How Do I Get Started With Music Or Voice Lessons?

How Do I Get Started With Music Or Voice Lessons?

Music and voice lessons are for students of ALL ages!

Are you considering music or voice lessons? Whether for your children, or for yourself, music or voice lessons are a great hobby that, for many, will quickly develop into a life changing passion. Many people are interested in trying lessons, but are unsure of where to start.

In fact. the number one phone call we receive is, “how do I get started with music or voice lessons?”. At NHTunes, we make it easy to try a lesson and see if it’s something you want to pursue on a regular basis, without having to make a major commitment. And, there is NO sign-up or registration fee!
Here are the simple steps needed to begin your musical journey!
1)  Click below on your lesson type. This will bring you into our scheduling system.
2) Select a 30 or 60 minute lesson. Many choose the more affordable 30 minute option, while some prefer the more relaxed 60 minute lesson (as a note, 60 minute lessons are discounted 10%).
How Do I Get Started With Music Or Voice Lessons?

Select 30 or 60 minute lesson.

3) Once you select the lesson type, you’ll be presented with the available day(s) and time(s) based on our instructor’s availability. Just select the day and time that works best for you, fill in the information, and pay for the single lesson using PayPal or any credit card – and that’s it! You’ll receive a reminder 24 hours before your scheduled lesson.
If you enjoyed your lesson and would like to schedule another, just let us know on the way out (or call us back) and we’ll schedule it in our calendar!
At NHTunes we make scheduling your first lesson EASY, with no sign-up fee, and only payment for one lesson! You can decide from there if the studio and instructor are a great fit for you!

NHTunes Music Studio… Our Story

NHTunes began in July of 2010 in a sublet suite in the Waumbec Mill in Manchester NH by then IT project manager Bob Desmarais. Although an IT manager by profession, Bob’s real passion was music.  Bob’s vision was to open a full service music studio that offered music and voice lessons, as well as recording services. He continued part time with his new business, working days at his IT job and nights at the studio through the remainder of 2010, and most of 2011. By the fall of ’11, he had acquired three additional music instructors (two of which are still with us!), and NHTunes had grown to almost 40 music and voice students. Forecasting steady growth, Bob decided to go full time with the business. He left his IT job of nearly 25 years in November 2011.

NHTunes Music Studio... Our Story

Circa 2011, our original 900 sq ft space in Manchester’s Waumbec mill. On the right are two of the three lesson/recording rooms.

With more time to work on promotion, by late 2012 the studio had grown its student base to over 60, and with only three lesson rooms (which also doubled as recording rooms) and six instructors, it was obvious that NHTunes was quickly outgrowing its original 900 sqft space. In early 2013, a tenant down the hall left, providing an opportunity to acquire more space. Shortly thereafter, the studio signed an agreement for build out of a new 1800+ sqft space – double the original studio size – complete with with six lesson rooms, and a dedicated recording studio. The new space was officially opened in the spring of 2013.
NHTunes Music Studio... Our Story

The new space – our comfortable waiting area seats 12

By the end of 2015, the studio had eight music and voice instructors, and over 90 music students! This steady growth is mainly attributed to word-of-mouth advertising combined with a strong web presence, and an extremely streamlined online lesson sign-up process.

As of early 2019, NHTunes now employs a dozen voice and music instructors, and and our student base is quickly approaching 150! The recording studio continues to keep busy recording soloists, bands, and voice overs for radio and commercial spots. We’ve recently renewed our current space lease for five more years, and at this rate of growth, scheduling open lesson rooms may be challenging before our lease expires!

NHTunes Music Studio... Our Story

Five of our six lesson rooms

All of us at NHTunes would like to extend a sincere thank you to all of our customers for allowing us to realize the dream of doing something we love, while providing a service that we find extremely fulfilling.
Thank You! We hope to be serving you for many years to come.
NHTunes Music Studio... Our Story

Our current recording studio (2019)

With his effort and perseverance, our adult guitar/voice student Dave is a bona-fide success story!

