Denver Drum Lessons

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The Denver Music Scene - A Drummer’s Perspective

Let me introduce myself. I’m a drummer with 24 years in the music business, and for the last decade I’ve been lucky enough to be an active and integral part of the music scene here in Denver Colorado. It’s been a long and interesting ride so far and I thought I would use this opportunity to share some of my experiences through the unique perspective I’ve gained as an in demand drummer with those of you who are currently taking or looking to take drum lessons in Denver.

Colorado has a diverse musical background, and there seems to be more room for hybrid musical styles here, rather than most places that have an older, more established scene. Between the location, the weather, the close proximity to the mountains and the sister vibe of neighboring Boulder, Denver just seems to be a better place for experimental bands to flourish. Funk, Reggae, Jazz and Electronica for example are a big force on the Front Range in the festival circuit, and also in the mountain towns. Despite being far from an ocean, where these musical styles typically dwell, Colorado really gives the local musician a platform to express more creativity in between what you would normally expect from a specific genre. There are a variety of outdoor festivals that draw big crowds during the summer and bands that offer a wider musical palette are everywhere here.

This has treated me kindly as I have a background in auxiliary and hand percussion in addition to drum set, and have been known to dabble with electronic interfaces as well. One of the most interesting groups I have been a part of was a group called Aphelion, which was a live progressive trance and dub-step group focused on mixing organic elements such as live afro-Cuban percussion set-up with pre-programmed beats. Of course most of what we were performing on stage was live, but using a mixture of tracks sequenced in real time or performed in conjunction with an electro-acoustic set up yielded very interesting results. Later we added a live keyboardist and live guitarist to the mix, which was received with even more enthusiasm. One of our biggest shows was playing a mountain festival on the Fourth of July opening for a Pink Floyd Tribute band. There’s something about looking out over a sea of people and noticing little kids doing back-flips to your music in an open space near the stage that helps you realize your potential in a place where there is no fixed norm.

To take it even further, I’ve recently had the opportunity to join an Afro-Funk ensemble that will be brining the music of Fela-Kuti and other well-known African artists to the jam scene and festival circuit. (It’s been a few years now since I’ve had the opportunity to play in a band with a full horn section, so needless to say, I’m stoked!) Again, Denver just seems to leave more room for individual thinking and while this group could have come together anywhere, the range of players here that are into unique projects like this one never ceases to amaze me.

As if this weren’t enough for my plate, I’ve also been actively perusing a career in Rock for the last 3 years with my main group, Genre Theory. Taking some time off from the stage recently to finish up our upcoming self-titled EP, GT has been a strong force recently in the Indie Rock establishments of the Hi-Dive, the Marque, The Bluebird Theater, and Gothic Theater here in Denver. Not that these are predominantly rock venues, but there does seem to be a strong foothold for this type of music here; again, I feel that this is because we’re allowed to take some chances musically that would be a hard sell to crowds immersed in the standard issue rock mentality. I don’t take this for granted, and neither do the other musicians embedded in the scene. A few notable groups have even used this liberated platform to rise to great heights, including Rose Hill Drive, The Epilogues and most notably, The Fray. By Mike M. - Denver Drums Teacher

If you’re taking drum lessons in Denver, make sure to get out to some local shows to experience this for yourself, even from the audience’s perspective. The most important aspect of any show is the interaction between the audience and performers. Support for any scene is support for all scenes, and with populations on the rise here on the Front Range, it won’t be long before everyone gets to be a part of our collective evolution. I feel lucky to be able to survive as a musician even on the local level, and with a constant influx of young musicians and audience members, I feel a real sense of belonging to something greater than myself. So keep an eye and ear open, and I’ll catch you in the scene.

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Chris S.

Aurora, CO

Drums! The backbone of the band! I play a wide variety of instruments, but I hop on the drums any time the opportunity presents itself-they're so much fun! You control the time, set the mood, and get to express yourself however you want! When you take drum lessons with me, we really work on your sense of time and how every piece of music revolves around you keeping time with your new instrument. As we develop an understanding of keeping time, we also discuss rudiments. Rudiments are the building blocks of drumming-with each new rudiment you learn, you discover a new way of expressing yourself on the drums. The more rudiments you know, the more you can express yourself freely in your music! As we learn rudiments, you will also be learning how to read drum music, so that you'll not only learn to play, but you'll be learning how to seek out new techniques for yourself to become an independent learner. And, as with all the music lesson I teach, we'll be focusing on songs that YOU

About Chris

A short history of my experience with music and education:

The first instrument I learned to play was the guitar in 2001.

