About my Lessons (FAQ)
Is learning drums easy?
Drums are often viewed as an easy option and a bit of fun. It’s true that drums are the coolest instrument on the planet and you’ll learn how to play a simple drum beat in your first lesson. However, to progress beyond the basics takes a LOT of hard work and dedication. Learning drums is NOT easy – as a classically trained musician I’d go as far to say drums are one of the hardest instruments to play well – after all not many other instruments require four limb independence. All good drummers have gone through endless practice of essential rudiments and unfortunately there’s no shortcut to becoming good other than hard work, lots of practice and a passion for the instrument. If you’re not prepared to make that commitment to practice, not to mention the expense of a drum kit, then I’d suggest picking a different instrument. If you’re not passionate about drums pick a different instrument. If you’re looking for an easy option pick a different instrument.
What level to you teach to?
I teach all levels with a special emphasis on teaching absolute beginners.
What ages do you teach?
There is no upper age limit to play drums providing you’re relatively fit & healthy. The youngest I teach is 10 years old mainly due to the practicalities of reaching pedals, attention span etc. Playing drums well takes a LOT of practice and patience – progress will be slow if you don’t have a passion for this instrument. Practicing on a practice pad is just as important as practicing behind a kit and you will be expected to practice from home between lessons.
Where and When do you teach?
I teach from my home in Great Park, near Gosforth, Newcastle upon Tyne. Lessons are held Monday to Friday with the last lesson ending at 7.30pm. I’m afraid I don’t teach on weekends and I don’t provide home visits.
How long do lessons last?
Lessons last for a strict 30 minutes or 1 hour. That time will be divided up between kit playing and practice pad rudiments / theory as required. Younger pupils tend to benefit from weekly 30 minute lessons whereas older pupils may prefer 30 or 60 minute lessons every 2 weeks.
How Much do Lessons Cost?
Lessons are £15 per 30 min slot. A double lesson slot (60 mins) is £30.
How much should I practice my drums between lessons?
Practice as much as you possibly can! If you do 30 mins practice per day you’ll progress at a good rate. If you do 30 mins practice per week you’ll progress slowly and lessons will be boring as we’ll not be able to start on new material. If you don’t practice at all you won’t progress at all and I would advise suspending lessons until you do have time to practice. Life can sometimes get in the road and if you know you’re not going to have time to practice before the next lesson then get in touch about re-scheduling – if you don’t practice lessons can become frustrating for both the pupil and the teacher.
What is the lesson format?
I like to give students a good opportunity to enjoy playing the kit while providing a balance of essential technique, rudiments and exercises. Lessons are split between an electronic kit, practice pad(s) and, from time to time, the acoustic kit. The vast majority of the lesson will be held on my professional level electronic kit (Yamaha DTX750K) – this has the advantage of a realistic feel and sounds without the volume of an acoustic kit – this makes communicating during the lesson far easier.
Can parents sit in on lessons?
Most pupils concentrate better without the distraction of someone else being in the room, but I do have space for up to two people to sit in on lessons if you want to check progress at any time.
What do you think about on-line drum lessons?
There’s a HUGE amount of information out there on the internet for free now and some that you need to pay for – even to an experienced drummer this can be overwhelming. Firstly there is no substitute for proper face-to-face lessons via a drum teacher. A good drum teacher will identify problems with your style and technique that are simply impossible to spot via on-line lessons. I’m author of the Beginner Drums educational web site and YouTube channel – this contains a huge amount of free information to help get started on the drum kit.