Laurel Songwriting Lessons

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Omar W.

Washington, DC

Do you want to develop as a songwriter? I can show you techniques used by the pros to create dynamic song structures and amazing lyrics. I specialize in songwriting as it relates to the guitar. So if you want to advance your chord vocabulary or become a better guitarist in the process this is the class for you.

About Omar

I receive a very large number of student requests everyday, So to keep things organized please keep the following in mind:

Takelessons is a wonderful service that I use to handle all my payments and scheduling. I want to focus on the teaching, so they help with the rest.

I have a 24 hour cancelation policy, please give me at least 24 hour advanced notice, or you will forfeit your lesson credit.

All scheduling changes or time off can be requested right from the website for your connivence. it's super easy!

Use an email that you will actually check to sign up for notifications,
it's not spam, it's to help us all stay organized.

Remember to please reserve your spot by paying in advance. (I have a waiting list of people asking me for those super convenient days, and times)

Online students please make sure you have the highest connection speed available to you. This will ensure you get the most out of the lessons.

*** Equipment ***

Please make sure you have your own instrument, and a note book or device to take notes with.

------------------------

My passion is sharing music with people.

I am musician and a visual artist who earned a Masters certification in Songwriting and Guitar from Berklee College of Music.
As an artist I have been featured on MTV, Rollingstone, BBC, NBC, VOA, ARY, Alt Press, LA times, documentaries and more. I have been playing guitar and recording music since childhood and am a classically trained sitar player and Indian classical vocalist. I sing and play guitar in the Mystical Dance punk band Sarmust, and I also produce electronic music under the name Evilartform.

sarmust.com

evilartform.com

I am a great teacher for someone who wants to write songs, or is into Indie, rock, pop, reggae, metal, hip-hop, and electronica.

I love to answer questions and learn things I don't know, I know a good amount about guitar repair, improvised instrument building, how to buy a good instrument and not spend to much, and I have a vast knowledge of obscure instruments, and audio production as well. Feel free to ask me questions, and expect informative non-judgmental answers.

I have spent a lot of time developing as a vocalist, songwriter, composer and producer, which helps me in all aspects of my music and teaching, I'm always looking to learn more. I have played in heavy metal bands, but have also done solo acoustic singer/songwriting stuff, I have produced raw hip-hop but also love old soul and ska tunes. Being well rounded musically and drawing from lots of influences is what makes me a good teacher and shapes me as a musician.

Learn more about me: https://about.me/omarpitraswaqar

*** Lesson Details/ What to Expect ***

You can expect a custom, fun and attentive one on one lesson. I am thorough and patient. I expect you to love music and put forth effort. I'm laid back, I will work as fast or as slow as you need. I prefer a total immersion technique and get my students playing right away. This boosts confidence and fosters interest because once a student enjoys playing you don't have to convince them to practice.

By the first lesson you will be familiar with the instrument and it's parts, and playing your first chord.

In 3-6 months you will be playing guitar with a greater knowledge of chords, basic harmony and be able to play scales and songs.

Once you have a foundation of chords we can explore more specific music subjects and lessons will become more personalized: songwriting, guitar tones, musicology, making a DIY record, shredding like a metal head, I can guide you to help you achieve your goals.

*** Studio Equipment ***

Studying in my live/studio space located in Artist Lofts near Brookland metro in NE DC. It has a high ceilings and full stage back line including keyboards, drum set, live sound system multiple amps and more. There is seating for parents and recording capabilities.
...

Reviews

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Ilana July 18, 2016
Sitar · In studio
There's not enough stars for Omar. Omar taught me Sitar, Guitar, Ukulele, Vocals and Indian Classical music. He is super patient, supportive, professional and tailors lessons to your goals. Plus he makes his own videos to support his students! I have never met a more passionate music teacher and his knowledge of music comes from all over the world.
I know someone who started taking lessons from Omar who couldn't afford more then the broken guitar he had. Omar traded him a guitar he BUILT for the broken guitar [and later on fixed it up].
If that's not enough because of Omar I've been on tour. No one else has been able to help me in understanding and appreciating music as much as Omar has.
Silhouette-80
Ellen B. June 15, 2016
Ukulele · In studio
Verified Student
This is my first experience with music lessons. Omar is very patient and supportive and knowledgeable. Very happy with him.
Silhouette-80
TJ May 24, 2016
Guitar · In studio
Verified Student
Three lessons in and couldn't be happier with how things are going. Omar put together a lesson plan for me but is also very willing to answer any random questions I have. Can't for my next session.
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Omar W.

