Alexandria Banjo Lessons

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Popular Music Lessons
in Alexandria, VA

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Popular Banjo Teachers Near Alexandria

Mike T.

Manassas, VA
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Michelle W.

Brentwood, MD
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John B.

Arlington, VA
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Mike T. Manassas, VA

Subjects Taught


About Me

I have played bluegrass banjo since I was 16 (I’m now looking at Social Security). I’ve been instructing for three years – since semi-retiring from my day job. I use various teaching methods and aids and have participated in training programs with the finest banjo players in the country, including Sonny Osborne, Bill Emerson, Tony Trischka, Ned Luberecki, Pete Wernick, Jim Mills, Bill Evans, Charlie Cushman and Alan Munde.

My banjo philosophy is that while we may aspire to play banjo like Earl Scruggs, it is not necessary to be at that level to enjoy playing bluegrass music. The organic simplicity of bluegrass songs, the repetition of components, and the strong melody lines makes entry level playing fun and rewarding and within the reach of anyone who is willing to try.

When bluegrass musicians are jamming together, using new skills, learning with and from each other, there's little chance they will give up playing music. I'd say they're hooked -- on bluegrass! More people spending less time in front of a TV, and more with each other. Wholesome fun. A bigger, thriving bluegrass community. A better world!

*** Lesson Details ***
I believe that anyone learning bluegrass should first learn the chords to favorite easy songs, and a simple way of accompanying. Playing songs smoothly in real time while using a songbook (or a fellow picker) for the words, is easy, fun, and builds a rhythmic/chordal foundation and repertoire.
Easy jamming is highly recommended and will be part of the learning program. Good sounding rhythm techniques can be added easily as they are learned. Through this process, overall technique is expanded and the music sounds more interesting. Once we have the chords and rhythm, different types of soloing can be added. The easiest method is to "fake it" by just playing simple licks and rhythm techniques while following the chord changes. The next step up might be to play an exact tabbed (a form of written banjo music) basic solo, or (better) a self-composed one featuring melody. This phase is exciting to enter, and of course it creates motivation to really improve and master those solos we all want to play. Since all students come to bluegrass banjo with their own unique skills and experience - I will design a program just for you to ensure you reach you playing goals.

*** Travel Equipment ***
Little equipment is required for bluegrass banjo other than the insrument.

*** Specialties ***
5 string Bluegrass Banjo

Michelle W. Brentwood, MD

Subjects Taught

Acoustic Guitar, Banjo, Blues Guitar, Classical Guitar, Guitar, Mandolin, Music Recording, Music Theory, Songwriting

About Me

"Ever since I could remember, I have always been in love with the guitar. I just always felt like it was an extension of who I am!" recalls Washington DC guitar and multi-string instrumentalist, Michelle. Michelle is a restless collaborator who is engaged in exploring and extending the boundaries of her instruments. Michelle's guitar playing is often described as incredibly creative and innovative. A FORCE OF NATURE. Her playing is visceral, with a expressionistic approach to creating timbre and velocities. Constantly discovering new sonorities on her guitar, she has created a uniquely personal language which speaks to audiences. "Michelle is the most engaging improvisor I have ever seen. No one is breaking boundaries and taking command of the guitaristic language like Michelle is, NOBODY. She is a percussionist on guitar, indeed she is the GUITAR'S RENAISSANCE" to quote Lydia Cummings Smith (independent improvised music critic) in 2002. Influenced at first by guitarist like Allan Holdsworth, Don Mock & B.B. King, Michelle found great inspiration in the highly charged expression of their music but has created a style all her own, an extended language. Michelle was born in Jersey City, New Jersey. Here she spent the early years of her life immersed in a community of musicians, break dancers, artists and poets. She started playing the guitar at the age of 5. It was rock music that got Michelle hooked on guitar "Rock & Pop guitarist were the biggest examples of guitar playing in my life at the time, they were the most visible and so I guess I just gravitated towards that. It wasn't until later that I started to wake up to all the other great guitar players out there playing other music that I actually liked more, like jazz and reggae. When I realized, really realized these players and their music it was like the whole world opened up for me. " In 1988 Michelle attended the Duke Ellington School for the Arts in Washington DC and studied jazz with DC guitar legend Tom Newman and Saxophone great Davey Yarbrough and in 1992 Michelle received what was at the time the second largest scholarship given to a conservatory student to attend Oberlin Conservatory in Oberlin OH. Here she studied with guitarist Bob Ferreza and jazz educators Jimmy Owens and the late Wendell Logan. Michelle moved to Brooklyn New York in 1995 where she expanded her musical career to include becoming a professional composer & sound designer as well as a DJ. After many concerts over the years, Michelle decided to assemble various groups of her own. These groups were instrumental in making Michelle more well-known. Her vast, poliedric repertoire is particularly oriented towards Global Bass.

