My name is Trevor Baron and welcome to my new private music education website, and personal record label Listening Edge Records. When I first established Listening Edge Records in 2009 it was to handle the publishing and distributing of my own recordings. I knew I wanted to do more with my company than just use it for my own recordings, however I was too busy teaching privately to work with other artists and promote their work. I started to develop Listening Edge Records as a modern approach to private music education where students could explore music in different ways through recording and career based projects. So often music students only see the music they are creating in the context of their lessons. I wanted to share with students the excitement music has to offer through recording projects, career projects, and online artist interviews.
How often do students get to hear themselves perform? In the case of smaller children parents may record their performances at a recital and play it back for them at a later date, and for older students that may not even happen at all. Critical listening and evaluation is a large part of developing ones own talent as a musician, and never hearing yourself play is not the best way to learn those skills. Since I own my own record label Listening Edge Records, and since record labels are supposed to help create records, this educational project seemed to be a perfect fit for what I wanted to accomplish. Students receive their private music lessons, but with the goal of creating a music album. Students are able to focus on playing their music to the best of their ability, learn the critical listening skills necessary to identify which songs they play best, and how to correct and improve upon songs which they may be having trouble with. Students learn another creative side to music as they plan which songs to place on the album in which order, perhaps create a theme for their album, along with art work to import into iTunes. Most importantly students can hear what they actually sound like when they play their music.
There is so much fun one can have with career related projects. When I talk about career related projects, I mean all of the things that go on in an independent musicians daily work life. Musicians have to promote their music, distribute their music, work on marketing, develop their website, perhaps write ad copy, manage their career, and much more. If you’re a musician with lots of money its a simple process of hiring people to do these tasks for you, however many musicians do much of this work themselves. Professional musicians develop their career in order to make a living, however there are plenty of amateur musicians who are just having fun. These amateur musicians still have websites, records for sale, perhaps perform online concerts, and do all this themselves for fun, and perhaps even a challenge. I wanted to share with my students this fun part of the music world. I wanted to show students regardless of whether you’re pursuing a music career seriously or as an amateur musician, that there’s lots of things to consider, and fun to have.
Since I’ve been working on this new approach to private music education I’ve learned a lot regarding music students and their thoughts on music. Many music students conclude that if they’re not professional musicians than what is the point of lessons. Many students have trouble seeing the multitudiness ways in which music can be a big part of their lives. For this reason I developed the online interviews that are posted on the labels website. Thanks to the many artists who have taken the time to complete the online artist interview, students are now able to experience first hand the many different ways people are sharing their music, and even on a more personal note, what music means to them. I personally find these interviews very inspiring, to understand these artists on a deeper level, what they are achieving with their music is truly incredible.
I want to thank my students for allowing me the privilege of working with them on various recording and career related projects. Working through the process allowed me to gain further insight into the future of Listening Edge Records and its commitment to providing a modern approach to music education. Private music lessons can be so much more than they are, and my hope is to bring this to the attention of students who are seeking alternatives to traditional music lessons.