Happy new year! I wanted to take a moment to reflect on 2021, as well as look forward to some new directions for Primary Colors Music Instruction in 2022.
One of the most exciting new things in 2021 was that during the Spring I taught an 8 week online class on "How Music Works" - Between 2 classes I almost had 20 students that met on a weekly basis for 8 weeks. This class was a challenge in many ways, from the technical aspects of doing a group class online, to working with students from many different educational backgrounds, to defining exactly what the class was. The concept of the class was born in 2020 during quarantine when I made a series of youtube tutorials for how to program music using Chrome Music Lab. Chrome Music Lab is free online sequencer that allows you to write and automate music in your web browser. The accessibility of this application, combined with the musical potential of knowing how to use the sequencer as a tool was very inspiring to me to want to teach. I personally feel that understanding how to use a sequencer is one of the easiest ways to learn how music works.
Not long after I taught this class, in early Summer I had an accident where I fell off a boat. During my recovery I was unable to teach, or even play instruments. I was for the most part on the couch for 3 months. I took advantage of this time by exploring my curiosities in composing, orchestrating and using music technology. I finally had time to watch 1 hour youtube tutorials and read some books I'd been wanting to read. I felt like I opened pandora's box. The possibilities were overwhelming initially, but thanks to the work in preparing my "How Music Works" classes, I was able to see it with a more structured perspective, as opposed to an endless amount of information. (My previous blog posts explore in details some of the new things I learned during this time.)
Whether I am structuring a private guitar lesson, teaching a group class, working on writing a piece of music, or recording a song... I always come back to what I call the primary colors of music - rhythm, melody and harmony. My goal is to make these elements of music work together in a way that serves the moment, whether it be a lesson, performance or composition. In 2022, I am looking forward to integrating everything I have learned about composing and music technology over the past year. Whether you want to incorporate technology as a way to augment the instrument you play, such as learning to loop a chord progression so that you can improvise a melody over it, or you want to fully embrace technology as a compositional tool, I am happy to help anywhere along this spectrum. Stay tuned for more educational resources/tutorials from me in the upcoming year, and please get in touch if you have any questions about how technology can help you reach your musical goals for 2022!