Price per lesson
Book a Lesson with Alan Uhler
Hi! My name is Alan, and I've been a bassist for 15 years. Like most kids, I started in my public school program, learning to read music and how to play in an orchestra setting. In high school I started playing jazz academically, and rock music with my friends. I went to Berklee College of Music for my undergrad, and am starting a Master's in Modern American Music at Longy/Bard College in the fall of 2013. Between college and grad school, I spent a year living in Los Angeles playing and recording music, and 3 years in Dallas teaching privately and at music camps. Other than woodshedding my upright, my recent hobbies have been watching Seinfeld, playing PC games, and watching/playing basketball. I currently play with a community orchestra and a couple of bluegrass bands in the Boston area, while picking up jazz gigs as I come across them.
Since lessons, especially for beginners, can quickly become a grind with no goal in sight, I like to give about 70% of content choices to the student. We're always going to do scales, and probably other more technical exercises, since they're the basis of music and many other trite but true things you've heard from teachers over the years. But I want to be playing songs as soon as the first lesson, giving a sense of purpose and satisfaction to time spent with the instrument. This is especially true on guitar and bass guitar, as almost everyone has a favorite artist that prominently features these instruments, and that artist has a song that is easy to pick up with only a little left hand activity. Upright bass requires either a more specific artist selection (Ben Folds, Tom Waits, et al), or a love of jazz and classical music, which is highly recommended anyway.
I'm pretty laid back, but if the work isn't getting done I get ornery. We will however end up repeating the material for a couple lessons until I've walked you through the practicing enough that we can move on. It's not fun, but the stuff we do is really what is necessary to get moving on to more challenging songs and better playing.