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May 2014 Teacher Spotlight

Jared Brustman
Classical, Acoustic, and Electric Guitar Teacher, Heid Music Appleton

jaredCGJared began teaching guitar in the greater Fox Valley/Green Bay area in 2007 and has taught a wide variety of students including, but not limited to, 6, 7, and 8 string guitar, bass, ukulele, elementary violin and drum kit. He received a degree in Music from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, where he studied Classical Guitar and Music History/Literature. Throughout his time at UWGB, Jared tutored Music Theory, assisted in judging the strings/guitar during Solo and Ensemble, and participated in various ensembles inlcuding Choir, Jazz Band, Jazz Combo, Concert Band, Symphonic Band, and New Music Ensemble, helping to make him a well-versed and well-rounded musician. His passion for music is rooted in metal, which is what inspired him to begin playing, and ultimately to study music. He has been involved with numerous bands over the years and gigs frequently. 

Jared helps students to learn proper technique and teaches students how to read music and understand theory regardless of style. He provides a positive, uplifting environment for learning in his tudio through encouragement and laughter.

What is your favorite part about being a teacher? First and foremost is that I get to reach out to a myriad of different people and share with them the gift of music. One of the greatest parts of being a teacher is being able to expose students to a wealth of music and musical knowledge that they may not have known existed before, and likewise students show me a lot of different music that I either haven't heard of or that I wouldn't normally listen to. Passing down skills and knowledge to people is a necessary, and great service - it is rewarding for the soul. Throughout my life I am lucky enough to have often been a person that people come to in times of need not only because I am a good listener, but I have a knack for explaining things in a very real and helpful way. Being a teacher is a very core part of who I am and I feel very lucky to have done it for as long as I have and would love to for the rest of my foreseeable life!

What is the best advice you can give to a beginning student?  Don't give up so easy, and don't let the guitar scare you (or any other instrument for that matter). The guitar is a monster of an instrument, with a big fretboard that a lot of people find intimidating. You won't have to master the whole thing right away, you'll start in 1st position and stay there for a while. Furthermore there are ways to learn the rest of it pretty easily with a few tips/tricks that you can remember. Ultimately guitar should be about enjoying playing/creating music and having some fun while doing so, but just like anything else you want in life it takes some effort to get what you want out of it - so you'll have to practice what you learn in your lessons (at least 10 mins/day)! You will get more out of consistently playing 10 mins/day rather than one or two days for an hour or two. If things aren't going as you thought they would or you're not having very much fun, don't quit so soon - (A lot of people that quit end up coming back to it later in life anyway!) there could be some simple fixes to any problems you might be having, so communication is huge. As Rabbi Kirschbaum 
​said in Seinfeld: "Elaine, often times in life there are problems, and just as often there are solutions." 

Who is your biggest musical influence and why? This is a very difficult question. So I will break it up - my go to guy for all things music is good ol' JSB, Johann Sebastian Bach. He never ceases to amaze me in the depth, complexity and passion that he had for music and for God. Bach wrote masterfully for so many instruments, amazingly came up with new hymn harmonizations every week keeping known tunes fresh, and was the master of counterpoint (and the list could go on). Counterpoint has always been a deep interest of mine and was my favorite part of Music Theory at the University. Is it just me or is it just a coincidence we both have the initials JB? :)

jaredguitarIn the realm of metal guitar some of my favorites include but are not limited to: Muhammed Suiçmez (Necrophagist) & Christian Münzner (Necrophagist, Obscura, Spawn of Possesion) Mathieu Pascal & Nicolas Alberny (Gorod) Paul Waggoner (Between the Buried and Me) Marty Friedman & Jason Becker (Cacophony) and again the list could probably go on. 

In the realm of classical guitar: Manuel Barrueco, John Williams (the guitarist, not the composer you know from Star Wars) Sérgio and Odair Assad, just to name a few.
In the realm of jazz guitar: Django Reinhardt, Joe Pass, George Benson.

Tell us more about one of your favorite hobbies.  My closest friends and I have always been big gamer nerds. The span ranges from Dungeons and Dragons to games like World of Warcraft and the Diablo series. I am primarily a PC gamer but have always enjoyed consoles (especially back when a not-very-good PC still cost an arm and a leg!). I have been a big fan of the Metal Gear series for quite some time. I had the original 1987 Nintendo game Metal Gear but my interest and loyalty to the series was solidified with Playstation 1's Metal Gear Solid (pun intended I guess you could say). Some of my fondest memories are grinding in Diablo, magic-finding for gear with friends and getting together for big 10/12 player Halo LAN parties. Video games aside I love learning foreign languages and I really like cats. a lot. 

If you moved out of the country, where would you live and why? If we're talking strictly non-English speaking countries my first choice would probably be Germany as I speak the language quite fluently (though it's declining... I think it's time for a trip back to the Fatherland!) and studied it both in school and at the University for about a grand total of 7 years. During Senior year of high school I was lucky enough to be able to go to Oktoberfest in München (Munich), and we primarily traveled and stayed in rural areas where English wasn't known so I was an invaluable resource to my family. Germany has a rich musical history and some of my favorite classical and metal musicians are from Germany! Not to mention my last name is of German origin, so I have some vested interest! If not Germany probably somewhere in Russia (I can read, and speak some Russian!). I was lucky enough to have gone there as well, to Moscow, Kurgan and Yekaterinburg and it was a very rich and edifying experience. Russia's list of musicians, authors and other artists is astounding. Russia lies close to my heart because my Grandmother is from Russia, and because I'm Orthodox.