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Winslow Y.
Teaches Online
Learn to play harmonica like Neil Young!
You can expect me to listen to what you tell me, listen to how you play, and then give you information and activities to increase your understanding and develop your abilities. It could be anything from which end of the harmonica is up to advanced classical or jazz performance, or anything in between - blues harp, Neil Young, you name it.
About Winslow Y.

My focus is on you - helping you achieve your goals with the harmonica, whatever they may be. Whatever inspires you to pick up the harmonica, whoever you want to emulate, whatever style grabs you, I bring the background, deep knowledge, and teaching experience to enrich your understanding and grow your skills and ability to express yourself musically. I'm a harmonica specialist, known internationally as a player and teacher. I'm the author of the books Harmonica For Dummies and Blues Harmonica For Dummies. I can teach all styles, all levels of expertise and all types of harmonica.

Levels taught

Teaches all skill levels

Teaching since {{year}}

Teaching since 1972

Education

Music composition, voice

Teaches ages {{minAge}}+

Teaches ages 5+

Speaks {{languages}}

Speaks English, French

Speaks {{languages}}

Has background check

Instructor details
Harmonica
Teaches Online
Teaches Online
Work hours
M
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F
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Times are shown in your local timezone (UTC-08:00) Pacific Time (US & Canada)
Pricing
30 minutes
$30
45 minutes
$45
60 minutes
$50
New Student Special
First 3 lessons
$30
Photos & videos16 photos & videos
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ReviewsWrite a review
4.8
23 Reviews
5Review Star
91%
4Review Star
4%
3Review Star
4%
2Review Star
0%
1Review Star
0%
Online

Winslow has been a wonderful teacher for my son. With his patience and wealth of knowledge and anecdotes, he has built a great rapport. We have subsequently also signed on for music theory for my son and me as well to learn further about musical notation and music history.

Posted Aug 8, 2022
Online

This was my first lesson with Winslow. During it, he was personal, patient, and professional. The man has a wealth of experience to share. No question I asked was too basic for him. Unlike other instructors, he focused on me as a student, not on his ability to impress me with his playing. I will continue with Winslow, who told me "I want to take you where you want to go with the harmonica." Who could ask for a better philosophy of teaching?

