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Essential Supplements to Piano Lessons in Portland, Oregon

By Chuck M. - Portland Piano Teacher

Portland, Oregon is well known for its natural beauty, its bountiful supply of craft beers, and its thriving music community. As a piano teacher, I encourage my students to catch live music performances as often as possible. Portland has many venues throughout the city that feature piano music performed in all styles. Here are a few that happen to sell pianos too:

1) Located in Portland’s historic Brooklyn neighborhood, Classic Pianos is a piano player’s dream house. It has a beautiful piano showroom of new and used pianos by Yamaha, Boesendorfer, Schimmel, and Steinway. It also has a recital hall featuring an ongoing jazz concert series. Artists have included Alan Broadbent and Dave Frishberg. Gino Vannelli recently recorded a song in the recital hall as a fundraising effort for a local young soldier. Classic Pianos is located at 3003 SE Milwaukie Ave. http://portland.classicpianos.net/

2) Located in downtown Portland, Portland Piano Company features music education events, concerts, recitals, competitions, and master classes. Many of these events are free! The piano showroom features exquisite pianos by Fazioli, Grotrian, and Kawai. You can find Portland Piano Company at 711 SW 14th Avenue. http://portlandpianocompany.com/

3) Michelle’s Pianos is a family-owned company located in SE Portland. Current news at Michelle’s includes the recent arrival of European exotic pianos by Fazioli, Bluthner, and August Forster. Special events include piano master classes, recitals, and composer workshops. Michelle's Piano is located at 600 SE Stark St. http://www.michellespiano.com/

Jazz venues in Portland include:

1) Jimmy Mak’s is perhaps the best known jazz club in Portland and features live music six days a week with local and national acts. Jimmy Mak’s is located at 221 NW 10th Av. http://www.jimmymaks.com/

2) Wilfs has a romantic jazz supper club ambiance with comfy red velvet banquettes and great live music. It is located at 800 NW 6th Avenue at Union Station. http://www.wilfsrestaurant.com/

Lastly, as a busy piano teacher, I’m always looking for new teaching materials for my students for their piano lessons in Portland. Here are a couple places to pick up piano music and supplies in the city:

1) For piano sheet music, I recommend heading to Portland Music Company located at 531 SE Martin Luther King Blvd. http://www.portlandmusiccompany.com/index.php

2) Secondly, I often tell my students that everything you need to know about playing piano can be found in the recordings of great artists. There are many fine brick and mortar record shops in Portland, and one of the oldest is Music Millennium, located at 3158 E. Burnside St. You can find piano music in all styles on vinyl, CD, or digital download.

I’ve barely scratched the surface for the available piano resources that Portland, Oregon has to offer, but I think this is a good start. Best of luck in your piano lessons in Portland, and enjoy the many opportunities this great city has to offer!

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Chuck M.

Portland, OR

My primary goal as a teacher is to present musical material in a way that keeps students excited about what they are learning. Even with absolute beginners, I will have a student playing actual songs that they are interested in as quickly as possible. Along with way I include fundamentals such as scales, strength-building exercises, rudiments of theory, and ear training. Some of the method books I use include the Alfred and Faber and Faber series, and Hanon's The Virtuoso Pianist, among many others. These materials are always supplemented with arrangements and transcriptions of popular songs and classical pieces, along with original exercises designed to teach specific styles and techniques. I also use interactive music websites to introduce students to concepts of music theory. The styles that I cover include classical, rock, jazz, and blues. As students progress in their creativity, I also introduce them to composition and improvisation.

About Chuck

Chuck moved to Portland, Oregon from Gainesville, Florida, where he was a prominent member of the music teaching and performing community for more than 25 years. Originally from Chicago, Chuck completed his BA in Music History and Masters of Music (MM) at the University of Florida. Chuck became obsessed with The Beatles when he began piano lessons at age 12. His first attempt at composing was actually improvising melodies over the ending chords to "Hey Jude". Along with playing Beatles tunes Chuck learned classic standards from a set of Reader's Digest Songbooks inherited from his grandmo
ther.

Chuck has performed with classic rock, top 40, funk, R&B, and jazz groups, and has served as an opening act for Bela Fleck and the Flecktones, and legendary Texas bluesman Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown. As a soloist he's played classical music, blues, jazz, and original compositions. Before devoting himself to music full time, he worked for 8 years as a radio announcer on WUFT-FM Gainesville hosting shows such as "Nothing but the Blues", "Montage" (acoustic jazz), and "Musica Antiqua" (Renaissance and Medieval).

Chuck has taught students of all ages and skill levels in piano, guitar, organ, flute, digital keyboards, recorder, and ukulele. He's also a multi-faceted composer whose instrumental pieces are infused with elements of classical, blues, and jazz styles.