I played the guitar on the worship team at FBC of Midway in Plant City, FL from 2001 to 2005.

I began teaching private music lessons in 2003.

I played bass guitar in a Christian rock band called of Anastasis from 2003 to 2005.

I played acoustic, electric, and bass guitar on the worship team at Family Worship Center in Lakeland, FL from 2006 to 2012.

I worked as a freelance audio engineer with my in-home recording studio throughout college (and now I just d
o it for fun).

I played bass and sang background vocals in a worship band called Skyline from 2007 to 2009.

I taught music and trained a student led worship team at Hope Christian Academy from 2009-2010.

I began performing independently from 2009 to present.

I played guitar and sang lead vocals in a Christian Rock Band called A Story Familiar from 2010 to 2012.

From 2010 to 2012, I taught in the Polk County public school system of Florida from 2010 to 2012, where I also worked heavily with students with special needs.

In July of 2012 I moved to Aurora, CO as a volunteer musician to help plant Livingstone Church.

In January of 2013 I married my beautiful wife.

Upon arriving home from our honeymoon, I was hired as Worship Director for church, and I have worked there since. Some of my responsibilities include developing weekly music set lists, creating charts and sheet music for new songs, and training the worship team in new music.

As for me personally, I love Jesus, my wife, and music.  As I'm sure you can tell by my brief history, I do a lot of church service and ministry, if for this for any reason makes you wary, let me assure you: I play a lot more than just church music.  As a lover of music, there is not much that I don't enjoy in the world of music, and I've taught most of it.  I've taught the young and the not-so-young, and whether you're just beginning to read music, or you're just eager to learn your favorite song, I work closely with you to ensure you achieve the results you desire!

*** Lesson Details ***
Four things I focus on:
1. Creating individualized lesson plans
2. Learning new techniques and polishing old ones
3. Building confidence
4. Having a fun, rockin' time!

When taking lessons from me, students can expect an environment that is a balance between being strict and laid back.Music is something that must be learned, and as such, it must also be practiced week-to-week in between lessons.  I consider myself strict because I'll hold you accountable to doing your best to learn the best. Despite holding you accountable, I think the overall mood of the learning environment is laid back; we'll have a lot of fun learning music.  I make sure that we'll be learning at your pace, but keep in mind, this doesn't mean I won't push you to be your best! My teaching experience has taught me one thing: everyone is different. That being the case, I create lesson plans that are unique to you.  Where you will be in a month, six months, a year, largely depends on your commitment to learn, but I'll promise you this:  all of my efforts will be utilized to maximize your potentiality.

*** Attendance Policy ***
I am very flexible with attendance, but I do require a one hour notice that you will not be at the lesson. If a one hour notice is not given, the lesson will be marked as "missed" resulting in payment from your TakeLessons account for the missed lesson.

If you are simply running late, please be sure to let me know-I try to be as flexible as possible, but if the student is over 15 minutes late, I typically mark this lesson as "missed" as well.

*** Studio Equipment ***
I provide the following equipment for in-studio lessons:
Guitar amplifier
Bass amplifier
Drum Set
Computer
iPad
Recording equipment
Music stand
Seating area for parents/guardians to sit/listen in on the lesson

*** Travel Equipment ***
I provide the following when traveling for in-home lessons: iPad
For in-home lessons, I expect students to have whatever equipment is necessary for learning their instrument of interest (This typically includes at least the student's instrument and a music stand, but may also include a metronome, tuner, etc.).

*** Specialties ***
Rock, Jazz, Blues, Folk, Praise/Worship, Indie
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Reviews

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Debbie A. January 31, 2016
Acoustic Guitar · In home
Verified Student
We've only had 2 lessons so far and he is great! He is encouraging, polite, flexible, kind and takes the extra time if needed. He definitely knows how to teach and knows the natural developmental progression to build the foundation for a beginner and explains what the next goals she'll be working towards. He even learned a Justin Bieber song just to make my kid happy. Lol!
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Bentley January 16, 2016
Drum · In studio
Verified Student
For our family, Chris just can't be beat!!!! He is super patient and has an awesome attitude! Laid back and relaxed! Made drum lessons easier to bear!
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Daniel August 19, 2015
Guitar · In home
Verified Student
Chris was way more patient than I was with my son. Even when Daniel got distracted Chris just re-engaged him and kept plugging away. I also like his method of explaining the notes and their differences. He brought down to a level Daniel could immediately grasp.
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Chris S.

