We had the good fortune of connecting with Jason Myers and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jason, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Honestly, the business model is quite basic and simple: private lessons at my home studio (currently zoom and my front yard for the duration of the pandemic). It’s a business model that’s probably hundreds of years old! After stints doing house calls, lessons in music stores and schools, the “no other parties involved” method is best for me, and it turns out I am a more reliable secretary than what I’ve experienced in more formal settings that include a third party.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
There was never a moment I really considered being anything other than a musician. There was also never a moment that I was unclear on the difficulties of a career in the performing arts. So, when I was sixteen and had started to work professionally here and there, I started teaching students. I was fortunate that it turned out to be something that I enjoyed doing and possessed the necessary communication skills needed to be an effective teacher. Not all good musicians are good instructors. I’m much more interested in the craft of music and being a good instructor than in running a business, so I keep the business element as simple as possible. On my site, the basic policies and payment is clearly explained in a handful of sentences, nice and simple. I don’t have a “brand” other than delivering superior service at the average marketplace price. If I have a brand, that’s it in a nutshell. If you listen and practice, I can help you become a good musician.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
When I have a friend here who hasn’t been to Los Angeles before, the first thing I take them to see is Watts towers. You can see a persons entire life work in a singular place. You don’t really get a glimpse of such a thing outside of a museum or an exhibit, and it’s all just on this weirdly shaped residential lot. I don’t really know of anything else like it. L.A. is also a great food town with a lot to offer so there is plenty of eating. A drive form the mountains to the beach also gives visitors a perspective of how remarkably diverse this city really is in every conceiveable way, with the possible exception of the weather which can hardly be considered a detriment. Other than that, if I’m not too busy working I try to find things of interest to my guest. (If they’re not a musician I’m not going to drag my guest around to a bunch of jam sessions.) I once wound up hosting an English Au Pair who was interested in a law enforcement career, so I called a friend in the sherriffs department who turned her on to the ride along program, which she thoroughly enjoyed.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I am perennially grateful to the many clients I’ve had the pleasure of teaching to play. Without them I wouldn’t have a business. Your referrals and support are what make it all possible. I’ve also been fortunate to have had great instructors and advisors whose guidance has been invaluable. Larry Kucher, John Carlini, Larry Koonse, Miroslav Tadic, Paul Novros, Stuart Fox, Mike Stern, George Van Eps, and Dirk Fisher. Thank you!