Posted Dec 5, 2021
Online

This was a good timely experience

Posted Oct 18, 2021
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Author, Harmonica For Dummies, Second Edition
Jan 2014 - Present
John Wiley and Sons
Harmonica For Dummies is now in its second edition, a 400-page book with online audio, video, and animation clips to supplement the written content. The first edition has been translated into French, German, Russian, and Portuguese.
Producer
Aug 2012 - Present
Harmonica Collective
The Harmonica Collective is an annual gathering of some of the best harmonica players, crafters, and performers to share their knowledge with intermediate and advanced players for three days. Enrollment is limited to 50 in order to give individual attention to each attendee.
Author, Blues Harmonica For Dummies
Jan 2012 - Present
John Wiley and Sons
Advice Columnist
Jan 2010 - Present
bluesharmonica.com
Roving advice columnist for the discussion columns at bluesharmonica.com, an instructional site and course for blues harmonica instruction
Performer
Jan 1971 - Present
Various
Sat in with, opened for, or backed major acts on harmonica, including blues icons Muddy Waters, Charlie Musselwhite, John Mayall, Mark Hummel, Jason Ricci, Magic Dick, Lee Oskar, Rick Estrin, and Jerry Portnoy, traditional violinist Alasdair Fraser and the San Francisco Scottish Fiddlers, and jazz singer Paula West.
President
Aug 2012 - Aug 2015
SPAH, Society for the Preservation and Advancement of the Harmonica
Since 1964 SPAH has produced a quarterly magazine and an annual convention for up to 500 attendees, with seminars, one-on-one teaching, jamming, open mic, and concerts, along with exhibits by vendors and manufacturers.
Faculty instructor
Apr 2008 - May 2018
Jazzschool Community Music School at the California Jazz Conservatory
I taught the ten-week Beginning Diatonic Harmonica Courses when they were offered. I still teach private lessons on Saturdays at the Jazzschool location in Berkeley, California.
Performer
Jan 2008 - Apr 2018
Winslow Yerxa/Tuula Cotter
Wrote, arranged, performed, and recorded with violinist Tuula Tossavainen Cotter with various accompanists.
Performer
Jan 2009 - Aug 2009
San Francisco Harmonica Ensemble
Worked with co-members Steve Malerbi, Damien Masterson, and Michael Peloquin as a four-part harmonica ensemble, including a recorded performance at the 2009 West Coast Jazz Harmonica Summit, which can be viewed on Youtube.
Performer
Jun 2001 - Apr 2017
San Francisco Scottish Fiddlers
Was featured soloist, ensemble member and occasional gig leader with this large traditional music ensemble that included a range from beginning amateurs to world-renowned professionals.
Conductor
Jan 2008 - Nov 2012
Fiddle Rising
Conducted and performed with this traditional music group, an offshoot of the San Francisco Scottish Fiddlers, which I co-led with violinist Tuula Tossavainen Cotter.
Performer
Apr 1996 - Aug 2000
Winslow's Bunch O'Guys
Founded, arranged for, led, and performed with a five-piece harmonica ensemble with rhythm section accompaniment. Members included, at various times, Joe Filisko, Dennis Gruenling, Richard Sleigh, Larry "Iceman" Eisenberg, Chris Michalek, Michael Peloquin, Damien Masterson, Beth Kohnen, and Allen Holmes. Performances included at the annual Buckeye and SPAH harmonica gatherings and the World Harmonica Festival in Trossingen, Germany.
Editor and Publisher
Jan 1992 - Nov 1997
HIP - the Harmonica Information Publication
Published and distributed internationally a 40-plus page harmonica magazine with news, instruction, historical articles, reviews, and general harmonica information.
Performer
Feb 1979 - Sep 1986
Cool Breeze
Played keyboards, percussion, occasional harmonica, and sang harmony vocals and collaborated with bandleader/composer Pietro Giacomo Poggi and musical director David Somers on arrangements for horns, vocals, and rhythm section for 15-piece band playing original music based in Caribbean and African styles.
Performer
Jan 1970 - Dec 1974
King Luxsac
Was lead singer, songwriter, and harmonica player for this pioneering Vancouver, BC, blues and R&B band that included such notables as Gordon Bertram, John Doheny, Olaf de Shield, and Rick Baker. This band was integrated into a shifting network of casual ensembles that included future members of Doug and the Slugs Simon Kendall, John "Wally" Watson, and John Burton.
Music composition, voice
Sep 1976 - May 1977
McGill University
Music composition and arranging
Sep 1974 - May 1976
Vancouver Community College
English
Native Proficiency
French
Limited Proficiency
Pete Pedersen Lifetime Achievement Award
Aug 2016
SPAH, the Society for the Preservation and Advancement of the Harmonica
California Jazz Conservatory
Apr 2008
The California Jazz Conservatory is a nationally accredited music conservatory providing a dynamic community of students, artists, educators, scholars and audiences with a forum to study, perform, teach, research, appreciate and enjoy jazz and related styles of music from throughout the world. Comprising two distinct education programs, the California Jazz Conservatory, a postsecondary degree-granting program, and the Jazzschool Community Music School, a non-degree-granting community education program, the institution honors the contributions of past masters and promotes artistic innovation, bringing together a diverse music community to develop practical skills, acquire artistic sensibility, realize creative potential and find artistic voice.
Society for the Preservation and Advancement of the Harmonica
Jan 1991
SPAH is the Society for the Preservation and Advancement of the Harmonica. It is a non-profit, member organization dedicated to serving the harmonica community.

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Instructor details
Harmonica
Teaches Online
Teaches Online
Work hours
M
T
W
T
F
S
S
Times are shown in your local timezone (UTC-08:00) Pacific Time (US & Canada)
Pricing
30 minutes
$30
45 minutes
$45
60 minutes
$50
New Student Special
First 3 lessons
$30
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