Zoom harmonica lessons with Tad Dreis
Hi, my name is Tad Dreis, and I’ve taught harmonica professionally for fourteen years.
What Would You Like to Learn?
Maybe you need help with harmonica technique, like playing clear single notes, bending, and overblows. Or you’d like to learn to play your favorite melodies on the blues harp. Maybe you’re an aspiring improvisor, and want to jam with friends around the campfire or onstage. Perhaps you play harmonica a bit already, but need some music theory and ear training to help put it all together.
I have over thirty years of harmonica experience, a music degree, and I’ve taught thousands of private music lessons. I also worked for four years as a classroom music teacher (imagine “School of Rock” with ukuleles). I arranged songs for two Hal Leonard harmonica books (“The First 50 Songs You Should Learn on Harmonica” and “The Ultimate Harmonica Songbook”) and I’m comfortable taking requests and quickly notating melodies for harmonica during your Zoom lesson. I enjoy figuring out how to play rock, folk, jazz, Celtic, blues, and classical music on harmonica. Also, I love working with kids and adults : )
How Long Have I Taught Online?
I started teaching live online music lessons via webcam in 2009, using Skype, then Google Hangouts and FaceTime. For the last few years I’ve used Zoom, mainly because of the improved sound quality. I’ve worked online with students from across the US, and internationally with folks in Canada, France, Austria, the U.K., Israel, Australia, Japan, and New Zealand.
If you’d like to get started, please give me a call at (603) 762-9378 or email me through the Contact page.
How Does a Zoom Harmonica Lesson Work?
It’s just like an in-person lesson. I’m sitting in front of you, you’re sitting in front of me. You ask me questions, I answer. I play something for you on the harmonica, you listen, then play it on your harmonica. I give you feedback. There’s a slight time delay, which prevents us from playing simultaneously, but call-and-response works fine in a Zoom lesson. You may want to have some scratch paper available to take notes by hand, and I’ll email you PDFs or text documents for songs and exercises, which you can either view on-screen during the lesson, or print out. I can also send you audio demos of what we’re working on, as well as backing tracks for jamming.
Time Zone & Schedule
I’m in New Hampshire, on the east coast of the USA, so my time zone is the same as New York City (Eastern Standard Time). For folks outside the US, my time zone is GMT -4, -5, or -6, depending on Daylight Savings. Please be sure to let me know your region and time zone when scheduling Zoom harmonica lessons.
I teach Monday – Friday from 5:30pm to 10:00pm. If your time zone makes those hours inconvenient, let me know and we’ll try to find a time that will work for both of us.
I accept payment online via Paypal, Zelle, and Venmo. You can either pay using your own Paypal account or a credit card. My rates for Zoom harmonica lessons are $50 for an hour, $35 for a half-hour. Students make a single payment at the beginning of each month. Click here to purchase lessons.
What You’ll Need:
Computer with Zoom Installed + High Speed Internet Connection
I’ll send you an email with a Zoom link, and you can attend your harmonica lesson simply by clicking and opening the meeting in your browser, but I recommend actually installing Zoom, in order to have more options for getting good sound quality and sharing documents. And of course, if you have a strong Internet connection, you’ll have fewer dropped calls and less glitchyness.
Your webcam will pick up your voice, and you’ll be able to hear me through your computer speakers, but it can be helpful to wear headphones to hear more clearly. Earbuds or headphones used for normal music listening will work fine.
Oh yeah, having an instrument would be helpful, wouldn’t it? I recommend using a Hohner Special 20 in C. Other keys are fine, too. I’m partial to C, G, D, A, and B-flat harps.
Second Device + Optional Speaker
I recommend having a second device on hand (ie, phone, tablet, CD player) to play backing tracks during the lesson.
It’s also handy to have a printer available, so that if I send you a worksheet or song during your Zoom harmonica lesson, you can easily print it. It’s also possible to view worksheets onscreen during lessons, but I recommend printing worksheets out and keeping them in a lesson folder or binder. Call me old-fashioned :)
Send me an email.