Playing Guitar Riffs | Fun Lessons involve Discipline

This content was created for Curtis Music Academy


Hi, this is Andrea with Curtis Music Academy here with another podcast on the fun and joys of giving piano lessons and playing guitar riffs or other music lessons. And so at Curtis Music Academy, we offer all three of those in great numbers. And we also offer a variety of other saxophone lessons, drum lessons, cello lessons, violin lessons. And there’s other odds and end type instruments that we offer as well. Ukulele lessons can’t forget about the ukulele lessons. We do not, unfortunately, offer Tamborine lessons or kazoo lessons. 

Huge bummer, but I wanted to talk today about the joy and fun of playing guitar riffs or piano lessons and other music lessons, because we want our lessons to first and foremost be fun. We want students of all ages to look forward to their music lesson, whether they’re four years old or whether they’re 44 years old or 74 years old. We want it to be an enjoyable experience for them. So there could be a person who’s the best pianist in the world. But if they can’t give an enjoyable music lesson and if they’re Juggy and condescending, well, then the student isn’t really going to learn the best or explore or become the full potential that they could be. 

On the other hand, it’s true that perhaps teachers are great performers, perhaps they’re not, but they have a gift to bring students up to a level that the students are at their greatest level. And so that is our heart. We like to pull students from where they are to where they want to be. And so that is, in essence the gift of being a teacher. But we like to have a lot of fun at our music lessons. So with kids, this could include a lot of games and activities because we want to teach them the foundations of music. 

I think it is terrible when a student has taken music lessons for a couple of years and they can’t understand playing guitar riffs. They can only play three songs from memory, like if they go to a relative’s house and they say, oh, play something on the piano, they might only know two or three songs performance wise, maybe that they’ve memorized or maybe that they’ve learned from their book. And I just think that is quite sad. And so I like to give the students a foundation of music so that they can create and build music from scratch no matter their level. And so a lot of the time this looks like chords, this looks like basic rhythm patterns. 

So all these things and it’s not necessarily the easiest thing to teach. And so we disguised it as fun games. And so the cool thing about kids is that they are great learners, especially if they’re having fun while doing that. And so usually we make it into a game, we make it into an activity, and they just really seem to enjoy it. Adults, on the other hand, we don’t really do games and activities, but we still have a lot of fun. The atmosphere is upbeat, it’s cheerful. There’s just a camaraderie with the teacher and the student. It’s never, like, condescending or I’m better than you. It’s always celebrating and enjoying the music lesson with them. 

Another part of what makes music lessons or playing guitar riffs so fun is I think students need to understand what it means to be disciplined because, yes, there are parts of learning a new skill that are tedious and full of discipline and really to the effect of I’d rather just be watching Netflix than practicing the piano right now. But there is a reward. So if you are consistent, if you are practicing, then you are going to have a reward of being knowledgeable at playing your instrument. And so that is really crucial. So in some ways, the music lesson itself is a discipline and that applies to kids and adults. 

It’s showing them that hard work pays off in that aspect alone. I think that music lessons are so beneficial to people of all ages because anything worth doing in life, it’s going to come at a cost, whether that’s time, whether that’s money, whether that’s effort. Playing guitar riffs is incredibly rewarding and exciting. So there is that aspect as well. It’s not just all fun and glamour, and it’s just always the best time of my life. Every time I sit down and play them. No, no, a lot of times it really just is a matter of discipline and matter of consistency. But the cool thing is I teach many students and some of my students started several months ago, and they’ll be able to sit down this Christmas and play Christmas carols while their family gathers around the piano. 

And to them, that is so fun and so worthwhile. And so you can see how what is a discipline in music lessons or throughout the week at home becomes a joy to be able to play and to be able to just sit down and pull out a song and have fun with it. So in that way, that is the fun part. And so a lot of times kids don’t really understand what discipline means or what it really looks like. But music lessons are a really great model of what discipline could look like, because let’s say a person starts taking lessons when they’re seven or eight and let’s just say they’re not necessarily the world’s best practices at home. 

But if they’re consistent with that throughout the week and throughout the month, throughout the years, they will be probably an intermediate pianist, which means that they can basically play most things with ease. And so that is a huge benefit. So there are the joys of the piano and playing guitar riffs. And it’s so fun to watch the student succeed and watch them go to new heights in their instrument. And we just like to celebrate and have fun along with them in the music lesson and in the guitar lesson as well. Thank you so much for joining us for another podcast on the joys and the fun of music. We will see you next time.