One Team – One Purpose

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david on stageThis article is a letter to our current DMH student families, as well as the surrounding communities of David’s Music House. As a life long musician and parent, I wanted to create a business that would serve a purpose of making the world a bit better, less arrogant, less combative, less judgmental, more friendly, more kind, more supportive of one another. This has been an underlying mission of my entire life as I questioned others’ intolerance and judgmental indifference.

The environment at DMH is completely unique in that everyone’s focus is totally on the needs of the students and the parents’ goals. As creator and owner of David’s Music House, I am keenly aware that often issues can arise, such as a young student wanting the same gender for a teacher, or perhaps a parent may want a teacher who has a firmer approach to insure their child follows and learns discipline. Other parents may only want the experience to be fun, and may feel that strictness will destroy the desire to learn. I understand these parental desires and that is why I require teachers do a blend of firm and formal learning, but also make it FUN. The world loses when a child wants to stop learning music.

Students who come to DMH do not belong to any one teacher. We only have teachers at David’s Music House who act as ONE TEAM, with the sole purpose of insuring the student is always inspired and WANTS to continue learning. Every teacher at David’s Music House is trained to look for “disinterested” signs from students. Actions are taken such as introducing the student to a completely different instrument and teacher, have them observe and maybe even make a connection that may lead to a duo, trio or ensemble performance experience or even suggest the student switch to another teacher. We all know that the student-teacher bond is a strong connection of trust and mutual admiration. This does not mean that every teacher is the best match for every student. This is why, at David’s Music House, every teacher is advised from the first day they join our DMH Family, that the student does not belong to any single teacher. Teachers at David’s Music House are in harmony with ONE GOAL …… to meet the needs of every single student and parent!

I speak to parents often about the fact that we are here for your child to explore music and all of our teachers are here for you. I encourage parents come forward if you are interested in switching to another instrument if they, or their child, tells them they want to do so. We will accommodate and arrange for a meeting between your current teacher and another to discuss the transition to a new teacher and experience. NO PARENT OR STUDENT who comes to David’s Music House should EVER feel that they cannot ask to try a new instrument or different teacher.

I TAKE THE TRUST AND PARTNERSHIP OF THE FAMILIES OF THE COMMUNITY VERY SERIOUSLY AND DAVID’S MUSIC HOUSE EXISTS SOLELY FOR THE BETTERMENT OF US ALL. MY REASON FOR CREATING THE SCHOOL IS A MISSION OF DOING EVERY THING POSSIBLE TO INSPIRE AND MENTOR STUDENTS TO KEEP DISCOVERING THE ‘WHY’ OR THE REASON THEY LOVE MUSIC OR PLAYING A PARTICULAR INSTRUMENT. WE WANT TO GIVE THE OPPORTUNITY FOR PEOPLE TO DISCOVER MUSIC AND THE POWER OF MUSIC AND WHAT IT CAN DO FOR THEM….AND ALL OF US.” – DAVID

Please feel free to email me anytime for any reason at David@davidsmusichouse.com or to DMH@davidsmusichouse.com. As always…..I thank each and every one of you for your continued Love and Support of what we are doing.

Peace & Love,

David

Want the Secret of Success?

More than a month ago

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Three key ingredients – Yep, that’s the big secret to success, so simple and yet so not followed. So many approach success as what’s the popular thing…what will yield the most return on investment… The secret comes from inside YOU and what has life taught you and what frustrates you that you want to fix…? Here are my 3 ingredients:

1) The idea of what DMH continuously strives to do comes directly from about 60 years of my personal life experiences. Every facet of David’s Music House is created and driven by the voice inside of me and that makes the business have no direct competition. No one else can possibly have had the experiences I have over the last 65 years.

2) Never, never, never, never, never…infinity + NEVER….QUIT. I know if I ever stop, that will be just a few inches short of succeeding beyond my wildest dreams. Every single world changing idea, invention or service created only came about to all of our awareness because the originator continued until it happened.

3.)There is one more key ingredient, which I strongly believe in, more so now in my life than ever before…that is the knowledge that I have discovered why God created me and why every good and terrible experience I’ve ever gone through happened to me. Every step, from my earliest childhood, to the moment I am typing this right now has allowed me to be exactly who I am and where I am and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’ve experienced, over the last 7 years, digging into some of my retirement money and even hitting a couple of solid walls of not knowing how I would pay for the next month, but every time, God has provided a way, through sources I would have never imagined! I have never been very religious, but at this stage in my life, I am 100% aware that all the years I thought my life was nothing of any significance, there were just far too many times and events that could have turned my life the wrong way or even ended it. This has solidified my faith in the simple fact that God has taken care of me. I won’t go further into this subject here except to say that these “facts or ingredients” provide such a sense of accomplishment and happiness to my life. I also know there is so much more to come…because I hear it and feel it from my inner voice every day.

