Bill Keis Music Lessons

Bill Keis Music Lessons

5.0 (3)
1 hire on Lessons.com
2 employees

About this pro

In the 1st lesson, I always ask the student what their goals are, what kind of music they want to play, what problems they have, etc.  Then I test them on basic skills to find ‘holes’ in their knowledge/skills to find the right level to start.  I have an uncanny ability to discover their main problem areas and/or misunderstood terminology and get to work right away handling them. It's rewarding to see students very quickly begin to brighten up as they clear away years of confusion and musical barriers. I’ve met many seasoned pros who have holes in their knowledge or skill that have prevented them from reaching the next level.

Read more about this pro


Credentials

Glendale, CA 91202
Email verified
Phone verified

3 Reviews

5.0

  • Noeleen Livingstone

    I've been taking piano lessons with Bill for the last 9 months. When I first started Bill took the time to understand my goals and found the right starting point for me. I had learned piano as a child but wanted to develop my skills to a level where I could confidently play with other musicians. What sets Bill apart is his extensive experience both as a teacher and a professional musician. Over the years he has refined and perfected his teaching materials and methods so that he can easily adjust for each student's particular needs. He's easy to get along with and has extensive knowledge of all things music related - I have yet to find a question that stumps him! I highly recommend Bill as a music teacher - I have certainly enjoyed my experience.

  • Patricia Magaro

  • Noeleen Livingstone



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FAQs


What is your typical process for working with a new student?

In the 1st lesson, I always ask the student what their goals are, what kind of music they want to play, what problems they have, etc.  Then I test them on basic skills to find ‘holes’ in their knowledge/skills to find the right level to start.  I have an uncanny ability to discover their main problem areas and/or misunderstood terminology and get to work right away handling them.

It's rewarding to see students very quickly begin to brighten up as they clear away years of confusion and musical barriers. I’ve met many seasoned pros who have holes in their knowledge or skill that have prevented them from reaching the next level.


What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

Bill Keis is a master pianist, keyboardist, composer, producer, musical director, and educator.

He has been teaching music for over 30 years and has performed and/or recorded with;
Ronnie Spector, Mark Isham, Edgar Winter, Maxine Nightingale, Kirstie Alley, Karen Black, Jay Leno, Chaka Khan, Morris Wade (The Drifters), David Campbell, Chick Corea, The Pointer Sisters, Sal Marquez (Trumpet from “Tonight Show”), Eric Rigler (Bagpiper from Titanic), and others.


Bill was instantly immersed in music by his parents and three of his grandparents, who were all music teachers. He started piano lessons at age 5.  Shortly thereafter, it was discovered that Bill had perfect pitch. He then began classical piano lessons, and as he got older, he studied cello and trombone. Throughout high school Bill played cello in the orchestra, trombone in the concert and marching bands, sang in the jazz choir and played piano in the jazz band.


Although classically trained, receiving “A” grades at state piano competitions, Bill developed an interest in Jazz and Rock genres. His first professional gig, at age 14, was a piano/trumpet duo. Various trios, quartets and quintets followed, encompassing music from Louis Armstrong to Charlie Parker, as well as Santana, The Allman Bros., Steely Dan, Chicago, etc. Additionally, Bill played his own solo piano arrangement of “Laura” on a live radio show.


At age 16, Bill began studying with one of Oscar Peterson’s students, a famous pianist in her own right, Lee Shaw.  Lee had Bill study many great jazz pianists such as Art Tatum, Bud Powell, Billy Taylor, Horace Silver, Bill Evans, and of course, Oscar Peterson. He also studied Miles Davis, Cannonball Adderley and the Brecker Bros. However his two biggest influences were Herbie Hancock and Chick Corea.


After graduating high school in 1976, Bill attended Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. After studying and playing in Boston, Bill moved to Los Angeles and taught music at a private school for 20 years. 

In 2000 Bill began his own private lesson teaching business.  In 2006 he released his acclaimed book, The Complete Guide To Learning Music.


Do you have a standard pricing system for your lessons? If so, please share the details here.

1) Pay As You Go Rate: $80 per hour lesson

One lesson per week is recommended for good progress. It is OK to take a lesson every other week or less less often if needed. 24-hour notice is needed to cancel a lesson.

2) Block Lesson Discount Rate:  $60 per hour lesson

Purchase five lessons in advance. Lessons must be taken in five consecutive weeks. 24-hour notice is needed to change the time/day of a lesson.

3) Extra charge to travel to student's home based on distance


How did you get started teaching?

I came from a musical family...all music teachers so I started teaching as a teenager in High School informally


What types of students have you worked with?

Piano is my main instrument, therefore most of my students have been pianists. However, roughly 70% of musical skill, theory and ability applies to any instrument, including voice. This covers theory, rhythm, harmony, melody, ear training, reading musical notation, improvisation, composition, etc.  The remaining 30% applies to the technique of the instrument one plays.

I have had great success teaching vocalists and those who play guitar, bass, drums, sax, flute, trumpet, trombone, violin, cello, harmonica, harp, and vibes.

The styles of music that my students are interested in include Classical, Blues, Ragtime, Dixieland, Swing, Bebop, Rock N Roll, Rock, Jazz, Country, Gospel, Broadway, Pop, Disco, Reggae, Latin Rock, Salsa, and so on.


Describe a recent event you are fond of.

8/23/16 went to Chick Corea concert, got to talk to him

8/24/16 went to Booker T/Herbie Hancock concert


What advice would you give a student looking to hire a teacher in your area of expertise?

Find a pro player who is a patient teacher and has the ability to guide you toward your musical goals.


What questions should students think through before talking to teachers about their needs?

What are my musical goals?