Brad Novak

Brad N.

Traverse City, MI

Lesson Details


Levels Taught:
Beginner, Intermediate
Are you a beginning band student or perhaps auditioning for a college or university? Let me help you walk through the process. We'll cover many aspects of the percussion world including snare technique, timpani (performing and tuning), marimba, etc.
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Brad teaches



Brad passed a background check that includes a SSN verification, national criminal record check, and sex offender registry search. Learn More
Brad delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 5+

Teaching since:

I've been a drummer for over 35 years. I LOVE music and I LOVE working with musicians/students with passion! I've been teaching since 1997 and run my own music school in Michigan called The Beat Lab. I currently teach over 100 students per week, in both private and group lessons! I am also the Applied Percussion Instructor at Northwestern Michigan College, the percussion instructor at the Homeschool Partnership through the Traverse City Area Public Schools, and teach beginning percussion at the Grand Traverse Area Catholic Schools.

As a live and recording drummer I've had the pleasure of working with The Accidentals, Miriam Pico, David Chown, Dominic Fortuna, Brian Whitscell, The Traverse Symphony Orchestra, Encore Winds, and many others. As a worship drummer I've had the pleasure of sharing the stage with musicians such as Paul Langford, Joe Horness, Abe Laboriel Sr., and many others.

My teaching centers around a few basic principles of music. Mastery of these principles allows the student to progress at an exponential rate. I value reading music, as I believe it makes the learning process faster and more efficient, not to mention the fact that it makes the player much more marketable, should they decide to pursue music as a career.

I teach drum set (rock, jazz, latin, etc.), concert percussion (snare, bass drum, timpani, marimba, triangle, etc), and marching percussion.

I look forward to meeting you and working with you on your journey through music!

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Percussion Instructor
Sep 2018 - Present
TCAPS Homeschool Association

Sep 2012 - Present
Private company

My company is a facility/community committed to providing real world musical experience for students of all ages and experience levels. Our unique combination of private lessons and ensemble classes gives each student plenty of opportunity to explore and expand their musical talents.

My company has classes for drums, percussion, guitar, bass, ukulele, and music theory. Students can participate in any or all classes

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Applied Percussion Instructor
Aug 2008 - Present
Northwestern Michigan College


Music Performance
Jan 1997 - May 2002
Central Michigan University
Aug 1996 - Dec 1996
Berklee College of Music


Louis Armstrong Jazz Award
May 1996


The Sabian Education Network
Jun 2015

Education is a priority at Sabian. Not only do we support hundreds of clinics around the globe each year, we also support education in schools, provide funding for scholarships and are actively involved as sponsors with collegiate ensembles and drum corps.

Vic Firth Education Team
Jan 2005

The Vic Firth Company is proud to be among the most educationally conscientious companies in the music industry. Vic Firth Company has collaborated with some of the top educational minds around the globe to support percussion education. As we witness the growth of percussion education, we are encouraged to further develop and diversify our already highly successful program. Started in 1997 as a means to foster dialogue between percussion educators of all levels and strengths, the Vic Firth Education Team remains the industry’s innovating force in providing resources to percussion educators. As we witness the growth of percussion education, we are encouraged to further develop and diversify our already highly successful program.

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Photos & Videos

Offering closing remarks at a recent student recital.

Photo by Brad N.

Photo by Brad N.
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2 Reviews

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Brianne Apr 24, 2019
Percussion · In studio

I took lessons from Brad for 6 years during middle and high school and I have nothing but praise for him. He is a stellar teacher and as a result of his instruction I am now a third year music major at Alma College performing with the college percussion ensemble, pipe band, concert band, drumline, and orchestra. Before that I earned 1 ratings at State Solo and Ensemble and participated in the MSBOA District Honor Band and All State Orchestra. None of this would have been possible without Brad's instruction. Brad Novak's focus on technique and development of proper musical phrasing and expression allowed my college music career to be possible.

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Kyle Dec 28, 2018
Drum · In studio

I took lessons with Brad for a little over 10 years before departing for Interlochen Arts Academy for my senior year of high school. To say this amazing experience not have been possible for me musically without Brad would be an incredible understatement. Brad was always open to whatever I was interested in musically, and let the music guide everything. Aside from being an amazing teacher, Brad was also an amazing mentor. He served as a great role model to me, and was incredibly influential to me as a person, not just a musician. It really is impossible to put into words the impact that Brad has had on me.

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