How many years have you been teaching drums?
What is your specialty?
Hand technique, drum set styles and coordination.
Who were your best teachers?
Joe Morello and Buster Bailey (whom I studied with at Juilliard)
Why is your method of teaching so good?
Because I studied with the greats and I have produced some of the great as my students. I just don’t teach the “how to’s”, but the “why’s” too. I explain the reasoning for the approach I take, which is to minimize tension, to produce a smooth flowing sound that increases speed and endurance, and to enhance styles in coordination that allow you to become better at whatever style you play.
How often should I practice?
That depends on how much time you have and what level you want to get to. Continuity to best. 30 minutes 5 times a week is better than 2 1/2 hours spread out in 2 days, because it’s the repetition (continuity) of your practice that produces the muscle memory needed for you become better.
What books do you use to teach out of?
I use the Syncopation book by Ted Reed, the Stick Control book by George Stone, Master Studies by Joe Morello, and the Drummers’ Cookbook by John Pickering. The Syncopation and Stick Control books are taught in a variety of different ways as taught to me by Joe Morello. Same for the Drummers’ Cookbook but the variations are my own. And I teach the Master Studies book the way it was MEANT to be played (check out the video I have posted on Joe Morello’s Master Studies). I also helped write Joe’s Master Studies II book.
Do you teach Latin rhythms?
Yes. Latin is a general term. Within that is Afro-Cuban (and all it’s rhythms including Cha-Cha, Mambo, Songo, and 6/8 patterns), and the Brazilian rhythms like Samba and Bossa Nova.
Who is your favorite drummer?
I like many, but particularly the ones who have Jazz elements in their playing like Stuart Copeland, John Bonham, and Mitch Mitchell. In Jazz I like Buddy Rich, Tony Williams, Art Blakey.
How has the Skype teaching experience been for you?
Excellent! The person I taught on Skype in France for 2 years felt like he was in the same room! Others closer the same way. Check out the video on that under the Skype lessons section.