Want to succeed and be happy? Look at your life and all the events in it that you experienced and then ask yourself, in your most quiet moments…What am I here for? You will find your answer….BUT…you may not realize it until you have had enough life experiences in order for this to be revealed to you.

As aways, I thank everyone for finding and supporting David’s Music House and what we do.

“It is our mission to not only teach how to play an instrument or sing, but to help students discover “WHY” they have begun this music journey! I call our music teachers, “Music Mentors” as they live the passion of “The lesson room is only the FIRST STEP” in the process of discovering this almost magical and emotional thing that we humans do to express ourselves, communicate and make the world a better place.” – David

 

Peace and Love,

 

David

 

“There’s no crying in baseball!” – Tom Hanks – “League of Their Own”

More than a month ago

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 In the popular Tom Hanks movie, “A League of Their Own”, Hanks portrays the manager of a women’s baseball team created during World War II who tries to treat the women players with the same hard knock methods as he would with a men’s team. When a player becomes upset at him yelling at her and begins to cry, Hanks says the popular quote from the movie, “There’s no crying in baseball”! I use this as an example to illustrate how I talk about the subject of “taking the summer off from taking music lessons”. To this I say…. “There’s no stopping in music!”

I consistently speak to this issue to all parents and students. This is a subject near and dear to the CORE Mission of David’s Music House. Ever hear the quotation, “How do you get to Carnegie Hall?…Practice, Practice, Practice”? Becoming the best you can be at any skill only comes from consistent learning, practice and experience. When the academic school year ends, this is the BEST time to continue or begin taking private music lessons, as there is actually less personal time restrictions for families. You’ll be that much ahead of the game when you go back to school and music activities the next year.

Exercising, weightlifting, running, losing weight, and basically any endeavor where the goal is to improve and be as good as you can be, can only be achieved by consistent and continuous pursuit of all the aspects that will lead you to that accomplishment. Music is a skill that one can only improve by adhering to a schedule of continuous experience. As with any skill, any extended or repetitive length of time not spent on that effort, whether it’s a physical sport or playing an instrument or singing, will cause physical changes to occur, such as fingertips getting soft again if playing guitar, or muscle strength in the hands and fingers that develop playing the piano or the vocal cords that grow and strengthen as one learns to sing. All the time spent on developing strengths and learned skills will diminish during long periods of non use and then will have to be relearned and strengthened all over again. Why would anyone want to take 5 steps forward, only to slide back to step 1 again?

NEW SUMMER PACKS PROGRAM

We realize that Summer also means the opportunity for families to spend some much needed time together for some R&R, going on vacations or visiting distant relatives. To help our DMH Families to be able to continue their music learning and take time off for vacations, we have developed our NEW SUMMER PACKS PROGRAM. There are some excellent options for families to schedule and reserve lesson times on our schedule that will also guarantee not losing your usual lesson times. Call us at 724-941-9200, email dmh@davidsmusichouse.com or stop by and ask our receptionists all about the details and reserve your summer lessons right away!

It is the mission of David’s Music House to insure that everyone is immersed in any and all the ways that will offer a continuation of the pursuit of the love of music and the “WHY” they need to continue learning and experiencing playing, listening and sharing the Power of Music! We don’t only teach how to perform music….we help you KNOW WHY music is awesome. Our music teachers are Music Mentors who collaborate and work together as a team for all our DMH students.

Thank you for your continued support and for spreading the word about the VALUE of David’s Music House to the community!

Peace & Love,

David

 

Cinco-De-Davo…huh?

More than a month ago

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In the month of May, the United States celebrates, Cinco De Mayo – May 5th. The date is observed to commemorate the Mexican Army’s unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. In the U.S. the date has become associated with the celebration of Mexican-American culture. To myself, it has become a unique milestone and memory…and a beginning!

It was May 5, 2008, 9 years ago, when I walked out of the corporate world that frustrated my creative mind and soul for 22 years and embarked on a journey that became David’s Music House, Inc. While it took 2 years, from that day of wondering what to do, to the opening day, October 10, 2010, David’s Music House has been the most rewarding career effort of my 65 years (so far).

