About lessons and practicing
Q: Do I need to be musically gifted to play the piano?
A: You already are. Everyone is deeply, naturally and profoundly musical – even those who think they’re not. If you work with us you will out just how musical you really are!
Q: I struggled with reading when I took lessons as a child. Can I learn to play the piano?
A: Absolutely! We delay reading for about a year so that you can just immerse yourself in the music and learn to play song after song, in all styles. Then you will begin to read with a process that is gentle and paced to match what is comfortable for you. With us, you will learn how to read music the same way you learned your first language: First, you learned to talk, then years later, you worked with the written word. We will teach you how to” talk” first, then later, when it is developmentally appropriate, you will work with music notation. Easy Peasy.
Q: I am a prospective adult student. I’ve always wanted to play the piano but never got the chance until now. Is it too late for me?
A: Not all. We have nearly 100 students and more than a third are adults! Our oldest student is 82 and she is doing very well. It’s never too late.
Q: You say that your students play 30 to 50 songs in their first year. Come on – isn’t that an exaggeration? Are these real songs?
A: It’s true – our typical Simply Music student learns 30 to 50 songs, in all styles, in the first year of lessons. These songs are substantial pieces of music, which develop a deep and wide set of skills, and they are fun to play and listen to. And these are just the beginning…
Q: Won’t I have to practice a couple of hours every day to get those results? I don’t have that much time!
A: You don’t need hours of practice – just 15 to 20 minutes, for 5 days each week, is all the practice that is needed. And you will come to view that time as some of the most productive and enjoyable of your day!
Q: Do I need to practice on a real piano?
A: Nope. Electronic keyboards can work well. In fact, all of our teachers practice on keyboards at home.
Q: I have no idea what type of piano or keyboard to buy. Can you help?
A: Yes. We can provide guidance to help you choose a reliable instrument that feels and sounds good and will serve for many years without breaking the bank.
Q: I have a piano that needs tuning and maybe even a little work. Can you recommend a piano technician?
About specific goals and concerns
Q: I would like to play for my church worship team. Can you help?
A: Yes. This type of playing is called accompaniment and all of our students learn how to accompany other musicians and singers. You can even bring in your favorite praise and worship songs and we will show you how to play them. You will also acquire the ability to figure out how to play these songs without our help!
Q: I would like to learn how to compose my own songs, or make arrangements of songs that I already like. Can you help me?
A: Yes. All of our teachers are trained to help budding composers and arrangers, and one of the owners (Evan) has a bachelor’s degree in music composition. Evan writes symphonies, commercial music and he is highly focused on melody, harmony and rhythm. Evan can help you learn how to compose and arrange any style of music, how to use music composition software, and how to take your idea from the initial sketch to high quality, finished digital demonstration recordings.
Q: Your website mentions that you have a “house band” which backs up piano students during your Jam Nights. If I play an instrument or if I sing, could I be in the band?
A: You bet. The house band consists of studio parents who play instruments or who sing, and piano students who play other instruments or who like to sing. Come check it out!
Q: Speaking of Jam Nights, I had a bad experience with recitals as a child. Will I or my kids have to participate in Jam Nights?
A: Nope. Although Jam Nights are lots of fun, no pressure events, they are optional. No one is required to participate. Visitors and observers are welcome and the food is yummy!