Band Sessions in London

Whilst I firmly believe one-to-one lessons are the best way to develop each students unique potential on their chosen instrument, there are some elements of music that can only be taught through interaction with other musicians in a group environment. Since 2009 I’ve been teaching band lessons in North West London, working with groups of musicians looking for the guidance of a more experienced player. This ensures direction, focus and achievement for any rehearsal or session, and can be a great way to break the ice for new people meeting each other for the first time.

For this to work in a private context you will need to provide the space for a session; either at a band members house or at a rehearsal space. I can provide assistance with finding and organising a suitable rehearsal space if required. Each session will be dictated by the individual needs and requirements of the group, so the best way to proceed is to contact me via email and we can discuss how best to make a session work: dougcartwright@gmail.com

My students Birdpark rehearsing their cover of Royal Blood’s ‘Better Stranger’ during a band session together.

Here’s a loose guideline for the types of class I can offer:

Band Sessions

These sessions are ideal for teenagers with more experience playing their instruments. If you’re a teenager in a band (or a parent with teenagers in a band!) I can help you to work together as a group to increase your productivity, musicianship and showmanship! Whilst there are many important benefits to one-to-one instruction, there are some things you can only learn in the thick of it, rehearsing and playing with other musicians; the guidance of a more experienced player will help you overcome issues faster, mediate the time-honoured ‘musical differences’ for the most diplomatic outcomes and offer a sense of focus and direction to your rehearsals, ensuring they don’t just become aimless jams!

I have lots of experience working with young composers of all ages and particularly enjoy helping young groups to hone their songwriting abilities. I can also assist with producing demos of your music – email me for info!

Rates: 2 Hour Rehearsal – Group of 3: £30 per person – Group of 4: £25 per person
This does not include costs incurred through rental of rehearsal space
Term-based booking discount available.
Booking: dougcartwright@gmail.com

Some of my students banging out an Incubus cover after one rehearsal. What a bunch of legends.

Band Sessions for Children

Band sessions are typically suited to children with at least two years of lessons in their chosen instrument. I can help them to choose appropriate material in line with the groups tastes, arrange the material into parts suitable for the level of each instrumentalist and even accompany the band on guitar or bass myself if required, whilst offering a positive atmosphere, mediating in disputes and ensuring each member of the band is maximising their potential both in terms of musicality and overall enjoyment.

Appropriate instruments: Guitar, Bass, Drums, Vocals, Piano/Keyboards
Other instruments are probably fine, subject to discussion

Rates: 2 Hour Rehearsal – Group of 3: £30 per person – Group of 4: £25 per person
This does not include costs incurred through rental of rehearsal space
Term-based booking discount available.
Booking: dougcartwright@gmail.com

An example of me playing with some very young students in 2012 – Nina (vocals) stuck with lessons and is now fronting Stepbrother who currently receive regular BBC airplay!

Adult Band Sessions

I’ve had quite a history of working with amateur adult bands, particularly a few years ago when I successfully initiated the concept as a class at The Rhythm Studio, a music school in Kensal Rise that I worked at for over a decade. These classes are ideal for hobby players or lapsed musicians looking to get back into playing music later in life; take the awkwardness and uncertainty out of rehearsing with people you may not know very well or haven’t played with before by hiring me to lead the sessions! I can offer advice on repertoire, help with learning parts and advice on learning resources, whilst giving sessions focus and direction. I can even play in the band if you need a guitarist or bassist to complete the lineup!

These sessions are normally a lot of fun and often lead to pub trips and booking gigs in local venues which are always a great night. If this sounds appealing drop me an email, either as a group or if you’re looking to meet likeminded people to form a band with!

Rates: 2 Hour Rehearsal – Group of 3: £30 per person – Group of 4: £25 per person
This does not include costs incurred through rental of rehearsal space
Term-based booking discount available.
Booking: dougcartwright@gmail.com

My students Vanta Blue performing their original composition ‘Window’ at Notting Hill Arts Club. I love the end section of this song!

Qualifications and Other Information

I hold a BMus Degree in Popular Music Performance on which I specialised in modern guitar styles, as well as a Level 6 Licentiate Diploma in Music Teaching. I also have an up-to-date full-disclosure DBS certificate and have completed an NSPCC Child Protection and Welfare certificate course; all are viewable on request. I can provide references if you’re a parent who’d like to speak to other parents about their child’s experiences learning with me prior to booking lessons.

For details on other types of Music Lessons I offer in North West London click here: Lessons

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