Charlie Hall

What You Get From Me as a Teacher
 


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What you'll come away with

  • For almost all of your assignments, you’ll receive from me (1) notation of the piece(s), both in standard musical notation and tablature and (2) a recording, either in audio CD or MP3 format. 

  • At the least, the recording will include an example of the piece being played up to speed.  In most cases, however, you’ll receive several recordings of the piece at different tempos, and often there will be loops, that is, short sections of the song played slowly over and over, so that if you play along with them and just “let the notes happen,” rather than blasting through a section, you’ll really get it under your fingers.

  • If the recording consists of a melody and a lead part, and you're supposed to play one or the other, the melody will be the left side of your headphones, and the chords will be in the right side.

  • My recordings are saved as MP3s.  Most recently, we've been using Dropbox to share files; it's very handy, and you can keep copies on your PC, Mac, iPhone, Android phone, iPad, or just about any device.  Alternatively, I can put your materials on a flash drive, MP3 player or other medium.

  • I encourage you to bring a recording device to your lesson; or if you’d like, we can record the lesson as one long MP3 file and I can put it on your flash drive, MP3 player, etc.  However, this does take a few minutes out of your lesson, so if you’d prefer, you can record them on your own device.

  • Also, if there’s a section or sections that you’re having particular difficulty with, I’ll make a loop of just that and include them on your CD.

  • There are a variety of ways in which computers can make practice more efficient, and I will encourage you to use them, such as Band In a Box or one or more audio editors.  Computers do not take the place of practice or making music, but if you use them as tools, they will help you improve your technique much more quickly so you get the most benefit out of practicing.  And, as you build technique, you can concentrate on making music instead of just getting the notes.

My goals, as your teacher, are to: 

  • Raise your awareness of your own playing, so that you’ll learn to listen to it and improve based on what you hear.  This is the number one key to improving your own playing.

  • Get and keep you on the path to improvement by assigning pieces that are within your ability to play but will challenge you.

  • Help you learn how to practice, and to use good practice techniques.  This is extremely important; good practice techniques can make one person’s 30 minutes of practice as effective as another’s 3 hours of practice.

  • Help you decipher difficult pieces of music, pointing out rough spots, showing you different possibilities for fingering, articulation, etc.

  • Give you exercises that will train your fingers so that difficult movements become easier.

  • Give you recorded examples so you can hear what the piece should sound like, both from a notes-only and from a stylistic perspective.

  • Often, to give you recorded loops of difficult sections to help you maximize your practice

If you really practice with the tools I give you, you will improve. 

Colorado Roots Music Camp                  Marianne's studio