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Matt Flinner

Newgrass, Celtic and Mandolin for Beginners: What You Need to Know

By Theme Admin on September 9th, 2016 at 1:33 AM

“Your course was exactly what I have been looking for.  It was well structured with a ton of good material.  I like that fact that we were given tunes to learn but also tools that allows me expand the lessons beyond the course tunes to others that I already know.”—Todd M.

“I’m really enjoying the course. The first time I’ve actually practiced an instrument in my 60 years!”—Skip H.

 

Welcome to mattflinner.com.  And welcome to the Bluegrass Mandolin 101 online lessons program!

This fall, beginning the week of September 26th, the Bluegrass Mandolin 101 program continues with mandolin courses for students of all ability levels: Newgrass Mandolin, Celtic Mandolin and Mandolin for Beginners.

 

Return to the fall courses info page.

 

Here’s a description of the Bluegrass Mandolin 101 online experience that I hope will give you a good idea of what this exciting style of mandolin lessons is all about.

THE BLUEGRASS MANDOLIN 101 ONLINE LESSONS PROGRAM

The Bluegrass Mandolin 101 program is a unique approach to online mandolin lessons that gives students the best of both worlds: access to live lessons as well as recorded mandolin instructional videos.  These courses focus on helping mandolin students get to the next level in their playing and broaden their understanding of the bluegrass, old-time and fiddle tune traditions.

A UNIQUE APPROACH: LIVE INSTRUCTION PLUS INSTRUCTIONAL VIDEOS

Part of what makes Bluegrass Mandolin 101 unique is the fact that students follow a step-by-step program of live lessons over an eight-week course.  The live lessons get a little more challenging each week, and students are encouraged to practice during the week in order to get comfortable with that week’s concepts and be prepared for the next week’s class session.  Students also have unlimited access to several short instructional videos each week (usually about 6 to 8) but are also following a regular schedule which encourages them to actually practice the material regularly during the eight week period.  The archive of short instructional videos plus the video recordings of each class session and practice session give the student plenty of material to work with during the course and on into their future mandolin endeavors!

 

THE SCHEDULE

The live lessons for the Mandolin for Beginners course take place every Monday night from 8-9 pm Central time from September 26th to December 5th, and for the Newgrass Mandolin course every Tuesday from 8-9 pm Central time from September 27th to December 6th.  The Celtic Mandolin course will take place every Wednesday night from 8-9 pm central time from September 28th to December 7th.  All three courses will also have Saturday practice/review sessions; Mandolin for Beginners will be from 9-9:45 am central time, Newgrass Mandolin will be from 10-10:45 am central time and the Celtic Mandolin practice sessions will be from 11:15 am-12 pm central time each Saturday from October 1st through December 10th.  Classes will be off on a couple of weeks due to Matt’s tour schedule; see the class’s specific curriculum for details.  There will still be eight class sessions and eight practice sessions in each course.

It is NOT imperative that students be able to attend the live mandolin bluegrass sessions.  All sessions will be recorded, so students can revisit the recorded sessions during the week to catch up on that week’s material at their own leisure.  Students attending the live lessons will be able to ask questions on the spot (and get immediate answers and interaction), while those watching the recorded sessions will be able to ask questions via email or on the class forum page.

VIDEOS, WRITTEN MATERIALS AND RECOMMENDED LISTENING

Students have access to video recordings of all of the class sessions and practice sessions as well (generally by the following morning, or, in the case of the Saturday practice sessions, later that afternoon).  In addition, shorter practice videos of the material are immediately available for viewing after each class session, along with PDFs of the all of the material in standard notation and tablature.  All of these videos (about eight or so per week) are available to view as many times as the student would like.  Students can also download all materials (including videos and PDFs) to keep as long as they wish.

Students will also be given a list of recommended recordings for each week’s tunes.  A variety of mp3 recordings will be suggested in the hope that students will broaden their musical horizons and get a better idea of how the tunes are played by the masters!

HOW INTERACTIVE IS THE COURSE?

All live sessions are interactive; students can ask questions and/or demonstrate tunes or exercises via live microphone or telephone, or via a chat window (most students opt for this approach).  The instructor is able to immediately respond and demonstrate the answers for the whole class.  Another form of interaction comes via mp3 recordings; students can record mp3s on their own time of themselves playing the material (or anything else they want to send in) and send it to the instructor for feedback, which is also recorded in mp3 form and sent back to the student.  Students can post their mp3s on the class site (and likely get encouraging feedback from other students in addition to the instructor) or email them privately to the instructor.

HOW MUCH DO I NEED TO PRACTICE?

That is completely up to the student.  While, say, 30 minutes per day might be a good recommendation for practice time, students can make whatever they choose of this course based on their own schedule and aspirations.  Practicing week to week (say, 30 minutes per day) will help students keep up with the week’s lessons and concepts, but the instructor knows that people have busy lives!  This is why all instructional material is archived and available for download so that students can learn on their own time after the course has finished as well as during the eight weeks of classes.  However, one advantage to the eight-week scheduled course is that by practicing at least somewhat regularly, students are more able to be prepared for the following week’s lessons and therefore take full advantage of the live and recorded mix of lesson material.

Students can decide whether to practice along with the class session or with the shorter individual videos (or both), depending on what they want to focus on for that week.  Material is given each week that is targeted toward various ability levels; a song is given which is playable for beginning to intermediate players (or intermediate to advanced in the 102 class), and various concepts relating to that song are also given to educate and challenge players at beginning, intermediate and even advanced levels.  The student essentially decides how much they want to take on for the week (and the course) based on their ability level and how much practice time they have.  Any material they were unable to get to during the week and want to revisit later will be available in the archived videos and PDFs.  The instructor will also give students a recommended list of priorities each week to help students take the best advantage of their practice time.

