Minnesota School Of Music - April 2020

04. 2020 763-432-9713 www.mnschoolofmusic.com



I was in a master’s class for guitar at the University of St. Thomas, watching my fellow classmate, Cory, play his way through a challenging piece. He was getting all the notes, working his fingers frenetically up and down the fretboard — but something felt off. Our instructor hit the nail on the head when the piece came to an end, gently teasing Cory, “In the beginning, there was rhythm.” This biblical-sounding advice stayed in the back of my mind all these years, but it suddenly came rushing to the forefront. Over the years at MnSOM, I couldn’t help but feel a void in our programming. Something was missing from our school that made the whole experience incomplete. Much like Cory’s performance, we were hitting all the right notes for a music school, but had left out a foundational part of the musical world. Drums. We needed drums. That’s why I’m pleased to announce we are finally making this dream a reality, adding drum lessons to our school’s programming. You can find more details on how to sign up for one of these percussion courses inside this newsletter. But for right now, I want to take a moment to address why this addition took this long and what it means for our school.

From its very earliest roots, MnSOM has been based in my capacity as a music teacher. We began as the Minnesota Guitar Academy, focused solely on the instrument I’d worked with in academia for years. Then we became the school you know today, adding piano and voice — two areas of music I’ve been immersed in since childhood. The idea was that, with such a small school, I had to be able to pitch in and teach any of our classes on offer. And let me tell you, I can’t drum. That didn’t stop me from owning a drum kit at some point in my younger years. But try as I might, I never really got past making a lot of noise with it. It was fun, to be sure, but without a teacher, I didn’t make any progress and, ultimately, didn’t stick with it. But now that our school has grown, we’re at an exciting point where we can step beyond my own musical expertise. Being able to bring on drummers to our professional teaching staff is an exciting milestone in the growth of this school. My own kids are excited to learn to drum, and to be honest, I’m thinking of taking a few lessons myself. “... to be honest, I’m thinking of taking a few lessons myself.”

know about drumming, as well as the benefits drumming has to offer, but I’ll close here on a personal observation: The drums are just a lot of fun. Something about crashing cymbals and kicking a bass drum brings out the kid in all of us. The drums are an exciting instrument to pick up, especially for those who may find the more minute, dexterous work of piano and guitar playing isn’t for them. So, it’s with great joy that I can now quote “The Go-Go’s” when talking about our school: We’ve got the beat.

Inside this edition, we go into more detail on what parents and students need to

–Eric Nehring

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