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By Rhys Lett

What We Teach

I asked the teachers of the Eastern Suburbs School of Music “What has been their favourite songs to teach during 2016?”. It is wonderful to see the variety of musical styles we are capable of teaching. If you would like to take lessons with any of our excellent teachers click the enquiry tab to the right of this page or call Rhys on 0421 705 150 today.

Elzna Mynhardt – Piano/Violin – Carrum Downs

My favourite to teach for violin has been “Spring” from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. My student played it beautifully.  For piano it was “Don’t Cry for Me, Argentina” as a two piano duet. I have an amazing student learning it. She has done a brilliant job.

David Hartney – Guitar/Piano/Singing/Ukulele – Boronia

My favourite song to teach on guitar this year has been Nirvana’s Heart Shaped Box. It has the top string on the guitar tuned down to D so it has a nice deep sound. The picking at the start of the verse is three note power chords. All of my students have all been able to understand these well. The chorus has a nice string bend in it on the third string. The solo has a nice pattern of bends that are great to practice bending and improving finger strength. Click here to see our video lesson on how to play string bends on guitar.

My favourite song to teach on ukulele has been Something by The Beatles. George Harrison wrote the song. The chords are easy at the start and gradually get harder with a bar chord eventually appearing later. I wanted to play it after seeing Paul McCartney play it on a ukulele at the Concert For George memorial.

My favourite song to teach on keyboard this year has been Don’t Look Back In Anger by Oasis. The Verse and Chorus chords have nice changes and variations. There are some passing chords and a nice steady hand movement that helps develop a good sense of timing.

Genevieve Matthews – Violin – Boronia

I’ve really enjoyed teaching my students music to their favourite TV shows and movie soundtracks. For example the theme to BBC’s Sherlock and some songs from Lord of the Rings. The students get to play something they really enjoy and can relate to the things they like to watch. It’s also fun to arrange them for violin as well.

Daniel Lijnders – Bass – Boronia

I’ve enjoyed teaching “Sir Duke” by Stevie Wonder. It’s a great bass line that is full of technical work. It makes use of scales and arpeggios. The groove is awesome.

Alex Gooding – Drums – Boronia

The song I’ve enjoyed teaching the most this year has been The Chain by Fleetwood Mac. It’s such a satisfying build to the outro riff. All of Mick Fleetwood’s subtleties are fun to teach and listen to.

Dalys Hill – Singing/Piano – Boronia

I really enjoyed teaching My Immortal by Evanescence to an adult student of mine. She began piano and singing as a complete beginner a year prior. She had practised so hard and so consistently. It was super rewarding to see her put it all together to play and sing a piece of music she loved so much. That’s what teaching is all about!

Jason Fados – Guitar/Banjo/Bass – Boronia

I have enjoyed teaching “3 Libras” by A Perfect Circle this term. It is a relatively easy finger picking song that students grasp quite quickly. It remains challenging enough to keep them invested. The chart I have written for it features 1st and 2nd time endings and Coda/Segno signs. This is a great way for students to get familiar with these symbols and understanding how to read the musical road map.

Heather Chapman – Singing/Piano – Carrum Downs

The favourite song that students have learned for singing this term has been “Flashlight” by Jessie J. It provides a nice variety of low and high bridges as well as developing breathing and resonance techniques. The other favourite many students brought in was “One Call Away” by Charlie Puth , providing a fairly easy melody for beginners.

Troy Eckhardt – Drums – Carrum Downs

Yellow by Coldplay. It has a good groove that students can grasp quite well. Skills students learn are some accent crashes and hi hat lift accents.