Here are some answers to some commonly asked questions: –
Do I need any previous experience to have saxophone lessons with you?
NH – No, I teach students of all levels. All you need is your sax, enthusiasm and some time to be able to practise between lessons.
Do I need any special equipment to have online lessons?
NH – No, not really. Basically all you need is a decent broadband connection and an iPad/tab or phone, or a Laptop (with either the Zoom or Skype apps/software installed). Good quality head or earphones can help, but I will always help you get the best sound out of your equipment.
Are you DBS checked?
NH – Yes. As part of my school and university teaching positions I have been DBS checked. I am also trained in Child Protection & Safeguarding to Level 2.
I’m a complete beginner. What length of lesson do you recommend?
NH – When you start learning any wind instrument you need time to build up the stamina of your mouth muscles, so I generally recommend that you start with 30 min lesson and or if you are particularly keen to make progress certainly no more than 45 min lessons.
Can you recommend a good student level sax for a beginner?
NH – Certainly! For most beginners I recommend that they start on an alto saxophone (for a few different reasons), and then in terms of a good quality sax that will last a number of years check out the Yamaha YAS-280 (or the older YAS-275). They are not cheap unfortunately, but are good enough to get you all the way to a fairly advanced level, especially if you combine them with good quality reeds and mouthpiece, plus you can often find them for sale second hand on places like ebay.
How much should I be practising?
NH – Basically as much as possible! However, on a per week beginners I’d recommend 3 x 30 min sessions; Intermediate level players at least 3 x 45-60 min sessions; and for Advanced level students ideally 60 mins per day if not more.
I just want to play for fun. Do I have to take Grades?
NH – No, not at all. Whilst I do like students working through ABRSM or Trinity College London grade exams as it gives a student clear aims and markers progress wise, I understand that these aren’t for everyone. As long as you are enthusiastic and happy to practise then you will make good progress and so we can work on whatever you are interested in musically.
Can I see you performing anywhere?
NH – Most of my performances are for corporate events or weddings via my music agency (www.nhmusic.co.uk), but I do help organise a few concerts each year. If you are interested in hearing me perform live, please do just drop me a line and I’ll let you know when the next public performance is. Alternatively check out the YouTube videos embedded on this website – they were all recorded completely live!
I’d like to start saxophone lessons with you. What should I do?
NH – Firstly, that’s great news! Drop me an email letting me know what type of lessons you would like to have (online or face-to-face at my studio) and the duration you’d like them for (30, 45 or 60 mins). We’ll then schedule a time and go from there!
How and when do I pay for my lessons?
NH – Generally I invoice in blocks of 10 lessons and this invoice should be settled no later than 24 hours prior to the first lesson of that block. Bank details are stated on the invoice, but if you would like to pay by card do just let me know as I can generate a PayPal version of the invoice.
Please note that if you want to book for fewer than 10 lessons (ie. if planning a one off consultation lesson prior to conservatoire entrance exams) that’s completely fine as well. Just let me know when getting in touch to arrange the lesson.
Hopefully that will help answer some of your queries about taking saxophone lessons with Nathan, either Face-to-Face or Online. However if you have any queries please do just drop Nathan an email and he’ll be happy to help.