THE CLASS WEBPAGE

This is the virtual gathering place for the Mandolin for Beginners, Newgrass Mandolin and Celtic Mandolin with Matt Flinner courses.  Here, students can view the instructional videos, view and/or download all written materials, listen to mp3s of Matt playing the tunes, get listening recommendations, ask questions, submit their own mp3s for feedback and generate forum discussions.  It’s a great place to drop by any time and explore, learn and discuss.

REGISTRATION FEE

The fee for the eight-week Newgrass and Celtic courses is $200, and the fee for the Mandolin for Beginners course is $175.  This gives you access to all live online lessons and practice sessions as well as access to all recorded videos, written materials and mp3s (which are yours to keep).

 

Here are a few quotes from some past students about their experiences in the Bluegrass Mandolin 101 program:

“I’ve taken music and instrument classes over the years, and I’ve never received such a comprehensive and successful approach as this format. Live video, downloaded charts and diagrams, recorded sessions, at the most affordable price. Nothing I’ve participated in compares to this. Best value for the dollar. Highly recommended.”—Jim H. 

“I was amazed at the time, feedback, and focus you gave us on chat questions, emails, and mp3s.  I was very impressed and feel better about my confidence level, how I play and focus now. The course just worked for me and got me over a hump in terms of my motivation and focus.”—Donna O.

“I have to say that making everything available online is a great convenience for me. Being able to stop and return to a more challenging exercise or a newer phrase is great for learning. I also really appreciate your availability to answer questions offline. This is a great course, and I feel as though I’m improving daily because of it.”—Joe C.

“The level was perfect. Mentally I understand many things that have opened up the fingerboard a lot; now I need some quality time to get it under my hands. I found things challenging without feeling out of reach.”—Stan M.

“You thoroughly answered the email questions and the recorded .mp3 feedback to the sample I posted was SUPER helpful. Very detailed and specific to what you heard on my recording. Very helpful to hear you play examples of what your were talking about and get recommendations of specific exercises to do.”—Barb N.

To visit the registration pages, click one of these links:

Mandolin for Beginners

Newgrass Mandolin

Celtic Mandolin

 

 


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Fall Online Courses Include Newgrass, Celtic Mandolin and Mandolin for Beginners

By Theme Admin on August 15th, 2016 at 3:48 PM

MattFlinner_pic

 

Welcome to the Bluegrass Mandolin 101 online lessons program!  Established in the fall of 2013 by Grammy-nominated mandolinist Matt Flinner, the Bluegrass Mandolin 101 program has become one of the premier mandolin learning methods in the world, whether online or offline.  This program presents a variety of online mandolin courses from bluegrass to old-time to swing and jazz to rock and roll and more.  Hundreds of students have improved their playing and broadened their horizons through this unique mix of live lessons and recorded materials.

For this fall, we’re offering three courses: Newgrass Mandolin, Celtic Mandolin and Mandolin for Beginners.

 

Mandolin for Beginners.  September 26-December 10.  This course is intended for beginning level players, and is designed to give the beginning mandolin student a solid foundation in basic mandolin technique, and help students start playing actual songs and tunes from the start. Chords, picking exercises, fingering exercises, rhythm exercises as well as tunes and songs will be taught each week in a progressive curriculum to help students establish good habits and enable them to advance more quickly in their mandolin playing.  Live class sessions take place on Monday evenings, and practice/review follow-up sessions take place on Saturday mornings.  The curriculum for the course can be viewed here.  Register for Mandolin for Beginners here.

 

Newgrass Mandolin with Matt Flinner.  September 27-December 10.  This is intended for students at an intermediate to advanced level who want to broaden their musical horizons into modern “newgrass.”  Students will learn to incorporate some ideas from rock & roll, blues and jazz as well as fiddle tunes to get a broader spectrum of sounds into their playing.  Styles of Sam Bush and David Grisman will be discussed, along with some other modern players.  Live class sessions take place on Tuesday evenings, and practice/review sessions take place on Saturday mornings.  The curriculum for this course can be viewed here.  Register here.

 

Celtic Mandolin with Matt Flinner.  September 28-December 10.  This course is recommended for players at an advanced beginner to intermediate level, and is intended to familiarize students with traditional Irish music on the mandolin.  The course will explore techniques for playing lead and rhythm in traditional Irish fiddle tunes.  Rhythm playing and picking technique on reels and jigs will be explored, as well as picking technique for triplets and various ways of playing ornamentations.  Live class sessions take place on Wednesday evenings (except for a couple on Monday evenings), and practice/review sessions take place on Saturday mornings/afternoons (depending on your time zone).  The curriculum can be viewed here.   Register here.

 

Course fees are $200 for Newgrass Mandolin or Celtic Mandolin with Matt Flinner and $175 for Mandolin for Beginners.