Omar W.

Washington, DC 20017
(37)
starting at
$30 / 45-min
267194_jdj5vs6p8xb49kmjcq2s

Scott G.

Silver Spring, MD

About Scott

A native of Washington DC, Scott has performed for over 45 years in various shows, bands & theaters. He has worked with The Glenn Miller Orchestra and The Modernaires; The Peter Duchin Orchestra; The Ink Spots; The Tokens; Rory (Disney Channel); Charlie Byrd; Susannah McCorkle; Keely Smith & John Colianni (accompanist for Mel Torme) to name a few.
He has also toured for the USO with Miss USA in Europe 85’ (With an 18 year old Halle Berry) and Miss USA in Central America 86’.
Besides playing a in few theater pits, Scott has also performed on the stage as a musical character in the Kennedy Cen
ter’s ‘92 production of “Pump Boys & Dinettes”, taking the role of inbred “Eddie” to new lows.
In 2005, upon the return of guitarist Dan Hovey from a NY career joined with drummer John Zidar to form Gigahertz [GHz]. The trio was an effort to reconnect with the music he grew up with. The band quickly became a known entity on the DC music scene.
Currently he is in his 15th year as a member of the Adjunct Jazz Faculty of Montgomery College, MD teaching electric bass and converting his students to upright bass players.
As a versatile musician, Scott is constantly changing hats to survive in an ever changing music climate and continues to work as a
full time musician in and around the Washington DC area. He has developed a reputation as a go to guy subbing for bands when they need
someone who can walk in and get the job done.
Besides teaching at Montgomery College and privately, he owns a recording studio making demos for local groups and also creates sheet
music for bands and singers.

*** Lesson Details ***
I am more than a teacher, I am a musical coach. I will offer exercises that will stimulate your musical creative juices. I quickly assess my students strong and weak points and guide the student how to become a balanced player. Emphasis on rhythm is always important. Whatever genre you wish to study I can guide you through the channels to reach your musical dreams.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Pro-tools Recording studio
Fender deluxe hot rod amp for guitar
Fender Super Champ amp for guitar
Mark bass amp 1x12
Mark bass amp 2x6
Genz Benz shuttle 9 bass head
Genz Benz Uber cab. 4x10
Genz Benz bass cab' 2x10
Electro voice PA system.
Rogers Drum kit
Kurzweil Keyboard

*** Travel Equipment ***
Anything needed including amps, music, cables, books, metronome, etc.

*** Specialties ***
Jazz, dixieland, swing, bebop, contemporary and smooth.
Rock old school and contemporary
Folk and country
...

Reviews

Silhouette-80
Gabriel June 9, 2016
Ukulele · In studio
Verified Student
I have never used the ukulele before, however, within the first 15 minutes Scott had me playing songs along with him. He was very patient and helpful with any mistakes I was making. I am excited for out next lesson.
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Candace K. May 16, 2016
Ukulele · In home
Verified Student
It's so much fun learning ukulele with Scott. I like his style of teaching. It's very laid back, and you feel like you are making music in your first few lessons. I'm looking forward to more lessons and feel motivated to practice and learn more.
Silhouette-80
Ali E. December 29, 2015
Singing · In home
Verified Student
Scot is a great teacher and musician. He is truly passionate about music. If you love music, you will love having your lessons with Scott.
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Scott G.

Scott G.

Silver Spring, MD 20902
(15)
starting at
$60 / 60-min
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Aleksis B.

Germantown, MD

About Aleksis

My name is Aleksis B., but many of my students know me as Mr. B. I am a professional instructor and performing musician who combines a love of music with a desire to help others who want to achieve their highest musical potential. I try to make that passion show in everything I do.

My education includes classical voice training with Michele Howard Hansen, an opera singer that often performs at the Kennedy Center. I studied piano with Geoffrey Chappell, who writes for Jazz Times. I also received compositional training on multiple instruments from Stanley Cowell, who recorded and performed
with legends like Miles Davis.

I have been performing professionally since 1992. I studied education in college and did my student teaching in a music class at Goshen Elementary School in Gaithersburg, Maryland.

