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common Q and A’s from David Wilson, Education Center Coordinator :

Q: I took guitar lessons before and they were really boring. What makes your program so different?

A: Man, I’ve heard that from a bunch of people! Please realize that this is a very broad generalization, but there are a lot of teachers (especially in the “combo” world of guitar, bass, and drums) that just should not be teaching lessons. Some teachers are just failed wannabe rock stars that realized they have to pay the rent so they start teaching. This really comes across! This is usually indicated by (1) a lack of ability to meet individual student’s specific needs and (2) not being able to explain just HOW they played such a cool guitar solo. Many players seem like great musicians until you get them out of their preferred element or ask them to explain what they’re doing! These are not people that should be teaching. Other teachers are the very stodgy type. This is the classic “I took guitar lessons when I was a kid, but all I got to do was play Mary Had a Little Lamb!” story. Our lessons challenge the student by teaching the instrument from a RELEVANT perspective. Music lessons don’t have to be always based on a classical repertoire! Modern country, metal, and even gospel use the same basic musical principles utilized by Mozart and Chopin, so why not use music the student likes, while challenging him or her to constantly broaden their horizons with other listening experiences

Q: My Uncle George plays guitar (bass/drums etc), can’t he teach me?

A: Maybe. Uncle George can definitely show you some basics, possibly more. Chances are that Uncle George is self-taught and has many bad habits he has developed over the years. All of our teachers have demonstrated a deep commitment to learning all aspects of music. They can sight-read, jam with a blues band, play a rippin’ solo, or analyze the harmonic content of a concerto. If Uncle George can do that, we may have a job for him!

Q: Why do your lessons cost more than the leading brand?

A: First, we ARE the leading brand! This is a subjective issue (see next faq below). There are cheaper lessons out there, but no other program in the area offers anything close to the learning environment we can provide. No one else even close to SW Oklahoma incorporates customized backing tracks, wireless access to 2 ½ million songs, or the option to sign up for jam sessions culminating in the experience of recording with other musicians in an ultra-modern digital recording studio. Plus, our teachers are simply terrific! Did you know there are people teaching private lessons on guitar/bass/drums that can’t read music? There are also teachers that can read, but could never jump on stage and jam with a country/metal/blues band. Our teachers are not just paid for the time they spend with you, but for their ability to deliver a ton of musical knowledge in a way that best fits the individual student.

Q: Why are your lessons so cheap?

A: We get this one too! Many people coming from other parts of the country are pleasantly surprised at our low tuition rates. To put it simply, the cost of living in Lawton is pretty cheap. We feel our lessons are at a price that makes it worth our while, yet is still within the monthly budget of most families.

Q: What’s the deal with the backing tracks?

A: Glad you asked! We have a huge library of music that we’ve made ourselves, just for the purpose of education. If you’re enrolled in our weekly program, the teachers will give you these backing tracks as needed. For example, we know that the songs in a beginning guitar book for 10 year olds can be boring. But if you get to play along with a rockin’ rhythm section of drums, bass, and rhythm guitar, it becomes a lot more fun! Also, it teaches the student how to stay in time with other musicians. Monthly students are guaranteed a customized-for-the-session backing track with each lesson.

Q: How do I pay for my lessons?

A: PMEC tuition will be automatically debited from your credit/check card on the 1st of the month for the next month’s lessons.

Q: What if I miss a lesson?

A: Sometimes, you may have to miss a lesson. Our new attendance policy does not allow for make-up lessons, but instead offers 3 ‘free’ lessons per year by charging the same for a month even if there are 5 of a given day. Consider your monthly tuition like a gym membership – you pay the same every month whether you come or not. If your teacher misses, we’ll credit your next months tuition. Months with holidays will be billed for only the weeks the studios are open.