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Volume magazine

Learn. Play. Perform.

Jay Street is a hugely popular instructor that has been teaching at Progressive Music Center for well over 10 years now. Jay’s students and parents love his easy going style and relaxed vibe which is evident in the long relationships Jay has developed with our clients over the years.

If you have the pleasure of really getting to know Jay you’ll find an amazing personality that loves to hear a good joke just as much as he loves to tell one. Jay is also a wealth of musical information and we love hearing him talk about all the changes he has witnessed in the musical landscape (and in life) over the years, so we thought it would be fun to ask our resident guru 5 quick questions:

1. What was your very first musical performance?

Playing saxophone in the 4th or 5th grade with the East Atlanta Elementary School Band.

2. Top three favorite artists/bands of all time? Why?

The Beatles – 1963 was a great time to be a teenager and a musician, even though saxophone was my only instrument at the time.… Keeping in mind that before the Beatles, Elvis was the King of pop, so to hear the sound of the Beatles was such a fresh, energetic and magical experience, that to say it shaped my life forever would be an understatement. Their influence certainly prompted my getting my first band together.

James Taylor and Paul Simon

Fast forward 16 years…
I am including these two artists as one choice, because I loved listening to them equally.
James Taylor and Paul Simon may not have kicked you in the head like rock groups of the same era, but their songwriting skills, especially on their album cuts- that didn’t get any air play, is why I was drawn to listen to Sweet Baby James and Paul Simon.

Jeff Lorber – It was 1980 when I first heard of him, and at the time his group was called The Jeff Lorber Fusion.
The tightness of the bass and drums… the more than funky way they played… and the songs themselves is why I love his material. I still listen to the older material as well as his newer songs.

3. If you were stranded on an island what three items would want to have?

1- Solar Powered Keyboard
2- A guitar with strings that lasted a lifetime and were not adversely affected by the sea air.
3- Three Wishes

4. What advice do you have for beginning musicians?

It does take a degree of time with practicing your instrument every day to really learn to play well.
You didn’t learn to tie your shoe or ride your bike in 5 minutes, so don’t expect that learning to play an instrument will be any different!
Most importantly, and I can’t emphasize this enough, have compassion for yourself and don’t ever judge yourself harshly for making mistakes.

5. Abba or the Bee Gees?
Abba

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