Tag: Jeff Comas

Getting The Most of Practice: Part V

By Jeff Comas, Director of Knoxville Academy of Music



Tension and The Physicality of Performing

This article is about performing music, but the concepts can be applied to other activities like sports, dancing, acting, even writing or doing crafts.

In part one of this series I discussed letting the learning of music be easier by studying and music in small segments, which can be learned faster and with greater ease. In this section I’ll discuss more of the physical element of playing music. Read more →

A Safety Plan For Parents

By Jeff Comas, Director of Knoxville Academy of Music



I want to warn you that contents of this article may provoke some uncomfortable thoughts. However, if you love your children (and I know you do) I urge you to read on. After all, every parent is concerned about their children’s safety and wellbeing. I know you want to protect your children from serious dangers to the best of your ability. That means considering the dangers your children may face in their lives, and what can be done about them, is part of your responsibility as a parent. We cannot, and should not even try to protect our child from every single danger in the world. However, when it comes to protecting our kids from the dangers of child predators we must be vigilant. Having safeguards to protect your children from predators should be a part of every family’s safety plan. Read more →

Nourishing The Soul With Music

By Jeff Comas, Director of Knoxville Academy of Music



“The effect of music on our bodies” has been a topic of scientific studies for a very long time. We all remember listening to our favorite singer or band for extensive hours and how it lifts our mood and cheers us up. This is important to remember because we all know that modern studies have shown the effects of mood on our overall health, good mood and stress-free life leads to longevity, whereas stress can lead to heart diseases and many brain related dysfunctions. Music therapy has become very popular to reverse some of the effects of old age but what is being given slightly less attention is the huge amounts of benefits listening and learning to play music can have for your child in the long run. Read more →

Should My Child Major In Music: Part II

By Jeff Comas



Last month we talked about your child pursuing music education in college and/or pursuing a career in music. I mentioned that there are basically three types of formal music education programs: the traditional university, the avocational school, and the modernized university. I also promised to discuss which style of advanced music program, if any, is right for your child? Read more →

Should My Child Major In Music: Part I

By Jeff Comas



question I often hear from parents this time of year is- “Should my child major in music, in college?” When I hear this question, it usually means that their child is 17 or 18, college is looming just ahead, and it’s time to consider a major. Their child may not know what they really want out of college, but they know that they love to play music. Being a music major sounds like it would be lot more fun, and much easier than majoring in math, or science. So they tell you “mom…dad, I want to major in music.” Read more →

Getting The Most Out Of Practice: Chapter 4: (Self-Talk & Self-Image)

By Jeff Comas



Our own self-talk influences the shape of our own self-image. Our self-image determines our beliefs about ourselves and what we can or cannot do, and even how we see the world. Our brains automatically tend to try to make true, that which we believe. If we say and/or think something frequently and/or consistently we will start to believe it. Let me give you some examples: If you believe “my job is boring” then you will find the reasons why your job is boring and it will be true. If you believe “I love riding my bike” then you will you will find the reasons why riding your bike is great and you will love riding your bike. Read more →

Getting The Most Out Of Practice: Part V

By Jeff Comas



If readers have been playing close attention, you might have noticed that last time I said “Next time we’ll talk dynamics.” Well, it’s that time, but I decided to add the subject of timbre to this article. Read more →

Getting The Most Out Of Practice: Part IV

By Jeff Comas



As I mentioned previously, I believe all people should learn to read music. I have witnessed how learning to read music helps children (and adults) develop their cognitive abilities, improve their understanding of concepts such as time & space, pitch, volume, conservation, division & multiplication, and increase their attention span. It also helps students improve coordination (motor skills). Read more →

Getting The Most Out Of Practice: Part III

By Jeff Comas



Reading music is an activity in three and sometimes four dimensions;

1. Pitch (highness or lowness of the sound),

2. Rhythm (when notes are played & how long they last),

3. Dynamics (the volume of the music played),

4. Timbre (sound quality- this is often dictated by instrument indicated but some instruments can vary their own tone).  Read more →

Getting The Most Out Of Practice – Chapter Three: Why Read Music? Part I

By Jeff Comas



I believe that learning to read music is an important part of becoming a musician. However, there are those who will point out that many wonderful musicians do not read music. I freely admit this is true, but there are also many great musicians who do read music. Read more →