Year: 2015

‘Big love’ in life, drumming and music

I had this idea about ‘big love’ that came to me one morning over the extended Christmas weekend. It started out as a thought about relationships: “Big love is about something bigger than the two people involved. It’s not just

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Nervous is good, nervous is normal.

As a teacher, I’m often helping my students get ready for performances. One of the things we always need to address is nervousness. Everyone deals with nervousness at some level, and for some it can be a serious challenge. I

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Why are ‘performances’ so important to our development as humans?

As a musician and music teacher my performances/shows/gigs are very important to my development. For my students, their performances and recitals–even just playing in front of their parents and friends–are also very important to their development. But, when I say

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Making Peace With the Critic-Voice In Your Head

This is a story about the critic-voice that all of us have in our head. It came up in a lesson with one of my drum students, and I think all of us deal with this at one point or another. This

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Small World Stuff and Stick Technique

This is a story about how a shrinking planet has changed my POV on the issue of proper stick technique on the drums. (For those of you who are not drummers–don’t run away yet. This is meant to be relevant

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Resisting The Grunt Work Can Be A Bad Sign…

In my last post, I talked about how putting in the grunt work is what differentiates the great performers from good performers (doesn’t matter what field you’re in–could be music, could be accounting, could be a performer for Cirque du

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Playing At A Very High Level: Why Simply Playing Your Part Is Not Enough

In my last post, I talked about one of my rules for my students that I use to get past their fear of making mistakes. Ultimately, it’s about having your priorities straight and playing at a very high level. I’m

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The artistry (and confidence boost) you get from playing through your mistakes

One of my big rules for my students whether I’m teaching in a group or 1-on-1 situation is this: “play bold, make BIG mistakes.” The intent behind this is to get my students past being worried about making mistakes, freeing

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Embracing weirdness to find your uniqueness

On my business card for my performance practice, I call myself a ‘tone merchant’, among other skills. I use that term for a couple of reasons. #1 It describes one of the things I’m obsessed about–getting the right tone(s) for

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Sometimes the circuitous route is the best path (the meaning of life, take one)

At this point in my life, I feel strongly that the meaning of life is something close to this: “do what you were put here on earth to do, and do it in the service of others.” You probably know

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