Cynthia Nelson Creative Music Lessons

Cynthia Nelson Creative Music Lessons

1 hire on
17 years in business

About this pro

After 10 years of writing, recording, and performing my own music in the rock and folk genres, I have been teaching for 10 years through the Rock 'n' Roll Camp for Girls, Portland Parks and Rec, and in my home. I work with students of beginning and intermediate levels who want to explore guitar, bass, piano, singing, and songwriting. After establishing some fundamental tools for getting started, we then have fun making music in the moment, from cover songs to improvisations to original compositions. If you don't sing, I might encourage you to sing, and if you don't play an instrument I might encourage you toward being able to accompany yourself and/or communicate with your accompanists. I will help you to develop the skills to "speak" the language of music without the stress of a "you-must-practice" edict.

I love making music with my students, learning new songs from them, and giving folks the freedom to enjoy music making at any level rather than experiencing it as a chore or as something to be attained in the future.

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Portland, OR 97211
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What is your typical process for working with a new student?

I interview them to find out their musical experience and goals for the lessons, and then dive in with some exercises and a song or two. Usually the first assignment is to make a list of 10 songs they might like to learn. Over time we hone an experience of practicing and/or writing songs together like any band would.

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

I grew up studying flute, piano, and choral singing (especially at Girl Scout Camp where we sang and sang and sang). In college I taught myself guitar and bass for rock and folk band purposes, studied a bit of electric bass, and continued with choir singing. After college I formed my own bands, wrote songs, recorded albums, and toured the US for 10 years performing in small venues. After moving to Portland in 2005 I began working with the Rock 'n' Roll Camp for Girls as a music teacher and have been expanding my teaching practice since then as I also continue to write, record, and perform.

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

Lessons are $40 for an hour lesson if you come to my house in NE Portland. Portions of an hour or traveling to the student's home are priced accordingly.

How did you get started teaching?

Working with Portland's Rock 'n' Roll Camp for Girls afterschool program and in their summer camps.

What types of students have you worked with?

Children and adults, babies and toddlers, songwriters and song interpreters.