I have been asked, what makes you think you can begin a business at your age, having never been a business owner before? It never takes longer than a second to say the answer. I couldn’t have been ready to do something like this, let alone succeed, until this age. I spent most of the first nearly 50 years of my life thinking I was not as smart, not as capable, or not as important as everyone else around me. I spent 12 years of my life in public schools just hiding or trying to not attract attention, for fear of all the bullies around me. It wasn’t until after I graduated from high school that I found the first thing I could feel proud of and that was playing music in a band, and then eventually, my singing voice, which allowed me to feel what it’s like to have someone who would have usually ignored me, now pay attention to me –  because of my performance in bands. Yet, somehow, when I wasn’t in the environment of music, I stepped back into the world of being inadequate and unseen.

During my years working the corporate world, I discovered a couple of things: 1.) Having a technical job had absolutely nothing to do with being creative and 2.) People behaved differently in that environment. Those who would normally have been friendly people, behaved as those they thought they would gain importance and promotions from. In other words, management ignored talents of some, to give monetary gain and power to those who “worshiped” them. The corporate world acts pretty much as the bland cubicles that reside within it…separate, detached and cruel to many, while ignoring ignorance of others and promoting such ignorance and lack of performance. Needless to say, I felt as worthless there as I did during my school years. Eventually, one’s efforts simply wither and die into thinking, “well, at least I have a decent job that helps provide for my family” and then go home to find your happiness and value. If it were not for my family and love of music, I am fairly certain that I would have never made it through the bouts of depression.

When I was nearing the time of being “blessed” with the opportunity to leave that corporate world, I joyfully chose it and that day in May, that celebrated holiday we know as Cinco De Mayo, was the beginning of a journey of awakening, the likes of which I had never known in all my previous years. I can vividly remember walking out of that building on that last day with a wave of emotional relief, like I was headed for the longest vacation I would ever take. This was in 2008, which we all know became our country’s biggest economic depression since the “Great Depression”. It was during this time in 2008, that I began to develop my idea for starting my business. I began talking to business owners and learning a lot. The most important discovery I made was that I began to reflect on all the things I had done in my life and instead of taking the insignificant aspects, I became aware of the huge, risky decisions I had taken and the drive that enabled me to do them. I was no longer the “silent, unimportant one”. I was a different person, and I knew that I could actually do ANYTHING I wanted to do…as long as I didn’t quit. Everything I ever did before failed because I quit. These failures actually taught me a lot, as failures always do. Mostly, they taught me what I never knew before…If I wanted to do anything, all I had to do was NEVER, NEVER, NEVER stop moving toward that goal, but ONLY if it was a true, deep passion that I believed in.

As anyone who knows me, well knows, I am not very good at remembering dates. I try my best to keep our wedding anniversary (also inside my ring), the birthdates of my wife and my two daughters and of course my birthday, but that’s all I claim to be able to remember, with one other exception… Cinco De Mayo, especially May 5, 2008…

Oh yeah…just one more date, the opening of David’s Music House, 10.10.10, October, 10, 2010. All of the 65 years of my life have been a step by step journey of preparation, leading to David’s Music House and my discovery of WHY I exist. There will be more to come on that subject, in future David’s Blog articles. What I can say is, that same passion and drive will reveal more of what I now know – “I can do ANYTHING I am passionately driven about…as long as I don’t quit”… and when it comes to this subject…there is no quitting.

Thank you as always for loving music, coming to DMH and spreading the word about what we do.

Love and Peace,

David

Practice…Practice…Practice…Yep, That’s How

More than a month ago

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You’ve may heard the expression, “How do you get to Carnegie Hall? Practice, practice, practice.” These are not just words. That is the truth! Music is a amazing skill to learn and has tremendous mental and physical benefits to both the performer and the listener, but there is no way around the fact that you are not going to gain the skill to play an instrument or to sing without spending a good deal of time, over the days, months and years, practicing. This is the hardest part of learning music. Practicing is not a punishment to endure, but a necessary part of improving. Everyone knows that to become a athlete, the daily grind of training, over a long period of time is a requirement. The same is true of any skill. Improvement will not happen if the time is not spent every day, doing the repetitive tasks that allow the body and mind to become skilled at the endeavor. So the motivation for practicing has to be how much does one want to be proficient at a chosen skill. This is why, at David’s Music House, teachers will integrate the reason, or the “Why am I learning this instrument in the first place”, into their mentoring of our students. Without knowing WHY you want to do something, there is no motivation or drive to achieve success.