 

Mandolin for Beginners Curriculum                                  Register for Mandolin for Beginners

Newgrass Mandolin with Matt Flinner Curriculum       Register for Newgrass Mandolin

Celtic Mandolin with Matt Flinner Curriculum               Register for Celtic Mandolin

 

Questions?  Email Matt at [email protected]

 


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Celtic Mandolin with Matt Flinner Curriculum

By Theme Admin on August 15th, 2016 at 3:25 PM

MattFlinner_pic

 

Register for Celtic Mandolin with Matt Flinner

See other courses offered this fall

 

New this fall is a course in Celtic Mandolin playing!  This course will explore techniques for playing lead and rhythm in traditional Irish fiddle tunes.   Each week, students can choose between three reels, jigs or hornpipes to learn, along with several exercises to help with various aspects of technique (during the class sessions, Matt will focus on one of the tunes each week, but students are given the option of learning one or two more if they have time, or focusing on one of the other tunes if they so choose).  Rhythm playing and picking technique on reels and jigs will be explored, as well as picking technique for triplets and various ways of playing ornamentations.  The course is recommended for players at an advanced beginner to intermediate level.

 

The live sessions occur online on Wednesday evenings at 9 pm eastern, though week 3 (Oct 17) and week 6 (Nov 21) will occur on Monday evenings at 9 pm eastern.  The weeks of October 12 and November 2nd will be off due to Matt’s tour schedule (giving students more time to practice!).  There will also be practice/review sessions on Saturdays from 12:15-1 pm eastern time (with the weeks of October 15 and November 5 off, again, due to Matt’s tour schedule).

Students are NOT required to attend all (or any) of the live sessions; all sessions are recorded and uploaded to the class website where they can be viewed after-the-fact at the student’s leisure.  Students also have the option of downloading all class videos and practice videos, as well as all PDFs and practice mp3s for the course, so that they can revisit the materials any time.

 

Register here.

See other courses offered this fall.

 

Here is the curriculum:

 

WEEK 1 (9/28)

Picking Exercise I

Playing basic rhythm on reels

Rhythm Exercise I

A few scales

Off to California

Rights of Man Hornpipe

The Lobster

 

WEEK 2 (10/5)

Picking Exercise II

Adding some hammer-on and pull-off ornaments

Varying the octave

Rhythm Exercise II

My Love is in America

The Maids of Mitchelstown

Jim Coleman’s

 

WEEK 3 (10/17)

Jigs

Picking Exercise IV

Emphasizing the beat in 6/8 time

Playing rhythm on jigs

Rhythm Exercise III

Tripping Up the Stairs

Merrily Kiss the Quaker

Kesh Jig

 

WEEK 4 (10/26)

Using chord inversions in your rhythm playing

Picking Exercise III

Pull-off ornaments

Julia Delaney

Music for a Found Harmonium

The Maid Behind the Bar

 

WEEK 5 (11/9)

Adding trills to your playing

Picking Exercise V

Cooley’s Reel

Tarbolton Reel

Jenny’s Wedding

 

WEEK 6 (11/21)

Jigs II

Further rhythmic ideas on jigs

Rhythm Exercise IV

Octave variations

Banish Misfortune

Morrison’s Jig

The Mist Covered Mountain

 

WEEK 7 (11/30)

Slip Jigs

Picking Exercise V

Rhythm Exercise V

Patterns in 9/8

The Kid on the Mountain

The Butterfly

 

WEEK 8 (12/7)

A few more reels

Tying it together: moving chords, ornaments and trills

The Star of Munster

The Fisherman’s Lilt

The Musical Priest

Salamanca Reel

 

The course fee is $200.

 

Register for Celtic Mandolin with Matt Flinner

See other courses offered this fall.


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Newgrass Mandolin with Matt Flinner Curriculum

By Theme Admin on August 14th, 2016 at 8:42 PM

MattFlinner_pic

 

 

 

Register for Newgrass Mandolin with Matt Flinner.

See other courses offered this fall.

 

 

Newgrass Mandolin with Matt Flinner returns!  This course leads students from the world of modern bluegrass mandolin into some other “newgrass” styles, giving them a broad variety of approaches to soloing and playing backup.  Following the lead of players like Sam Bush and David Grisman, the course will explore ways of adding new elements to the students’ playing, from bluegrass to some Rock & Roll influence to a bit of jazz and more.  Expand your horizons, and learn some new tunes along the way!

The course runs from September 26-December 10, and is intended for intermediate to advanced players.  Classes take place Tuesday evenings at 9 pm eastern time, and review sessions take place on Saturday mornings at 11 am eastern time (note: the weeks of October 18th and November 2nd are off due to Matt’s tour schedule).  The registration fee is $200.

 

 

Register here.

See other online courses offered this fall.

 

NEWGRASS MANDOLIN WITH MATT FLINNER CURRICULUM: 

Week 1 (9/27)

Bluegrass just outside the box

Double stops

A few licks in G

One Way Track

Bonus tune: This Heart of Mine

 

Week 2 (10/4)

Adding some more advanced chords

Some position playing, some scale-style playing

Playing over minor chords

More licks in G, and transposing

Steam Powered Aeroplane

Bonus tune: Gentle on My Mind

 

Week 3 (10/11)

Rock & Roll grooves

The Rock & Roll chop feel

Adding ornaments in backup playing

A few rock & roll-friendly licks

Lonesome and a Long Way from Home

Bonus tune: Four Days of Rain

 

Week 4 (10/25)

Adding the blues to your playing

Blues scales and licks in various keys

Moving chord inversions

7th chords

White Freight Liner

Bonus tune: Blue Railroad Train

 

Week 5 (11/8)

More advanced instrumental harmony

Shifting Positions I

More chord movement

Manzanita

Bonus tune: Kissimmee Kid

 

Week 6 (11/22)

Minor keys

Playing over minor progressions

Using chord tones in solos

Land of the Navajo

Bonus tune: Jackaroo

 

Week 7 (11/29)

Some more advanced progressions and grooves

Adding licks in various modes to your solos

With Care from Someone

Bonus tune: When You Come Back Down

 

Week 8 (12/5)

Tying it all together

Varying grooves on the same tune

Approaches to improv: double stops, positions, scales and arpeggios

The Likes of Me

Bonus tune: Thirsty in the Rain

 

Register before September 15th for just $175.  That’s $25 off the normal registration fee of $200!

