Friday, May 29, 2015

Am I too old to learn the Guitar ?

Man : Hi, Music Star Academy?

MSA: Hi, yes this is Music Star Academy. Can I help you?

Man: I’m wondering if you have guitar course for adults?

After 13 years of giving music lessons, the most challenging ones are to provide guitar lessons to adults. I mean people age between 40 – 72 years old. Why 72 ? I have one student whom age is 72. A man who paint buildings all his life and playing guitar at his leisure time, this is what he told me “ Young man, before I step into the coffin. May I know the secrets of playing Jazz music as during the 40’s my favorite songs mostly are from that genre.” And so i gave him 3 months class and off he goes playing all that jazz music he love so much.

Why challenging? Is not because of hard joints of the fingers, or slow understanding or full capacity in the brain that unable the student to learn. But the way of thinking. They always come into class with a full cup instead of an empty one. I’m not talking about all, but mostly. I have 60 years old that seems to catch up playing guitar in less than a month and happy with his achievement. 

Maybe I’m young? They seems to already lose confident when they see a young teacher. How this young man can teach me anyway? May he is less experienced to. I get this all the time. But I still believe that, to them seeing is believing. If they see me play a few tunes, then I’m over stage 1.And I don’t mean playing metallica or shred lick like from Malmsteen. Tunes that they would understand and comprehend. They will then have confident on me to teach them.

Stage 2, you can’t scold. You can't make negative statements. You need to be very careful in giving pointers and make encouragement rather then penalties. Take time slowly and move according to their speed. Don't rush and be more caring.

They don’t expect much, just to be able to play some everygreen songs and chat with you sometimes, they will feel their time is spent worthwhile.

To me, I like teaching adults a lot. Because i get to help them regain the music in their life, everyone goes through life, ups and downs. I believe that music works as a salvation to it, and I am honored to be able to help and provide my service to them.

SO back to the question? Are you too old to learn the guitar?

NO you are not.

Come along if you have doubt, I will always find a solution to help anyone to be able to enjoy the beautiful art and craft of the guitar. 

Because I love it so much!!~ 

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

How Long DO it Takes to Learn the GUITAR?

How Long DO it Takes to Learn the GUITAR?

Just the other day as usual a new student came and register for guitar lessons, as usual too the parent will ask a few questions on how the process and how much a guitar is but that particular day one of the same questions I get everyday seems to have just spark a thought. The question is,

How Long Do it takes for My Son to learn The Guitar?

Maybe it’s the arrangement of words in that question spark a whole different spectrum of answer from the ones I have been answering all this time.

How Long?

I have asked myself once, how long do you want to learn the guitar? I mean if she would refine the question to be how long you think my son can strum twinkle twinkle little star? I would just answer on the 3rd class. But How Long, man it’s a hard one because I myself doubt it. Is it because I don’t know?


I would answer “I don’t Know”, learning the guitar is an endless journey. How long depends on how long you want to learn, until your desire on improvement on the guitar fade off. I have been playing and learning the guitar 18 years now and I still learn it today. Everyday when I pickup the guitar I felt I still lack of this and lack of that. My sweep picking is not as good as Jason Becker and my composition sucks if it’s to compare to Joe Satriani’s. But in another point of view I felt lucky, because even my life is now full and currently adding on daily life commitments. My desire to improve on the guitar still burns. How can I resist from learning the whole tracks in Deep Purple’s Machine Head album? How can I resist to master Perpetual Burn?
You kinda of start off learning chords, then melody. Learn abit of theory, move on to techniques. Covering songs, learning artist styles…etc.. So there are tons of lessons, tons of guitarist you can learn from. How can the learning stops if a lesson it created from a guitarist? As everyone is unique , every lesson and sometimes on same thing might be different if taught by a different perspective. And there’s always something new to learn from.

How long?

Man I give up on answering it, if someone takes guitar playing and learning seriously, it’s for life I gonna tell you. I will be taking this for life. Whatever that will be going against it, I will hop over and continue.

What did I answer the parent?

I said, he will take it in for life if he learn from me. I will make sure all of my students taste the meaning of music and what the guitar can do to make it so beautiful for everyone and most importantly for himself as music will change and alter your life in a better way. Then I added, if you mean by able to strum and sing twinkle twinkle little star? His 3rd class… The parent smiled and nodded. He knew he made the right choice in bring his son to me, the correct teacher for guitar and life.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Play what you sing, sing what you play

Once you can do this, So many have come to me to learn the kinda ultimate skill , "guitar soloing" and thought one can be master the mentioned skill overnight and it's only partly true.


You may learned it overnight but to solo like Van Halen? In your dreams bro...

You can only understand the soloing concept but far from really understanding the meaning,feel of Improvisation . The note choices the modes the tri tone substitution .

And yes it may seems to be intimidated , but its true to the bone. In order to solo like yngwie malmsteen, you need years of experience on improvisation or learn the top 100 best solo's of all time. But don't give up yet, if they can solo so can you. You only need to start now.

First all you need to do is be able to play the basic of guitar, means playing chords and single notes. Then practice singing what you play, make try to match what you play to what you sing. The. Idea is to sync your mind with the guitars note with your hands or fingers as the bridge.

