Connecticut Shoreline Studio for Music Lessons
in Voice, Piano, Guitar & the Fundamentals of Music

All Skill Levels Welcome, Ages 4 -104

Connecticut Shoreline Studio for Music Lessons
in Voice, Piano, Guitar & the Fundamentals of Music

Clef Notes

Giving You Practice Tips, Tech Tips, & Commentary on Current Music by Staff & Area Musicians

Il Sildenafil trova impiego durante il trattamento della disfunzione erettile e per migliorare le capacità di esercizio nei pazienti adulti. Viagra, Levitra e Cialis in https://farmaciamaddaloni.com sono i nomi commerciali dei farmaci più comunemente utilizzati in presenza di una disfunzione erettile.

Voice & Piano Instructor Needed
The Loft
Sandy Connolly

Voice & Piano Teacher Needed

Crescendo Music Loft is growing! And we’d like to continue! Presently, we need a voice and piano teacher who is versed in traditional songs as well as contemporary pop, rock,

Read More »
What is a Master Class?
Events & Classes
Sandy Connolly

What is a Master Class?

Master classes can be given in any discipline, but they are more commonly used in more advanced music education. Perhaps that’s because, according to Wikipedia, famous composer Franz Liszt invented

Read More »
John Hurley
Staff
Sandy Connolly

John Hurley: Staff Sergeant

We are delighted to welcome John Hurley as Assistant Teacher and Guitar Instructor at Crescendo Music Loft. Some of you will recognize John as our “Staff Sergeant.” He has worked

Read More »
Blue notes are the cool kind of wrong notes
Musician Tips
Sandy Connolly

What Is a Blue Note?

Blue Notes Are “Wrong” Notes Some people would consider blue notes to be “wrong notes.” But they’re not just any wrong notes. They’re particular wrong notes. Some “wrong notes” are

Read More »
Yay! You have a head cold!
Tips for Singers
Sandy Connolly

Yay! You Have a Head Cold!

Head colds are a fact of life. Here are some tips from the professionals on how to manage them during your singing career or course of study.

Read More »
Tips for the Beginning Piano Player
Musician Tips
Sandy Connolly

Tips for Getting Started on Piano

Whether you are an adult starting from scratch or a parent helping your child, here are a few things that are helpful to know in those first few weeks. Get

Read More »
Eye Contact Is Crucial
Tips for Singers
Sandy Connolly

Eye Contact Is Crucial

If you want to add power to your vocal performance (singing or speaking, for that matter), the number one way to add power to your performance or message is to

Read More »
Speaker Arrays Are Best
Sound Tips
Don Briggs

Speaker Arrays Can’t Be Beat

Speaker arrays are designed to focus all frequencies in a desired direction. Drivers, cabinet and electronics achieve this at at a hefty price tag. Arrays Can Reduce Opportunities for Feedback

Read More »
Speaker Placement
Sound Tips
Don Briggs

Speaker Placement

What is a speaker? A speaker is a transducer that converts electrical energy into sound waves. PA speakers turned up to 95dB (reasonable indoor volume) make big waves. You not

Read More »
Rituals of Preparation
Practice Techniques
Sandy Connolly

Rituals of Preparation

Everyone Gets Into a Slump Having worked weekly with 15 – 30 musicians 45 weeks out of the year for over 20 years, I observe that almost everyone (including me)

Read More »
How to Draw the Circle of Fifths
How to Memorize the 15 Major Keys
Sandy Connolly

How to Draw the Circle of Fifths

Being able to draw the circle of 5ths from memory is a helpful skill to acquire when you want to memorize all 15 key signatures. Here’s how!