 

Register for Newgrass Mandolin with Matt Flinner.

See other courses offered this fall.

 


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Mandolin for Beginners Curriculum

By Theme Admin on August 13th, 2016 at 11:30 PM

MattFlinner_pic

 

 

Mandolin for Beginners is an eight-week online program designed to give the beginning mandolin student a solid foundation in basic mandolin technique, and help students start playing actual songs and tunes from the start. Chords, picking exercises, fingering exercises, rhythm exercises as well as tunes and songs will be taught each week in a progressive curriculum to help students establish good habits and enable them to advance more quickly in their mandolin playing.

 

Register for Mandolin for Beginners

See other courses offered this fall. 

 

The eight-week course begins on September 26th and runs until December 10th.  Class sessions will take place every Monday evening from 8-8:45 pm central time, and follow-up practice sessions will take place every Saturday morning from 9-9:45 am central time (Matt will be taking off the weeks of October 27 and November 24 off due to his tour schedule and the Thanksgiving holiday; there will be eight class sessions and eight practice sessions over a ten-week period).  All class sessions and practice sessions will be recorded so that students can revisit the lessons as often as they’d like to, and students who are unable to attend any of the live sessions can view the lessons at their own convenience.

During the live sessions, students can ask questions and/or play examples via their microphone (built-in or external plug-in), or they can ask questions via a built-in chat window.

All students will also have unlimited access to short recorded videos of all of the material played at a slow tempo, PDFs of all material in both standard notation and mandolin tablature, and mp3s of all of the tunes at slow and medium speeds that they can practice along with.  Students can access all of this material at any time through the class website, and can also download all materials (videos and class session videos included) to keep them permanently.

Students are also encouraged to submit mp3 recordings at any time during the course if they would like to, and the instructor will respond in an mp3 recording with constructive criticism.  Students can submit these mp3s either privately via email or publicly via the class website, where all students can listen and respond if they choose to.  Mp3 submissions are encouraged but not required, and there is no limit on how many mp3 submissions a student can send in.

Students will also be given a “Recommended Listening” list each week for the material covered.  A variety of versions of each tune will be provided in the hopes that students will listen to recordings and further explore the wide world of recorded bluegrass and old-time music.

 

WHAT YOU WILL NEED TO PARTICIPATE:

1. A desktop or laptop Mac or PC computer, iPad or Internet-connected mobile device in order to view the sessions, plus a good internet connection.  If you’re on a Mac, you’ll need to be using OS 10.8 or later in order to see Matt’s webcam (which is central to the lessons).  It’s also a good idea to update your browser to the most recent version in order for the live lessons to run smoothly.

2. An internal microphone and speakers on your laptop or desktop computer, or a phone to listen and speak (if desired) during the sessions.  Instructions for participating by phone are included when you register for the course (long distance charges may apply).

3. During the course, you have the option of submitting recorded examples of your playing to the instructor (and to the group, if desired). In order to do this, you will need your computer’s built-in microphone or an external microphone plugged directly into your computer (via built-in ports or an external audio interface), in addition to basic audio recording software, such as Audacity or Garage Band, that will allow you to record yourself playing and save the recording in MP3 format.

4. A mandolin (actually maybe that should have been #1).

 

The fee for the course is $175.

If you have questions about the course, email Matt at [email protected]

 

Register for Mandolin for Beginners here.

See other courses offered this fall. 

 

MANDOLIN FOR BEGINNERS CURRICULUM

 

WEEK 1 (9/26)

Getting familiar with the mandolin

How to choose a pick, mandolin set-up and tuning

A Few Chords

A Few Picking Patterns

Fingering Position

Playing chords on Will the Circle Be Unbroken

Bonus material: This Land is Your Land

 

WEEK 2 (10/3)

Playing melodies

Picking Pattern 2

Chords in A

A Major scale

Bile Them Cabbage Down

Bonus material: Woody’s Rag

 

WEEK 3 (10/10)

Picking pattern 3

Fingering Exercise I

D major scale

Angeline the Baker

Bonus material: Wildwood Flower

 

WEEK 4 (10/24)

Picking pattern 4

A few minor chords

Rhythm patterns

G major scale

Old Joe Clark

Bonus material: Shady Grove

 

WEEK 5 (11/7)

Adding ornaments, Slides and Hammer-ons

Fingering Exercise II

Playing rhythm in Waltz time

Rhythm on Goodnight Irene

Muddy Roads

Bonus material: Eighth of January

 

WEEK 6 (11/14)

Getting to know the neck a little better

Closed position A major scale

Three Closed position chords

Red Haired Boy

Bonus material: Over the Waterfall

 

WEEK 7 (11/28)

Intro to position playing

A few double stops

Bluegrass “Chop Chords”

Will the Circle Be Unbroken

Bonus material: I’ll Fly Away

 

WEEK 8 (12/5)

Transitions between lead and rhythm

Trying other keys (with tunes from week 7)

Soldier’s Joy

Bonus material: Blackberry Blossom

 

Register for Mandolin for Beginners

See other online courses offered this fall.

