Gary L. Gerdes Classes


Note to Educators: I am available to teach any of these classes as a guest, part-time, contracted or adjunct faculty member. I am available to high schools, two and four-year colleges in the Greater Seattle area (Auburn to Everett and east to North Bend). I can also offer the classes at specialized music schools, organizations or stores. Please contact me with any questions or for further information.


Note to Students: Check or bookmark this page for currently scheduled classes.

 


SONGWRITING
30-40 hour class - available in accredited (graded) or non-credit versions.

This class is based on my recently-published book "Songwriting Magic & Sweat". Check that page to learn more about the book and my experience as a songwriter - or go directly here to see the contents/cirriculum of the songwriting class.

Please see below for my qualifications and experience as an instructor.

Working with the book as a basis, I can teach at least four versions of the class:

SONGWRITING FOR MUSIC MAJORS
For those with moderate to advanced theory & reading skills, we gloss over most of the musical fundamentals in the book, and delve deeper into melodic constructions, and more sophisticated chords and progressions. Lyrical elements and techniques are approximately half of the course material.

 

SONGWRITING FOR NON-MAJORS
For those with little or no music experience, we stress some of the music fundamentals to ensure that the students can at least create a "lead sheet" for their songs. Lyrical elements and techniques are approximately half of the course material, and do not really differ from the class above.

 

PRAISE AND WORSHIP SONGWRITING FOR MUSIC MAJORS
Tailored to the needs of Christian high schools and colleges.
Identical to the first class above in musical disciplines and prerequisites. Lyrical and subject areas are more focused on the 4 basic types of Christian songs, and on interpreting the Scriptures accurately but creatively when creating songs.

 

PRAISE AND WORSHIP SONGWRITING FOR NON-MAJORS
Tailored to the needs of Christian high schools and colleges.
Identical to the second class above in musical disciplines and prerequisites. Lyrical and subject areas are more focused on the 4 basic types of Christian songs, and on interpreting the Scriptures accurately but creatively when creating songs.

 

CURRENTLY SCHEDULED SONGWRITING CLASSES AND INFORMATION

none scheduled at present - private mentoring available for self-study students.

 

 

MUSIC FUNDAMENTALS AND THEORY
Available in accredited (graded) or noncredit versions.

Please see below for my qualifications and experience as an instructor.

MUSIC FUNDAMENTALS
This is pretty much what it sounds like, and is targeted at those who know little or nothing about music. Topics would include rhythms, time, and counting. Notes on treble & bass clef and piano keyboard. Putting notes and rhythm together. Basic triad structure of chords for the main types of chords. Keys, signatures, and chords in a all key. Musical notation symbols and phrases.
I do not have a definitive textbook I prefer to use, so if your school already has a fundamentals class, I'd be happy to use any standard texts or materials you've standardized on.

 

MUSIC THEORY
I prefer to teach a mix of classical and popular theory, taking the best from both disciplines. I can teach several progressive courses in either discipline or a mix of the two.
I do not have a definitive textbook I prefer to use, so if your school already has a fundamentals class, I'd be happy to use any standard texts or materials you've standardized on.

 

CURRENTLY SCHEDULED
FUNDAMENTALS AND THEORY CLASSES & INFORMATION

none at this time.

 

 

gary

About Me

Teaching Qualifications and Experience

  • I have a BA in Music Composition and Theory; and have continued learning through 30 years in the "real world" of both popular and "serious" music. So I am well versed in classical and popular music theory.

  • I have developed curricula, conceptual presentation tools, and workbooks for dozens of classes.

  • I have over 20 years experience in teaching music and computer skills. I have likely taught nearly a thousand individual classes, mostly to adults of all ages; but with some experience in elementary and high school. At all age groups, I've been recognized and commended for my clear, dynamic, patient, and encouraging style as a teacher.

  • I've written nearly 400 completed songs in most of the popular music genres; and written over 150 instrumental pieces in a variety of styles (ranging from neoclassical, electronic/techno, and big band, to soundtracks and advertising jingles).

  • I have performed in concerts, musical theaters, night clubs, dances, etc. almost continually since the tenth grade.

  • As far as Christian music and education, I have been performed at evangelical rallies, concerts and coffee houses. For the past ten years, I have been a "praise & worship" leader in 3 different churches. So I have ample experience and expertise in writing and choosing effective Christian songs for the appropriate occasion, and in the nature of worship.

 

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Sound Recording Live/Bands Dee-Jay Theater/Musicals
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