Articles by Jeff Comas
I want to warn you that contents of this article may provoke some uncomfortable thoughts. However, if you love your children (and I know you do) I urge you to read on. After all, every parent is concerned about their chi . . .
“The effect of music on our bodies” has been a topic of scientific studies for a very long time. We all remember listening to our favorite singer or band for extensive hours and how it lifts our mood and cheers us up. Th . . .
Last month we talked about your child pursuing music education in college and/or pursuing a career in music. I mentioned that there are basically three types of formal music education programs: the traditional university . . .
A question I often hear from parents this time of year is- “Should my child major in music, in college?” When I hear this question, it usually means that their child is 17 or 18, college is looming just ahead, and it’s t . . .
Reading music is an activity in three and sometimes four dimensions;
- Pitch (highness or lowness of the sound),
- Rhythm (when notes are played & how long they last),
- Dynamics (the volume of the music played), . . .
I believe that learning to read music is an important part of becoming a musician. However, there are those who will point out that many wonderful musicians do not read music. I freely admit this is true, but there are a . . .
I commonly ask music students what they think they need to do to improve their performance of a certain piece of music. The common response is “practice more.” While more practice may be part of the solution, it is defin . . .
Since 1989 when I became a music educator, I have worked with many hundreds of children and adolescents. While I hold no specialized certification outside of my license as an instructor of the Childbloom Guitar Program, . . .
Most of us have had the experience of hearing/seeing a fantastic musician perform, and thinking that he or she made it look easy. Chances are that it actually was fairly easy for the performer. Why was it easy? Because t . . .
As I mentioned previously, I believe all people should learn to read music. I have witnessed how learning to read music helps children (and adults) develop their cognitive abilities, improve their understanding of concep . . .
Jeff Comas's Bio
Jeffrey R. Comas was born in Atlanta, GA, in 1961, but has spent most of his life in East Tennessee, where he currently resides with his wife Laura. He has two adult children and two grandchildren.
As a youngster, Jeff played piano, and then trumpet, before adopting guitar as his instrument of choice at 13 years of age. His parents did not actively play music when he was a child, but his mother listened to lots of folk music while his father’s tastes leaned more towards classical styles.
In 1980, when he was 19 he dropped out of electrical engineering school to pursue music full time. After spending nearly 10 years as a traveling musician, in a variety of pop & rock bands, he eventually found himself in Minneapolis, MN, working for an Elvis impersonator, that also did a Neil Diamond tribute.
In 1989, seeking to broaden his opportunities, he returned to school to study his true passion, music. During his course of study, he would attend Music Tech (now known as McNally-Smith College of Music), Belmont University, and Austin Peay State University. Along the way he studied guitar and/or composition with such notables as David Crittenden (of the Minneapolis Guitar Quartet), Steven Webber (Emmy winning composer, now with Berklee College of Music), John Pell, Stan Lassiter, Stanley Yeats, and Jeffrey Wood.
Also in 1989, Mr. Comas, with a recommendation from Jack McNally (McNally-Smith College), landed his first job as a music educator, teaching guitar classes for Minnesota retail music chain, Schmitt Music. Through the end of his college experience Jeff would teach guitar lessons and other music classes, and perform professionally on weekends, to support himself and his family.
In 1998, Jeff rented space inside a Knoxville music store to teach out of. Because of his innovative approach to teaching and outreach he soon found himself with nearly 100 students.
In 2000, he first became director of a music school, overseeing nearly 20 instructors and hundreds of students. In 2004, he opened Knoxville Academy of Music (then called Allied Music Instructors). Mr. Comas is a master teacher who, along with his music studies has also acquired special knowledge in: child development, neuro linguistic programing, and Alexander technique, enhancing his skills as a leading music educator.
Over the course of his career Jeff has personally delivered over 40,000 music lessons, and
schools under his direction have provided over 200,000 lessons, to thousands of students. He is a continuous student of the art and science of music and music education, and is dedicated to helping more people learn, and enjoy, playing music.
Mr. Comas is currently the Director of the award-winning Knoxville Academy of Music, the largest private music school in the state of Tennessee. He visits area schools with his collection of guitars, tells a history of guitar, demonstrates the instruments, and is enthusiastically referred to as “the Guitar Man” by the kids who attend his presentations. Additionally, he is regularly asked to speak with student groups on the career days at a variety of public and private schools.
Jeff has assisted the East Tennessee Technology Access Center, the Knoxville Autism Center, and is a supporter of Smoky Mountain Service Dogs,which provides service dogs to wounded veterans. He also serves on the board of directors for the Knoxville Guitar Society.
Along with classical, steel string, and electric guitar Jeff also enjoys playing bass and baritone guitars, ukulele, guitalele, mandolin, piano, and something called the Chapman Stick®. He has written music for guitar solo, and ensembles, piano, voice, flute, Chapman Stick, and saxophone. He also writes music in the pop/rock/blues veins, and has been known to let his classical influences crossover into his rock compositions and vice versa.
Jeff is the co-author of the book- “Your Guide to Music Lessons” and is the developer of the “You Will Change the World” online course- "Method of Personal Music Enjoyment"
While his overseeing of Tennessee’s largest music academy and continued development of music programs keeps him quite busy, he still makes some time to play music nearly every day.