 

Questions?  Email Matt: [email protected]


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Summer Intensive 102, Scale and Arpeggio Intensive and Bluegrass Jamming Start August 8-10!

By Theme Admin on July 6th, 2016 at 7:56 PM

 

The Bluegrass Mandolin 101 online lessons program continues this summer with three more four-week long intensive courses designed to help your overall mandolin playing technique and help you have more fun playing the mandolin!

In the Summer Intensive 102 course, we’ll look at several exercises each week which are intended to increase your knowledge of the fretboard and help your picking hand control as we look at seven different areas: picking exercises, fingering exercises, scale exercises, arpeggios, chord exercises, double stops, and licks.  We’ll also learn a new tune each week and apply the ideas from each of the exercises to that week’s tune; by practicing these exercises in this context, students get some practical applications for the exercises as well as some ideas for variations on tunes.

In the Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II with Matt Flinner course, we’ll get more deeply into scales and arpeggios—the building blocks of music and the basic tools of improvisation.  Each week, we’ll look at certain types of scales and learn various patterns based on those scales to help students learn the fretboard.  We’ll also look at certain types of arpeggios each week and get a thorough workout in playing those arpeggios around the fretboard.  Students will also be given a picking exercise each week to help with fundamental technique, and a double stop exercise to further reinforce the students’ knowledge of chord tones—plus students will receive a new tune each week along with suggestions on how to incorporate that week’s exercises into creating variations on the tune.

The Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming II with Matt Flinner course is intended to help students play bluegrass music with other people.  Each week, students will receive four new tunes (from beginner to advanced level) along with ways of playing rhythm, approaches to creating variations on the tune, and some exercises to help with fundamental technique.  The goal is to help students learn more tunes, learn practical approaches to playing those tunes, and get out and play with other people!

All three courses are continuations of previous courses which finish up at the end of July; however, it is not necessary for students to have taken the previous summer courses in order to register for and learn from the current courses.

 

Register for Summer Intensive 102

Register for Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II with Matt Flinner

Register for Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming II with Matt Flinner

 

The Summer Intensive 102 course, which takes place on Monday evenings, is intended for beginner to intermediate students, and students will learn one bluegrass or old-time tune in conjunction with the exercises.  The Scale and Arpeggio Intensive course, which takes place on Tuesday evenings, is intended for intermediate to advanced level students, and students will learn one swing or bluegrass tune in conjunction with the exercises.  Both courses will also address fundamentals which should be beneficial to players of all ability levels.  And both courses will also have practice/review sessions on Saturday mornings.

The Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming course, which takes place on Wednesday evenings, is intended for players of all ability levels, but will lean toward the intermediate level.  The course is intended to help students build repertoire and get practical experience in playing tunes and creating and trying out variations.   This course will also have practice/review sessions on Saturdays.

 

Summer Intensive 102 Curriculum

Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II with Matt Flinner Curriculum

Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming II with Matt Flinner Curriculum

 

Here’s a description of the Bluegrass Mandolin 101 online experience that I hope will give you a good idea of what this exciting style of mandolin lessons is all about.

BLUEGRASS MANDOLIN 101 (and Scales and Arpeggios, and Jamming!)

The Bluegrass Mandolin 101 program is a unique approach to online mandolin lessons that gives students the best of both worlds: access to live lessons as well as recorded mandolin instructional videos.  These courses focus on helping mandolin students get to the next level in their playing and broaden their understanding of the bluegrass, old-time and fiddle tune traditions.

A UNIQUE APPROACH: LIVE INSTRUCTION PLUS INSTRUCTIONAL VIDEOS

Part of what makes the Bluegrass Mandolin 101 program unique is the fact that students follow a step-by-step program of live lessons over a four-week course.  The live lessons get a little more challenging each week, and students are encouraged to practice during the week in order to get comfortable with that week’s concepts in order to be more prepared for the next class session.  Students also have unlimited access to several short instructional videos each week (usually about 8 or 9) but are also following a regular schedule which encourages them to actually practice the material regularly during the eight week period.  The archive of short instructional videos plus the video recordings of each class session and practice session give the student plenty of material to work with during the course and on into their future mandolin endeavors!

THIS QUARTER’S COURSES

For Summer Quarter, there will be THREE 4-week courses offered from August 8-September 3.  The Summer Intensive 101 and 201 courses will focus on various aspects of technique.  Each week, students will receive six or seven exercises and a tune to learn.  For the 101 course, picking exercises, fingering exercises, arpeggios, scales, double stops, chord exercises, and licks will  be given each week.  For the 201 course, picking exercises, scale exercises, scale pattern exercises, modes, arpeggios and double stop exercises will be given each week.  Students will also be given some ideas on how to apply that week’s exercises to that week’s tune in order to create variations.  The Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming course will focus more on building repertoire, playing lead and rhythm and creating variations in a jam-like setting.

1. Summer Intensive 102, which is geared toward upper beginner to intermediate students.  Students will be given seven exercises per week plus a bluegrass or old-time tune, along with suggestions on how to relate the exercise to that week’s tune.

2. Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II with Matt Flinner, which is geared toward upper intermediate to advanced students.  Students will receive six scale and arpeggio-focused exercises plus a swing or bluegrass tune, along with suggestions on how to relate the exercises to that week’s tune.

3. Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming II with Matt Flinner, which is open to players of all ability levels, but will lean toward the intermediate level.  Students will be given four tunes each week along with a few exercises and suggestions on how to play lead and rhythm as well as create variations for that week’s tunes.

THE SCHEDULE

The live lessons for the Summer Intensive 102 course take place every Monday night from 8-9 pm Central time from August 8th to 29th, and for the Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II with Matt Flinner course every Tuesday from 8-9 pm Central time from August 9th to 30th.  Both courses will also have Saturday practice/review sessions; 101 will be from 9-10 am central time, and the Scale and Arpeggio course will be from 10-10:45 am central time.

The Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming II course will take place on Wednesday evenings from 8-9 pm Central time from August 10th to 31st.  There will be Saturday practice/review sessions from 11:15 am-noon Central time.

It is NOT imperative that students be able to attend the live mandolin class sessions.  As all sessions will be recorded, students can revisit the recorded sessions during the week to catch up on that week’s material at their own leisure.  Students attending the live lessons will be able to ask questions on the spot (and get immediate answers and interaction), while those watching the recorded sessions will be able to ask questions via email or on the class forum page.

VIDEOS, WRITTEN MATERIALS AND RECOMMENDED LISTENING

Students have access to video recordings of all of the class sessions and practice sessions as well (generally by the following morning, or, in the case of the Saturday practice sessions, later that afternoon).  In addition, shorter practice videos of the material are immediately available for viewing after each class session, along with PDFs of the all of the material in standard notation and tablature.  All of these videos (about eight or so per week) are available to view as many times as the student would like.  Students can also download all materials (including videos and PDFs) to keep as long as they wish.

Students will also be given a list of recommended recordings for each week’s tunes.  A variety of mp3 recordings will be suggested in the hope that students will broaden their musical horizons and get a better idea of how the tunes are played by the masters!

HOW INTERACTIVE IS THE COURSE?

All live sessions are interactive; students can ask questions and/or demonstrate tunes or exercises via live microphone or telephone, or via a chat window (most students opt for this approach).  The instructor is able to immediately respond and demonstrate the answers for the whole class.  Another form of interaction comes via mp3 recordings; students can record mp3s on their own time of themselves playing the material (or anything else they want to send in) and send it to the instructor for feedback, which is also recorded in mp3 form and sent back to the student.  Students can post their mp3s on the class site (and likely get encouraging feedback from other students in addition to the instructor) or email them privately to the instructor.

HOW MUCH DO I NEED TO PRACTICE?

That is completely up to the student.  While, say, 30 minutes per day might be a good recommendation for practice time, students can make whatever they choose of this course based on their own schedule and aspirations.  Practicing week to week (again, say 30 minutes per day) will help students keep up with the week’s lessons and concepts, but the instructor knows that people have busy lives!  This is why all instructional material is archived and available for download so that students can learn on their own time after the course has finished as well as during the eight weeks of classes.  However, one advantage to the four-week scheduled course is that by practicing at least somewhat regularly, students are more able to be prepared for the following week’s lessons and therefore take full advantage of the live and recorded mix of lesson material.

Students can decide whether to practice along with the class session or with the shorter individual videos (or both), depending on what they want to focus on for that week.  Material is given each week that is targeted toward various ability levels; a song is given which is playable for beginning to intermediate players (or intermediate to advanced in the 102 class), and various concepts relating to that song are also given to educate and challenge players at beginning, intermediate and even advanced levels.  The student essentially decides how much they want to take on for the week (and the course) based on their ability level and how much practice time they have.  Any material they were unable to get to during the week and want to revisit later will be available in the archived videos and PDFs.  The instructor will also give students a recommended list of priorities each week to help students take the best advantage of their practice time.

THE CLASS WEBPAGE

This is the virtual gathering place for Summer Intensive 101 and 201  courses, where students can view the instructional videos, view and/or download all written materials, listen to mp3s of Matt playing the tunes, get listening recommendations, ask questions, submit their own mp3s for feedback and generate forum discussions.  It’s a great place to drop by any time and explore, learn and discuss.

REGISTRATION FEE

 

Fees for the 4-week summer courses are $120 each.

 

Here are a few quotes from some past students about their experiences in the Bluegrass Mandolin 101 program:

 

“I’ve practiced more in two weeks than I have in months!   Really enjoying how it’s going.”—Donna O.

“I have to say that making everything available online is a great convenience for me. Being able to stop and return to a more challenging exercise or a newer phrase is great for learning. I also really appreciate your availability to answer questions offline. This is a great course, and I feel as though I’m improving daily because of it.”—Joe C.

“The level was perfect. Mentally I understand many things that have opened up the fingerboard a lot; now I need some quality time to get it under my hands. I found things challenging without feeling out of reach.”—Stan M.

“I’m really enjoying the course. The first time I’ve actually practiced an instrument in my 60 years!”—Skip H.

 

To visit the registration pages, click one of these links:

Summer Intensive 102 Registration

Scale and Arpeggio Intensive with Matt Flinner Registration

Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming with Matt Flinner Registration

 

You can always ask questions about the courses via email ([email protected]), and I’ll get back to you as quickly as possible.  I hope to see you this summer!

All the best,

Matt

 

Summer Intensive 102 Curriculum

Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II with Matt Flinner Curriculum

Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming II with Matt Flinner Curriculum


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Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming II with Matt Flinner Curriculum

By Theme Admin on July 6th, 2016 at 7:52 PM

 

Register for Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming II with Matt Flinner.

See other courses offered this summer.