Dave has had a lifelong dream of playing the guitar – something that remained a dream well into his adulthood. About three years ago, he decided to do something about it… he started taking guitar lessons at NHTunes. Despite the ups-and-downs of practice time that working adults often experience, he stuck with it, and after his first year of lessons he was a regular guitarist at our monthly recitals!
NHTunes Guitar Lessons

Dave and guitar instructor Bob Desmarais

His next goal was to be able to sing & play – and if you ask any musician, that’s not an easy thing to do. Playing chords and strumming is hard enough; adding the third element of singing takes practice to master. Dave has spent his last couple of years of lessons honing his craft; learning his vocal range, and pitch control, as well as learning to strum consistently while he’s singing.

This past weekend, it all paid off! Dave sang and played a full set of songs to a very receptive crowd at a private function. It was a great night!

Guitar Lessons NHTunes

Dave nailing it!

Dave’s secret to success? Perseverance. Many adults get frustrated because adult life demands can sometimes get in the way of practice time. Dave stuck with it through the ups-and-downs, and now he has a skill that was just a dream a couple of years ago. Now he can enjoy singing and playing for the rest of his life.
Way to go Dave, it’s GREAT to see a success story such as yourself!!
Are you interested in becoming our next success story? Schedule your first lesson below.

Practice Tips for New Musicians

Learning to play an instrument need not be tedious. Here are five practice tips for new musicians that are designed to expedite your skills while keeping learning fun!

1) Keep an instrument close by
Regardless of the instrument you’re learning, keep one close by; for example, keep a guitar on a stand in the living room – and don’t keep the keyboard down in the basement, but rather put it in the living room! Having an instrument near your traffic area will encourage our next tip: play with frequency.

Practice Tips for New Musicians

Music lessons should be FUN!!

2) Practice in small, frequent increments
Studies show that you’ll learn more quickly if you practice in smaller chunks; for example in three 10-minute intervals rather than a single half-hour session. And having your instrument close by encourages those frequent sessions. I used to grab an unplugged electric guitar and play while watching TV every night – it really helped me with getting very comfortable with the guitar.

3) ‘Practice’ and ‘Playing’ are essentially one and the same
I tell my students not to stress about practicing, just play. “Just playing” builds skills almost as quickly as focused practicing, and is a lot more fun and less stressful. If someone is set on learning a specific song or technique, they’ll practice. For all other times, just play and enjoy it; after all, learning an instrument should be fun!

4) Record your new material often
It’s hard to gauge your own progress as it happens slowly (but steadily) over hours and days. When you first learn a new song or strum pattern, record yourself doing it, even if you’re playing it badly. After you’ve played it for a week or so, listen back. You’ll be amazed (and encouraged) with your progress, and will likely chuckle as you listen to yourself as you stumbled through your early attempts at something that comes quite easy now!

5) Perform for others
We believe that music should be shared. We offer our students monthly free recital performance opportunities. There are many benefits to performing your music for others, including: goal setting, focused practicing, building confidence, etc.. In addition to all of the benefits to the musician, the audience gets to enjoy your music – it’s a win-win!

We hope you enjoyed these five practice tips for new musicians, and can take advantage of one or all of them! If you’re not a current student and would like more information on our music or voice lessons, click HERE.

Getting Started With Music or Voice Lessons

Are you thinking about getting started with music or voice lessons, but you’re not sure where to start? Manchester’s NHTunes makes getting started with music or voice lessons EASY! You can start by purchasing a single lesson with NO registration fee, and NO further commitment!!
Getting Started With Music or Voice Lessons

NHTunes makes is EASY to start your music of voice lessons!

To schedule your first lesson, just follow these three easy steps:
1) Visit the page of the lesson type that you’re interested in to learn more about our lessons:
2) If you’re ready to schedule a lesson, at the bottom of the page select either a 30 or 60-minute lesson (note that 60-minute lessons are discounted 10%!). The scheduling system will present you with our available day and time openings. Select one that works with your schedule (if you don’t see something that works with your schedule, just e-mail us HERE).
3) Fill in the required information and checkout with PayPal or any credit or debit card. You’ll receive an e-mailed confirmation, and a reminder 24 hours before your scheduled lesson.
That’s it – you’ve just scheduled your first music or voice lesson!!!  If you find your lesson was great, and the studio and instructor are a good fit, there are several ways to proceed:
  • Option 1 – Weekly Lessons: Just let us know that you would like weekly lessons in a consistent day & time spot, and we will e-mail you our openings to pick from. Once you choose what works for you, we’ll firm it in the calendar, and send you an invoice for the lessons remaining in the month for that day.
  • Option 2 – Schedule Another Lesson: If you would like to schedule one more lesson before committing to weekly lessons, just let us know and we will send you your instructor’s link to schedule your next lesson (let us know if you would like to try another instructor and we can send you a different instructor’s link, no problem!).
  • Option 3 – Think It Over: If you would like to wait before deciding anything, you can simply use the link again to schedule your next lesson whenever you are ready to do so.