Chuck's teaching philosophy: "In my 25 years of teaching I’ve found that everyone learns in different ways and at different rates of progress, so each of my students is treated as a unique individual. I try to get to know my students in the first few lessons so I can be more sensitive to their personalities. This helps me choose the best teaching approach for them. From the very first lesson I create a relaxed setting so students feel no apprehension, especially when trying something new. This allows them to feel free to take chances and experience playing music as something enjoyable, not a life or death situation! The biggest measure of my effectiveness as a teacher is when my students embrace new challenges and the opportunity to improve".

*** Lesson Details ***
My primary goal as a teacher is to present musical material in a way that keeps students excited about what they are learning. Even with absolute beginners, I will have a student playing actual songs that they are interested in as quickly as possible. Along the way I include fundamentals such as scales, strength-building exercises, rudiments of theory, and ear training. Some of the method books I use include the Alfred and Faber and Faber series, and Hanon's The Virtuoso Pianist, among many others. These materials are always supplemented with arrangements and transcriptions of popular songs and classical pieces, along with original exercises designed to teach specific styles and techniques. I also use interactive music websites to introduce students to concepts of music theory. The styles that I cover include classical, rock, jazz, and blues. As students progress in their creativity, I also introduce them to composition and improvisation.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Kawai K50 upright piano, music playback devices, Hammond C3 organ, multiple keyboards/synthesizers, acoustic and electric guitars, amplifiers, computer recording equipment; parents are encouraged to sit in on lessons.

*** Travel Equipment ***
I don't provide any specific equipment. Piano students should have either a well-tuned piano or full-sized weighted-key digital keyboard (Casio Privia, for example). Guitar students should have a well set up electric or acoustic guitar and an amplifier (for an electric guitar).

*** Specialties ***
I teach students of all ages and skill levels. The styles that I cover include classical, rock, jazz, and blues. I also teacher recording techniques using computer software including Ableton Live, Reason, and Pro Tools.
...

Reviews

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JIA Z. February 12, 2014
Piano
Verified Student
Mr. Michaelson is the best teacher I've met at Portland.

I do appreciate Chuck for his professional piano lessons and kind. My son enjoyed his lessons sooooooo much and, loves piano more from then on. He is really a great musician and responsible teacher I've ever met at Portland. His patience and style of teaching are sunshine to my son's piano life.
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lulu M. November 5, 2013
Ukulele
Verified Student
Great music teacher!

I've been taking ukulele lessons with Chuck for over a year now. I am always impressed with his musical knowledge and appreciate the way he goes beyond the songs and also teachers me musical notation, chord progressions, and more. My lessons are always fun, with just the right amount of challenge to keep my skill development moving forward. Thanks, Chuck!
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Heather B. April 29, 2013
Guitar
Verified Student
skilled teacher

My teen has been taking lessons from Chuck for many months and has learned a lot from him. He is knowledgeable and skilled in guitar, always on time and willing to be understanding with our schedule conflicts. His studio is very attractive and professional, very comfortable and nice location. He is patient and obviously enjoys what he does! thanks Chuck!
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Chuck M.

Chuck M.

Portland, OR 97212
(8)
starting at
$35 / 30-min
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Peter Q.

Portland, OR

I've got a great tuned piano in my studio! We can learn Classical, Jazz, Pop, the whole 9!

About Peter

I'm a multi-instrumentalist from the Northwest with lots of love for teaching people to groove. I got my bachelor's degree in music from Whitman College with an emphasis in Jazz Performance. I can teach anyone to rock, swing or get unreasonably funky. Lessons can be casual or serious and I'm down to tell you how to get to Carnegie Hall or onto the stage at the local jam.

*** Lesson Details ***
I like to teach my students what they want to learn! I'm always game for setting up a fun path to being able to play your favorite songs as fast as possible. I don't scold or shame and having a blast
is the name of my game. I can teach you to improvise, read music, become a strummer or virtuoso, it's all up to you.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Lessons in the basement studio, piano, guitars, amps, hand drums, a bass, woodwinds, FULL DRUM SET!

*** Travel Equipment ***
I can travel with a sax, flute, guitar, electric bass, and a didgeridoo....

*** Specialties ***
I'm a jazz musician! But I listen to and perform all styles of music. I have written string quartets, been the front man for a funk band, and recorded every style of music under the sun. I can teach Bach and the Beatles and explain how/ and why they intersect and are similar musically.
...