 

This course is intended to help the aspiring mandolinist build up repertoire and find ways of creating new solos over commonly played standards; it’s also designed in the hope that it will encourage students to get out and jam with other players!

Each week, we’ll look at four bluegrass standard tunes: two instrumentals and two vocal songs in a particular key.  Students will be given lead sheets (in standard notation and tablature) for each song, as well as a few exercises to help them learn more about the fretboard and start incorporating new ideas into their solos.  Concepts and tunes will be taught during the class session, and all tunes will be revisited during Saturday practice sessions in a “jam session” format, where each song is played several times though, and students have the opportunity to try out some of the week’s concepts on the tunes (with guidance from Matt).

While this course is a continuation of the Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming course which completed in late July, it is not necessary for students to have taken the first course to be able to take the second course.  The Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming II course is intended to reinforce many of the concepts taught in the previous course, while expanding the student’s knowledge of the fretboard beyond where the first course left off.

The course begins August 10 and runs through September 3.  Class sessions meet every Wednesday evening from 8 to 9 pm central time, and practice/review sessions meet every Saturday from 11:15 am-noon central time.

Students are encouraged to attend the live sessions to be able to interact more directly with the instructor, but live attendance is not required.  Students will be able to view the recordings of all of the sessions any time afterward as often as they want through the class website.

Register here.

Here is the curriculum:

 

WEEK 1 (August 9)

KEY of C

Positions in C

C Chord Tones and Double Stops

Shady Grove

I Don’t Believe You’ve Met My Baby

Texas Gales

Boston Boy

 

WEEK 2 (August 16)

Keys of E and F

Position Playing in E and F

E and F Chord Tones and Double Stops

Octave Changes

Won’t You Come and Sing for Me

Ocean of Diamonds

Brown County Breakdown

Mississippi Waltz

 

WEEK 3 (August 23)

Key of B

Positions in B

B Chord Tones and Double Stops

Chop Chords and “Open” Style Chords in B

I’ve Lived a Lot in My Time

I Wish You Knew

Rebecca

Fox on the Run

 

WEEK 4 (August 30)

Key of Bb

Using Open Strings in Bb

Position playing in Bb

Bb Chord Tones and Double Stops

I’m Coming Back, But I Don’t Know When

Old Home Place

Daley’s Reel

New Camptown Races

 

The course fee is $120.

 

Register for Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming II with Matt Flinner here.

To view other courses offered this summer, click here.


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Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II Curriculum

By Theme Admin on July 6th, 2016 at 7:52 PM

 

Register for Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II with Matt Flinner

View other courses offered this summer

 

The Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II course begins August 9 and runs through September 3.  Class sessions meet every Tuesday evening from 8 to 9 pm central time, and practice/review sessions meet every Saturday from 10-10:45 am central time.

Students are encouraged to attend the live sessions to be able to interact more directly with the instructor, but live attendance is not required.  Students will be able to view the recordings of all of the sessions any time afterward as often as they want through the class website.

The Summer Intensive Scale and Arpeggio course is intended for students at an intermediate to advanced level, and will use swing and well as bluegrass material as examples and exercises.  Some material may be more easy or more challenging for individual students.  Students are encouraged to prioritize certain exercises according to their ability level, and are given the option of adding to many of the exercises in order to further challenge themselves if they wish to.  Part of the intent of the course is to challenge students at a variety of levels, and to help students advance their playing, learn new musical ideas and have more fun playing the mandolin regardless of their ability level.  While this course is a continuation of the Scale and Arpeggio Intensive course which completed in late July, it is not necessary for students to have taken the first course to be able to take the second course.  The Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II course is intended to reinforce many of the concepts taught in the previous course, while pushing the student’s technique further than the first one did.

 

Register here.

 

Here is the Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II curriculum:

 

WEEK 1

Chord Tone Exercise: ii-V-I Chord Tones

Arpeggio Exercise I: Major Arpeggios from the 3rd

Arpeggio Exercise II: Major Triads going in Minor 3rds

Scale Exercise I: Lydian Scales in All Keys

Scale Exercise II: Major Scales in Fourths

Picking Double Stop Exercise: 2-bar Picking Pattern with C Double Stops

Miss Molly

 

WEEK 2

Chord Tone Exercise: Minor Chord Tone Exercise

Arpeggio Exercise I: Major Arpeggios from the 5th

Arpeggio Exercise II: Diatonic 7th Arpeggios

Scale Exercise I: Phrygian Scales in All Keys

Scale Exercise II: Major Scales in Fifths

Double Stop Picking Exercise: 2-bar Picking Pattern with A Double Stops

Alabama Jubilee

 

WEEK 3

Chord Tone Exercise: Finding Chord Tones Over a Chord Progression

Arpeggio Exercise I: Diminished Arpeggios

Arpeggio Exercise II: 1-2-3-5 and 5-3-2-1 in All Keys

Scale Exercise I: Diminished Scale and Patterns

Scale Exercise II: Major Scales in Sixths

Double Stop Picking Exercise: Picking Pattern with Open Style G Double Stops

Black and White Rag

 

WEEK 4

Chord Tone Exercise: Chord Tones Over a Chord Progression II

Arpeggio Exercise I: Augmented 7 Arpeggios

Arpeggio Exercise II: Dominant 7 Arpeggio Exercises in Chord Progressions

Scale Exercise I: Whole Tone Scale and Patterns

Scale Exercise II: Major Scales in Sevenths

Double Stop Picking Exercise: Picking Pattern with Open Style C Double Stops

Take the “A” Train

 

The course fee is $120.

