My piano teacher in London was absolutely fantastic; a concert pianist as well as someone who could communicate what it was that could transform a simple piece into a work of art. Normally it’s quite demoralising when someone picks up a tune I’ve been struggling with and effortlessly evokes every nuance of beauty from it, but somehow he turned it into an inspiration instead.
As such, I’ve been a bit wary of finding a teacher over here (and undecided as to whether I’d like to continue with structured piano lessons, or try actually learning to play bass), but I think I’ve found something that could work.
The New York Jazz Academy has a series of jazz improvisation workshops that I’ll be heading along to with my bass over the next few months. I’m pretty comfortable with technically playing the instrument, but right now I just can’t translate my thoughts into music quickly enough when playing new pieces, or sight-reading Real Book tunes from lead sheets.
I’ll let you know how it goes.