You have questions and I have answers – as it should be.
So, the doors are open and people are joining the new Club.
I started the FretDojo Academy Club so that you’d have everything you need to build your jazz standard set list and develop all of your jazz guitar skills in an integrated way each month.
I’ve gotten a few questions along the way and I want to answer them here, so everyone can benefit from the answers.
My answers will follow:
Q: “So is this kind of like a ‘jazz standard of the month’ club?”
A: Yes – but better. Let me explain: each month, I’ll be releasing a brand new collection of lessons on a classic jazz standard for you to work on. This will help you to build your repertoire of jazz tunes, as well as expand your vocabulary by learning new soloing, comping, and chord melody approaches along the way.
I’ll be running a study group for the current standard of the month, but you’re welcome to work on any of the other tunes in the Club library at your own pace besides. You aren’t forced to learn a particular tune each month – you can work on ANY of the material included in the Club at your own pace, as long as you’re a member. I think this is a big advantage over other offerings out there.
Q: “So what exactly is included in the club? And what materials are offered as part of my membership?”
A: Your membership will include access to a growing library of high-quality video lessons on classic jazz standards. The Club library will be expanded each month to include a set of lessons on a brand new tune. The video lessons on each jazz standard will include learning the melody, comping ideas, single line soloing approaches, ways to improve your technique AND chord melody/chord soloing ideas. You’ll also get access to regular live workshops and Q&A sessions with myself, as well as an online forum with other Club members.
Q: “Is this Club going to be suitable for my skill level? I’m afraid that this club will take me way, way, way outside my comfort zone on guitar and in the world of music theory. I’m worried that I might be “venturing beyond my depth” on the skill front and might not be able to keep up with the pace, while being aware that many of the other club members may well be more advanced than myself. What do you think?”
A: Although this Club is not suitable for complete beginners at guitar (you’ll need to have been playing guitar for a while beforehand) it’s suitable for newbies to jazz guitar all the way to advanced students of jazz.
The monthly lessons cover the complete range of jazz guitar techniques on the one tune. So, if you are a beginner at jazz, you would focus more on learning the melody, a bit of comping, and a couple of the soloing approaches included. If you’re more advanced, you would focus more on the chord melody/solo guitar side of things and the more advanced soloing approaches. Remember that as your skill level develops you can always go back to the more advanced lessons when that time comes (you’ll have ongoing access to all lessons included in the Club as part of your membership).
Q: “What’s with the logo? Am I entering some sort of religious cult?”
A: (LOL Someone seriously asked me this!) No, it’s not a religious cult. Relax – the logo was actually inspired by Bruce Lee’s martial arts dojo logo (it kind of suited the whole FretDojo vibe :-) E.g. check out this image for the design inspiration – https://www.brucelee.com/new-page/ (scroll down the page to see Bruce Lee’s logo)
Q: “Can I continue to have access to the previous jazz standards covered in the club when I join?”
A: Yes. Regardless of when you sign up, you’ll have access to all of the previous lessons added to the Club Library. You’ll continue to have access to all the previous jazz standards lessons released as long as your membership is active.
Q: “I’m a bit shy and fear having to reveal my shortcomings. The idea of submitting a video for review by a tutor is putting me off – at present, I’m not good enough for that. Do I NEED to submit videos as part of my involvement?”
A: Although getting feedback on your playing from a qualified FretDojo instructor is available to you, you are under no obligation to submit videos – that’s optional. If you would prefer to go through the material on your own for a while without sending any videos, that’s completely ok with me.
Q: “I have a busy schedule, so my practice time is limited. I’m worried that I won’t have enough time to get through the material included in each month of the Club. I’ve recently tried another teacher’s online group, but given my limited and fractured guitar practice time, I just couldn’t keep up with the monthly tunes.. I need some structure but I need some flexibility at going at my own pace. Will your Club serve my needs? What if I cannot complete one standard a month? Can I continue until I’ve “mastered” one tune and then progress to the next?”
A: You can take the material in the Club completely at your own pace. To keep people motivated, I do run a “challenge” for each tune at the end of each month that it’s released, and people go into a lucky draw to win a prize if they submit a video.
But – you don’t need to do those Challenges if you want to go through the material on your own schedule. All the lessons from previous tunes featured in the Club remain on the site, so you can go at whatever pace suits you best. There is a forum for each tune on the site so you can post questions there and fellow students can help you out, or I can cover questions on any of the tunes in the live calls (replays of every live call is posted to the website). So in this way, it’s quite a bit different to other offerings. All the material published in the Club will be available for you to work on any time.
Q: “I really want to learn chord melody on jazz guitar. Is that going to be included in this club?”
A: Yes – I’m going to include chord melody ideas and concepts as a regular component of the lessons. I’ll also show you how to improvise with chord soloing techniques from time to time as well, which is one of the coolest things you can do on jazz guitar.
Q: “I have way too much music instruction to work on including a lot of Truefire stuff and hundreds of books. Is this going to give me something I don’t already know/do or already have a book sitting on my shelf gathering dust that I can refer to? I think there’s a lot of information overload out there and that, as with most jazzers, I’ve probably wasted a lot of money on courses books etc or time on free online stuff that doesn’t really tell me anything I don’t already know.”
A: To answer this one, a quote from Bruce Lee comes to mind that I mentioned in a previous email: “Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Understanding is not enough, we must do”. That’s the whole problem with buying loads of books and courses and DVDs. Because although they might have good information, these ‘passive’ learning formats are missing 2 crucial ingredients to learning a skill – a teacher you have direct access to, and a community of like-minded people. This new Club is built on what I call the “3 Pillars of Learning” – i.e. access to a teacher, high-quality instructional materials, and a supportive community. That’s why it’s very different to other things you might have tried in the past. If you’ve purchased loads of other stuff and still not getting better at jazz guitar, that’s the exact reason you should give this Club a go.
Q: “Are the video portions of the lessons downloadable? Will I be able to keep the materials included in the Club lessons, including the diagrams and sheet music?”
A: Yes. For the jazz standard released each month, the lesson videos and PDFs will be downloadable. For previous jazz standards covered in the club, you can still download the PDFs (the videos for the previous months can be viewed online).
Q: “What are the billing procedures? Can I cancel at any time?”
A: Secure payments can be made for the Club via Paypal or Credit Card. Most major brands of credit card are accepted. Yes – you can cancel at any time without incurring any extra charges. When you cancel, you can keep all the materials you’ve already downloaded from the Club website and take them with you.
Q: “I’m a little hesitant because I was not sure specifically the content or the amount of content that would be included in the membership. How many jazz standards do I have access to if I join the Club today?”
A: Each series of lessons published monthly includes around 10 – 15 video-based lessons covering the whole range of techniques you need to be able to play the jazz standard of the month in a variety of performances situations. For example, click here for a screenshot of the lesson series for this month’s tune, All The Things You Are. There will also be live workshops and special events regularly (with replays available if you can’t make the live calls).
Although this is the public launch of the Club, it’s into it’s third month now so there are three lesson collections available to you the moment you sign up: Take The “A” Train, Days of Wine and Roses, and the latest one, All The Things You Are. There’s also access to replays of workshops and other live sessions held so far including my Chord Melody Masterclass and Memorization Techniques For Jazz Guitar. In addition, I’ve included a special lesson series onWalking Bass For Jazz Guitar. So there’s quite a lot there already the instant you sign up. At the start of each month, I’ll add a new series of lessons on a new standard to the website.
Do you have a question? Not a problem, reply and let me know right now!
World Leader in Online Jazz Guitar Education
P.S. Now is the time, the FretDojo Academy Club membership is waiting for you right here, right now: