Four Years – “Live Long and Prosper”

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david on stageOctober 10, 2010 – October 10, 2014, 2 years of planning and 22 years of saving gets you blessings, success, purpose and seeing a dream ( as Mr. Spock would say ) “live long and prosper”. As we hit our 4th year milestone, I must pause to reflect.

Once upon a time… I had a seed of an idea of how to try harder to go the steps beyond giving instruction on how to play an instrument or sing. The seed of an idea was just in my mind a few years ago. I wasn’t even aware that it was there at the beginning, but my frustration was taking hold. I have been a musician for 50 years now. I have taken formal lessons, learned to play with other musicians, learned how to improvise, how to sing harmonies and then lead vocals. Over the years, as I struggled with the age old question of many young musicians, especially from the 1960’s Beatles and Woodstock explosion…”should I be just a full time musician and risk it all…or go to college and get a 40 hour a week job”? Not being a person who took risks in my youth, I chose the latter and went to college. All the while, I would face difficult or uninteresting issues and quit and start performing music more. This back and forth struggle continued most of my second, third and forth decades of life. I eventually worked at a full time job, raised a family and performed music on the side for fun and extra money, thus giving up on my dreams of being all that I could be as a musician.

During the raising of my children, I had two daughters who showed a natural gift for music and I proudly watched them take to it so much better than I ever did, throughout their school years, only to find that they would give it up after school and go the way of college and become school teachers – a very noble profession indeed and one that I always thought I would have been good at. I am extremely proud of the people and teachers they have become but I will always feel like I didn’t do enough to encourage their musical learning journey. THIS is the seed that I speak of! This is what started growing a burning desire in my mind that eventually became David’s Music House. This business would serve multiple purposes. It would allow me to explore my passion to provide encouragement and ways to help students of music discover WHY they wanted to learn how to perform. It would also serve to replace the disappearing ‘Retirement of Baby Boomers” with something that would not only be my retirement, but would allow me to find ways to help the world be better off, because of creating more musicians and in turn, more music.
The seed of an idea grew from my non risk portion of my youth, into a burring desire to do whatever it takes, to see this vision become a reality in my life.

I repeat this vision over and over to all that will listen. David’s Music House is a place you can come to learn how to play an instrument or sing, but there are many private teachers and music stores that do that. David’s Music House is a place to come and discover WHY music is so powerful, incredible, healing, emotional, basic, life improving and on and on. We are like a house or home that explores music and what is so special about music. I call our teachers Music Mentors because as they teach you how to play or sing, they teach you how to act on stage, how to listen to other musicians you perform with, how to add to a musical group or performance rather than “be the star on the stage”! Our LIVE concerts by touring singer/songwriters provide hands on learning that music students can not find anywhere else. We can teach you how to start writing your own music and take it in the recording studio experience.

When new music teachers who come to David’s Music House, they are given the “keys” to experiment and create their new ideas to Inspire students. New teachers also discover that they can actually “learn” from the other teachers here because we are a Music Mentoring Team that does not shun other teachers but instead, help and support the other teachers.

Our Coffee House setting provides a great place for waiting parents but it does so much more than that! It provides the “kitchen table” home-like atmosphere that provides a family welcoming and gathering place where people find a few moments of their day to relax and stop thinking about everything going on in their hectic world outside.

I have learned a great deal as an entrepreneur over the last 6 years of planning, building and tweaking the business model of David’s Music House but one thing never stops being the center of my focus and passion….that is the “seed” of what started in my mind that is growing into a thriving model for help, support and Inspiration to all those who come to share their love of Music.

I end with my forever and constant Thank You to each of you who have discovered, come, shared and continue being loyal lovers of the dream that is David’s Music House.

Sincerely yours,

David

DMH E Sign

“I always wanted my name up in lights”!

 

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There is a place where Music Education with Inspiration Works!

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david on stageAn Evening of Proof – There is a place where Music Education with Inspiration Works!

As many of you know from my past articles over the last 4 years, I have been constantly talking about WHY I created David’s Music House. I have been passionately trying everything I can to promote my idea that students need more than instruction and even more than hoping that they find that special teacher who goes beyond what other do to instill the LOVE of music into a student. There is more that we can all do.

