Beginners to Advanced
Piano - Keyboard - Guitar - Bass - Drums - Theory
£32 for a one hour lesson, reduced to £29 if paid in advance, and the first one is also only £29.
Length and frequency of lessons are flexible.
All ages welcome.
I am able to teach students to play any songs or pieces they like and not make them learn any they don’t like. I teach them to play by ear and by notation. I also teach them how to improvise, and speak their mind musically.
I have 18 years experience in this line of work, and for 17 years now it has been my full-time occupation.
I have studied music at Los Angeles Musicians Institute and Cambridge Anglia Ruskin University.
My name is pronounced ‘Dave Montaig’. ‘Deive’ is short for Deiven.
Students can choose to learn any or all of the instruments I teach. They do not have to own an instrument to spend part of their lesson learning it.
Students do not have to learn to read conventional sheet music. Furthermore, I do not teach it to beginners. I do teach it to those who want to learn it, but only after they have learnt my own ‘RSMR’ notation system. I don’t want to give them an overcomplicated, incorrect view of music that may make them give up.
RSMR is the Rational System of Musical Reference, and is not just a notation system; it incorporates a new nomenclature system also. There are serious mistakes in both the notation and the nomenclature of music, and in fact a rational system of notation is not actually compatible with conventional nomenclature. There are also serious mistakes in the conventional theory of music. I am the originator of a new theory of pitch and a new theory of rhythm.
Students do unfortunately have to learn the conventional nomenclature - because it is so widely used. Many musicians cannot read the notation and do not use it - including many of the world’s most popular musicians - but all musicians use the nomenclature to some extent. All students of pitch-playing instruments should be taught the conventional names of the twelve absolute pitch-tones and all students of chord-playing instruments should be taught the conventional names of the chords, but they should also be taught that these names are bad ones. There is now an enormous library of song notations that are available for free on the web which simply present the lyrics and chord-changes in the song, with the chords indicated simply by name, and every guitarist and keyboardist should learn how to read these; however, they should also learn how those chord-names are far from good ones.
I have no problem with beginner guitar and bass students being taught conventional ‘tablature’ notation, and I often give them tabs that have been published on the web. The only difference with my own tablature is that it includes timing details; conventional rhythmic-timing notation is not compatible with guitar tab, but my rhythmic-timing notation is compatible with any system of pitch notation.
I do teach ‘grade’ exam courses if requested, and have taught those from the Trinity, ABRSM and Rockschool awarding bodies, but I don’t teach these to an absolute beginner. They present rudimentary music theory as little more than the rules of a bad system of musical reference stated as if it is a good system. I teach the real rudiments of music, and this does not involve introducing such things as the sharp, the flat or the time signature.
I came to realise and understand the main mistakes in the theory, nomenclature and notation of music before I ever started teaching, and this was one of the reasons I went into teaching. It caused me to confront these mistakes head on and find the solutions. Some of these solutions had already been proposed by others, and some had not. The staff design I use for keyboard and general-purpose pitch notation has been around for almost two centuries, although I have presented it in a particular way that is unique and improved, but the rhythmic-timing notation system I use with all my students, no matter what the instrument, is entirely of my own invention. I also have invented numerous other music learning aids that translate what we hear into something we can see.
For those reading this who have some knowledge of the conventional system of musical reference, I will now present my list of the main mistakes it makes. The order I am presenting these mistakes in is not from the most serious to the least serious, it is an order that allows me to explain them all in detail in one flowing narrative that doesn't repeat itself or jump back and forth between different subjects. I do that explaining in a 25,276-word eBook titled ‘Why the Theory, Nomenclature and Notation of Music Need Reform’. Presented below is the list that eBook is the explanation of.
* * * * * *
Why the Theory, Nomenclature and Notation of Music Need Reform
1. The staff for indicating pitch in music notation is only ever referred to simply as the ‘staff’ or ‘stave’, but it is only one of a number of types of staff used in music notation, and so should often be referred to as the ‘pitch-staff’.
2. The circular element of pitch is not being properly distinguished from pitch itself and is not shown at all in the pitch-staff design.
3. A position in the circular element of pitch should be referred to as a ‘tone’ or ‘pitch-tone’ and not as a ‘pitch class’, a ‘pitch’ or a ‘note’.
4. A pitch should not be referred to as a ‘tone’ or a ‘note’.
5. No specific interval of pitch should be referred to as a ‘tone’, and if one had to be, it should not be the one that is.
6. The way the terms 'tonal’, 'atonal’, ‘tonic’ and ‘twelve-tone’ are being used is irrational and problematic.
7. The term ‘diatonic’ is given a number of conflicting meanings, none of which it is a very good term for.
8. The key of a piece of music is only ever referred to simply as a ‘key’, but should often be referred to with a more descriptive term such as ‘music-key’ in order to distinguish it from a key of a keyboard or wind instrument.
9. The four different types of pitch-tone a musical note may have at any one time are not being distinguished from one another.
10. A tone-pattern should be distinguished from a scale and not be referred to as a ‘scale’.
11. A tone of pitch should have a permanent identity which does not change when the musical context changes.
12. A tone of absolute pitch should only have one identity, and never be given a temporary identity for a particular musical context, and the same goes for a tone of the unnamed type of relative pitch represented by the Kodály Sol-fa, Tonic Sol-fa and Jianpu pitch reference systems.
13. No tone of absolute pitch should ever be considered the ‘sharp’ or ‘flat’ of another.
14. The notation staff used for representing pitch should have twelve pitch-positions per octave, not seven.
15. The naming of the twelve tones of absolute pitch should use twelve letters of the alphabet, not seven.
16. The naming of the twelve tones of absolute pitch with alphabet letters should be done so that the first letter represents the bottom tone of the octave-register in the system of marking and naming the different octave-registers.
17. The standard system of keyboard music notation should indicate where the pitches it indicates are located on the keyboard.
18. Pitch-interval should be measured primarily in half-steps, which could be called ‘stairs’.
19. The conventional system of naming chords is imprecise, overcomplicated, hard to learn, and limited in the information it can deliver about the chord.
20. Pitch-interval should not be generally referred to simply as ‘interval’, as this term is so commonly associated with time, and it would be more practical to refer to it as ‘pitchspan’.
21. If keyboard notation is to use a staff which has two clefs, representing the left and right halves of the keyboard, then those clefs should both represent the same order of tones.
22. The so-called ‘melodic minor scale’ is not a scale; it is an exercise involving two different scales.
23. The conventional names for the different scale degrees of a music-key are misleading and illogical.
24. The conventional names for the different scale-types are misleading and illogical.
25. The idea that there are only two types of music-key - the ‘major’ and the ‘minor’ - does not make sense.
26. The labeling of the strings of a stringed fingerboard instrument with numbers should begin with the thickest string, not the thinnest one.
27. Using the word ‘piano’ to mean ‘quietly’ is problematic.
28. The term ‘rhythm’ should not be used to mean timing in general; it should only refer to a particular type of timing that employs a set of closely related durations.
29. A rhythmic duration should have a permanent identity which does not change when the musical context changes.
30. Rhythmic duration is being measured in a measurement that does not measure it.
31. The conventional labeling of metres is imprecise; there is often a secondary beat-division that it does not mention.
32. Notating note and rest duration via different kinds of note and rest symbols has some serious drawbacks.
33. What most people refer to as ‘echo’ is for some reason being referred to by musicians as ‘delay’.
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