Chris S.

Aurora, CO 80017
(7)
starting at
$24.99 / 30-min
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Joey I.

Denver, CO

I teach in whatever way suits you. If you want classic textbook teaching, I can do that, or if you want to start by learning your favorite song, we can do that as well. My skill set can be applied to any genre of music that you would like to learn. I will share some of the best tools with you so that you can learn the fastest while having the most fun! I attended Berklee School of Music!

About Joey

My name is Joey and my dream is to bring balance to the world and all people through educating people about health, wellness, and music. I have been studying health, wellness, and music for 10 years and have received certifications through the CHEK institute, Dr.Guy Voyer's SOMA training, and Berklee school of music. I have learned AMAZING things that are on the leading edge and have the power to radically transform people's lives, and the state of the world. Will you join me in my endeavor to change the world? If you sign up with me, I will give you many tools to expand your life, your health
, and/or your musical ability in the fastest and most enjoyable way possible. I'm looking forward to meeting with you and sharing knowledge, laughter, and good times. I wish you the very best!
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Reviews

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Sharon February 23, 2016
Guitar · In studio
My 11-year old son absolutely loves taking guitar lessons with Joey. He says he's smart and fun, and he really looks forward to each lesson. Thanks, Joey!
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Allison February 23, 2016
Drum · In home
Verified Student
Joey is patient and kind and really knowledgable about music. He has helped me learn to play the drums and have a fun time doing it. He's very encouraging! I am well on my way to playing the drums!
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Becky February 23, 2016
Life Coaching · Online
Wow. All I can say is that I am completely amazed. The first session gave me so much valuable information about myself. I took my assessments online and was so amazed. You get to see an in depth look at your overall health with the assessments. The online assessments tell you more than any other personal trainer, health coach, or even doctor will tell you. Valuable information.
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Joey I.

Joey I.

Denver, CO 80237
(15)
starting at
$25 / 30-min
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Mike M.

Denver, CO

30 years of experience playing all styles, and over 13 years of private drum and percussion instruction. If you have specific goals on your instrument and need some polishing and a fresh approach to your instrument I have just the curriculum for you! Newbies are also a specialty of mine as the majority of my longest running students, some of whom have been with me for over 8 years, started from scratch. Not only do you get a very qualified and respected teacher, but you get a friend and mentor in the local music scene as well. I have performed professionally in over 25 bands of all instrumentation, size and style you can think of! If there is a specific style that you are into, chances are I have performed many live concerts in that genre and will be able to directly help you achieve the same respective goals. I am more than happy to help you or your son or daughter hone their skills through real world application of Rudiments, Chart Reading, Speed and Endurance drills and Creative ...

About Mike

Hi,

I'm a professional drummer, percussionist, and composer here in Denver offering a fresh new approach to drum instruction. I teach at two separate locations complete with dual drum sets and a complete sound system that allows for both my students and I to play simultaneously and at full live volume!

As a Graduate of the California Institute of the Arts, I've been lucky enough to have studied with some of the most diverse masters of drumset and percussion from several continents around the globe. I've been a player of the drums for over 26 years now, and I'm still practicing and perf
ecting the art, gaining new friends, students, and live stage experiences on the way.

Let me start by saying that I highly value the freedom that I've been able to enjoy by passionately perusing music as a career. Any field where you get to socialize, interact with other musicians, and have fun performing with your friends, is a dream gig by any measure, but it does take hard work, sacrifice and tenacity to achieve that level of recognition. Fortunately I have the background and skills to not only make our lessons interesting and exciting!, but to also get you up to speed so that you can enjoy the life of a musician as well!!

My Complete Education:

Born in Santa Monica, California, I lived in and around Los Angeles in several areas before moving to Denver in 1990. I began on the Piano at age 4 and slowly gravitated towards playing the drums by my 9th birthday.

My first teacher, AND first mentor in music: Mark Foster (Metro College of Denver & Colorado Symphony Orchestra), At a very early stage he introduced me to Jazz and Latin and gave me a solid understanding of Classical Percussion as well.

My second instructor and Mentor: Jimi Bauchet, whom I took Rock, Progressive Rock, and Fusion lessons from, was a session and commercial artist in Los Angeles during the eighties and nineties.

