are in the middle of learning, your teacher will often try to correct your singing. They must be able to do it through demonstration and tangible exercises. Simply asking you to sing higher or use your stomach is not going to help you, especially if you are a beginner. As a newbie, you have no way of knowing how to follow these instructions. Choose a teacher who has a more precise manner of showing how to achieve the desired results.
Allows you to hear them out
Before signing up for classical singing classes, it’s not a bad idea to ask your teacher for a demonstration. Some teachers might get offended at the thought of being judged for their performance, and it might be better to avoid these teachers. You could also exercise some diplomacy and check out the prospective teacher during public concerts, if they give any. But it is your right to hear them out before paying them.
Shows respect
A decent teacher will respect their students, and put in effort in building up relationships. If your teacher spends time talking on the phone during class hours or their children keep wandering in and out of the classroom, creating a ruckus, this means that the teacher is not professional enough. If your child is the one taking classes, then some teachers might even instill fear by being too stern with children. All this is a blatant lack of respect for the students and such teachers are better avoided.
Makes it enjoyable
Singing must be fun even if a lot of effort and time goes into it. Find a teacher who really understands this. If your classes are becoming more of a chore and are leaving you dispirited, your teacher is not doing enough to make it fun. While discipline is required to master classical singing techniques, it is not sufficient. Unless you are also deriving enjoyment from your classes and your learning, you will never be able to immerse yourself fully in your music. It is imperative that your teacher makes the lessons fun.
A good teacher is a blessing and must be a good fit for you. If you feel comfortable with a teacher, then go ahead and sign up. Don’t get intimidated by their behavior or knowledge, and make your choice of classical singing teachers with a clear head.

Challenges for Taking Cello Lessons for Adult Beginners

Challenges for Taking Cello Lessons for Adult Beginners

Learning the cello as an adult has its own specific challenges. There is nothing that can be overcome, but it still means a lot more dedication and effort to achieve the same results that a younger student would probably achieve as a matter of course. There are rewards to taking cello lessons as an adult as well, so it’s not all bleak.
Physically demanding
The first challenge is that which can impede youngsters as well. The cell is a large and heavy instrument and to play it effectively, you must be able to handle it properly. It is an instrument which requires the player to fit perfectly. The biggest size of 4/4 is also known as the ‘adult size’ but in reality, it does not suit all adults. Shorter adults might have to go for a smaller size, and adults with larger hands might even opt for a larger size, which are rare, but exist nevertheless. Even with the right sized instrument, it is still a taxing affair to play. Conditions that lead to early fatigue or chronic pain related diseases can also lead to problems. The good news is that you can still find ways to enjoy and learn the cello by making minor adjustments and having a teacher who will help you with the correct posture and not make the learning an imposition.
Devoting time
Children or adult students can usually fit in more activities even if they are extremely busy. Learning is a matter of course to them. But as you enter the world of jobs and deadlines, it becomes more and more difficult to make time for your hobbies, especially those as demanding as learning the cello. With children, this becomes more difficult. This does not mean that you have to set aside your dream of learning the cello. You just have to be more dedicated and disciplined and set aside some time on a regular basis to practice.
Slower to learn
Adults can find it more difficult to learn the cello for several reasons, including the fact that they might not be able to devote as much time to it as they could have as children. Adults who want to learn the cello generally also have a greater understanding of music and quickly lose interest in basic pieces. In addition, being able to understand that they don’t sound as good as they want to be is discouraging. All these factors add up to put you off from continuing, so it is up to you to find the motivation and the interest to sustain you. Good cello teachers can help you with this.
Prohibitive cost
Taking up any instrument is expensive, but the cost of cello is slightly above-average. The instrument itself is expensive. Even if you choose to purchase a used cello, which is not really advisable, the cost of repairs and tuning can rack up the expenses and make it more expensive than a new one. Cello lessons are not cheap if you want a good teacher either. In addition, there is the cost of the music books, maintenance expenses, group activities with your fellow students, etc. Every step costs money and it can all add up to a large amount.
Overall, learning the cello as an adult has its very specific challenges but they are nothing that cannot be met with a little discipline, planning and knowledge. Make sure you have all information in hand before you start cello tutorials.

Beginner Drum Lessons for Children

Beginner Drum Lessons for Children

 

Very often, we think of having our children learn something but don’t give enough thought to the preparations. This is also true of music, and any form of musical instrument, especially drums. If you seek to learn drums or want your child to learn drumming, then first help him or her get interested in the world of music and drums. Here are a few things you ought to do before your child starts formal drum lessons.

Introduce the child to music

If you want your child to get interested in drums, it is important that you actively introduce them to good music. Take your child to concerts and explain the various types of music to them. Play music CDs often at your home and make sure that your child is exposed to different classical and modern music from a young age. In short, let the child know that there is a world out there and they too can be part of it, if they desire so.

Buy them a drum set

It can drive parents wild when their children are presented with toys or instruments that make a lot of noise, but if you want your child to become a drummer at a future date, there is no help for it. You have to buy them a set of drums when they are very young so they get used to it. The earlier they start banging on drums, the sooner they will develop a style of their own. At first, it will only seem like noise, but gradually they will start to develop a rhythm before even beginning formal drum tutorials.

Let them interact with other children

You can find some informal and fun musical activities for children in your neighbourhood and let your child interact with other musically inclined children. It is very possible that this kind of interaction will help them form friendships and relationships that will help them sustain their interest once they are old enough for formal lessons. It is also an excellent way to help them have fun while learning.

Make it fun

To get children interested in anything, you must make it fun for them. Don’t push your child to practice every day or interrupt them at every point to teach them proper technique. Let the child have fun with his or her drums and show their creativity all by themselves. It is also not a good idea to start formal lessons too early. Most drum teachers claim that 8 – 10 years of age is the best for children to start. Even after your child starts classes, don’t push him too far or it might turn them off music completely.