We make getting started with music of voice lessons simple, with NO commitment, and no sign-up fees! Just sign up for one lesson, and YOU can decide where that takes you!

Is Your Band Going into a Recording Studio? 10 Recording Session Tips to Get the Most from Your Studio Time!

recording studio tips

Having a GREAT session is possible with these ten recording session tips!

Did your band book time in a studio recently? Here are our 10 recording session tips for getting the most from your studio time, and the best final product possible.

  • Know your material
    • Out of our 10 recording session tips, this is the biggest! It goes without saying that a band should know their material inside and out before recording it, but we see bands in the studio all the time who need several takes just to complete a song, simply because they haven’t rehearsed it enough. You’re better off postponing a session for a few weeks while you practice your songs, rather than to rush to recording. The more you practice your songs, the tighter the band will be, and the better the recording.

      Recording Session Tips

      Recording sessions can be FUN and less stressful if you follow these tips!

  • Use the best instruments you can
    • Have a budget guitar, or a beginner drum kit? They’re going to sound like beginner instruments when recorded. Borrow or rent some quality gear, or better yet see if your studio has instruments that you can use (NHTunes has guitars, basses, amplifiers, and even a great drum kit for our client’s use). Don’t be too proud to use a better instrument; the final mix will thank you for it.
  • Pick your best songs
    • Whether original or covers, pick your best material to record. Ask other’s opinions – their picks may be different from yours. If you’re making a demo of covers, think or the places you’ll want to perform at, and what they would want to hear.
  • Record sober
    • Contrary to myth and legend, sober musicians perform better, period. A beer or two may work to lighten the mood, but don’t overdo it.
  • Listen to the engineer’s feedback
    • A good engineer will provide feedback when solicited (and sometimes when not), and when they do, listen. They likely have much more studio experience than you do, so listen to them and utilize their wisdom to your advantage.
  • Monitoring is important  
    • Look for a studio (like NHTunes) that has a multi-track monitoring system, which means each band member can dial in their own custom mix when recording. Not being able to hear yourself properly when recording leads to performance anxiety and possibly a bad performance.
  • Don’t rush the process 
    • Even if you’re prepared and ready to rock, be patient and enjoy the recording process. Rushing to get five songs done instead of three usually means cutting corners. Take your time, listen well to your takes, and redo if they are not acceptable. Don’t expect perfection, but you should be happy with your performances.
  • Tuning is everything 
    • Be aware of you tuning! I’ve stopped many sessions mid-song to tune and out-of-tune instrument. We have a strobe tuner in house which is extremely accurate, but most clip-on tuners are fine as long as they are used!  Be aware that drums need to be tuned too… a big part of a great sounding kit is a well-tuned one.
  • Record in several blocks rather than one long session 
    • Bands tend to fatigue after a few hours; mistakes occur more frequently, and tensions tend to build. Plan on recording in smaller, say three hour blocks. Plan four three-hour sessions, rather than one 12 hour day. Sure, there’s a little loss to setup time, but that is more than made up for with a fresh band that’s ready-to-rock!
  • Be on time!
    • Studios tend to run pretty tight, and if you’re booked for a 5-8pm session, odds are there’s another client coming in at 8pm. So, the clock starts ticking at 5pm, and you should plan on arriving a little early (if the studio is not being used, the management may let you start setting up before the session). Being late is just negligence, raises tensions, and gets the session started on the wrong foot.
We hope these recording session tips will help you the next time your band is in the studio! For more on our recording studio, located in Manchester NH, please click HERE.

How does a recording session for a singer work?