Read More »
Sound Tips
Don Briggs

Speakers: What They Can Do for You

4 Speakers When someone asks “How’s it sound?” The answer shouldn’t be “Depends where you’re standing.” Only a sound company can have the right system for every venue. You have

Read More »
dB-Fletcher-Munson-Curve
Sound Tips
Don Briggs

Your Ears Are Amazing

This is the second in a series of articles called “More Than You Wanted to Know About Sound Systems.“ Your Ears Respond Differently as Volume Increases Your ears have a

Read More »
Musical Meditations
Musician Tips
Kirsten Livingston

Musical Meditations

For any type of relaxation or meditation, I recommend that you be comfortable, either lying down or sitting with your back supported or straight. Start with 2-5 minutes and if

Read More »
Counting Pickups
Musician Tips
Sandy Connolly

How to Count “Pickups”

What Is a Pickup? In music, a pickup is an unstressed lead-in note or group of notes that take place before the first accented note of a phrase. They can

Read More »
Take Care of Your Feet
Musician Tips
Kirsten Livingston

Free Your Feet

Why are your feet important? Why is this post on a music site? Some musical instruments actually use the feet of course.  Many musicians stand on stage to perform. How

Read More »
Learn Finger Fans
Musician Tips
Kirsten Livingston

Take Care of Your Hands

If you are a performer of any kind, I urge you to pay attention to your hands. Scratch that — I want everyone to pay attention to your hands. If

Read More »
Do You Know How to Follow All the Common Road Signs in Music
Musician Tips
Sandy Connolly

How to Follow Signs in Sheet Music

Musicians use all kinds of ways to communicate with each other about what notes to play from scribbles on a napkin to full-fledged orchestral scores, but one of the most

Read More »
Wanna See My Uvula?
Tips for Singers
Sandy Connolly

Wanna See My Uvula?

After nailing intonation and getting your mouth Opera Open, getting the back of your tongue down can drastically improve your singing tone.

Read More »
July Tree Chart
Musician Tips
John Hurley

Chart for July Tree

I asked John to write a chart for Eowyn O’Hara who wanted to sing this song in a higher key than Nina Simone’s, and here is the email message to

Read More »
Breathe to Prepare
Practice Techniques
Kirsten Livingston

Breathe to Prepare

Help for Introverts and Others Everything is opening up and it’s really exciting (right?)!!! We’ve all been isolated… in-person interactions and performance opportunities have been limited. So, let’s get out

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Sandy Connolly

My Favorite Dan Reeder Songs

Introducing Dan Reeder If memory serves me, the first song I ever heard by Dan Reeder was “Born a Worm.” I don’t know if it came up on my Spotify

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Sandy Connolly

New Releases April 2021

Since Abigail Connolly had to study for an exam at culinary school, I took matters into my own hands to cull some new releases for everyone this week. As it

Read More »
Musician Tips
Steve Shelton

Play Guitar Like a Horn Player

Learn a Harmonized Blues Scale – Easy and Fun! My inspiration for this column is from Rich Severson, guitarist, and host of GuitarCollege.com. Rich is one of the smoothest jazz

Read More »
Musician Tips
Steve Shelton

The Golden Age of Guitar Instruction

YouTube and the internet could be considered the golden age for guitar and music instruction –– so much content for no cost-but where do you start? Justin Guitar For all

Read More »
Tips for Singers
Sandy Connolly

Glottal Stop Management

Learning what glottal stops are helps you learn how to manage them in your singing. It’s a good technique to add to your vocal tool kit.

Read More »
Musician Tips
Tony Cafiero

Standing Up to Play Keyboards?

Sitting: My Preference Many keyboard players choose to play from a seated position. I am one of those players and this post will help explain why this is and always

Read More »
Practice Techniques
Steve Shelton

Alligators & Lizards Part 2

Let’s go to the videotape! For this column, I made two short videos demonstrating “free playing” over a loop of GMaj7 – Dmaj7, the main Ventura Highway chord progression. In

Read More »
Practice Techniques
Sandy Connolly

Drill In & Work Out

Most songs have some sort of challenge section to them. In the case of some songs, it can just be one hairball measure. Here is a practice technique that can

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Abigail Connolly

March 10, 2021 New Song Releases

Hello! I’m happy to be back and writing. I was complaining to my mom that I had run out of things to write about so she tasked me with posting

Read More »
Tech Tips
Melissa Greenberg

Zoom: Etiquette for Hosts

If it’s your turn to host a Zoom meeting, check out Melissa Greenberg’s checklist of things to learn and test before the big day.