I was able to see this come together one amazing evening on Saturday, August 16, 2014 during the Hillary Reynolds Band Concert. I have been planning this evening in my mind for a long time! In actuality, the specific planning occurred for at least 3 or 4 months when the band contacted me to say they would love to perform sometime in August during their fall tour. HRB has been one of the BEST and most favorite group of musicians I have had perform at DMH. They are not only amazing musicians and songwriters but are wonderfully caring people who have become great friends. They are also one of our greatest supporters of performing to Inspire students. My mind started to work….I needed to make this event fulfill my dream of getting our students and their families to come to the concert. I have had many concerts over the last 3 + years and have found it challenging to get my message of how important and priceless it is to have learning, developing students see and meet actual professional touring musicians. It is my opinion that this is KEY to a student wanting to make playing music a part of their lives. Even attending area concert halls and arenas, although wonderful to see, does not offer the intimacy of our “Big Living Room” Coffee House setting. With only seating for 50, it provides the perfect Family Friendly setting for students of all ages to watch up close these amazingly talented professional musicians.

Over the last 3 months, previous to this concert, I have been strongly promoting the event through social media and area print. I have been relentless in reminding my teachers how important it is to not merely mention this event to their students but to get them involved in how amazing the performance will be and how much they would love becoming fans of The Hillary Reynolds Band. I have also decreased the amount of concerts I have in order to make the ones I do book, more SPECIAL and anticipated.

I learned that this extra effort and more concentrated focus on bringing the DMH Mission and the concert importance together ACTUALLY WORKS!!! I can not emphasize how much this event is now one of the most amazing moments of realizing my dream this far! On this particular evening, I not only got to see and hear a band that is my ideal type of band and music I personally would love to be in, but I also saw multiple DMH students with that “look of complete awe” on their faces as they were mesmerized by the performance.

Hillary Reynolds Band Concert

Hillary Reynolds Band Concert

 

HRB Student Showcase HRB 2 HRB 3

We also included a “Student Showcase” of 3 of our amazing young vocalist students. Olivia, Alexis and Madhumita performed during an intermission of the concert. Their performance and the experience they gained doing this was beyond valuable. It was something they will likely never forget. The students and their families became strong fans of HRB and many students bought as much merchandise as they could talk their parents into buying for them. They talked with Hillary Reynolds, who is now their true American Idol.

Another very important thing students learn from seeing a concert like this is how great musicians perform with each other, as a band. They see how microphones are used, how to engage an audience, how much practice it takes to play perfectly and one of my important principles of “how to listen to what every other member of the band is playing”. HRB was a perfect example of how to do this. Each band member is not trying to be the star of the show. So many music teachers in private lessons forget to stress the importance of LISTENING. There are so many “want-to-be-musicians” out there picking up guitars and playing cover songs in their bedrooms to their smartphone cameras who are playing by themselves and only thinking of themselves performing. Sooner or later they will begin playing in a band and if they have never been taught the importance of LISTENING to the others, they will continue to please only themselves and never go very far as musicians. This learning disability of playing like they’re the only “important” person on the stage usually continues as a bad habit forever. This is why this is such an important part of the early learning process. I stress this to all my teachers all the time….”don’t forget to train students how to play with others through listening”.

Thanks again to each member of The Hillary Reynolds Band, the Student Showcase students and the DMH Families and friends who came to this event and gave me proof that my journey is true and purposeful! A SPECIAL THANK YOU to Heidi Adomshick for all her hard work of preparation and insuring that the Student Showcase as well as the entire evening was a success!!!
“I have a dream….but I can’t do it alone”!

Yes….There is a place where Music Education with Inspiration Works…..and it’s name is David’s Music House!

Cheers,

David

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More Students = More Teachers

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Believe it or not, even though we actually have about two months of warm weather coming, Summer seems to be flying by! It’s August and advertisements are already talking people into looking for back to school deals. Back to school also means an increase of families planning their schedules and looking for the best place for music education….and “All signs point to David’s Music House!” We are already seeing a HUGE increase of free consultations for our Fall semester. To prepare for this, we are hiring new teachers to join our DMH Team of Music Mentors.

Kelsey Backstrom – Woodwinds & Beginning Piano Teacher

Woodwinds, Brass, Beginning Piano Teacher

Emily Cook – Woodwinds, Brass, Beginning Piano Teacher

Check out our Music Lessons webpage for all of our teacher Bios. We have an extensive screening process and detailed orientation that all of our teachers go through to not only ensure you are being taught by degreed and talented teachers but also that DMH Teachers do things the DMH WAY! Our teachers work together as a team to ensure that you are getting the “Total Music Experience”, which is a philosophy of “the lesson room is only the beginning” and that there is so much more to teaching than instructing someone how to do something. We all work to provide the reason WHY a student learns and needs to understand the value of the Power of Music.