Reviews

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Lissa M. August 5, 2015
Flute · Online
Verified Student
My daughter loved her first lesson, and is very excited for more
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Alisa M. October 20, 2014
Flute · In studio
Verified Student
Peter is wonderful with kids, he's empathetic and eager to find the right fit with your child. He is very well versed in multiple methods from Jazz to Classical to Beatbox and he's super fun. I'd highly recommend him.
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Peter Q.

Peter Q.

Portland, OR 97211
(2)
starting at
$40 / 30-min
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Jack W.

Vancouver, WA

I believe that students can only learn properly in the right atmosphere, with an enthusiastic, motivated instructor. If the experience is not fun the student will not excel in what they do. I believe the students should periodically have a chance to show what they are learning by performing in recitals with others.

About Jack

I started taking Violin and Piano lessons at age 7. By the age of 12 I was performing recitals and was Concert Master of my elementary school orchestra. In high school I was first chair, and learned to conduct the orchestra. I attended Southwest Missouri State College in Springfield Missouri. I created my own string quartet while studying there. I studied Violin under Mr. Harold King, who was a good friend of Jascha Heifetz and was his roommate in Chicago where they studied music together. I have studied Violin and Piano with many other instructors, including Tony Bennet and Peggy Lee's record
ing pianist. I studied modern and jazz piano with Paul Horn's Jazz Group. I was vocal coach for 3 years for the Pasadena, California Ambassador choir.I have taught for approx. 50 years privately and in various colleges and schools. I was a co-founder and owner of Pasadena School of music in Pasadena California . I was an instructor for Beacock Music in Vancouver, Washington. I have been a member or the Clark College Orchestra and have performed in several concerts with them.I currently perform all over Oregon and Washington, and perform weekly for various functions in the area.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Living Room:Roland electronic piano, seating for parents

*** Travel Equipment ***
Violin
All required music

*** Specialties ***
Suzuki Violin, normal Violin Methods, Classical Violin and Piano, modern music piano & theory, and Viola.
...

Reviews

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Evelyn B. June 2, 2016
Violin · In home
Verified Student
Very good instructor
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Lisa O. November 14, 2013
Viola
Verified Student
JACK IS TERRIFIC!

I wish we had found Jack years ago. We hired Jack specifically to help my daughter prepare for an audition. The audition was a success! Jack's approach to teaching is no nonsense and precise, but he has a warm and gentle way about him that motivated my daughter in a way that others haven't. Aside from his teaching ability, I was pleasantly surprised with Jack's sense of urgency and flexibility in responding to special scheduling needs. This is the first time I have been inspired to write an on-line testimony. I hope it helps other students discover Jack's tutoring.
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Sharri L. October 31, 2013
Violin
Verified Student
Deserves 6 stars

If I looked for a million years I could not have found a better instructor than Jack. He is a peach. I am an older student with Osteoarthritis and I'm hoping that violin will both help avoid Altzheimer's and exercise and stretch the fingers. Jack is sympathetic to my needs and is helping in any way possible. I always look forward to Jack and his sunny personality and expertise. I'm sure that I have reached the epitome of "difficult students", but Jack is always patient and pleasant. He is a true professional in every sense.
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Jack W.

Jack W.

Vancouver, WA 98662
(5)
starting at
$40.50 / 30-min
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Mark W.

Portland, OR

BEGINNING PIANO and VIOLIN - The foundations of music require many skills layered on top of one another. We will start by learning fingering, note names, and short pieces. The students will be making music even from the beginning. The lessons will progress from learning by rote to reading music. We will incorporate clapping rhythms, singing, and musical games.

INTERMEDIATE PIANO and VIOLIN - We will focus on refining technique, sight-reading, music theory, and building an exciting repertoire of music that they love to play and can share with others.

I look forward to meeting you!

About Mark

Mark W. is available for in-studio lessons in SE Portland. Mark has played piano and violin for over 25 years and began teaching in 2000. Mark teaches all experience levels from beginner to intermediate to advanced as well as professional artists in touring rock bands and classical musicians.

Although trained in standard teaching methods, Mark developed his own method of teaching to positively enhance the student€™'s technique, ear training, and confidence. His goal as a teacher is specifically designed to help you achieve your goals as an artist and a musician.

He is a hands-on, one-ste
p-at-a-time teacher who believes in the whole musician. He incorporates music theory, history, composition, and performance into lessons. In all cases, he will be searching for and exploring music that you can be excited about.

Mark is a very patient instructor and understands that students learn at different paces, after all everyone is an individual.

____________________

Mark studied at the University of Missouri where he completed his Master of Music degree in 2008. He teaches piano, violin, composition, and music theory college prep classes. His students range from kindergarteners to adults.

Mark is the Artistic Director and conductor of BRAVO Youth Orchestras, a social justice after-school program for students in North Portland. He has arranged over 100 pieces of folk, popular, and classical music for youth orchestra.