I started taking electric organ lessons at the age of 13, and my teacher knew when I didn’t practice during the week. I thought I could fool her and practice a lot the day of my lesson, but of course, I never fooled her. Parental involvement and strictness is absolutely necessary to insure their children succeed in whatever they attempt. When school requires homework, many children will try almost anything to avoid doing the work. Parents know to take the responsibility to insist that their children sit down and do the homework and if necessary, sit down with them to make sure it gets done. The same applies to music lessons. I knew that I could not quit music lessons because my Dad wouldn’t hear of it. Only when I became about 17 years old and graduated high school, did I feel that I could stop taking lessons. I know now, that was a mistake. Just as parents have to take active roles in supporting academic learning, the same is required of music lessons.
 
Unfortunately, often it is the case that music and the arts have never had the proper support of our educational systems and are treated as extra curricular activities. More recently, Music and the Arts are now being pushed by many to become CORE subjects. The research has shown that the Arts actually improve a student’s mental capacity, learning skills and accomplishments throughout all the academic years and the rest of their lives.
 
One of the main reasons I created David’s Music House was my deep passion to do everything we can, to keep a student learning and try to prevent students quitting. I have been telling parents and teachers since our school opened in 2010, that we are going to do things differently here at David’s Music House. Teachers do not simply rent space and give instructions. David’s Music House is not a store that sells music instruments or music equipment. We are a private music school and everyone at DMH is dedicated to the same goals and mission, which is to do everything we can think of to not only provide an excellent learning experience, but to mentor students by example.
 
I personally have two main goals of what I want David’s Music House to do:
 
1. Provide an atmosphere that celebrates and fosters love and appreciation of music and the arts and instilling that same passion in our students, through inspiration and mentoring.
 
2. Instilling a fundamental characteristic of support and humility in our students, that will enable them to not only support other musicians but also people they deal with in all facets of their lives.
 
I love what I do more than anything I have ever done. One thing saddens me and that is to see any student quit music or to see parents punish their children by stopping their learning as a punishment for not practicing enough. My highest objective is to insure that everyone connected with David’s Music House is doing everything we can think of to prevent a student from quitting. When anyone stops playing music….everyone of us loses.

“I’ve never known a musician who regretted being one.” – Virgil Thomson

“I have heard many people say they regretted not being one.” – David

Thank each of you for your constant support of what we do.

Peace & Love,

David

Pittsburgh is discovering David’s Music House is The Future of Music Education!

More than a month ago

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David’s Music House has a mission of helping any student of music discover “WHY” they are learning music. We always have a solid focus, which is providing all the teaching, mentoring, support, encouragement and Inspiration possible to every student. Every teacher is screened and goes through an orientation process to insure that every student who comes to David’s Music House has access to ALL the resources possible. New teachers who request to be a part of what David’s Music House brings to music education are excited to discover our NEW approach to teaching! Each new teacher undergoes a rigorous process before they are given a student to teach. This training is not to change each teacher’s personal style and experience of giving lessons, but more of a methodology that brings teamwork and the mission of David’s Music House. Teachers who are extremely experience end up mentoring newer teachers in skills they have acquired, while newer teachers will often introduce a new perspective to a teacher who has been using the same methods for many years and finds a new approach quite helpful. There’s something to learn by all members of the team.

When anyone comes into David’s Music House for a FREE consultation, they are given a tour of everything DMH has to offer and are overwhelmed to find a setting unlike anything they ever would have expected. New students have the entire teaching team as available resources to them. Students can benefit from substitute teachers who may offer a new exciting viewpoint or a student may want to investigate a completely different instrument and that is easily managed at DMH. There are NO jealousies or individual teacher ownership of students because ALL DMH Students belong to David’s Music House and all that it offers. There’s also no need for teachers to be worried about a student moving to a different teacher because they always know that a new student is sure to be assigned to them very quickly. Everything we do is all about the student and their parents wishes.

There is ample and easy parking, we are easy to find as we are directly on a main route through the South Hills of Pittsburgh, PA.  Once you come into David’s Music House, you will immediately feel the comfort and friendship of entering a living room of a home. We have ample soft couches and chairs, tables, FREE WiFi, games to play while you wait, a Music Library of books to read about music learning.

We will always stive to be ahead of the curve on new technology and teaching/mentoring methods. Every teacher at David’s Music House is a resource for any DMH student. We are a team, better yet, we are a FAMILY of mentors, here to help anyone, of any age, discover the love of music and the arts.

I want to personally thank each and every DMH student and their family for your continued support and for spreading the word to the community about the musical enrichment and value you have found by choosing David’s Music House for your Music Education.

Peace and Love,

David