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Meet Our Repair Team - Ben Schildgen & Peter Hart: West Music Marion
By West Music Company
4/20/2016 3:51:00 PM  

Ben Schildgen and Peter Hart are Band and Orchestra Instrument Repair Specialists at the West Music Marion location. Ben handles woodwind and brass repair on all makes and models. He's a 1985 graduate of Minnesota State College - Southeast Technical in Red Wing Minnesota and has been with West Music since 2003. Ben also likes hunting and fishing, other outdoor activities, and spending time with family. Peter has repaired band instruments at West Music since 1991. He earned his BM in saxophone performance from the University of Wisconsin Madison in 1980 and his MM from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester New York in 1982. In 1986, he received his Band Instrument Repair degree at Red Wing in Minnesota. In addition to his duties at West Music, Peter teaches saxophone through the Cedar Rapids Symphony School and plays professionally with the Iowa Vanguard Jazz Collective, Funk Stop, the Rod Pierson Big Band, Thelonious Assault, the Manny Lopez Big Band and the Dennis McPartland Schoolhouse Jazz Band.

If you have an instrument in need of repair, contact Ben or Peter at West Music Marion by calling 800.373.9101 or 319.377.9100!



Tags: band, orchestra, repair, marion, ben schildgen, Peter hart
Categories: West Music Cedar Rapids/Marion
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Meet Our Repair Team - Jay Ramsey: West Music Cedar Falls
By West Music Company
4/11/2016 2:28:00 PM  

Jay Ramsey works in the Band & Orchestra Repair Department at West Music Cedar Falls. Call Jay at (319) 277-1000 for all your band & orchestra repair needs!



Tags: Jay ramsey, band, orchestra, repair, maintainance, cedar falls
Categories: Band & Orchestra, West Music Cedar Falls
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Coralville April 2016 Teacher Feature: Jeff Miguel
By West Music Company
4/1/2016 8:01:00 AM  
Jeff Miguel is a saxophonist that currently teaches and performs in Iowa City, Iowa. All About Jazz describes him as an “expressive” saxophonist, “like a seasoned veteran poised to establish himself as musician of note.”

In May of 2015, Miguel released, as a leader, his “expertly arranged” (Pulse Magazine) and “auspicious debut” (Midwest Record), Perseverance. The album features all original compositions and several talented musicians including Iowa music faculty, grad students, and other local professionals.

Miguel was also recently recorded as a sideman on several albums including Grace Leong’s “Moving Forward”, Dana T’s “Tiny Mind MASSIVE Soul”, Fire Sale’s “Furry Noises”, and several other albums to be released in the next few months.

Miguel has taken an interest in composition and arranging of a variety of jazz styles and “focuses on melody and sophisticated chord progressions to express himself” (Little Village Magazine). He also has a passion for performance that includes a multitude of genres in addition to jazz such as R&B, Reggae, Rock, Hip-Hop, and Funk.

Originally from northern Illinois and having traveled around the world, performing has taken Miguel to many venues. These include: The Iowa City Jazz Festival, Dazzle’s Jazz Club and The Peoples Fair in Denver, The Jazz Showcase in Chicago, Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York City, The Crypt Jazz Club in Cape Town, South Africa, and The Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington D.C.

Miguel works locally as an educator giving clinics to high school bands and providing private lessons. In the past, he also co-directed the University of Iowa Hawkeye Big Band and taught Introduction to Jazz Improvisation at the University of Iowa.

Go to www.jeffmiguel.com for more information and to get a sample from his upcoming live album!

Click here to get 50% off lesson registration with Jeff Miguel through April!




Tags: All About Jazz, University of iowa, Perseverance, jeff miguel
Categories: Conservatory, West Music Coralville
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Meet Our Repair Team - Andy Taylor: West Music Coralville
By West Music Company
4/1/2016 8:00:00 AM  

Andy Taylor is a Woodwind Instrument Repair Specialist at the West Music Coralville location. He's been with West Music for a little over 17 years as a clarinet, oboe, flute, and piccolo specialist, and is also a graduate of Redwing Technical College. He's had a number of memorable "repair moments," including an emergency repair for the Lincoln Center jazz band.

If you have an instrument in need of repair, contact Andy at West Music Coralville by calling 800.373.2000 or 319.351.2000!



Tags: andy taylor, repair, maintainance, specialist, woodwind,
Categories: Band & Orchestra, West Music Coralville
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Coralville April 2016 Musician of the Month: Nick Campbell
By West Music Company
4/1/2016 8:00:00 AM  
A 10th grade student at West High School, Nick Campbell has studied guitar with Dan Engel in the West Music lessons program for the last one and a half years.  He also plays piano and is a part of the Good Time Company show choir.

