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Teaching

What I Teach
Primarily, what I teach is snare drum and drumset. I am also well-versed in mallet instruments (marimba, vibes, xylophone, etc) and hand drums (congas, bongos, djembe).

My Approach
I like to take a patient approach, and understand everyone learns at their own pace. I’ve taught students ranging in age from 7 to 73. No matter what the age or ability, I believe I’ve been successful in helping students find their own path in music, as I have. I’m comfortable customizing a tailored-program to suit each individual.

My Method
When I teach drums I stress a strong technical foundation on the snare drum. What I tell students is that if you can play all your rudiments and exercises on the snare drum (one surface) then moving them around the drumset (many surfaces) becomes much easier. My first book, “Innovative Practice Techniques for Snare Drum and Drumset,” helps to accomplish this with exercises and practice techniques. I also can use any current book on the market in conjunction with mine.

The first thing I do is talk about proper grip(s), basic movement of the hands, rebounding the stick (free-style), development of the three types of rolls. Later, I emphasize control strokes, (accents and taps). Then I apply both techniques to the rudiments. I also stress reading of both orchestral style, and rudimental style snare drum. This I believe is also the foundation for good drumset technique.

My style
In my new book, "A Guide to Contemporary Drumming," which focuses on pop and rock, I teach in a chronological order - easiest to most difficult, so that one concept is mastered before moving on to the next. So I will present a student with basic beats in a straight-eighth style, then embellish those beats with syncopation and ghost notes. Interspersed are flow and fill exercises to connect the dots. Next I take the same approach with triplet feels like shuffles and 12/8 grooves.

I also teach jazz and latin styles. I like to get my students playing songs as soon as possible to prepare them for real-world situations with emphasis on good time and solid groove in all styles.

If you’re interested in a lesson or one of my books, please contact me. You can also view my teaching schedule.