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Sandy Connolly

A Playlist to Cook & Eat By

I listen to a lot of music. I mean A LOT. Part of my job requires it as I get a continuous stream of requests from students to sing and

Read More »
Tech Tips
Melissa Greenberg

Rocketbook

I came across this latest tech organizing gadget last year and immediately fell in love. Rocketbook is a hybrid of a notebook and whiteboard that, along with the Rocketbook app,

Read More »
Musician Tips
Sandy Connolly

How Many Vocal Registers Are There?

Now I’m getting into dangerous territory for a voice teacher. Coming right out and saying what you believe are the “official registers” is akin to declaring your political party in

Read More »
Practice Techniques
Sandy Connolly

Opera Open

Next to learning good intonation, I consider this is the number one thing that 99.99999% of beginning singers need to learn: get your mouth open! Dana Shelton calls it “Opera

Read More »
Musician Tips
Tony Cafiero

The Importance of Stage Monitors

Monitor vs. Monitor Mix Monitors (stage wedges) are the speakers that the band uses to hear itself on stage. The size, shape, and format of these devices vary greatly, but

Read More »
Tech Tips
Melissa Greenberg

Zoom: Etiquette for Participants

As we’ve become more comfortable hosting and attending Zoom meetings throughout the last 12 months, it is important to check ourselves on Zoom etiquette. There are basic standards such as

Read More »
Tech Tips
Melissa Greenberg

Zoom: Logging In

Zoom is an excellent tool that allows millions of people to connect remotely everyday in work-from-home capacities as well as to friends and families near and far. However, as it

Read More »
Musician Tips
Tony Cafiero

How to Draw a Stage Plot

Preparing for the Big Gig OK – We have learned to disinfect our microphones, how to get paid for gigs, how to perform on boats, and lastly a crash course

Read More »
Musician Tips
Sandy Connolly

The Three Ways to Begin a Song

If you are a singer working with a band, you can be helpful during rehearsals if you know how to begin and are prepared to count in each section of

Read More »
Musician Tips
Steve Shelton

Another Hendrix Chord?

The Hendrix Chord: E7#9 Lots of guitarists call the 7#9 chord – the “Hendrix” chord, after the legendary Jimi Hendrix who employed it often, but you can really hear it

Read More »
Tech Tips
Melissa Greenberg

Zoom Visuals

Continuing with the theme of troubleshooting Zoom, this post will address another frustration: camera and video issues. Last week’s Clef Notes post addressed audio concerns and many of those resolutions

Read More »
Musician Tips
Sandy Connolly

The Tricky Thing About Tempo

The tricky thing about tempo is that even though it can be measured in an objective way (60 beats per minute is 60 beats per minutes), it can seem subjective.

Read More »
Musician Tips
Tony Cafiero

Busking

BUSKING: “The activity of playing music in the street or another public place for voluntary donations” Great Practice & Exposure to New Crowd Sometimes, musicians must accept that there are

Read More »
Tech Tips
Melissa Greenberg

Can You Hear Me Now?

This blog post is part-one of many posts to come addressing everything Zoom. At first glance, Zoom seems straightforward and simple enough with few buttons and settings.  So how hard

Read More »
Musician Tips
Steve Shelton

Try Some of Our Fine Arpeggios

Lots of students learn scales and can get them running up and down in short order. Arpeggios are key notes from scales that are used to play the harmony of

Read More »
Musician Tips
Steve Shelton

Plays Well With Others

Let’s take a break from all that chord chemistry and talk about something practical (and musical) when playing with another guitarist or keyboard player. I’ve found that if guitarists each

Read More »
Tech Tips
Melissa Greenberg

Bookmarks For Online Loft Students

This past year has proven that the willingness to adjust and adapt to a new format can bring success. Crescendo Music Loft is no exception. Students have had the option to

