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Coaching a Popular Music Ensemble: Blending formal, non-formal, and informal approaches in the rehearsal Paperback – May 28, 2019

5.0 out of 5 stars 11 ratings

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Editorial Reviews


"I am thrilled to see such a wise, balanced and creative account of knowledge and practice in the field, and of your own excellent approaches. The book is refreshingly straight-forward without in any way being reductive. Engaging, insightful and directly linked to practice, this book makes a fantastic contribution to innovative pedagogy and will support the incorporation of popular music not only for higher education professors but for many working with younger students too.'  Dr. Lucy Green, author of How Popular Musicians Learn
"What Steve Holley has done is capture the important elements of coaching a popular music ensemble in an easily accessible text that anyone can connect and learn from. This book is relevant for the expert and the beginner, and opens up the discussion not just content, but more importantly diverse ways for facilitating and sharing."
~ Dr. Jarritt Sheel, Berklee College of Music, Boston, MA

"From chapters discussing the ethos of popular music education and its relationship with other areas of practice, to chapters that provide specific ways to assist and engage with instrumentalists, this book sets forth a range of highly valuable information and ideas that will make it a valuable addition to the toolkit of any teacher who wants to be involved in popular music education."
~ Dr. Zack Moir, Edinburgh Napier University, Edinburgh, Scotland

"I have watched and enjoyed Steve's approach to non-traditional music education over a long period of time, and he is certainly the right person to write this book. It takes a wide array of skills and the ability to translate the nuances of that particular style to teach this music. This book will help the band director develop those skills."
 ~ Paul McKinney, The STAX Music Academy, Memphis, TN

"A long overdue contribution to the conversation about how to teach popular music in K-12 settings. The book comprehensively covers the topic through a combination of music education theory and practically based suggestions gleaned from Steve's many years as a popular music facilitator. This book is a must have for teachers interested in starting their own pop program, for pre-service music educators, and for professors who train young music educators heading off into the field."
~ Dr. Judy Lewis, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
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Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ McLemore Ave Music (May 28, 2019)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 180 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1733970703
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1733970709
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1.18 pounds
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 8.5 x 0.41 x 11 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    5.0 out of 5 stars 11 ratings

About the author

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Grammy nominated music educator Steve Holley served as the Producer for the Commercial Music Program at the Kent Denver School outside Denver, CO, for nineteen years. During his tenure, the R&B, soul, salsa, and jazz bands of the CMP were recognized by DownBeat magazine’s Student Music Awards 15 times, performed hundreds of gigs throughout the United States, and performed abroad at the Festival del Tambor, Montreux Jazz, and Porretta Soul Festivals in Cuba, Switzerland, and Italy, respectively. They performed on dozens of radio and television broadcasts, held standing gigs at local clubs, recorded at some of the most hallowed studios in the country, and per-formed with dozens of Grammy caliber artists, all while taking on a full course load as a typical high school student.

Steve holds a B.M. in Jazz/Classical bass performance, a M.M. in Jazz/Classical bass performance from the University of Memphis, and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Music Education at Arizona State University. In addition to being an educator, arranger, performer, writer, and musical entrepreneur, Steve is a sought after clinician/speaker with performances and presentations given at the Jazz Education Network, Association for Popular Music Education, Modern Band Colloquium, National Association for Music Education, and several state MEA conferences. More recently, Steve has written several articles for In Tune Monthly magazine, Teaching Music magazine, and multiple blogs and newsletters for the National Association for Music Education and the Jazz Education Network.

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Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on August 14, 2019
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5.0 out of 5 stars Thorough, Practical Text
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on August 14, 2019
Steve Holley shares invaluable wisdom from years of experience in his book, Coaching a Popular Music Ensemble. As a high school music teacher working with students in popular music ensembles, I have never found a text that was so exhaustive and easily applicable. He provides important technical information (type of sound equipment to purchase, how loud is too loud in your practice space, etc.) while also sharing the more nuanced advice on how to guide musicians to refine their musicianship and develop autonomy. This book is great for new teachers looking to implement more popular music making into their music programs, or for seasoned veterans looking for new strategies to work with a wide variety of students. Great read!
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