I’ve been teaching at the University level for over 30 years. I started VERY young!
I am still a part time instructor at York University (Jazz Workshops, Private lessons, Jazz history and Music In Film.) I also taught for about 6 years at Mohawk College.
I have private piano students and small jazz groups that I coach. Many other students have found their way to my home from as far as London, Korea, and Germany. It amazes me how many people from all over the world have more than a passing interest in Jazz music. I love having the opportunity to meet them and possibly help them.
The most important thing that a teacher can do, is to be a guide to finding out what is “out there” in terms of possible influences. This is possibly the best time in a long while to study Jazz, because of the availability of Jazz on recordings.
I love seeing a student that I’m helping have that flash of insight when they realize that they “get it”. After so many different students, I feel that I’ve come up with some fairly simple ways to explain what seems to be complex musical problems. In addition, every student needs a different way of being led to understanding. Finding the approach that works is the fun of teaching.
I owe a great deal of this approach to my years of Jazz studies with John Gittins. He seemed to be able to get ‘blood from a stone’ (in a musical sense)….at least out of me. My time spent in New York at Barry Harris’ classes were some of the most inspiring and practical learning experiences I’ve ever had. I urge anyone who has an opportunity to see Barry play and/or teach to grab it!!
I believe I have some good advice regarding jazz phrasing, and some tips on how to concieve and achieve a good time feel. My free advice is this: always remember that the answers to all musical questions are on the recordings of your favourite jazz musicians. All the theorizing in the world is just a way to explain something that is common practice, after the fact.
Below is my standard blurb re: how the lessons are priced and other details.
I’m very familiar teaching well trained classical piano students who want to expand into jazz! As well, I’m experienced with beginner jazz students, or musicians from other disciplines, and other instrumentalists. I’m available for private lessons on an “as needed” basis. (No big commitment to a set schedule) Think of what I do as jazz coaching.
Online lessons are available for students anywhere in the world. Please have a look at some of my youtube videos. Here are a few about Red Garland.
My rate is $80.00 for an hour lesson at my studio, which is located in the Beach area of Toronto. The TTC is very convenient.
Please call contact me through this website for more information
My best times are weekdays, and this winter my best days are Tues and Thurs. but this can change. To avoid the worst of rush hours, midmorning – early afternoon, but I am flexible about all of that. Weekends are possible. You may record the lessons. If you don’t have a recorder, I can use a digital recorder to record the lessons for you. Bring a USB memory stick(at least 100 meg free space) so I can record the lesson for you and upload it to your drive. Or you can use whatever method of recording you like, including video.
You should also bring a notebook for me to write in. (8×11)
e-mail – email@example.com