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Rick Crittenden: Teaching

Please note: Rick is not currently accepting students.

A statement from Rick about teaching:

I have been a committed working musician since 1967 when my first rock band first started getting paid gigs. Since that time I have played, studied and explored jazz fusion, straight ahead jazz, free improvisation, world music from Ireland, Africa, and Latin America, and post romantic classical music. I am currently on the Adjunct Faculty at Portland Community College.

In my teaching practice, I aim to tap into the student's natural enthusiasm by starting out working with musical material the student listens to and enjoys. In the process of exploring and learning to play music they listen to currently, I expose them to music theory, structure and notation.

Several years ago, I had an extremely talented student that started like any other, but the rate of growth was remarkable. This student was playing bass in a professional local jazz group after only two years of weekly lessons with me. I asked the young man's parents how much he was practicing, and they told me that music is what he did for fun; so he played at every opportunity, rather than choosing more, say, traditional teen recreational activities. Generally, people get good at what they enjoy.

Most of my clients stay with me for several years. I have been fortunate to become friends with many families of students, over the years. Below are a few statements from students and parents.

Rick Crittenden

Our son had Rick for a teacher for two years. He grew remarkably as a bass player and I believe that his lessons on bass informed his improvisation skills on his other instrument, the cello. Since he's moved on to the marimba and focuses much of his talents with this new instrument, his teaching from Rick continues to "play" out in his new musical venture.

- Dave E. (Dec 28, 2009)

"Our son has been taking lessons from Rick for more than two years. It's clear to us that Rick's teaching has played a very big part in our son's interest in music and the growth of his playing abilities."

James and Tiffini G. (Dec 28, 2009)
Rick is one of the best teachers I've had on any instrument. The entire time that I was getting lessons from him, I saw both my own rapid improvement and his devotion to the bass guitar grow. World class is right.  
Aiden Forsi (Dec 28, 2009)

Rick is a great instructor to work with. He listens to what objectives/interests you’re interested in learning to play bass, and the lessons are tailored to your needs and at the pace that fits the prospective student’s needs.

He has a wide range of music styles in his background, and this is a very integral part of his approach at instruction. You get to learn what styles/techniques you wish to develop with his guidance.

Hal Harper

Rick has been an inspiration to our son as a musician and as a young man growing up. He has taught him a deep appreciation for music and the complexities of various styles and compositions as well as opening his mind to the world of the music business. Rick has done an outstanding job with our son, who was not an easy student to work with and had many challenges – but Rick stuck with him and has been terrific as a teacher, mentor and friend. We highly recommend him.


Nelson and Bela Friedman