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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2009
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Discussion Starter #1
I've given many over the years and always felt that for the money I give out a heck of alot more info in a 20 minute lesson than I ever got in a few hours of face to face instruction from my many hours of taking private lessons. But I'm not here to plug me. I felt stuck in my playing, heard a few clips of Steve Neff's playing (Nefertiti on SOTW) and thought , what the heck. I'll throw away 100 bucks on a crappy ebay mouthpiece or 30 bucks trying out new reeds so why not risk 30 dollars and see what Neffs has to say about my playing. I sent him a recording and told him areas that I thought I needed work. He did a few things that I appreciate because I try to do them myself in my lessons. 1. He was clear in his communication, 2. He didn't assume anything. For instance he didn't assume that I had spent lots of time on articulation in my soloing ( I pay alot of attention to that when reading a chart but didn't do it in my soloing) and commented on some ideas to improve my time. 3. Gave specific things for me to do to address my problems. Plus, I have a CD of his Mp3s that I can listen to in the car and review my lesson. ( I record a CD for my students here at the house. I think thats a good way to really remember the many instructions you get in a a lesson). I think most importantly , Steve gave me a fresh set of eyes to my playing. I have known for a long time that what you focus on while practicing is as important as what you practice. In any event I plan to use Steve as an ongoing resource. I also got his PDF on approach notes and I think it is def a next step to get me out of just playing a mix, dorian, or pentatonic based scale. That should open up new ideas in my soloing. I'm glad I "took the chance" K ( I don't mean to slight the other SOTW members who give on line lessons. Steve is the only one I've tryed personally)
 

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Keith Ridenhour said:
I've given many over the years and always felt that for the money I give out a heck of alot more info in a 20 minute lesson than I ever got in a few hours of face to face instruction from my many hours of taking private lessons. But I'm not here to plug me. I felt stuck in my playing, heard a few clips of Steve Neff's playing (Nefertiti on SOTW) and thought , what the heck. I'll throw away 100 bucks on a crappy ebay mouthpiece or 30 bucks trying out new reeds so why not risk 30 dollars and see what Neffs has to say about my playing. I sent him a recording and told him areas that I thought I needed work. He did a few things that I appreciate because I try to do them myself in my lessons. 1. He was clear in his communication, 2. He didn't assume anything. For instance he didn't assume that I had spent lots of time on articulation in my soloing ( I pay alot of attention to that when reading a chart but didn't do it in my soloing) and commented on some ideas to improve my time. 3. Gave specific things for me to do to address my problems. Plus, I have a CD of his Mp3s that I can listen to in the car and review my lesson. ( I record a CD for my students here at the house. I think thats a good way to really remember the many instructions you get in a a lesson). I think most importantly , Steve gave me a fresh set of eyes to my playing. I have known for a long time that what you focus on while practicing is as important as what you practice. In any event I plan to use Steve as an ongoing resource. I also got his PDF on approach notes and I think it is def a next step to get me out of just playing a mix, dorian, or pentatonic based scale. That should open up new ideas in my soloing. I'm glad I "took the chance" K ( I don't mean to slight the other SOTW members who give on line lessons. Steve is the only one I've tryed personally)
Uh, Keith. When you give these lessons - do you use paragraphs so they're easier to read? :twisted:
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Gary, my non music classes at Berklee were "soft". I'm afraid English wasn't as big a priority as is should have been. At least I numbered my points and this post like internet lessons you can read over and over again until its clear!! K
 

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Keith, neither you nor anybody else has to do this. But it has to do with the ability to read, physically, what's there, and I'm sure I'm not the only one who has trouble keeping track of what line is what after so many sentances are run together. Even if the paragraph organisation isn't perfect, just separating groups of sentances would be very helpful. It would just be nice if folks kept this in mind when they posted. :)

But that's not the point of your post, which is a nice post with some good stuff to think about and some good reminders. It's always helpful for me when a guy with your experience shares some fresh way of looking at things. Or reminds me to remember and revisit things I've just taken for granted and then overlooked. And as a teacher myself, it's great to see, through your experienced eyes, how another teacher operates and your reaction to that. Thanks for posting.
 

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Gary,

We need to invent a paragraph checker, no?
 

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Thanks Keith.
Gary, Maybe you can give some online grammar lessons?:D Actually, my writing and speaking is awful. I got into music too early and the english classes I did take in HS and college I was thinking about music and not even paying attention.
The first book i wrote I sent to a friend to look at and he was amazed at all my spelling and grammar mistakes. To quote him " I think you got your name right but that's about it!":shock:
 

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I've asked this before but got no response - any experience of online syllabus - based courses from whatever source - colleges etc - any recommendations

if they were linked with the occasional tutor - based session in the UK even better

any recommendations?

km
 

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I have taken a few on line lessons with Keith. They have absolutely been the most valuable part of my learning experience since I started playing sax almost 2 years ago.
I sent him an MP3 which he reviewed and then determined what I needed to focus on. He sent me a lesson full of ideas and excerscises for long tones and timing.
Next I sent him an example of where I'm at with playing blues. Keith took off with it and gave me great encouragement and sent me back a ton of info, examples and tips on how he plays blues.
These lessons are great because you can practice along with them daily or whenever you have time.
As a late bloomer with a full time job, I do not have as much practice time as I would like. I have not had a teacher up until connecting with Keith.