Our team of teachers are always coming up with creative programs, workshops and methods for The Total Music Experience, like Chorus, Ensembles, Mandolin Group, and Recording Workshops and Lessons. At DMH, teachers are not left alone to come and go, merely giving instructions on how to play an instrument. At David’s Music House, teachers are free to think “out of the box” and come up with innovative methods and processes to INSPIRE students to discover how far the Power of Music can take you.

We have a HUGE CONCERT this month. Coming back to DMH is the Hillary Reynolds Band on August 16. Hillary Reynolds BandCheck our Event Calendar for more details. These concerts provide great entertainment for the community but our main reason is to have our music students come and hear, meet and talk to the performers. They can ask things like, “What’s it like to tour and play your own music?” This is the KEY to discovering WHY they need to practice more and learn how to perform with other musicians.


We will continue bringing occasional music events to our Coffee House and seek out unique teachers who can learn that “The music lesson is only the beginning.”

Thanks for choosing us, supporting us and spreading the good works we are doing here at David’s Music House.

Cheers,

David

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Music & Laughter – BEST Stress relievers

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david on stageStarting your own business takes money, confidence and TIME…and I mean serious amounts of TIME…oh yeah… and for those out there wanting to start a business, this is time WITHOUT being paid! For the first few years, yes, I said years, you will most likely receive no pay! OK… now why do so many do it? For me, it was my chance to be able to use my creativity without being told to stop thinking and go sit down. In addition to this need to use my brain to solve problems and come up with creative solutions, I have had an inner passion to rid my mind of the life long lack of self confidence. I have always had a deep desire to do something to help others but often lacked the confidence to put myself out there to commit myself to that goal. Really age and years of being made to feel as if I couldn’t do anything huge and successful, is what finally gave me the knowledge that not only do I have the ability to do something big, but that I have been doing BIG things for many years. So I finally had the money and the confidence and the willingness to commit the time. There is no way for anyone to understand how much time commitment this really means. It’s more than you can imagine and you WILL become tired and stressed. You will face times when being tired will weaken your focus and drive. This is why it is so important to overestimate the time commitment if you want to start your own business, especially if it’s a new unique idea where you really have no other models to research.

Two things in life can do miracles for our happiness and stress relief and they are MUSIC and LAUGHTER. Fortunately, my business is all about one of these. Of course, that is MUSIC, but even running a music business provides all the stress related issues of any business and I have to find time to completely disconnect myself from the business. Sometimes, I’ll just sit down at the piano and “doodle” and create music of whatever feelings I have at the time. Other times, I’ll just veg out or meditate to some relaxation mood music.

I also LOVE to lose myself in COMEDY! Laughter is another part of being human that provides happiness in indescribable ways. Like music, laughter heals. I know that a few episodes of “Seinfeld”, “I Love Lucy”, a stand up comedian or funny movie takes my mind away from thinking. Whenever I get together with the guys I have played in bands with for most of my life…I get to enjoy both of these at the same time. Recently, when we all performed at David’s Music House, I actually felt a decade of youth enter my body while we were playing on stage. Music is that powerful IF you learn to allow your emotions to fully take over. These guys are also one of my BEST resources of laughter! I never laugh harder, to the point of tears, than when we all get together. Life long friends will do that for each other.

We all have to find time to do things that make us happy and when you are occupied with tasks that consume your thinking and time, you need to STOP and soak yourself into something that takes you away from the race. You can always rely on MUSIC & LAUGHTER as BEST medicines for happiness.

Check out our Music Therapy page for services we offer that utilize #thepowerofmusic

Thanks for all your continued support and spreading the good word about what we do at David’s Music House.

Cheers,

David

“A Total Music Experience – The Future of Music Education”

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Summer Camps, Concerts and More…

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david on stageSo Summer officially starts this month so let’s get cracking to the summer deals.

We brought back our Summer Lesson Special for NEW students only. You can check out what we do and take some lessons at an unbelievable price for six weeks.

We have something soooooo awesome for the toddlers…our Summer Session of Junior Jamboree from July 9 – August 13. The BEST way for your toddler to explore and start their love of music out the right way. They’ll be singing and dancing, playing instruments, reading and singing stories and make a craft each session.

It’s time for Summer Camp dudes….Summer Music Camp that is. We are having two totally awesome camps over this summer.