Read More »
Practice Techniques
Sandy Connolly

Find the One Note & Fix It

Often, a person can sing a song most of the way through, but there’s one section that is bringing the whole thing down. A Typical Popular Song Form For the

Read More »
Tech Tips
Melissa Greenberg

Google Drive, Part 2

Google Drive is an extensive platform that deserves a second look and follow-up post to A Guide to Google Drive.  This post highlights a helpful Google app that automatically syncs with

Read More »
Musician Tips
Tony Cafiero

Gigs on Boats

Sooner or later, most musicians find themselves booked to perform on a boat. I remember playing on several local vessels including the Lady Catherine, Becky Thatcher, and the somewhat infamous

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Sandy Connolly

What Songs Are Your Children Listening To?

An Instructional Conversation with a Thirteen-Year-Old About fifteen years ago, I was teaching a guitar lessons to a teenage boy and struggling to find some way to inspire him to

Read More »
Tech Tips
Melissa Greenberg

A Guide to Google Drive

Google Drive is a Google platform that brings together Google files you have created or opened.  Google Drive can appear overwhelming at first, but I’m here to break it down in

Read More »
Practice Techniques
Sandy Connolly

Practicing Backwards

This is not what you think. What I’m talking about is starting your practice work at the end of a piece and methodically working your way backwards to the beginning.

Read More »
Musician Tips
Kirsten Livingston

How to Be A More Effective Student

Expectation | LET IT GO Expectation is where everything starts to go wrong. Expectation is the death of acceptance. When we were tiny, our brains were ready to accept lots

Read More »
Useful Software
Sandy Connolly

GarageBand 101 for Singers: Part 1

GarageBand Can Be Fun I’ve been having a lot of fun lately with many of my voice students making GarageBand recordings during lessons and special sessions. Over two Saturdays in

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Abigail Connolly

Some Beautiful Music

This week, I offer this playlist of nine of the most beautiful songs I’ve ever heard. These are not my top nine, but just a collection of music I adore

Read More »
Musician Tips
Ted Ervin

Reverse Karaoke

The Issue I probably don’t have to tell you that lately, life’s been tough for the live-performing musician. Because of Covid-19, performances big and small have been canceled or made

Read More »
Tech Tips
Melissa Greenberg

A Crash Course in Online Core Curriculum

Online Courses In Core Curriculum Are Now Available Another week, another tech-tutorial!  This Crash Course in Online Core Curriculum will get you prepped and ready to dive into the Crescendo

Read More »
Practice Techniques
Sandy Connolly

How Using Solfege Can Help You Sing Better

Many musicians use a system called “solfege” to make the task of singing and understanding melodic lines a little bit easier. Solfege is used in conservatories and schools all over

Read More »
Useful Software
Abigail Connolly

Why You Need a Collaborative Playlist

Spotify Hosts Collaborative Playlists I adore Spotify, they make me feel known and suggest heavily curated music that I like most of the time. They also have a collaborative playlist

Read More »
Useful Software
Kirsten Livingston

Let’s Sing Rounds Together!

I’ve always loved to sing in groups. It’s fantastic for those of us who are self conscious because it gives us a level of anonymity. This brings me to one

Read More »
Musician Tips
Sandy Connolly

What I Mean By Daily Vocal Workout

Establish a Regular Routine of Working Out The first piece of advice I give anyone wanting to improve their singing voice is to establish a regular routine of working out.

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Abigail Connolly

A Christmas Song to Listen To

as You Await Election Results or Mourn/Recover/Celebrate Election Results I am writing this post on 11/3/2020, election night, as we await results. My friend Christopher sent me this song, and

Read More »
Staff
Doctor Slaughterhouse

Danger Is My Business

Most people know me by my given name, Charlie. I’ve earned other names, too. Badges of honor, if you will. When you’re good at your job cool nicknames kind of

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Abigail Connolly

Personal Musings on Track 10

Some background: Vulfpeck listed their 10th track spot for their new album “The Joy of Music, The Job of Real Estate” on eBay back on August 7th. Fans had the

Read More »
Musician Tips
Tony Cafiero

Gigging for Beginners: Preparation!