Many singers put off booking a recording session because of the anxiety they feel in regards to the many questions they have surrounding the process. Recording sessions are fun, and the results sound fantastic!

To put your mind at ease, here’s an FAQ of sorts regarding booking a voice session, and what to expect.

Recording Session

One of our two voice recording booths.

  • How much will it cost?
    • Recording time for voice sessions is just $45/hr. This includes an audio engineer. We book sessions in 2 hour blocks, and recommend that someone new to a studio start with that. So, the entire session is $90; there are no additional costs.
  • How many songs will I get done?
    • Most people get 2 to three songs completed in the two hour session, but it varies based on many factors. Bring in the backing tracks for three songs; if you complete all three it’s a bonus, but most likely you’ll get at least 2 recorded properly.
  • What if I get nervous and perform badly?
    • Most first-timers in the studio are nervous… that’s normal. For many, the first recording session is a learning experience. Most people end up booking more sessions, and they are much less nervous in these subsequent sessions. This does not mean you won’t get a nice recording from your first session.. but if you feel a little nervous it’s normal! We’ll work with you and after a few minutes you’ll feel at ease.
  • Does it cost more to mix my songs? 
    • No. With a two hour recording session, we will use the last half hour for mixing the songs. So, we’ll record for an hour and a half, and mix the last half hour.
  • Where do I get my backing tracks? How to I bring them into the studio?
    • If you are not bringing in original tracks, one of the best places we know for cover tracks is: https://www.karaoke-version.com/
      Recording Session

      Looking out into the studio from booth #2.

      . The tracks cost just a couple of dollars each, and you can even change the key to fit your vocal range. Once you’ve downloaded them, you can put them on a memory stick and bring it in, or e-mail them to us ahead of time.

  • How will I take my mixes home with me?If you brought your backing tracks in on a memory stick, we’ll put the MP3 song mixes onto that; if not, we can e-mail them directly to you (sorry, we no longer make CD’s).

We hope that this answers some of your questions and reduces your anxiety regarding booking a recording session! Are you ready to go for it? You can book your first session online here:

Adult Guitar Lessons | How We Tailor Lessons for Adult Learners

NHTunes is proud to offer guitar lessons to students of ALL ages and skill levels. We also know that guitar lessons for adult learners should be handled differently that for those for younger students. What are the differences with adult guitar lessons?

First off, unless an adult specifically wants to learn to read music, there is no real need to teach an adult to read traditional music notation. Our adult guitar lessons focus on chords, strumming, and learning familiar songs. We start with just a few chords and some easy songs, and move up from there when the student feels comfortable. We will teach our adult guitar students to read tablature, as that is how most music is downloaded from the internet (tablature is a much simpler form than traditional music notation).

 

Adult Guitar Lessons

Out adult guitar lessons focus on FUN and no-stress!!

 

Second, adults generally learn at a slower pace then younger students. Therefore, our adult guitar lessons move at a pace that is comfortable for the student! There is no need to rush learning; after all, the journey itself should be fun! We work with each student at their own pace, and recognize that each adult learns at a different pace.

Third, for the most part, we let adult students pick the songs they would like to learn! Unlike lessons for younger students, where there are predefined pieces to master to better their skill, with our adult guitar lessons, we let the student pick the songs they would like to learn… and more often than not, their chosen song is appropriate (or can be transposed so) for their skill level!! What a great feeling it is to play a song that you’ve always wanted to play for the first time!!

NHTunes takes great pride in custom tailoring our adult guitar lessons for each student. We have a lot of happy adult students, who are learning a skill that they put off for years! Take it from our adult guitar student Marc:

“I have been taking guitar lessons here for two weeks now.  I am very much a beginner and tried learning a long time ago with very limited success.  I recently bought a guitar and based on my music school experience from the past I thought I would try learning with a book and the internet.  So glad I found NH Tunes, great experienced instructor, great learning environment/studio.  I have no doubt that I will have more success this time around.  Although some of the things I learned on the internet were very helpful, it is so important to have an experienced instructor guide you and critique you through the learning process.  NH Tunes is a great studio, I would not hesitate to give them a try.”

If you’d like to try a guitar lesson, you can schedule one below with our online scheduler.

