Draper's Music Lessons

Draper's Music Lessons

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I have taught piano and sax lessons for 20 years.  I studied my jazz masters in New Orleans in my mid twenties and have played professionally since my first gig at Carowinds at 15 years old.  I have a degree from UNC Chapel Hill and UNCC in communciations and music performance.  My studies with over 10 doctorates of music and some of the most reknowned educators in the United States have taught me to be an effective and efficient teacher.  My professional experience and personality allow me to make music fun and interesting to my students.

I love music and I love passing the knowledge of playing music on to others.  Its not that hard to learn an instrument, within a month my students can read and play by ear.  I teach both methods and believe they are equally important to be the type of musician that really understands performing and enjoying music.

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Q & A

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

I have an initial lesson to get to know them and assess their goals and what material order for them.  Usually, a manuscript book for me to write notes and lessons and a published book specific to their level and the instrument they are learning.  All other materials I have at my home that I can copy as needed from my library.


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

UNC-BM Communications

UNCC-Music Performance Degree

UNO-Masters of Jazz performance studies


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

$30 per half hour

$50 per hour


How did you get started teaching?

After graduating Chapel Hill I started teaching at Mars music and have been teaching since then.  That was about 20 years ago.


What types of students have you worked with?

Age 5-95.  Every different level from beginning to professionals looking for other methods of improving their performance skills.  I have studied with some of the finest teachers in America including well over 10 doctorates of music and privately with Ellis Marsalis in New Orleans.


Describe a recent event you are fond of.

One of my students learned the tune "Donna Lee."  One of the hardest jazz tunes in the book.  When I had a student play the Pathetique by Beethoven for entrance into an exclusive music camp and I did the recording and she nailed it


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

Don't try and find the cheapest teacher.  That means they don't have the expertise in most cases.  My fee is well below what many of my peers charge but my experience and education are amongst the top in Charlotte.  I teach to pass on the tradition and charge enough to make an honest living.


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

What is your goal in playing music?  What songs or artists do you want to play or play like?