HI, I’M JUSTIN...
I HAVE OVER 30 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE PLAYING AND TEACHING DRUMS AND HAVE TAUGHT WELL OVER A THOUSAND STUDENTS OF ALL AGES AND ABILITIES, FROM BEGINNERS TO PROFESSIONALS.
An alumnus of Berklee College of Music, I subsequently obtained my Masters Degree in Performance from the London College of Music & Media. In addition, I have been lucky enough to have studied privately with some of the most respected drum teachers in the world, including Gary Chaffee, Mike Mangini and Pete Zeldman.
It was my own experiences as a student that led to my interest in music education and since then, my passion for teaching has led to work at a number of institutions such as Thames Valley University, Drumtech and the Institute of Contemporary Music Performance (ICMP) where I was Head Of Drums for several years and, in addition to teaching, was involved course development, curriculum design and programme leadership at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.
For several years, I wrote a monthly educational article for UK drumming magazine, Rhythm during which time I had over a hundred articles published. My first drum tuition book, Learn To Play Drums, was published in 2008, by Quarto Publishing. It was translated into eleven languages, was available in fourteen countries worldwide and sold over 48,000 copies. In addition, I co-authored a book with guitarist, Justin Sandercoe (the founder of www.justinguitar.com) to help students of all instruments develop their ability to read music. Entitled Rhythm Reading, the book was initially self-published, selling over 20,000 copies before being re-published by Wise Publications (a part of the Music Sales Group).
Throughout this time, I've maintained a successful private teaching practice and have helped literally hundreds of students, including Elliot Fyffe (Blue, Ronan Keating), Aaron ‘Breakbeat’ Fagan (N-Dubz), Aicha Djidjelli (Rachael Stevens, Amy Studt) Lawrence Colbert (Ride), Adam Ficek (Baby Shambles), Olly Betts (The Duke Spirit), Stephen Simmonds (Groovejet), Matt Thomas (The Joy Formidable), Jack Cowens (The Dub Pistols), Louise Bartle (Bloc Party), Jay Sikora (Paulo Nutini) and Greg ‘Rozzy’ Ison (New Device).
For the last three years, I have worked with Hertfordshire County Council, providing peripatetic lessons in local schools. This has given me an even greater experience of working with younger pupils, many of whom are beginners and having drum lessons for the very first time.
I'd love to help you realise some of your musical aspirations too, whatever they might be, so feel free to get in touch and let me know how I can help you or the young, aspiring rock star in your family.
Hope to hear from you soon,
WHY LEARN DRUMS?
A number of academic studies have concluded that there is a range of positive benefits associated with drumming, which provides support for the idea that learning to play drums can play an important role in your child's development—enhancing cognitive, social, physical, emotional, cultural and recreational skills, as well as offering a valuable opportunities for individual expression.
Although the ability to learn continues throughout life, it appears that hands-on participation in music during childhood is particular beneficial and children who miss out on the fun of playing a musical instrument might be missing out on some critical developmental opportunities. Some of the ways that playing drums can benefit your child are:
Aiding their academic aptitude in mathematics, science and the arts
Promoting large and small motor development
Increasing scholastic participation
Cultivating concentration and focused listening
Fostering early vocal development and enhanced social abilities
Bolstering confidence and self-esteem
Of course, the ultimate goal for any musician is to perform to an audience as part of an ensemble and, as music is a truly universal language, this endeavour encourages a sense of community, and brings people together by bridging any number of cultural, age, racial, gender, political differences. By giving a child the means of learning to play an instrument, you are providing them with a powerful voice—an alternative way of communicating their ideas that transcends words.
Participation in stimulating and engaging activities such as playing drums will not only capture and hold your child’s interest and satisfy their natural desire for fun, it will also provide them with many valuable and enduring lessons that will benefit them for the rest of their lives.
WHAT OTHER PEOPLE ARE SAYING
"I've had the pleasure of knowing and working along side Justin for many years. The thing that sets him apart from everybody else is not just his incredible depth of knowledge of the drums, but his understanding of music as a whole. There is nobody who cares more about the art form and passing on the correct information to anybody who needs it. In short, he is an extraordinary musician and educator. I just wish he was my teacher, but in a way, he already is."
Tom Meadows (Drummer with Kylie Minogue & Will Young)
Greg 'Rozzy' Ison (Drummer with New Device)
Whilst there are distinct benefits to in-person lessons, the past year has proven that it is possible to conduct fun, effective and productive lessons using online platforms such as Skype or Zoom.
Consequently, I also offer video lessons to anyone
who would prefer to study from the comfort of their
own drum kit.
Many of students enjoy working independently, and are accustomed to learning from online materials. For them, online courses are often the preferred way to study drums.
Covering the same curriculum as my private lessons, the ever growing catalogue of courses is available through my tuition website, thereforeidrum.com, along with lots of additional free lessons.