Professional Voice Recording in Manchester

NHTunes is the best choice for professional voice recording in Manchester. If you’re looking for a pro result that you can be proud of, NHTunes is your studio! We record all types of voice projects; singers, voice overs, and spoken word. And our studio time is very affordable.

What makes NHTunes the best studio to record your vocal projects?

  • Our Rooms
    • We have twin vocal booths that are treated for both isolation, and reflections. One booth is sized perfectly for a single vocalist or voice over artist, the other larger room can accommodate groups of up to 4 singers. Our large mixing room is an ideal environment for creating mixes that translate well.
  • Our Equipment
    • Our studio features some of the best recording equipment available. Our extensive microphone collection has some of the best mics available. Our boutique preamp selection, in addition to sounding great, will impress even the most hardcore audiophiles. And our mixing console and monitoring system delivers mixes that translate well and sound great no matter where they are played.
  • Our Experience
    • NHTunes has decades of experience with recording and mixing a variety of projects; from singers, songwriters, full bands, commercials for radio and TV, and more. We’ve worked with artists of all levels; we’ve recorded and mixed many spots for TV and radio play. We even teach audio recording and mixing classes through Manchester Community College!

If you’re looking for professional voice recording in Manchester, please consider NHTunes. You can purchase studio time HERE. After your purchase, you’ll be contacted by a studio representative to schedule your session.

Have more questions? Call us at 603-660-2208, or feel free to contact us HERE.

 

What is the Best Age to Start Music or Voice Lessons?

Out of all the questions that people ask us, the most frequent is this:   “what is the best age to start music or voice lessons?”  If you’ve got a younger child who is eager to start their musical journey, and have this same question, we’re happy to help you!
As a general rule, most children are ready to start formal music lessons by the age of five; however, children can benefit from informal ‘general music education’ lessons which can begin as young as three. A more specific breakdown is below.
Be advised that the most important element is not the age of the student, but their excitement and enjoyment regarding music and their lessons; children that enjoy playing learn quickly and grow their musical skills.
  • Piano – Piano is a great instrument to start a younger child on because many of the physical requirements dictated by guitar/ukulele and even voice are non existent (press a key, and a sound is made!). The keyboard is also laid out in a way that facilitates teaching basic music theory. We generally see positive results with students as young as 5 years old, as their hands are large enough to play chords, and their attention span is developed enough for formal half hour lessons.
  • Ukulele – The ukulele is all rage now, and there’s good reason: it’s relatively easy to play, it’s inexpensive, and highly portable! For younger students, it’s also a great stepping stone to the guitar. We see great success with ukulele students as young as 5 or 6 years old; again, it’s somewhat dependent on the maturity level of the student (i.e. are they able to concentrate through a half hour lesson?). Young ukulele students learn the basics of chords and strumming, which later on migrate well to guitar. They also participate in our recitals, building their performing experience and gaining confidence in their playing ability at a young age.
  • Guitar – We generally recommend starting guitar at age seven or eight. By that age, students have usually
    What is the Best Age to Start Music or Voice Lessons

    Formal piano lessons can start as young as 5 years old!

    developed the physical requirements that’s required of playing the guitar. We see more successes with younger students starting on ukulele, then moving to guitar when they are ready.

  • Voice – Formal voice lessons usually begin at age 10 and older. At that age, the student’s voice has begun to change and take on it’s adult form. This doesn’t mean that younger students cannot sing in their music lessons; we encourage it!! But lessons that focus specifically on vocal training should wait until the student is physically ready for them. For younger students that want to take singing lessons, we generally recommend piano lessons, along with informal voice lessons.
  • General Music Education – the above being said, 3 or 4 years old is not too early to start general music education ‘lessons’! These informal lessons can include: musical games, learning the basics of rhythm, sing-along’s, identifying different instruments, etc. The goal of these lessons is to simply expose and engage the child  to a musical environment.

If you are interested in signing up for a lesson, please click HERE.

We hope that this answers any questions you have regarding the best age to start music or voice lessons. Please contact us HERE if you have any other questions – we’ll be happy to help. Also, if you’re considering music or voice lessons, please sigh up for our monthly newsletter. You’ll receive valuable information on our music and voice lessons, and money saving coupons!