Fall 2017 - Spring 2018

This fall, we are excited to announce four new classes:

1. Developing Deep Rhythm in Your Music

When we play music with others, whether be classical, folk-based, or jazz, it is often the rhythm that becomes the most subtle layer that we need to work with. When we listen to the masters, we notice their attention placed on every note. This is what I describe as “deep rhythm,” being; attention placed with conviction and space toward and around each note, chord, and rhythmic gesture in alignment with the human breath and its physical language of the body. Deep rhythm is a layer of practicing often left to the “rhythm section” players, (often called, “the groove” or “the zone”), but even working on our rhythm with solo strumming a guitar or playing a melody with a certain conviction can be a deeper part of our independent practice that can offer an unending stream of joy. When the lead player or vocalist commands a sense of deep rhythm, it draws along the rest of the ensemble with its current. This class will be an exploration and practice of these aspects of solo and ensemble music-making. For individuals, pre-formed groups of all genres, or new groups forming. Please call 415-663-9176 for exact time, schedule, and fee.

2. Learning to Read Music

This class will be divided into two levels: those who are complete novices in the skills of reading music and those who wish to improve their confidence in their fundamental knowledge of music reading. Fun exercises and rhythm games will include ear training, “eyes-closed” note identification games, discussion of the beautiful system of scales we use in Western music, learning simple tunes with reading and writing, and eventual songwriting in the genre of your choice. Take a step toward opening your entire world to the literature of written music! Please call 415-663-9176 for exact time, schedule, and fee.

3. Improvising Music and Poetry from the Heart

This class is for complete novices as well as those who have sung or played instruments over the years. In the past, this class became a four-year odyssey of creative expression for people with many levels of experience. Picture an experienced piano improviser, a new person to small percussion listening for a place to make a subtle sound, and another person spotting a source of creative sound - a piece of paper to tear at the just the right second. The entire practice is about attention and sensitivity to rhythmic timing, with musical sounds as the medium. Poetry will also enter in to our pieces to add a verbal and vocal level of expression. Please call 415-663-9176 for exact time, schedule, and fee.

4. Hand Drumming

How do we express ourselves from the heart to the hand to the skin of a drum? How do we learn to play with the kind of gentleness and subtlety that will consistently bring out the deep resonance of a beautiful African-style hand drum? How do we pay attention to our own rhythm part as well as our fellow drummers to create a sound of “one drum” in musical unity? These are some of the major issues we address in this class. Authentic rhythm patterns of Senegal - experienced over 30 years by the instructor after learning them with the master drummers of the National Ballet of Senegal, West Africa - will be our palette for learning. This is an ongoing class. We welcome newcomers who will be given “easy parts” to play after a private session or two with the instructor. Please call 415-663-9176 for exact time, schedule, and fee.

Plus Private Lessons in Piano, Guitar, Cello, Percussion, Composing, Ear Training and Musicianship, Improvisation in jazz and free-style