The Coronavirus epidemic put a rapid and dramatic end to live performances, tours, and even recording sessions. Social media has exploded with ‘live from the living room’ performances, jam sessions at a distance, and a myriad more creative solutions to the problem of reaching one’s audience during lockdown. It has also forced most musicians to invent new ways of bringing in an income.
We spoke to internationally celebrated guitarist, Dan Patlansky, about one of his solutions to staying musically active during the coronavirus dilemma: online guitar lessons.
Offering guitar lessons online is a great option in this time of social distancing and isolation. There must be a lot of existing musicians who can use the extra free time to improve their playing skills. Was this purely in reaction to the current Corona virus epidemic?
It was and it wasn’t. I’ve done Skype lessons in the past, but touring limited my time. Skype lessons are a way to continue earning some sort of a living at the moment by doing something I really enjoy.
What is the format of a typical online lesson? Does it differ from an in-person lesson?
It does a bit. But saying that, I only had great success in the past, and massive growth in students that really want to get better. It also offers great convenience as no one has to travel to and from lessons.
What does the student need to have set up at home to take part?
Just a guitar of his choice guitar amp if needed, plus a smart phone or computer with Skype on it.
Do you use any special equipment on your end (dedicated video camera, audio interface, microphone)?
We’ll, for purpose of lessons and to get ideas and concepts across, all that’s needed is a computer with Skype. But a good-quality soundcard to plug a microphone and your guitar into can make a big difference to the tone and clarity of the guitar parts and techniques being demonstrated.
Are most of your students local, or a mix of local and international?
It’s a good mix of both but leaning more to the international front.
Apart from announcing to your fan base, how do you go about marketing your lessons?
I’ve done a bunch of radio interviews , paid social media marketing, and tapping into audiences like Bothners’.
Who are your lessons meant for?
Lesson are for all levels, all ages, and for people who are genuinely interested in furthering their abilities.
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