*** Lesson Details ***
Instruments taught: Electric & Acoustic Guitar, Lap Steel, Mandolin, Oud
Styles of guitar taught: Rock, Metal, Jazz, Classical, Funk, Soul, World Music.

Lessons with Michelle are laid back, however the instructor asks that you DO practice to become the best guitar player you can possibly be and to get as much out of taking guitar lessons as you possibly can.
Michelle's curriculum consist of using the Hal Leonard Guitar and/or Bass series Vol. 1-3 to learn all the basics of guitar playing from tuning your guitar, to chords, scales, song exercises, and fundamentals of reading music. After the student is done working through the basics,the curriculum changes to directly concentrating on elements of a specific style of music that the student wants to go into musically.
At this point, the teacher and student work through specific elements that take the student from intermediate to advanced levels of playing guitar ( or bass, or mandolin )
The instructor asked that you please show up for your lessons on time and please practice.
See you soon !

*** Studio Equipment ***
Guitar Amp, music stands, guitar friendly comfortable chairs

*** Specialties ***
ALL STYLES: American Folk Music / Jazz/ Rock / Electronic / Reggae / Soul / World Music

John B. Arlington, VA

Subjects Taught

Banjo, Bass Guitar, Classical Guitar, Flamenco Guitar, Guitar, Mandolin, Music Theory, Songwriting, Ukulele

About Me

I have been playing for about 35 years and teaching music and guitar for 25 years. I have a Bachelor of Music in Jazz and Classical guitar. I've taught at the University level and currently maintain a professional studio in Arlington, Virginia. I am very well versed in many different styles of music including, Rock, Blues, Jazz, Classical and Suzuki guitar. Students who decide to sign up with me, will have a lesson plan, a strategy for meeting their musical goals and will enjoy themselves in the process.

*** Lesson Details ***
Lessons are custom designed to meet the needs of every student, whether it is someone just starting out with the basics or for that seasoned player that wants to hone their professional skills. As a teacher, I consider myself easy going and laid back, with an emphasis on encouraging each student to do their very best.

*** Studio Equipment ***
guitar, instruments, keyboards recording equipment, waiting room, seating for parents

*** Travel Equipment ***
Music stand, foot stool, cables.- Teacher
Own instrument, amplifier if needed, notebook.-Student

*** Specialties ***
*Teachers classified as a Student Favorite have taught a minimum of 25
lessons and have received the highest feedback rating from students.I have been teaching for about 25 years and am well versed in Jazz, Classical, Rock, Blues and Country genres. I focus on anything from note reading, theory, improvisation and composing.

Banjo With TakeLessons

TakeLessons offers private in-studio and in-home Banjo in Alexandria and nearby areas. Learn how to play banjo by working with a qualified TakeLessons instructor. Review Alexandria Banjo teacher profiles and contact a friendly TakeLessons student counselor by phone or email for assistance with scheduling your Banjo lessons.

Whether you are a beginner Banjo student, intermediate Banjo student, or advanced Banjo student, a TakeLessons Instructor can help you learn or enhance your Banjo skills. Your choices for a Alexandria Banjo instructor come from a variety of backgrounds, making it easy to find one that matches your interests and skill level. Each Banjo instructor's specialties are listed on their profile, along with helpful details like teaching style, background, photos, student ...

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