I have been teaching music professionally now for over twenty years. Some students want to take a few lessons to see if it is something they will enjoy, others have worked with me for over a decade. I have mentored several students who have gone on to professional careers. I have experienced a lot of success teaching young children and those with special needs. I have been blessed with a tremendous amount of patience and truly enjoy teaching anyone who wants to learn.

Whatever your goals or abilities, I look forward to working with you!

*** Lesson Details ***
Experience fun based lessons as my teaching approach is relaxed and inspirational. I enjoy working with all ages, adjusting my teaching methods to accommodate your learning style and abilities. Learn to play the music you love! You learn best when you enjoy what you are playing, I can help you play along with your favorites or even write your own songs. I always ask my students at the beginning of a lesson "What would you like to do today?" Then structure the lesson accordingly into a routine that the student can practice on their own. Generally the time is divided into warm ups, learning new material, then picking a fun song the student choses. Whether your interest is Classical, Jazz, Rock, Pop music, etc... I'm here help you reach your goals so let's make your dreams come true with music together!

*** Studio Equipment ***
basement, digital piano, acoustic/electric guitars, speakers, amps, microphones, recording equipment, seating for parents

*** Travel Equipment ***
Books, Guitar, music stand, metronome, picks, tuner, page clips, capo, media player, laptop, Keyboard (on request), and recording equipment (on request)

*** Specialties ***
With Voice I specialize in helping people prepare for auditions such as American Idol. I have students who simply want to be karaoke stars. I have several professional singers that hire me as a voice coach and producer for recording sessions. I have taught children as young as 2 and those that retired with a lifelong dream to sing. Though my training is classical, I can teach Jazz, Pop, Rock, Rap, R&B, etc...whatever is fun for the student. I highly recommend learning to read music but I do not push it unless parents want their child to.

With Piano I can teach traditionally from Alfred and Bastien Piano Courses depending if they are auditory or visual learners. For Kinesthetic learners I use Hanon scale exercises and Rothman Rhythm Exercises. For those that want to learn notation I introduce classical and Jazz composers unless there is a popular artist/band/movie theme etc...that they would like to learn. However I do not push students to read music unless their parents would prefer it. I tend to keep more students that want to learn to play by ear especially adults by using rhythm training and music theory exercises and then applying them to songs they love. For piano I haven't had much success with children younger than 3. I also have a lot experience working with special needs children.

For Guitar I teach Classical, Acoustic, and Electric all styles and genres. I encourage sight reading but don't mind using tabs. I use more exercises with these students, since the first month students have a hard time making a sound. I try to make the lessons fun by having students strum chords along with songs they chose. I teach lead and rhythm even songwriting and composition. Job satisfaction for me is seeing my students leave a lesson with a smile on their face so I make sure to be a fun based teacher that doesn't give the student a hard time about not practicing.

For Recording and Performance I use the knowledge I gained doing Pro Audio Sales for Guitar Center from 2000-2002 to help clients build their own home studio. I have lots of producers and engineers I work with on a regular basis to produce broadcast quality audio and video recordings and help my students use their lessons and pre-production for those opportunities. I can teach Garage Band or Pro Tools classes on navigating the software and utilizing all the commands. I can also teach room acoustics and using the right microphone and how to position them with the right equipment and the right acoustics to get the best possible tone that they are looking for. I can also teach editing, mixing, looping, sampling, midi, and mastering so that the student can eventually work on their own writing, performing, and recording their music.
...

Reviews

Silhouette-80
Hazel H. May 17, 2016
Piano · In home
Verified Student
Great!
Silhouette-80
Nunu L. May 2, 2016
Piano · In home
Verified Student
Very patient and supportive attitude!
Silhouette-80
Barbara S. March 5, 2016
Singing · In home
Verified Student
Aleksis is very personable, knowledgeable, and kind. He makes the lesson fun and definitely puts you at ease. Would highly recommend him!
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Aleksis B.

Aleksis B.

Germantown, MD 20876
(15)
starting at
$36 / 30-min
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Jackson C.

Takoma Park, MD

I am a current songwriter and poet.
I have taught and coached in the area of songwriting and phrasing (word painting) with lyrics.
By signing up with me, you'll learn a great deal of interpretation skills. There are 7 skills that will prepare you for not only acting, but speaking, and singing as a whole.

