Saxophone Lessons Side Hustle
…I don’t know how, but they will.
The Saxophone Tshirt is surprisingly accurate.
Where would the world be without saxophones ?
Those of you who know me are probably well versed with my regular playing of my saxophone(s).
I’ve played the sax for more than 33 years.
It is my escape, my meditation, my refuge from the harsh realities of this modern world.
I’ve played in bands across Melbourne and beyond for many, many years. I actually started at university to become a music teacher, with the aim of being a sax legend – either as a performer or a teacher.
I gave saxophone lessons to a few students while I was at Uni, but stopped for a long time.
Recently, I’ve started again.
Because of my back injury, I have spent a lot of time re-assessing what is important to me in my life:
My wife, my daughters and everything that involes them – priority number 1. Tick.
I have recently had a promotion of sorts at work. I do “computer stuff” in the financial sector of corporate Australia as my day job. This pays the bills and allows me and my family a few nice things, including the occasional overseas trip.
It also allows me to indulge in various musical schenanigans.
So, again because of the thought processes involved with my sore back, I have started teaching saxophone lessons again. And, I’ve been REALLY enjoying it.
I have a few students, ranging in age from 10 to 59. And because of this experience, I’ve noticed a few similarities.
Saxophone Lessons traditionally have been rather tedious.
I remember when I was a 15 year old student – while I knew that my saxophone was “my calling” I also knew that the lessons I was having were remarkably and surprisingly boring.
But I persisted.
Then, when I was about 16 years old, my hip and groovy sax teacher (who actually couldn’t play saxophone, but was quite skilled on the trombone) asked me what kind of music did I want to play ?
He actually wanted to help me play what I wanted to play !!
The band leader at my school was also very young and very cool. He too was a major influence in my musical journey, in that he also encouraged me to play what I wanted to play.
So, because of these two amazing teachers – both co-incidentally named Rob – I have been playing my saxophone ever since.
And now I am trying to help others do the same.
I’ve been recording and creating my own online beginner saxophone lessons – and I am now in the process of making these available to the world.
My iPhone 6 has been my video camera of choice.
My Rode SmartLav plus microphone has done a great job.
My Hercules DS730B Tall Saxophone Stand has been fantastic for me with my sore back. I don’t have to bend down at all, because my saxophone is exactly at the right height for me to just grab it when I need it.
I have put together approximately 20 video lessons on various aspects of learning how to play the sax and beginner saxophone lessons.
I planned these out in advance – with titles and lesson plans. Teaching these to my real live students before hand has made this process much easier.
During the video and audio recording process I made several mistakes, but due to the wonders of iMovie on my phone, I think I got away with pretty much all of them.
I chose Udemy.com as a starting point.
Udemy is an amazing online learning portal. You can access training courses on just about any topic you could possibly imagine. It’s actually quite incredible.
I have uploaded my beginner saxophone lessons to Udemy. My thought process is that Udemy has a massive audience already – so if I can get in front of this audience, then this is worth the price of the Udemy Instructor fees.
Nick Loper from Side Hustle Nation is a firm believer in getting infront of a pre-existing audience. So, I’ve taken a leaf out of his book and I am in the process of trying this concept out for myself.
The Udemy upload process is actually quite easy to deal with.
For the most part it is very intuitive and fairly self explanatory. Having preapared my beginner saxophone lessons videos, backing tracks and pdf documents in advance, uploading these all into a logical layout within the Udemy interface has been quite easy.
One little surprise was when I thought that I was ready to publish my course. I’d built this up in my mind to be a bit of a moment – a triumphant push of the “submit” button.
However, Udemy then hassled me with a Verification Process.
Fair enough, I thought. They are interested in quality control and making sure everything is above board. However, there was a rather strange automated process that involved giving my personal details – country of residence, name, address, date of birth, etc. This automated system then told me that my details were unable to be retrieved, were incorrect, and I had two more attempts left.
A bit odd, especially given that I had entered my correct details. It wasn’t me who was getting this incorrect.
Then, upon my third alleged “failure”, the automated process suggested that I email a video of myself explaining who I was, what my course name was and to read from a script basically saying that the course was mine and I hadn’t stolen it from anyone. So I did.
This has added to the time taken to approve my course. No big deal, but a little bit strange. Pressing the “submit” button very quickly became underwhelming, rather than than the personal triumph I’d built it up to be in my head.
So, we’ll see how it goes.
My Beginner Alto Saxophone Lessons course is now live and ready for the holiday season.
I will investigate SkillShare next. And update my How To Play The Sax website accordingly.
The point I am trying to make here is two fold:
- A Side Hustle can be relatively cheap and simple to begin. I’ve spent a few hours a week for the last three months or so planning, filming and recording, editing, uploading and publishing my beginner saxophone lessons course. It has cost me some time, but has cost me zero dollars.
- I happen to enjoy and have some skill with the saxophone. You, dear reader, might have skills in other areas. Can you allocate an hour or two each week and create your own training course ? Can you impart your wisdom in some way, shape or form ? Can you sell this wisdom ?
P.S. Have you started or created a training course of sorts ? What is it about ? Where did you make it available to the world ? Why did you choose to publish it where you did ?
Please let me know in the comments below 🙂