- Levels Taught:
- Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
- Teaches students:
- Ages 5+ and special needs
- Teaching since:
I’m Ben of BZ Drum Studio. I’m a professional drummer and educator. I’ve performed around the world, in Japan, China, South America, Europe, Canada, and across the US having worked with some incredible jazz musicians (Randy Weston, Johnny O’Neal, Larry Ridley, David Williams, Roy Hargrove, Joel Press, Cecil Bridgewater, Deborah Davis, Joe Cohn, Jerry Dodgion, and Steve Nelson).
I specialize in jazz but play and teach many genres on both drum set and percussion. I’m fascinated by the many drumming traditions around the world, New Orleans, Brazil, West/Central Africa, European Classical, Klezmer, Cuba, American Jazz, Folk, and Rock and Roll.
I have a B.M. and M.M. from Manhattan School of Music and have 10+ years of private teaching experience. I’ve taught percussion classes at public, private, and charter schools and also have conducted jazz masterclasses at various universities around the country. My students have been regularly chosen for prestigious ensembles such as Jazz at Lincoln Center’s student ensembles, Manhattan School of Music pre-college and summer camp, and Columbia University’s jazz ensembles.
In lessons we focus on strengthening the fundamentals (time, sound, groove feeling) while also working on creativity and drum set language. I have a passion for teaching my students. Lessons are usually generously extended over the allotted time, and I take each student’s goals into account when tailoring the individual lesson curriculums.
University jazz clinics with various touring jazz ensembles. I've conducted workshops on rhythm section playing, jazz history and listening, business dealing in the modern gig economy, and technique for clearer melodic drumming.
Private Teaching Studio. Drums and Percussion. All Ages and experience level.
Percussion Instructor at Bronx Charter Middle School.
High School and Middle School Group Percussion Classes
I owe Ben a lot. I spent about a month taking lessons with Ben to prep for an audition for a university jazz program (I had zero experience playing jazz before this). Ben was one of the best music teachers I have ever had: he managed to get me prepared for my audition in just a few short weeks (I got into the program and had an incredible experience), and, perhaps more importantly, he taught me basic principles about jazz and jazz drumming that I think about constantly - not only when I am playing, but when I’m listening to jazz (which is most of the day, thanks to all the great recommendations from Ben). Ben is also an awesome dude, and has been described to me by random jazz dudes at FatCat as one of the “best drummers in New York right now.” If you’re looking for a drum teacher, Ben is without a doubt the best choice out there.Show More
Ben is a talented drummer and an excellent educator: he really helped me improve as a musician. I highly recommend studying with him.
Having been a student of Ben's for three years, I am proud to say that he is the best drum instructor I've ever had. Ben's approach is tailored directly to the student's needs, whether they be introductory or advanced. He is always supportive and encouraging of you to perform to your fullest potential and actively practice what you learn between lessons, for which he provides useful activities. Ben is also generous with his time each lesson, frequently spending a little extra time to ensure your understanding of the material. He is always prepared to start teaching at the appointed time, and he is easy to contact to set up lessons and flexible with his availability.
Outside of lessons, Ben has often invited me to see him play in clubs around New York City and sometimes perform myself if there's room. This has given me the opportunity to engage with the jazz community and see what I've been taught being applied in professional settings. Taking lessons from and spending time with Ben has been a fulfilling experience, and I would strongly recommend him to drumming students of all ages and backgrounds.
I have worked with Ben for many years. Ben is one of the most insightful and enthusiastic teachers I have ever encountered. He always knows how to focus his students’ attention on what they need to work on in a supportive and helpful way, giving them manageable assignments that isolate and strengthen the weak points of their playing. Ben is personally invested in his students’ improvement and love of music, and is wonderful at encouraging his students such that they really want to practice and get better. I’ve enjoyed every part of our lessons and highly recommend Ben as a teacher for a drummer or musician of any skill level. I’ve also had the pleasure of meeting a number of Ben’s other students and I know they feel the same way!Show More