The idea is simple, if you can't sing what you play. You don't know what you are doing at all.

So try....... and see if you are playing what you can sing..

Thursday, August 8, 2013

It All Started with 3

Once upon a time not very far away, My friend and i started this so to called Music School, it have been a ride going through all the hurdles in life and the school. We have lots of funny stories going on and if i have the extra money i will produce a tv series out of it... surely you guys will laugh your lungs out.
One of the story is this,

CAN you imagine we started off with limited capital and launch our trading with only 3 guitars?

Yup just 3 as you see beside. The photo is the real thing and real life. Well life's hard, frankly speaking. Lots of sacrifice have to be made, but i believe in " There's no such thing as Nothing for something" Although it's not a famous law or teaching , for me it's rule number 1. The more you put in, it will give back. The more people laugh at what you are doing you will have bigger desire to put more. Hence the return is huge. With just 3 guitars on stand, we worked from that profit until today, we have 2 stores containing 20+ guitars each. and looking forward to bring more in.
NO... it's hard work. Being able to do the same things everyday by increase of difficulty each time we do it. It's like playing Tetris in the older times where every level will add speed and it's never gonna end.
Patience and believe in what you do is crucial. If you don't believe who is?

We made it from 2 brothers to a family of musicians here in Music Star Academy, not because we have the values as i said above but also what we give. We always believe in giving more to our customers and students and with their trust in us, We are what we are today.

I would like to thank all of you who supported us and believe in us all these years.

We will continue to bring more great future in music for you and your future.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Do you see it coming?

After the rain Sun and thunder, our first flag had seen it all. Now It's time for a new flag to continue to represent the school where we provide our best education for musicians all around.
Yes, we are here. Always have..

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Music Star Academy coming along the new year

July 2013 - Music STAR Academy, finishing our 2 years and 8 months

Getting ready to proceed with our third year and preparing for our fourth year. Many have learned and many have gone through, we are growing and learning on every step of the support you guys have given , just like in life. Every ups and downs provides us lessons to be learnt. 

Students to us are like brothers and sisters alike, we give our 110% on every lesson and make sure you gain on every lesson and together find solutions to you musical difficulties. We made that promise and forever will provide such professionalism .

Recently we launched " Star Shirt" , which is a black t shirt with the MSA logo in front putting the star near our hearts to represent that music comes from our hearts and expression and we are committed to provide students with our best . The bold word " I'm a Musician" is crossed in our backs , because we are musicians. Every student here will be a all well rounded musician.

With much challenges up ahead we will and we will still provide the best music education to everyone here.
Thank all of you for supporting and ever learning music.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Prog Album Must Hear & Download

Have you guys been bored listening to the same old stuffs, I know some hardcore genre fans will denied the fact of being bored at the favorite genre but HEY, come on. Will you? be bored? sometimes? Hearing that same riff with some alteration in the next song? Same stuff with different ways?

I do, for me Music is VERY BIG, Why Limit it? Yes i have my favorites, but it don't stop me from listening to others and understanding them. It sometimes make you love your favorite genre more.
I start listening to Oldies then to Boybands, to Pop songs in the radio until i end up in Grunge. After that I turn to hardcore in Metal genres. But i turn to Blues and then Jazz, from there i got to Bossa Nova and new age, the classic fingerpicking blues to environment music. I even have cds of sitar and Tabla recordings, the middle east folk songs. Man i can go all day all night. My ears have been very good taken care of.

SO what i'm going to share with you guys today is a bunch of old cds i took off my old rack. Oh yes. The prog years.... I have been so crazy for them...Prog is the ultimate time where musician taken composition to the highest limit, shows you where no man can go, or thought possible. My vocab for Prog maybe ain't that big but i can share with you some to start off with.

Opeth - Watershed

Man i love this album, It's sophisticated, mature and dark. Mikael's dissonant chords in a major is dark and gruesome. Don't even mentioned his vocals in this. The songs are well arranged and i really love the classical guitars in this. The whole album is a killer.

Pink Floyd - Dark side of the moon

70's great album, what can  say about pink floyd? Legendary, starting off with the clocks ding aling... I can't forget it all. It's like a journey when you listen to this album, David's bending makes me goosebumps... 

Dream Theater - Trains of thought

Students from Berkeley Music school, form the best band of all time. Portnoy's drums and Petrucci's shredding, change my world completely. John Myung's bass is amazingly awesome. If you listen to this with earphones you might not want to take them off until you have reached the end of this album, superb sounding with time changes and super shreds!!

YES - Fragile

STEVE HOWE ! I really love classical guitar arrangements here, it makes me smile everytime i listen to this album, "we are heaven " Is one of my favorite tracks here. If you're lost in life This album will bring you back in track and go along, really i tried it!

Tool - 10000days

Yes! poly rhythmic guitars and wonderful vocals, everytime you listen to it, it'll be different. it just blow my mind away. 

Well that a little to start off listening to strange music, easy to understand then to straight off listening to bands like, Genesis, King Crimson, Gentle Giant, Van Der Graaf and all...

Listen and blow your mind!