About Jackson

Jackson Coaching Studio
Welcome to the Jackson Coaching Studio! It pleases me to welcome you as a valued student. My job as your instructor/coach is to ensure that my students get the best knowledge and skills. I teach the following lessons:* Voice lessons * English * Spanish * Public Speaking * Piano for beginners and revisiting...

I advocate a dynamic variety of approaches to your learning styles and trends. My interest is in the study of voice production; functionality, style/approach, health, and stage presence and as a result, my students are empowered with useful to
ols to reach their goals, confront and overcome common oppositions.

I am a PROCESS teacher. Everything in life is a process. Therefore, as a PROCESS teacher, I believe in beginning every first lesson with all of the information (I plan to teach) as a preview. Immediately (upon the next lesson) followed by my teaching methods:

My teaching methods fall into these four categories: (D.A.D.E.)
• Discovery- Gathering relevant and resourceful information of voice functionality.
• Application- Putting technical skills to use and knowledge of when to use them.
• Development- Process learning- Changes cause/effects and as a result, progress, production, and promise. “Trust the process.”
• Execute- To bring forth, carry out, and perform!

Process teaching and learning is a specific teaching style that not only empowers the students to feel confident about their craft, it also gives the students useful skills that can be applied to REAL "time-life" scenarios. This reinforcement confirms that the students have indeed learned what they've hired me for and more.

By signing up for voice lessons with Jackson, you will become a V.I.P. member. What is a VIP member? V.I.P. members have the inside opportunities to learn “singer secrets!” (Vowels, Interpretations and Pept-talk).
• Vowels- Two different approaches: Spoken and Sung
• Interpretation- A stylistic approach that best explains or makes sense of. Your explanation for your creativeness.
• P.E.P.T.-Talk (Details in your lesson)

Note:
1. The most important thing for singers/musicians/language students is that they train their ears. Why? Because 90% of what you'll learn is by what you recall from hearing/listening.
2. ENVIRONMENT- is key to your learning. It's important for you to surround yourself around the very things that you're learning.

Once you sign up, you’ll receive a questionnaire. The information you provide is vital because it shapes and designs your learning curriculum.

Bio: From Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (Born October 15th, 1974) is an American singer, songwriter, arranger, and producer. Notable instruments are the piano and percussion. Jackson is one of Washington, DC’s prominent male vocalists. His voice is recognized as; beautiful light lyrical-pure tone, fine diction, long phrasing and an extended high range. He is also known for his work within the concert/recital repertoires around the Washington, DC Metropolitan areas and performances with the Symphonic Orchestra of Northern Virginia, Jeff Dokken, conductor.

Jackson credits himself as a Pop Inspirational singer. “Music to touch, move, and inspire.”- Jackson C.
Jackson has experience working with youth and adults in churches, and privately. He has taught music and accompanied the production "KIDS" at the Kelsie Collie Children's Musical Experience.
His music education studies hail from; University of the District of Columbia,- Washington, DC, Oberlin Conservatory under Richard Miller,- Oberlin, OH, and Shenandoah University Conservatory under Dr. Kathryn Green,- Winchester, VA with an emphasis in Voice Pedagogy (CCM) Contemporary Commercial Music. His professional music career began (Spring 2009) in the Washington, DC Metropolitan area. Jackson is fortunate to have had a career built on “word of mouth” via his fans and supporters. Often, he is called upon to sing for; weddings, funerals, private parties, churches, recitals etc. Words and phrases that best describe Jackson's vocal performances are: (G.R.I.P.) Graceful, Refreshing, Inspiring, and Powerful.

*** Specialties ***
Pop, Inspirational, Gospel, Rhythm & Blues (R&B), Classical, Contemporary Jazz, some musical theater.

"Trust the process! Everything in life began and ends with a process."- B. Jackson Caesar

Languages: (English & Spanish)
My interest in the Hispanic language, its apparatus, style/approach, and culture as it pertains to the ever growing population and bilingualism around the Americas. My desire is to engage the students in the discovery and appreciation of the lingual- romantic tongues.

Spanish:
Countries visited; Mexico and Peru.
I can guarantee that within a few months you'll feel confident and sure that you're conversation- ready to Speak Spanish. Therefore, if you're preparing a trip to a Spanish speaking country, you’ll find Peruvian Castellano pronunciation straightforward and as good as any other, with few of the dropped letters or peculiarities found in some other countries.

