The dictionary defines etiquette as the rules indicating the proper and polite way to behave. The more complete definition is the conduct or procedure required by good breeding or prescribed by authority to be observed in social or official life. I am going to refer to how etiquette impacts the musician on the job (or gig). These are gentle reminders of how you should be conducting yourself as well as other things to think about. Continue reading Gig Etiquette Reminders!
With some of my students graduating college heading out into “real life”, and others graduating high school heading to college in the fall, it made me think about things I wish I had known ahead of time. Below are some tips that I either figured out during my college career or after I graduated that would have saved a bunch of time if I had known about them in advance. Continue reading 10 Things I Wish I Knew Before Attending Music School
Have you ever felt like there are musicians that have endless amounts of vocabulary and material to play with and you’re stuck with the same handful of “licks” that you repeat over and over again? I used to feel that way until I looked at improvising differently. This post is going to give you some fresh ways to enhance your creativity, while making your approach a lot more simple. Continue reading Improvise With Endless Material
Chart writing can make learning or navigating a lot of music quicker and easier. Especially if you don’t have a lot of time to learn the music in the first place. This can save you time (and money) in a variety of situations, whether you’re leading an ensemble or performing in one. This month’s blog post is going to show you some ways to help you write smarter charts and give you some clues as to the charts you might encounter in your music career. Continue reading How To Write Great Charts!
So you get the call to play with an artist. You are available to do the hit and now you need to learn the music. This post will help set you up for success so you can learn the music quickly and have more time for other tasks at hand. If you prepare correctly, you won’t be spending most of your time writing charts and you will only need a little daily maintenance to keep things in check until the gig.
Continue reading How To Efficiently Learn Music (And Do It Quickly)!
Here are 15 tips that you should already be incorporating into your career as a professional musician. With everyone making resolutions for the New Year, I prefer to call them reminders. I remind myself of the goals I had, and check in to make sure I am still on track, or adjust them as necessary (or add new ones to replace completed ones). This post is full of knowledge I learned in high school and college that I continue to put to good use on a regular basis. Continue reading New Year’s Reminders (that you should already be doing)!
In this month’s post I will list twelve things I learned after I graduated from music school. These are tips I learned that I couldn’t get from a textbook or from my teacher telling me. I am still learning more everyday, but I feel these are things I deal with regularly, that every musician should know. A few of them have already touched upon in previous blog posts so feel free to go back and read those. Continue reading 12 Things I Learned After I Graduated Music School
I have been asked by fellow musicians how I come up with pricing for the different things I am hired to do. This could be anything from performing live, recording for a client, teaching lessons, giving a clinic/masterclass or anything that requires your time and your skills or expertise. This month’s post will help you figure out how to set your prices so when someone asks you to work for them you aren’t caught out fumbling around for numbers. Continue reading How Much Should You Charge?
After helping a lot of my students with their auditions, sight-reading is what instilled fear in almost all of them. I’m not saying you can’t be a great musician if you don’t know how to read music or read extremely well, but you will be missing out on many gigs and opportunities to make more money. There are plenty of heavy intensive reading gigs that you are saying no to if you choose not to get your reading chops up to speed. This post will give you things to think about when approaching your reading, as well as helpful methods to improving your reading quickly and efficiently.
Continue reading Mastering Sight-Reading Made Easy!
It’s almost september and a fair amount of my private students have been asking for help with their various back-to-school and ensemble auditions. A couple of them have even asked for competition audition help. I had a long conversation with a great friend (and soon to be Doctoral recipient) Mark Small. Mark and I have been friends since high school and he is an amazing woodwind player finishing up his Doctorate degree from the University of Miami. Before that he was in Michael Buble’s band for 6 years (among other prestigious groups). He has auditioned for more ensembles, and competitions than you can shake a stick at, and we bounced our do’s and don’t’s off of each other in hopes to making your audition process easier. Continue reading Audition Better!