 

You can register for the Scale and Arpeggio Intensive II course here.

For more information about other courses offered this summer, click here.


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Summer Intensive 102 Curriculum

By Theme Admin on July 6th, 2016 at 7:52 PM

Register for the Summer Intensive 102 course.

See all other courses offered this summer.

 

The Bluegrass Mandolin 101 online lessons program continues this summer with three more four-week long intensive courses designed to help your overall mandolin playing technique.  Each week, we’ll look at seven exercises intended to increase your knowledge of the fretboard and help your picking hand control as we look at seven different areas: picking exercises, fingering exercises, scale exercises, arpeggios, chord exercises, double stops, and licks.  We’ll also learn a new tune each week and apply the ideas from several of the exercises to that week’s tune; by practicing these exercises in this context, students get some practical applications for the exercises as well as some ideas for variations on tunes.

The 102 level course begins August 8 and runs through September 3.  Class sessions meet every Monday evening from 8 to 9 pm central time, and practice/review sessions meet every Saturday from 9-9:45 am central time.

Students are encouraged to attend the live sessions to be able to interact more directly with the instructor, but live attendance is not required.  Students will be able to view the recordings of all of the sessions any time afterward as often as they want through the class website.

You can register for the 102 course here.

For more information about other courses offered this summer, click here.

The 102 level course is intended for players at a beginner/intermediate level.  While this course is a continuation of the Bluegrass Mandolin Intensive 101 course which completed in late July, it is not necessary for students to have taken the 101 course to be able to take the 102 course.  102 is intended to reinforce many of the concepts taught in 101 while pushing the student’s technique further than the 101 level did.

Here is the curriculum:

 

WEEK 1 (August 12):

Picking exercise using three rhythms

Hammer-on and pull-off fingering exercise

Chord Inversions

Major scales in six keys with a new pattern

Arpeggio exercise: going from I-IV, I-V and I-bVII using chord tones

Double Stop Exercise: Bile Them Cabbage Down Exercise in Six Keys

Hammer-on and pull-off licks

Tune of the week: Cluck Old Hen

 

WEEK 2 (August 19):

Tremolo exercise

Closed position fingering exercise across the strings

Chord exercise: waltz time using open style chords

Closed position scales and patterns in G, D, and A

Arpeggio exercise: closed position major arpeggios in seven keys

Double Stop Exercise: open style double stops

Monroe-style tag lick in six keys

Tune of the week: Tennessee Waltz

 

WEEK 3 (August 26):

Three string picking exercise

Chromatic fingering exercise I

Chord exercise: throwing some melodic runs into chord progressions

Scale exercise: major scales starting on 1, 3 and 5 in six keys

Arpeggio exercise: major arpeggios (1353) around the circle of fifths

Double stop exercise: double stops around the circle of fifths

Cool C and F licks

Tune of the week: Alabama Jubilee

 

WEEK 4 (September 9):

Four string picking exercise

Chromatic fingering exercise II

Blues chord progression using shuffle rhythm

Major scales in Bb, Eb, Ab, C#, F#, B

Arpeggio exercise: arpeggiating chord changes on tunes

Double stop exercise: double stops with neighbor tones

Blues lick in six keys

Tune of the week: T for Texas

 

 

The course fee is $120.

Register for 102 here.

For an overview of all summer courses, click here.


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Bluegrass Mandolin Jamming Curriculum

By Theme Admin on May 7th, 2016 at 6:12 PM

 

This course has completed.  To view the next online courses, which start September 26-28, click here.

 

BLUEGRASS MANDOLIN JAMMING WITH MATT FLINNER

 

This course is intended to help the aspiring mandolinist build up repertoire and find ways of creating new solos over commonly played standards; it’s also designed in the hope that it will encourage students to get out and jam with other players!

 

Each week, we’ll look at four bluegrass standard tunes: two instrumentals and two vocal songs in a particular key.  Students will be given lead sheets (in standard notation and tablature) for each song, as well as a few exercises to help them learn more about the fretboard and start incorporating new ideas into their solos.  Concepts and tunes will be taught during the class session, and all tunes will be revisited during Saturday practice sessions in a “jam session” format, where each song is played several times though, and students have the opportunity to try out some of the week’s concepts on the tunes (with guidance from Matt).

 

Here is the curriculum:

 

WEEK 1 (June 29)

Key of G

Warmup Picking Exercise

Positions in G

G Scale Exercises

Don’t This Road Look Rough and Rocky

Roll In My Sweet Baby’s Arms

Big Sciota

Wheel Hoss

 

WEEK 2 (July 7)

Key of D

Moving Between Positions in D

D Scale and Patterns

Changing Octaves in a Tune

Angeline the Baker

Cora Is Gone

Reuben

Little Birdie

 

WEEK 3 (July 13)

Some Minor Key Tunes

A Variety of Minor Chords

E Minor Scales and Patterns

Throwing in Some Minor Double Stops

Randall Collins

Nashville Blues

Little Sadie

Kentucky Mandolin

 

WEEK 4 (July 20)

Key of A

Some Positions in A

Using Open Strings

A Major Scale and Patterns

Mixing in Licks and Double Stops

Gold Rush

Uncle Pen

Hit Parade of Love

Come Hither to Go Yonder

 

The course fee is $120.

 

Register here.

Check out other courses offered this summer here.


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Selected Discography


The View From Here

Walking on the Moon

Walking on the Moon

Latitude

Latitude

Music du jour

Music du jour

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