Get out of the world of music

It is unhealthy to ruin a child’s childhood by pushing them to study too hard at a young age, when they should be having a variety of experiences. Similarly, you must not push your kid too hard to practice their music either. Give them some space to have other experiences once in a while, so that they can return to their drumming, refreshed and motivated.

In the end, it is your child’s motivation, interest, talent and capacity for learning that will make a drummer out of him or her. You can only teach and inspire, and to find good drum teachers for them. You should take that role seriously, without being too heavy-handed about it.

Saxophone Lessons for Beginners

Saxophone Lessons for Beginners

 

Deciding to learn music is not a light decision. You will have to put in great effort and devote plenty of time in listening and practicing. Once you have decided to take the plunge, there will definitely be rewards and you will go from strength to strength. However, it is a good idea if you were to make adequate preparations at the beginning of your saxophone tutorials.

Decide the kind of saxophone you want to play

Before purchasing or beginning lessons on playing the saxophone, you must decide what kind of saxophone to play. There are about a dozen types of the instrument, each giving a different music experience, and it is up to you to decide which would suit you best. The Alto is often used for beginners since it is the easiest. The most difficult is the Soprillo, which is pretty rare, expensive and tough to play and can be used by experienced players. There are a number of other instruments you can play in between. Theoretically, if you learn to play one type in your saxophone classes, you will easily be able to play the other types as well.

The sound and playing of the saxophone is also affected by the finishing it has. If your saxophone has silver or gold plating, then it will produce different sounds from the standard lacquer plating. Silver plated instruments provide a higher tone while gold plated ones produce a heavier tone. The instrument can be coated with lacquer in different colours, but that does not often affect the sound.

Purchase the instrument

Once you have decided on your instrument, you must decide whether to rent or purchase your instrument. If this is your first foray into music, it might be better to go for a rental option, and most reputable music shops have rental programmes on offer. Make sure that the place from where you rent can help you with any adjustments required.

If you are purchasing your own saxophone, always buy those of reputable brands. The main problem with obscure and off-brand saxophones are not that they are bad, though some of them can be unreliable, but that it will be difficult to get them serviced down the line. Some of the reputable brands are L.A. Sax, Yamaha, Yanagisawa, Selmer, Conn, Guardala, and Keilworth. You can enquire with the music store for other reputable brands.

If you choose to purchase a used instrument, make sure that you get it tested by someone who is knowledgeable. Online purchases must always be considered only if the product is refundable. It is better to be safe than sorry because even second hand saxophones can be quite expensive.

Buying accessories

Once you have purchased your instrument, you will also need to purchase accessories to go with it. First in importance are reeds, of which you must buy at least a box with different strengths from soft to hard. The reeds will not last forever so get adequate supply to last for a while. Get a reed holder as well to keep yourself organised.

A strong neck strap is another important requirement, as well as a music stand for holding the music sheet. Don’t forget to buy a swab for wiping off moisture from the saxophone after playing.

You can take the help of your saxophone teachers to help you make all these decisions prior to beginning formal lessons as they will obviously be more knowledgeable and experienced.

Advantages of Home Flute Lessons

Advantages of Home Flute Lessons

 

If you have been learning the flute for a long time already, you might want to prepare for grading. While group lessons are fine for children or for beginners seeking to build a network, those who approach their playing more seriously would find private one-on-one flute classes more useful, especially if you are preparing for a certification or an exam.

Personalised attention

A private teacher will be able to give you personalised attention, which means working on a class schedule that goes into detail and focuses on your strengths and weaknesses. During group lessons, it is possible that the teacher might not realise if you have not mastered some aspect of playing. Unless you are completely incompetent with some piece, they generally tend to move on with the next thing on the agenda. With one-on-one lessons, the teacher will be able to point out all your problems and work on them until you get it perfect. This is essential to improve your skills and prepare for exams.

Focus is on the student

Group lessons concentrate on all the students and keep an average pace. In private tuition, you can be assured that the lessons will progress at your own pace. The teacher will also be able to pinpoint your weaknesses give you sufficient time in order to improve the areas in which you are weak. If you are playing at an advanced level, this is important because an experienced teacher will be able to guide you on your career choices, based on your flute playing style, which might not always be possible in a group setting.

Discipline

While group lessons can be motivating and it is fun to play with others, solo lessons will ensure that you don’t shirk your responsibilities as far as your flute lessons are concerned. You might get away with not preparing a piece for your group lessons and hide behind the music of the other students, but that is simply not an option with solo lessons. You will have to practice and do your best, putting the onus on you to progress.

Flexibility

If you opt for solo lessons, you can discuss with your teacher about the schedule and fix something suitable. Group lessons will always be fixed on the demands of the majority, and you might not always find the timing suitable. If your work takes you away from home on a regular basis, you can plan out a schedule with your teacher around your trips, so that your progress is not affected. In addition, you can also consider online flute tutorials, conducted through applications such as Skype. While preparing for grading, this is very useful since it is important not to lose touch with your playing.

Combination of group and solo lessons

Even if you are already taking group lessons in order to further your networking in the music world or to gain access to certain openings, taking solo lessons as well can only enhance your learning experience. Even the best student can only improve with one-on-one private lessons with a dedicated teacher as it helps in smoothing out your rough patches.

Different people prefer different ways of learning and what suits someone else best might not suit you at all. Evaluate your needs, your options and consider your goals, then make a decision whether or not to opt for private solo flute teachers.

Call Audrey at (65) 8168-8251     or     Email info@absolutelyintuned.com.sg