“A TOTAL MUSIC EXPERIENCE CAMP” – 2 sessions. July 7 – 11 & August 11 – 15. (9am – noon)

“PICK, STRUM & PLAY” – A TOTAL GUITAR CAMP – July 28 – Aug 1, (9am – noon)

We have NEW EXPANDED RENTAL INSTRUMENTS: 
ACOUSTIC GUITARS
ELECTRIC GUITAR PACKAGE ( includes guitar, amp and chord )
ALL BRASS INSTRUMENTS
ALL WOODWIND INSTRUMENTS
VIOLINS, VIOLAS, CELLOS
FULL DRUM KITS & CYMBALS
ELECTRIC BASSES
KEYBOARDS

We are bringing some AMAZING PERFORMERS THIS SUMMER!

DMH TEACHER CONCERT – JUNE 6 (7pm – 8:30pm) & JUNE 8 (2:30pm – 4pm)
See our awesome music teachers perform their favorite songs.

HILLARY REYNOLDS BAND – AUGUST 16
Coming back one year later, almost to the day, one of DMH’s favorite bands.

IAN ETHAN CASE - OCTOBER 25 (yeah Fall, but you can not miss this outstanding guitarist.)
Ian (double neck guitarist) performed recently with Legands like Robin Ford & Stanley Jordan.

Like I said….it’s going to be ONE TOTALLY MUSICAL EXPERIENCE this Summer at DMH.

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Getting Wiser or Learning How Much More There is to Learn?

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david on stageIf I’ve found one thing out for sure in six decades of life, it’s that you don’t really get wiser as you get older…you just find out how much more you have yet to learn. There is no end to discovering and learning new ideas, ways of thinking and doing things, IF you have an open mind, that is. Creating a business that doesn’t exist anywhere else is a great idea, but there is really no other models to learn from. You are creating the model from scratch, through trial and error and a lot of instinct. That’s exactly what I wanted to do, after working for a corporation for 22 years that told me to NOT think or create.

My mind constantly is thinking of new aspects and new ideas to use in my business, but I still need to focus on things moving along that are already in place and that are bringing in revenue. To this end, in the beginnings of my fourth year in business, I find that I need to slow down and focus on what is actually feasible and necessary to insure growth and progress. I keep thinking of those creative new ideas, and I keep working on them and storing them, much as a songwriter, who creates the initial idea of a song, but may work on development for years before publishing it.

This is what I love about being an entrepreneur….using your skills and talent to resolve issues and grow the business, but being able to just bring in a brand new concept because you know it will enhance the business concept and mission. That’s something that you can never do if you have to go through manager after manager,  to suggest an idea, only to be told it won’t work or worse, have them implement your idea and call it their own.

I have found it completely a waste of time to even think about what other competitors are doing, other than to see if there are ways similar efforts can help each other’s business. When I look at another business in my area, I wonder how we could partner and work together to increase the community’s wellness. It serves no purpose for me to see what “they” are doing and copy it or be jealous of it. This is a trait of a foolish business person. I’m far too busy thinking of ways to promote music and help the community better connect, through the power of music to bother wasting time trying to get ahead to the “other guy”.

So, needless to say (but I will…) there are some GREAT enhancements coming to David’s Music House over the course of 2014, and beyond. Keep your eyes and ears open for some more great ways to bring more music into the world.

One such enhancement occurring in May, will be better instrument rentals as we partner with “Music Hut”. This is a local business that has been in existence for many years of renting and repairing instruments. We will now be renting acoustic and electric guitars, keyboards, amplifiers, cellos and others, in addition to the woodwinds, brass and strings we currently offer. We are often asked by parents of children beginning lessons about renting as they do not want to purchase instruments until they see that the student really wants to keep playing the first instrument they become interested in. Now, we will be able to offer a much wider selection to rent, as well as support another area local small business.

Now….some reflection and what’s coming next:

Our Spring Student Concerts were just amazing and full of great new talented students of all phases of learning and all ages.
I am constantly looking for great talent all over the country who can perform in our DMH Cafe and INSPIRE our students, as well as our teachers! We are bringing an A Capella Chorus Group called “Minor Variation” from Wake Forest University of North Carolina. This will be an evening of choral music as our new DMH Chorus opens with a few songs and then gets to attend the concert for FREE, as well as talk to them about how they tour and record.
In coming months we will bring back the Hillary Reynolds Band and Noel McLeary among other touring recording artists.

Behind the scenes, we are doing some serious soundproofing to the lesson rooms, as well as a fresh coat of paint and some NEW design and artwork. Most of these tweaks will be done by the end of May/June and will not cause any interruption of lessons or events. All of these improvements will give everyone a much better learning experience!

As always, thank all of you for your continued support and spreading the good word of David’s Music House bringing more music into our community and world.

David

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