I have tried to use paragraphs here, but my grammar isn't that good either.

Keith Ridenhour is a great guy and his personalized online lessons are a wonderful tool for anyone serious about learning saxophone.
 

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Hey Keith,
When I can show you some real progress on Honkytonk, I'll be ready for more. I've been a little sidetracked with GAS and work and stuff. I picked up this old Holton Collegiate tenor that screams the blues.
 

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Keith Ridenhour said:
I've given many over the years and always felt that for the money I give out a heck of alot more info in a 20 minute lesson than I ever got in a few hours of face to face instruction from my many hours of taking private lessons. But I'm not here to plug me. I felt stuck in my playing, heard a few clips of Steve Neff's playing (Nefertiti on SOTW) and thought , what the heck. I'll throw away 100 bucks on a crappy ebay mouthpiece or 30 bucks trying out new reeds so why not risk 30 dollars and see what Neffs has to say about my playing. I sent him a recording and told him areas that I thought I needed work. He did a few things that I appreciate because I try to do them myself in my lessons. 1. He was clear in his communication, 2. He didn't assume anything. For instance he didn't assume that I had spent lots of time on articulation in my soloing ( I pay alot of attention to that when reading a chart but didn't do it in my soloing) and commented on some ideas to improve my time. 3. Gave specific things for me to do to address my problems. Plus, I have a CD of his Mp3s that I can listen to in the car and review my lesson. ( I record a CD for my students here at the house. I think thats a good way to really remember the many instructions you get in a a lesson). I think most importantly , Steve gave me a fresh set of eyes to my playing. I have known for a long time that what you focus on while practicing is as important as what you practice. In any event I plan to use Steve as an ongoing resource. I also got his PDF on approach notes and I think it is def a next step to get me out of just playing a mix, dorian, or pentatonic based scale. That should open up new ideas in my soloing. I'm glad I "took the chance" K ( I don't mean to slight the other SOTW members who give on line lessons. Steve is the only one I've tryed personally)
I couldn't have put it better myself. I also didn't think once about how you structured your great post.
Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Steve, I really like your Mix Be Bop workbook in addition to your approach note workbook. Now, how do I minimize the tendonitis in my left forearm?? I lightened the action on the left and right hand keys considerably but I still can exceed my forearms ability to heal in a hurry. Actually considering all the health stuff I've faced over the last 5 years I am surprised that I still bang away at it. I do massage the area right by my left elbow with Bio Freeze at night but any tips from you pros who play a whole lot more than I do would be appreciated. K
 

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there is one thing that keeps me from getting on-line lessons.....recording myself!

i don't have the equipment. i am challenged by some of the technology that many here take for granted. you asked why more don't take advantage of these types of lessons and that's why i don't.

i know there is a shift key somewhere on this here keyboard that would allow me to capitlize my i, if i wanted to do so.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Heres the cheap way to do it and get a fairly good produce. I use a shure 57 mic plugged with an adapter into the back of my computer and then use a cheap shareware program Goldwave to record, edit and then send out as an Mp3 rather than a way big wave file. I think Audacity is free and some guys use that to record. Its a great way to see where you're at. K
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Update on Steves advice

Steves advise to me really has changed the way I practice. He noticed that I tend to rush my lines so I've been working on feeling the pulse internally rather than having the met on all the time. Really a challenge after years and years of playing everything with a met. Also, since I have limited time I've taken just one pattern out of each of his books and really woodshedded it so I don't have to think , it just comes out. I am really glad I "took the plunge" and gave Steve a shot. I have stuff to work on for easily 3 months. K
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Update

I hate to push a point but I hit a roadblock and sent another Mp3 off to Steve for lesson 3. I think for the internet thing to work you have to be able to record yourself easily and have a clear idea of what you want. I have Steves books on approach notes and Mixolydian Be bop scales but I needed next step advice on getting over a hurdle with a tune. I could drive an hour to see Alex Murzyn who is a very good teacher in the east bay (at 60 bucks an hour and a three hour time commitment) but I think Steve answers my questions well and notices what I need to do next. I have done the same for players at my and lower than my level. Anyway, I'm grateful that I have a resource I can go to rather than run around in circles doing the same things over and over with limited results. K
 

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Until you're really, really good you should be taking lessons at least off and on. So yeah, basically I will be taking lessons forever. That's ok though because I love going to my lesson and just learning stuff. Online would be cool also if distance was an issue. Otherwise though I prefer face to face.

Since taking lessons again I realize that music isn't all chord changes, scales, phrases etc etc. It's also mental and having a good teacher can also help you with a lot of mental things. Also things like posture and other bad habits they see you do. I wasn't bending my pinkies and it was causing me a lot of problems on my left hand spatula. I still revert back to that sometimes but he stays on me so it's slowy going away.

I do think though that online lessons will get more and more the normal way of doing things. Less travel=saved time, money, gas, less co2 etc etc. I think for it to be really good though it has to be on a really fast connection with a webcam.

I put paragraphs like a big boy!!!!!
 
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