Mark is also a faculty member at Multnomah Arts Center where we directs the Multnomah Chorus, a non-audition adult choir. Between the youth orchestra and his choir, he conducts over 35 concerts each year.

He has held conducting positions at Pacific Youth Choir and the Community Music Center.

— STUDIO EQUIPMENT —
grand piano (Yamaha)
violin (Klaus Heffler)
music stand
...

Reviews

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Heejoo H. February 14, 2013
Piano
Verified Student
Mark is great

Mark is a very good teacher. My progress with him is better than any other of my teachers. I would recommend him to anyone. He is very kind and I enjoy my lessons with him.
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Olga O. October 28, 2012
Verified Student
Best piano teacher.

Mark W. is a really good teacher. It's fun to learn piano with him. He is a professional piano teacher. He's careful in making sure that I understand what he tells me. I'm really happy that I am his student.
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CrisC June 11, 2012
Mark is a very patient instructor, he works hard at encouraging me every class! If you want a good, hardworking instructor who is willing to really take the time to help you in your quest for learning to play a musical instrument I would highly recommend Mark !
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Mark W.

Mark W.

Portland, OR 97214
(11)
starting at
$35 / 30-min
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Karen W.

Portland, OR

Experienced Piano teacher available for eager students of all experience levels and ages! I structure my lessons so students learn what they want to learn, while also building a strong foundation of musical skills. I am classically trained, have played in blues/rock bands, and have some jazz improv experience. I like to use the Faber method books, since they include many fun teacher/student duets. I enjoy helping people to find the fun in playing piano!

About Karen

I have a BA in Psychology, and an MA in Parapsychology. I studied Architecture for 3 years, and Music Education for two years. I was a National Merit Semifinalist in High School for good SAT scores, and in the Honors Society in High School and College. I play piano, percussion, flute, cello, guitar, bass, cornet and glockenspiel, and teach music lessons. I enjoy playing duets with my students, sharing the fun of making music with them. I do macrame', draw and paint, and am certified as a Reiki Master. I always loved school, and enjoy helping other people to learn. My Dad is my role model, sin
ce he was a calm, patient tutor for me - I try to live up to his example in my own teaching work.
I like to work with my students in a learning partnership, letting them work at their own pace with my encouragement and support.
I love to teach, and can help you love to learn!

*** Lesson Details ***
Lessons are usually 30 or 60 minutes, once a week.
I can be flexible, if your needs differ.
I can also arrange more evening times at 5:00 or later,
if the times on my availability list don't work for you.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Living room with electric piano, electric guitar, percussion instruments, and seating for parents

*** Travel Equipment ***
Piano students should have a touch-sensitive piano/keyboard in their home.
All other music students should either own or rent their instrument.
Everyone should bring their assignment notebook and their lesson books to lessons.

*** Specialties ***
I play Rock, Blues, Jazz and Classical styles.
The Faber method books are my favorite.
I have the most tutoring experience with Math and Statistics.
...

Reviews

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Maria L. June 20, 2016
Piano · In studio
Verified Student
Karen is not only a gifted teacher but an excellent listener and has an extremely easy going personality. This was my third lesson and I already "feel the love."
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Ethan P. July 13, 2015
Piano · In home
Verified Student
My son was thrilled with Karen and so was I...she will be a great fit!
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Malini R. July 2, 2015
Piano · In home
Verified Student
Karen was a wonderful teacher to my 6 year old! She was very calm, attentive and flexible with my daughter's learning needs. She was able to start my daughter off on the right foot with love of piano, having her play short songs and duets, learn notes and reading music. We moved but are grateful to have had her as a teacher.
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Karen W.

Karen W.

Portland, OR 97206
(9)
starting at
$25 / 30-min

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Free Piano Lessons with an Expert Teacher

Learn how to play the piano in these video tutorials from a professional piano teacher!

Have you always wanted to play the piano? We’re here to help! Get started with these 20 video tutorials hosted by San Diego, CA piano teacher Jordan M, one of our expert instructors with TakeLessons.com. In this free video series, you’ll get an introduction to the instrument and learn a few easy exercises to get you reading music and understanding rhythm!

Video #1: Intro to the Piano

Intro to the Piano: Learn about the parts of the piano and how to find the all-important Middle C.

Video #2:
Piano Basics

Learn about proper posture, hand placement, and other beginner essentials.

Video #3:
Reading Piano Notes

Learn about the treble and bass clefs, and tips for remembering the notes on the piano.

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Time and Key Signatures

Learn what all those sharps and flats really mean, and how to decode your music.

Video #5:
Understanding Rhythm

Follow along to master quarter notes, quarter rests, and half rests.

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