You’ve practiced, rehearsed and honed your craft and are ready to put your talent on display for the world. Now it’s time to learn a new lesson – selling the

Read More »
How to Memorize the 15 Major Keys
Melissa Greenberg

Steps for Creating a Gravatar

An “avatar” is an image that represents you online—a little picture that appears next to your name when you interact with websites.  A Gravatar is a Globally Recognized Avatar. You

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Kirsten Livingston

“Song Exploder” on Netflix

Last weekend I discovered “Song Exploder” on Netflix. Each episode takes us inside a particular musician’s process in creating/constructing a song from concept to completion. Episode 2 grabbed me and

Read More »
Melissa Greenberg
Staff
Tony Cafiero

Melissa Greenberg: Goddess of the Gigabyte

Crescendo Music Loft is pleased to introduce Ms. Melissa Greenberg as its newest staff member. Melissa will serve as our Gigabyte Guru assisting students and faculty with her information technology

Read More »
John Hurley
Uncategorized
Tony Cafiero

“Shot Glass” John Hurley

Crescendo Music Loft is thrilled to announce a new staff member – Mr. John Hurley – who will serve our students as our “Lesson Lieutenant.” John will assist in reviewing

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Abigail Connolly

Ten Songs for Your Listening Pleasure

1. Poinciana performed by Vulfpeck New Vulf is coming, and this is my favorite single so far. I should note for the true Vulfpeck fans that I am aware this

Read More »
Commentary on Current Music
Sandy Connolly

Finding Inspiration In Hiromi Uehara

Finding Inspiration for Young, Female Piano Students I often talk to my students about playing music with feeling and about how moving their bodies can help in that regard. Last

Read More »
Lessons
Sandy Connolly

Sign Up for Fall Lessons 2020

Sign Up for Fall Lessons 2020 Ready to Book Now? If you’re ready to book a lesson right now, you can visit our Loft Schedule page to check for available

Read More »
The Groove
Sandy Connolly

Groove T-Shirts Are Here!

At long last, the Uzo produced t-shirts designed by Abigail Connolly are in! They are being modeled here by the artist and Keelyn Ervin. How to purchase: come by the

Read More »
Uncategorized
Tony Cafiero

Ken Hickmott: Grandmaster of Graphics

Ken Hickmott is our Grandmaster of Graphics joining us after relocating to Connecticut from Northern California. Ken’s experience as art director for a commercial printer as well as his exposure

Read More »
Uncategorized
Tony Cafiero

Tony Cafiero: Sultan of Spin

Tony is our wizard of the written word, sultan of synonyms, and the prince of prose writing copy for our press releases, posters, web and social media articles  When not

Read More »
Events & Classes
Ted Ervin

Master Class with Christine Ohlman – CANCELED

Master Class: Canceled After multiple postponements, we have canceled our Master Class with Christine Ohlman. We find ourselves in an unprecedented situation without firmly-established protocols for the type of indoor

Read More »
The Groove
Sandy Connolly

The Groove Jr is Happening!

A Performance Opportunity for Middle Schoolers As many of you know, each month The Music Loft hosts two events for high-school-aged teens: a rehearsal to prepare (Get Your Act Together)

Read More »
Ted Ervin
Staff
Tony Cafiero

Ted Ervin: Factotum

Factotum of the Loft Ted Ervin is Crescendo Music Loft’s Minister of Technology and the “go to guy” for needs regarding scheduling our rehearsal and performance space and anything related

Read More »
Sandy Connolly
Staff
Tony Cafiero

Sandy Connolly: High Priestess

Sandy Connolly is our fearless leader at Crescendo Music Loft handling all aspects of teaching in addition to running the business. Classically trained in music (opera) but having heard the

Read More »