Gotham Music Academy offers courses for all experience levels in the following music programs:
From beginner level through intermediate and expert levels, voice students will methodically progress from proper body position, breath control and articulation, including vocal warm-ups, breathing exercises and development of clear diction; to singing precise musical intervals, adhering to tempo notation and modulating singing dynamics; and onward to expanding the vocal range (including smooth register transitions between chest, middle and head voice), developing vocal agility, and putting your personal touch on a performance, e.g., by adding vibrato or resonance.
From beginner level through intermediate and expert levels, students will methodically progress from basic control of the guitar, including strumming open chords, arpeggio picking and open scales; to barre chords, advanced fingerpicking and blues/rock scales; and onward to complex left-hand techniques (e.g., hammer-ons, pull-offs, string bends, etc.), off-beat/percussive rhythm playing and fretboard mastery.
From beginner level through intermediate and expert levels, students will methodically progress from basic control of the bass guitar, including first position arpeggios; to walking, muting and pull-offs; and onward to complex right-hand techniques (e.g., slapping, hammering, ghost notes, harmonics, etc.), syncopated rhythms and fretboard mastery.
From beginner level through intermediate and expert levels, students will methodically progress from basic control of the ukulele, including strumming open chords, arpeggio picking and open scales; to barre chords, advanced fingerpicking and double-tap “island” strumming; and onward to chord-to-melody runs, reggae rhythms and alternate tunings.
From beginner level through intermediate and expert levels, students will methodically progress from basic control of the keyboard, including middle-C hand placement, right-hand melody and left-hand chord playing; to arpeggiated chords, multi-octave runs and finger- and hand-independence; and onward to syncopated blues piano, intermodulation into all major and minor keys and fluid position changes.
Drums & Percussion
From beginner level through intermediate and expert levels, students will methodically progress from basic control of the drum set, including keeping time with the bass and snare drum, modulating open and closed hi-hats and playing simple rudiments; to devising tom and cymbal fills, mastering advanced rudiments and developing limb independence; and onward to complex drum patterns, off-beat world and jazz rhythms, pitched percussion instruments and speed mastery.
In addition, Gotham Music Academy offers classes on songwriting, recording and music production:
Songwriting & Composition Workshop
Looking to hone your skills creating songs in contemporary genres such as pop, rock, folk, Rn’B or blues? The Songwriting & Composition Workshop will teach participants how to develop a musical idea, using either a melody line or a chord sequence as a jumping-off point to a full song arrangement. Progressing from the exploration of counterpoint and harmonization, participants will learn how to employ different song structures, create arrangements that optimize dynamics and frequency balance, craft lyrics to match beat, tempo and instrumentation, and add effects to maximize their songs’ emotional impact. The workshop will furthermore touch on related aspects of publishing and recording. Students will have the opportunity (but are not required) to practice each new skill with hands-on exercises using acoustic guitar, keyboard and mic’ed solo voice. Classes are generally held once weekly. Enrollment in this workshop is open to teens and adults.
Mic'ed Voice Club Course
In addition to exercising their vocal skills, students in the Mic’ed Voice Club Courses will learn how to record voice in the context of music production. Among other, students will learn proper microphone technique, practice overdubbing, and develop vocal skills commonly used in modern music genres such as rap, double tracking and providing backing vocals. Enrollment in this Club Course is open to teens and adults.
Gotham Beatmakers Club Course
Gotham Beatmakers teaches students how to make their own beats: Using MIDI controllers and an iPad, students learn the skills, tools and tricks of music production for various modern genres including Hip Hop, Rn’B and electronic music. From beginner level through intermediate and advanced levels, Beatmakers will create their own virtual drum kits, program beat loops and layer bass lines and pads; progress towards applying effects, arranging and mixing a complete song; and explore advanced techniques including sampling, designing synth patches and preparing for live beatmaking performance. Enrollment in this Club Course is open to kids, teens and adults.
Our Club Courses are taught in a group format at our main location at the Barrow Mansion, 83 Wayne Street, in downtown Jersey City. Club Courses in each music program, in addition to voice or instrument practice, also encompass “ear-training”, composition and learning how to perform with a band or ensemble. Our study materials cover a wide variety of musical genres including pop, rock, Hip Hop, Rn’B, electronic music, blues, folk, jazz and world music.
Each Club Course comprises of weekly classes — at least one per week for Adult Club Courses and at least two per week for Youth Club Courses, with even more classes per week available to advanced students. In addition to these weekly classes for each Club Course, all Club Courses meet once a week for ensemble practice, which prepares students for the professionally staged and recorded ensemble performance that concludes each semester. Each class is 55 minutes long, recurring on the same day of the week, at the same time of the day. Check out the current Club Course Schedule.
Our Club Courses run continuously throughout the year. The programming for each course progresses towards the talent show at the end of each semester (Fall/Winter: October through January; Spring: February through May; Summer: June through September). New students may enroll in any Club Course as of the beginning of any calendar month (and may start lessons at any time that month).
For each of our music programs, you also have the option to enroll in one of our exclusive Concierge Courses which generally consist of weekly private lessons taught at your home, with all scheduling details to be agreed-on directly with your instructor.