English (As a second language)
I enjoy helping other’s learn the complexities of the English language. English is indeed a hard tongue to grasp however; it’s not difficult once you understand its secrets. (Phonetic learning)
...

Reviews

Silhouette-80
Diana S. June 15, 2016
Piano · In studio
Verified Student
Jackson is very friendly, very responsive, very patient with mistakes, and good at explaining basics for beginners like me.
Silhouette-80
Malachy M. May 29, 2016
Vocal Training · In studio
Verified Student
Excellent teacher - very patient with kids. Cares about his students.
Silhouette-80
Maurice B. May 26, 2016
Speaking Voice · In home
Verified Student
Life Changer!! Lessons for life, ammo to give the "wow" effect, and confidence to move further in your life and career, is what you'll get with Mr. Jackson. Sign up... You'll be glad you did...
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Jackson C.

Jackson C.

Takoma Park, MD 20912
(20)
starting at
$30 / 30-min
370632_3vgd88p4d5d7mmxxr7f3

Dennis B.

Bethesda, MD

I encourage all students to try writing music or at least coming up with their own basic ideas. I will then work with the student's ideas to help them learn how to develop an initial idea into a large more complete musical form. If the student is able to write more complete songs I will coach them in techniques to improve the structure, harmony and melody of their work. I try to demonstrate ways that they can improve their writing without simply rewriting their ideas for them. For all of this I draw on my many years of experience as a composer. I try to guide the student towards developing a process of writing music that works for them. My main goal is to help them to grow into their own musical voice rather than to simply do what I suggest.

About Dennis

I have been teaching guitar for 25 years in the Washington DC metro area. I work with students 12 years of age and up, but I am especially experienced at teaching adult students regardless of whether they are beginners or have previous guitar experience. I have performed in acoustic Celtic, new age, funk, progressive rock, fusion and contemporary jazz groups and am currently performing regularly as a solo acoustic guitarist. I have composed over 40 works for solo guitar as well as numerous pieces for small jazz bands. I have played on numerous CDs including my most recent solo CD 'DARK MATTER'
.

*** Lesson Details ***
I tailor the lesson materials to suit the interest of the student but I am dedicated to teaching students at any level to learn to better understand the fundamentals of the language of music. My teaching focuses on critical fundamentals of guitar technique including chords, scales and rhythm guitar playing as well as the art of improvisation. A significant amount of time in the lessons is spent actually playing with the students so that the technical concepts are put to use in real music situations. To further the student's understanding of music I frequently teach elements of music theory to those who are interested.

*** Studio Equipment ***
I have guitars and amps available for student use although I prefer that the student bring their own instrument. I also have all the needed accessories, cables, stands etc.

*** Specialties ***
Adult students (and older teenagers ) whether beginners or experienced are a particular specialty of mine. Adult learners want to be treated as adults and often times benefit greatly from a more mentor oriented approach to teaching. I like to describe myself as both a teacher and a coach so as to emphasize that the student and I are on the same team sharing the goal of improving their guitar playing and musicianship. We are both on the same path of musical discovery. I am probably just farther along on that path with insights and knowledge that will hopefully help them along their way.
...

Reviews

Silhouette-80
Andrew McGehee March 4, 2016
Guitar · In studio
Verified Student
Dennis is professional, knowledgeable, and easily constructs a lesson plan tailored to your needs. Would recommend!
Silhouette-80
Clay Jones December 3, 2015
Guitar · In home
Verified Student
After the first lesson I can tell this is going to go great! Dennis is very personable and easy to talk to, and communicate with. It is immediately apparent that he has a wealth of knowledge not just about guitar, but about music theory in general and I am so excited for what I will learn!

Also, he has a lovely home and his wife is so nice :) I felt right at home.

I definitely recommend Dennis to anyone who is considering lessons.
Silhouette-80
Thomas P. July 2, 2015
Guitar · In studio
Verified Student
Dennis is a great teacher, he is effective, patient, passionate, I could not be happier, he has an excellent teaching style made me improve a lot. Highly recommended
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Dennis B.

Dennis B.

Bethesda, MD 20816
(7)
starting at
$40 / 30-min

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