What do Bobby McFerrin, the Odyssey, and Winter Bells have in common? They're all in this month's newsletter! Download a pdf here or read all about ways to be involved in music this season by viewing the pics and clicking the links at the bottom.
Michael Lucero is a guitar and oud player based in Portland, Oregon. Born and raised in Scottsdale, Arizona, he began playing guitar and bass in 2007. He played electric bass in local indie rock bands and upright in his high school’s jazz band. In 2013, he moved to San Diego to attend and play baseball at Point Loma Nazarene University where he earned a degree in philosophy. His musical education draws from a multitude of sources, studying with Brooklyn-based guitar and oud player Harvey Valdes and San Diego-based classical guitarist Peter Pupping, as well as studying at both Mira Costa and Grossmont College. He has been gigging actively for a decade, but most recently as an oud player with the Grossmont Middle East Ensemble and a guitar player both in the Encinitas Guitar Orchestra and in San Diego-based soul/rock band Cath.
Michael joined Maestro Music Academy in 2022. He adapts the curriculum according to the taste and enjoyment of each student, balancing music literacy with favorite requested tunes. He helps students uncover the logic of the fretboard enabling them to find freedom on the instrument, through which students can discover their own voice and sense of musicality. He teaches various plucked string instruments including guitar, oud, bass, banjo, and ukulele as well as piano and percussion.
Students at Maestro Music Academy will begin an Odyssey through the Land of Music in mid-September! We are planning a year-round excursion into the elements of music. Prepare to visit:
Island of Rhythm
Beginning September 11, students will create their music passports and each new month will emphasize a different element of music! We invite you to join us on this odyssey as you continue your lifelong learning and growing through music education and performance. Children will learn different musical concepts through a new music theory game each week, and adults will explore different ways to read music notation through new songs each week. Teens will experience both with a composition emphasis. Enrollment is now open for new students to join! Visit www.maestromusiclessons.org/register to see openings or text Bonnie at 541-231-6040.
Note: summer subjects are encouraged choices for new and returning students alike.
Summer flash sale discount limited to new students only, as existing members receive many other membership benefits.
I’ve been on zoom since 2015 because of the convenience of signing in from home when unusual circumstances arise:
-stayed home sick but feel fine now
-weather created unsafe road conditions
-visiting a second parent’s house on a different night than normal
and of course now, rain & cold & the pandemic. Maestro Music Academy has put a brief hold on in-person outdoor lessons while the MusicMobile is renovated, and members have switched to zoom during the hiatus. We had an informative & brief workshop last night for students either new to zoom or looking for ways to improve their lesson experience. Here's an overview for your reference!
Tip #1: Posture
You've heard your teacher talk about this til you could recite it word for word - but have you LOOKED at yourself in zoom recently? The bigger your screen the more helpful the lesson will be (aka tablet or laptop is bigger than a cell phone). Place your device so you are showing both your face and your fingers on your instrument. We don't need to see your music usually (we have a copy) but we need to see your profile from head to fingers.
Tip #2: Original Sound
Video calls often screen out background noise, and you wouldn't want zoom to hear your guitar strumming and filter it out. Learn how to enable "Original Sound", their term for authentic music, by logging into your zoom app and enabling the setting BEFORE the meeting begins AND every time you join a new meeting. (Original Sound is not an option when using a cell phone for your lesson.) https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/115003279466-Using-and-preserving-original-sound-in-a-meeting
Tip #3: Annotation
This is my favorite tool. Zoom has improved it a LOT since the company became a household name and I use it every day. Imagine it's 1970 and you have a copy of the teacher's slides to write on for notes - if you circled a portion of a slide or drew on it, you "annotated" the slide. Now zoom ahead to 2021 and use the pencil-shaped annotate feature from everything to marking music to playing games to practicing drawing music notes on the whiteboard screen. Enable this feature here https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/4409894568845-Enabling-or-disabling-annotation-tools-for-meetings
And find the annotate tool by reading these instructions https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/115005706806-Using-annotation-tools-for-virtual-meeting-collaboration
Incentives drive performance. We want your student to practice so they can learn new techniques and repertoire. You want your student to practice so your tuition is utilized and you can see results. When students don't practice, they get frustrated at their lack of forward progress.
Why does your student want to practice? Try asking them, it will facilitate communication about goals and expectations.
What makes all students want to practice more? Incentives! For all students who complete 4 weeks of practice assignments AND switch lyrics to a popular song for Halloween, Thanksgiving, or autumn in general, they'll receive a special holiday gift bag at our December recital.
Download the practice assignment page here, and ask your teacher for help with switching lyrics!
A BIG thank you to Andrea and Trevor Dow for the practice assignment pages!