Old students, new licks

I just spent some time with a friend and former student who came by my studio to visit. Ben was a student of mine through high school, and is now a year from leaving college for graduate school. He isn’t a music major, but is playing in five bands, doing some spec studio sessions for friends and has been studying drum set since he got to campus three years ago. While he was at my studio, he showed me some of the ideas that he has developed over the last three years. He had managed to incorporate a number of styles and techniques into a recognizable personal style that was tasteful and controlled but very funky and perfectly matched to the music. His knowledge of studio techniques and approaches was very perceptive, with the fresh perspective of a young but experienced player. I watched very intently, so I could steal as many licks as possible… To top it all off, as a side project, he built a snare drum as a gift for me!

It was really a treat to see Ben again, and to see how much he had grown musically. The rewards from teaching are intangible (except for the new snare drum!), but most satisfying, indeed!

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