Nick loves playing the guitar because it is fun, and hopes to play in bands.  His favorite musician is Jimmy Page and he can play a lot of Led Zeppelin songs.  When he’s not playing music, he participates in baseball, track and football.

His teacher, Dan Engel, has this to say about working with Nick:
“Nick enjoys playing classic rock mostly on the electric guitar.  He plays songs by bands like Lynard Skynard, The Rolling Stones, and The Beatles.  He’s ready to be in a serious rock band, folks!  He’s really good.”

Congratulations, Nick!



Tags: Dan engel, guitar, lessons
Categories: Conservatory, West Music Coralville
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Marion April 2016 Musicican of the Month: Daniel Hollinger
By West Music Company
4/1/2016 8:00:00 AM  
Daniel is a guitar student of Billy Lee Janey here at West Music Cedar Rapids. He plays acoustic and electric guitar and saxophone. He has been studying with Billy Janey for 1 and a half years. Daniel is a 7th grader at Prairie Point in Cedar Rapids. Daniel’s musical goal is to play in a band and teach others.

His advice to other students is “to not give up. Stay with it! Being able to play music is totally worth it!”

Daniel loves that music sounds cool and he feels in control when playing music. He is in jazz band at school and concert band. He also plays for his church and worship group. His favorite musicians play classic rock and jazz music. Someone might be surprised to learn that Daniel is bi-lingual.

Congratulations, Daniel!



Tags: Billy Lee Janey, guitar, lessons
Categories: Conservatory, West Music Cedar Rapids/Marion
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Des Moines Piano Gallery April 2016 Musician of the Month: Eleanor Meek
By West Music Company
4/1/2016 8:00:00 AM  
Eleanor Meek is a piano student at West Music Des Moines Piano Gallery. She has been taking lessons with Paige Pederson for 1 1/2 years!

Eleanor says her musical goal is "to play at my local church someday, and maybe learn the violin". Her advide to other musicians is "even if you think the instrument you are playing is hard, keep going. It will make more sense and you will love it more."

When asked what she loves about music, she says "I love the fact that if you love it so much and focus, you can make beautiful music."

Outside of music, Eleanor participates in dance and church group. Her interests include horses, animals and reading, and she dislikes broccoli! Her favorite artists are Crowder, Matthew West, and Shawn Mendes.  She also likes hip-hop and Christian music. It may suprise you to learn that  Eleanor is an only child.

Her teacher, Paige Pederson, says: "Eleanor is a joy to work with every week! She is always pushing herself to be a better musician and has even set a goal to finish the next level by the end of the summer!"

Great job, Eleanor! Keep up the good work!



Tags: Paige Pederson, piano, lessons,
Categories: Conservatory, West Music Des Moines Piano Gallery
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Coralville April 2016 Teacher Feature: Tom Maples
By West Music Company
4/1/2016 8:00:00 AM  
Tom Maples is an active soloist, chamber and orchestral musician. He earned a B.M. degree at the University of Kansas studying with Ed Laut, and a M.A. degree at the University of Iowa studying with Anthony Arnone. He has also studied with Anthony Elliott in Ann Arbor, MI, Michael Mermagen at the Aspen Music Festival and has played with the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, FL.

Tom performs regularly with the Omaha Symphony and Orchestra Iowa. He has also played with the Quad City Symphony Orchestra and the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Symphony. As a graduate student at the University of Iowa, Tom was awarded a performance fellowship with the Center for New Music, performing recent and new works by student composers as well as faculty and guest composers. He was the winner of the First Annual String Area Chamber Music Competition, performing Dvorak's String Quintet in G Major, Op. 77 with the University of Iowa string faculty. In 2014 Tom gave a series of outreach lecture performances on Olivier Messiaen's Quartet for the End of Time with the EpHawk Quartet, a graduate student piano quartet under the direction of Elizabeth Oakes.

A dedicated teacher, Tom has been coaching and teaching students aged 5 and up for more than 10 years. Tom began playing the cello in his elementary school music program, so he understands the importance of arts education in public schools. In addition to teaching privately, he has volunteered in public schools, working closely with music educators to help coach cello students on technique and musicianship. 

A native of Lawrence, KS, Tom grew up in a culturally rich community with an eclectic music scene. He developed an early appreciation for all kinds of music, from classic rock, indie rock, hip-hop and country to bluegrass, blues, jazz and jam bands, just to name a few. Tom has experience playing a variety of styles of music, and has contributed to two indie rock albums and a documentary soundtrack.



Tags: Tom Maples, ed laut, University of Kansas, university of iowa, anthony arone, omaha symphony, orchestra iowa,
Categories: Conservatory, West Music Coralville
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