Teachers and other resources
Having a good teacher or people to play and sing with is extremely helpful, even if you’re already an experienced player or singer. Here is a list of teachers and resources that can support your goals.
The World Harmony Chorus
This community chorus (currently online in 2021) welcomes participants of all ages and ability levels. There are no auditions nor entrance requirements.
Daniel Steinberg & Betsy Blakeslee work with vocalists at all levels of ability and experience to develop choral repertoire from a wide variety of ethnic sources and folk traditions, including urban jazz/gospel, hymns from Madagascar & Zimbabwe, Appalachian shape-note singing, Eastern European kolos, and Venezuelan choral works. The result is an ongoing chorus for participants of all ages. All parts are taught by ear, and musical transcriptions are provided. If you’ve never experienced the magic of singing in a choir, or if you’ve always thought of yourself as someone who “just can’t sing”, this is a great way to start.
There are plenty of challenges and solo opportunities for experienced singers, as well.
Freight Singers community chorus
The Freight Singers is a new community chorus based at the Freight and Salvage, led by Zoe Ellis and Bryan Dyer. The chorus will introduce singers to music from a variety of cultures inside the U.S. and around the world with an emphasis on traditional/roots music. Participants will learn about the historical and cultural context of the music, as well as the style and technique, including basic body music techniques.
There are no auditions, but singers will be asked to participate in a brief assessment with chorus directors. Singers should be able to sing on pitch and hold a part. Ability to read music is not required. Singers should be at least 14 years old.
Hiram Bell, ukulele teacher
Hiram Bell is a popular teacher who teaches beginning, intermediate and advanced ukulele classes and private lessons.
Evie Ladin, banjo, singing and rhythmic dance teacher
Evie is a master of her craft and has performed all over the world, from A Prairie Home Companion to Lincoln Center, Celtic Connections to Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, Brazil to Bali.
Erik Hoffman, fiddle teacher
Erik is a wonderfully patient teacher with a vast knowledge of fiddle tunes, techniques and styles.
Megasonic Sound recording studio
If your recording ambition has exceeded your home studio, then I recommend Megasonic. Located in the East Bay, they have world-class equipment and facilities, a talented and supportive engineer and a Yamaha C3 conservatory grand piano.