Upon High School Graduation I left Denver to study percussion with Dr. Pennington at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado. It was here that I would get my first taste of performing music on a high art level, as Dr. Pennington was one of Michael Udow's young prodigies when he attended the University of Michigan, a nationally regarded school for the percussive arts.

Two years at Fort Lewis College provided me with the perfect spring board to transfer and I then returned to my home state to earn a degree at the prestigious California Institute of the Arts (CIA). It was here that I had the honor to study with the likes of John Bergamo (Master Percussionist), Randy Gloss (John's closest disciple), Joe Labarbera (Jazz Drumset Master), David Johnson (My Mallet & Orchestral Mentor), Alfred Ledzekpo (African Percussion Tribal Leader), Wenton Welojo (Balinesian Gamelan Master and Celebrity), and Swapan Chardui (THE Tabla Guru, Truly an Honor). The Multi-Focus Curriculum allowed me to study a wide array of disciplines while still receiving a degree based heavily in Classical Percussion. My BFA is essentially a custom built degree with a strong background in Theory, Composition, Jazz Drumset, Tympani, Mallets, and a variety of pitched percussion instruments from around the world.

*** Lesson Details ***
My Personal Philosophy:

In many parts of the world there is no separation between music and culture, and to that end I strive to bring my students closer to the outside world through the strength of their own musical bond. Having music be a part of my life has brought me great opportunities to meet other players and fans of the trade, through which I have experienced some of my most rewarding moments with, as well as making some life-long friends along the way. So to me, MUSIC IS SOMETHING THAT YOU ARE!!!, not just something that you do, and that concept is the fundamental reason why my lessons will often go far beyond just the common practices of instruction, to not only show you WHY you would want to use a certain rhythm or technique, but also HOW to apply it in a real situation in the most musical way. Through the deeper understanding of music, there is an equally deeper understanding of ones self..........

My Approach:

Drumming is a very root level based instrument. It is primal in its nature and very emotionally driven. This is great in many ways, for playing the drums can be meditative, or used to relieve stress and pent-up energy, but the bottom line is that drumming is expressive and FUN!!!

So keep in mind that while there is a student-teacher relationship that I must keep, in order to get my points across, you really should enjoy each and every lesson while you're learning. It's proven that you'll retain more of the information that I'm teaching if I can get you to leave with a SMILE on your face!!

OK, so the real trick to what I do as a teacher that sets me apart is my approach. I don't have a "cookie cutter" format for stamping out drummers that all sound the same and have the same library of beats to pull from. If you're a beginner or a seasoned pro, I will custom tailor a lesson, or a set of lessons in order to maximize our time together, all while allowing you to develop your own individual voice on the instrument.

For beginners, I will set up a more structured program to get you up to the level where we can begin to experiment a little more and be able to play along with some popular songs. Using a few time tested books, some rudimentary exercises, and few hand written examples, you will begin to see results immediately. Together we will keep a binder of notes that contain all of your previous and current exercises, and from lesson to lesson you will be able to see the progress that you are making through your collection of notes and music. With this method I have taught everyone from 5 to 65 how to navigate their way around the drums, so you will be in good company if it's your first time on this instrument.

As far as the intermediate to the advanced player is concerned, well, we are going to have a great time jamming together and sharing amazing contemporary concepts. I will still offer the structured program to anyone that is interested, but for the drummer that already has years of playing under their belt, I really have something special to offer you. Odd time, Mixed Meter, Four Limb Independence, Ostinatos, Displacement, and even Polyrhythm

*** Studio Equipment ***
Pearl Drumsets, Ludwig Drumsets, Sabian cymbals, Istanbul cymbals, DW drum pedals, Various reading materials, a stereo, mixer and isolation headphones for playing along with music tracks at full live volume. Comfortable thrones to sit on while playing. Various instructional DVDs that can be borrowed from time to time.

*** Specialties ***
Music, Drum set, Orchestral Snare Drum Technique, Hand Drums, World Percussion
Moeller Technique, Multi-Fulcrum Technique, Four-Limb Coordination and independence, Odd time, Polyrhythms, Mixed Meter! Capable of teaching drum set Reading and Notation! Also capable of teaching ALL STYLES of music. If you can think of it, I have played it. Too many to list here.
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Reviews

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Jessica November 27, 2015
Drum · In studio
Verified Student
Mike is a true musician who loves his craft and loves teaching it. My daughter is having FUN learning drums!
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Chris S. October 23, 2015
Drum · In studio
Verified Student
Mike makes drum lessons fun while still teaching the key fundamentals.
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Aaron S. June 10, 2015
Drum · In studio
Verified Student
Thanks Mike, so much great info!
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Mike M.

Mike M.

Denver, CO 80210
(9)
starting at
$25 / 30-min
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Anna A.

Denver, CO

With 20 years of teaching experience, your lessons will include material from a large library of books, sheet music, online sources, along with real world experience and advice. Hands-on, auditory and visual teaching techniques are used while lessons incorporate rudimental study, drum set instruction, chop-building exercises, 4-way coordination, proper body mechanics and music theory to give the student a well-rounded experience.

About Anna

I am now accepting students at my home and via online. I have 20 years experience teaching and over 30 years playing and performing (visit my website for full bio & credentials www.annamul.com). I specialize in coaching and mentoring kids and women. Drums are more than hitting things with sticks. They build confidence, social skills, focus and self esteem. I also find that aspects of drumming is meditative, something we could all use in our fast-paced, anxiety-driven society. Drums are one of the best tools you can use for stress relief! I want to see more women and young girls playing and exp
ressing themselves thru the art of drumming. I'd like to be a part of changing how our culture views the divine feminine in music. I have a basement dedicated to music and lessons are taught at my two drum kits side-by-side for optimal learning. I create customized and fun learning experiences while sharing my passion of the drums. My musical passion comes thru in my ability to really reach the student thru a variety of techniques so that they fully understand the lesson, while having fun. My teaching approach adapts and changes based on the student's behavioral feedback.
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Reviews

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Jeff August 24, 2016
Drum · In studio
As a musician for cover bands, I learned that all good ones start with the drums. I played with Anna in three bands. Rarely did I encounter as much talent, energy, precision and pure heart that she brings to rehearsal and live performance. On stage, through her talented and intuitive performance she sets perfect grooves and plays in the pocket, inspiring and coalescing her fellow musicians. I also observed her teach, and I interacted with some of her students. In lessons she quickly connects with her students, coaching them with perception and sensitivity. Many musicians who have mastered their art are not so good at imparting it to others. Anna is one of the rare ones who does both very well.

Jeff L,
Denver
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Candace Horgan August 24, 2016
Drum · In studio
Anna is a wonderful teacher, able to work with beginners and advanced students alike. While I am not her student, I worked with her at a music camp and watched her ability to take students with absolutely no experience and break down two-way, three-way, and four-way coordination on the kit so that they could confidently hold down a beat. With her more advanced students, she taught them a variety of beats and helped them progress confidently. Her attention to detail and her patience make her an outstanding instructor.
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Sam August 15, 2016
Drum · In studio
Anna worked for our summer camp this past year and she was INCREDIBLE! She was extremely positive with all of the kids and has great energy. Anna is able to teach many different skill levels. She is fantastic at meeting the students at their level to best meet their needs and help them grow as drummers. She was professional, a blast to be around and was always on time and ready to rock. And of course, she is an AMAZING drummer.
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Anna A.

Anna A.

Denver, CO 80236
(6)
starting at
$30 / 30-min
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Kevin J.

Denver, CO

Kevin J. has been writing, recording, and playing music for over 25 years. Music is meant to be fun and it is his goal to help others enjoy music. He has been a teacher for 11 years and has composed hundreds of songs. He is passionate about teaching his students the songs they want to learn, no matter the difficulty. He specialized in guitar, drums, and song writing.

Kevin has a great way of encouraging others to keep going no matter what challenge is in front of them.

About Kevin

I truly enjoy teaching. I've taught in the public school classroom for 11 years. Teaching music is so so much FUN! And it should be fun for the students to learn. When I'm teaching I tell all my students that if they don't enjoy and smile about something, then we need to change something.

I would love to start lessons with you soon.

My Video: https://youtu.be/qw9BpEU1t08
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Reviews

Silhouette-80
Melissa December 1, 2016
Acoustic Guitar · Online
Kevin is very reliable and responsive. He is always on time and my son loves his lessons and is learning a ton!
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Chad K. November 29, 2016
Acoustic Guitar · In studio
Verified Student
Kevin is awesome and I'm looking forward to more.
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Mary D. October 23, 2016
Guitar · Online
Verified Student
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Kevin J.

Kevin J.

Denver, CO 80227
(34)
starting at
$25 / 30-min

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