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SOURCE B&B Music Lessons
Sending Qualified Music Teachers Into Homes
WASHINGTON, Feb. 4, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- B&B Music Lessons, based in Washington, D.C., is celebrating its ninth anniversary this March. Owners Brad Clements and Bhagwan Khalsa are pleased with the progress they've made since starting the business in 2005. The school currently has 65 teachers and 370 students, mostly age five to 15.
For a busy parent in the Washington, D.C., Virginia, or Maryland, a music school like B&B is a godsend. Teachers come to your home to teach music to your child. That means you don't fight traffic to drive to a studio; you don't sit waiting through a 30 or 45-minute lesson and then fight the traffic back home again. Your child has the benefit of a familiar home environment, playing on his or her familiar instrument. Lessons are tailored to the individual student with the aim of making them fun and enjoyable.
B&B Music Lessons provides teachers on a range of instruments, including piano, woodwinds and brass, strings, and drums. Clements and Khalsa meet personally with each prospective teacher – something that the national music lesson services cannot do – and they make sure that their teachers can work well with children. Only those who demonstrate good communication skills, reliability, and musical competence make the cut to become a B&B teacher. Clements and Khalsa work hard at establishing a sense of community among their staff of teachers and pay them about $9 per hour more than other similar services. By sharing the wealth, they hope to earn their teachers' loyalty and build long-term relationships.
Khalsa believes customer service is B&B's strength, compared to other local in-home music lesson providers (competitors include Travelling Music Teachers and Studio Papillon). B&B sends out an array of supportive materials to students, including music lesson planners and lesson follow-up. They make sure that there is a good fit between student and teacher, and if for some reason one teacher doesn't work out, they can provide another. This capability also helps them compete with the individual private teachers who offer in-home lessons. If a teacher moves or is otherwise unable to continue the teaching relationship, parents must find another teacher themselves. With B&B, a new teacher can be provided without the child losing continuity in his or her lesson progress.
Clements and Khalsa met in the early 1990s while performing for a year on the same Hawaiian cruise ship. Their relationship continued once they returned to the Washington, D.C. area. In 2005 Khalsa was ready to find a career day job to complement his performance career. The first viable option he found was teaching music for a company that sent teachers to the homes of students. He discussed his experiences with colleague Brad Clements and they began to feel they could do an even better job running an in-home music lesson business. In 2005 they started B&B Music Lessons and never looked back.
Both owners are regularly performing musicians. Trumpeter Brad Clements has 25 years of experience playing in a variety of genres. He spent 14 years touring with Chuck Brown until Brown's death in 2012; currently he is performing with the Chuck Brown band, which features former members of Chuck Brown's final band. He has performed with Sean "Puffy" Combs, Prince, George Duke, Eric Benet, Lalah Hathaway, Ledisi, Boney James, and The Four Kings of Rhythm & Blues. Clements has also produced two of his own albums on the Lundy's Lounge Music label, For the Love of You (2002) and Liquid Lounge (2005).
Bassist Bhagwan Khalsa primarily plays jazz and has toured the globe with the Eric Byrd Trio, recording on all the trio's albums. His arrangements are essential to shaping their distinctive sound. Khalsa has performed with other world-class musicians such as saxophonists Sonny Fortune, Eric Alexander, Gary Thomas, Cecil Payne, David "Fathead" Newman, and the late Buck Hill. He has worked with guitarist Mike Stern, pianist Kenny Drew, Jr., and vocalists Giacomo Gates and Kenny Washington. Besides his educational work at B&B Music Lessons, he spent two years teaching electric and acoustic bass at the Washington Conservatory of Music.
Over the years Clements and Khalsa have noted a number of research studies which report a positive association between music experience and increased abilities in non-musical (such as linguistic, mathematical, and spatial) domains in children. They have also seen more interest from adult age learners. All that bodes well for the future of their service business, but their goal for B&B Music Lessons is a simple one: "To make the world a better place through music, one lesson at a time."
Contact: Paula Phillips, 443-702-7016
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