Hello! My name is Mr. Chen Flakes and I am a professional music educator. I specialize in a variety of instruments ranging from piano to Pro Tools composition. I own and operate my own recording studio out of Grand Rapids, MI. I am a veteran in the music industry with 10 years as an award-winning salesperson at Guitar Center to engineering Grammy artists. I will cater my lessons towards your personal goals. I am not a one-size fits all teacher. Please let me know what you're looking to achieve. I look forward to working with you.
As an instructor, Chris is very knowledgeable when it comes to technique and theory. He is exceptional at explaining the why's and the how's thoroughly, and his patience for beginners is unmatched. Specifically, I have learned many vocal warmups and exercises over the past few years that have noticeably expanded my range and helped to mitigate vocal strain. Notes I thought were impossible to conquer have been reached through his encouragement and persistence to push forward through continued practice. In addition to vocals, I've become more dexterous on the guitar, learning scales and warmups I'd previously been unfamiliar with, as well as increasing my speed and precision. This is in large part to his insistence on familiarizing myself with and solely practicing to a click track, which helps speed up time in the studio, thereby saving my engineer time and myself money. If you're willing to practice and dedicate yourself to becoming a better musician, Chris will go at pace your comfortable with, while at the same time, pushing you further and further toward your goals.
My typical process of working with a new student is gauge previous knowledge of music and design a curriculum based on their learning style and interest in genres of music.
I have been teaching formally for almost ten years. I've studied music under numerous instructors and continue to expand my musical horizons.
I own and operate a full-production studio called AO Studios where I have engineered and produced with numerous Grammy artists.
I am also a certified instructor for Guitar Center and have taught recording, engineering, drums, and guitar through their program.
For in home lessons, I typically charge $25 for a half hour or $50 for an hour. I do make package deals for multiple instruments or multi-student discounts.
Lessons are paid at the beginning of the month. I have four weeks a year designed for makeups if a student cancels. I do not makeup more than 4 lessons in a calander year unless there is an extrenuating circumstance such as a broken bone or severe illness.
In the event I am unable to teach due to ailments or illness, I will refund immediately.
I started teaching friends and family that wanted to learn music for free and eventually had enough referrals to begin teaching as a career.
I have taught voice, drums, piano, guitars, and bass with dozens of students. I found that teaching, even for a short period of time, helps many of the artists coming to my recording studio.
I specialize in piano, recording, and drums, but I can teach intermediate guitar, bass, voice, and saxophone.
I recently started a division of my company called "Couch Covers" where I engineer and produce various renditions of popular songs with musicians across the state of Michigan.
We release videos weekly on our YouTube Channel called "Another October."
I advise students to research the materials being given to them.
I have gone through many teachers that have a cirriculum that is a one-size-fits all, and I do not believe in that. If the teacher gives you a single book and does not let you deviate away from the lesson plans, that's a good red flag to switch teachers.
1. Why do you want to play music? It's beyond "just because". Do you want to write, perform, inspire, find a creative outlet, etc.
2. Who and what inspires you? What will inspire you to practice, or whom will help motivate you?
3. Music is a craft that takes dedication, it is not simply the half hour to hour block set aside for lessons. Daily practice and care for your instrument is crucial for proper development. Are you prepared to begin your musical education?
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