Benjamin M. offers Bass Guitar Lessons, Creative Writing Lessons, Drum L...

Tutor in Detroit, MI 48217

Detroit, MI 48217


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Price starts at: $25.00

Subjects: Bass Guitar, Creative Writing, Drum, Guitar, Music Performance, Music Recording, Music Theory, Piano, Saxophone, Songwriting

Hello Future Students!

Whether you want to pursue a Musical Career or simply learn how to Play your Favorite Tunes for friends and family, I am here as your Teacher and Guide. I teach at my own home, at the Student’s home or through the use of Skype.

I am originally from Ann Arbor. I spent much of this century living in NYC and prior to that I lived in Chicago. Those experiences vastly helped me develop Networking, Performance and Teaching experience. I now live in southwest Detroit near River Rouge.

As a Father of four, I have had the joy in teaching my own children Guitar, Saxophone, Songwriting, Composition and Keyboard. As a parent I have found that Patience and Encouragement is often the best form of support.

It has been proven that learning Music helps develop intuition, self-awareness, and social skills as well as improve in other subjects not directly related to the arts such as Mathematics and Science.

One of the most important aspects of playing Music is being able to Play by Ear. This has been a priceless gift that I was born with and have developed throughout my life. I encourage all musicians, young and old, to do the same. The use of simple Rhythmic Dictation and Ear Training exercises can do wonders for “picking out” Beats and Harmonies no matter what Genre we are interested in.

I attended music courses at The Boston School of Contemporary Music and Thomas Jefferson College (MI). I have a BA at Columbia College Chicago double majoring in Music Composition and English .

My band THIRD BORDER’s “Sun of Water; Sea of Light” was selected to be nominated for the Grammy’s as The Best Alternative Album of the Year in 2006. On this record, I played Guitar, Saxophone, sang Lead Vocal and wrote all the Songs. If you are a Songwriter, we can polish up your approach.

As a Composer, I have done Sound Design for Film, Dance, Spoken Word and Multi-media Performance – most notably with renowned poet Anne Carson and former members of The Merce Cunningham Dance Co. I also formed and composed two symphonies for my 12-member saxophone orchestra in NYC. Currently, I am rehearsing new work with a Detroit-based multiinstrumental orchestra.

I hope to talk to you soon!

  • Lesson Details *
    My teaching style is relaxed with a forte on Patience and Encouragement. Though I have specific expectations on what needs to be learned, I gear each lesson towards the student’s wishes and their personal direction in Creativity. Whether you are a beginner or an advanced student, I can guide you wherever you are headed!

For Guitar (acoustic or electric), you will learn the fundamentals of Music Theory, Chord Structure, varied Strumming and Picking Techniques, and Scale Positions to travel from one part of the neck to the other. Any song you wish to learn, I can teach!

For Saxophone, you will learn proper Embouchure technique, Notation, Music Theory, and Scale Patterns for improvisation. Whether you are interested in a Classical, Blues, Funk or Jazz approach, I can help you find your own sound that is both personal and professional.

I teach 2nd year Piano and Drums/Percussion directing you into Intermediate level.

For those leaning toward the experimental genres, I am well-versed in the use of Electronics. Much can be accomplished with my lessons on Sound-Scape Improvisation either as 1 on 1 or Group Workshops.

  • Studio Equipment *
    At Home Studio: music stands, metronome, guitar amps, electric and acoustic guitars, guitar tablature, staff music paper, a scanner for weekly homework. I can also record and send MP3s of our lessons to review at home if you wish.
  • Travel Equipment *
    Students will need their own instrument, a mutually chosen music book to learn from, a metronome, and hopefully easy access to a keyboard (very helpful!)
  • Specialties *
    I am fluent in Rock genres, Blues, Beginning Jazz, Beginning Classical technique, Prepared Guitar, Electronics/Sound Art.

Child Ages:
3 weeks - 17 years
  • Levels and Ages
  • Types of Lessons Available
  • Course and Teaching Material
  • Activities and more...


Date: September 15, 1997 – June 15, 2002
School: Columbia College Chicago
Degree: BA in Music Composition and English
Description: Music Composition, English, Screenwriting, Theater Stage Make-up and Design

Date: September 15, 1973 – September 15, 1974
School: Boston School of Contemporary Music
Degree: Music Theory and Improvisation
Description: Music Theory, Jazz Improvisation

Date: September 15, 1974 – June 15, 1975
School: Thomas Jefferson College @ Grand Valley State Colleges (Allendale, MI)
Degree: 20th Century Composition, Multimedia Performance
Description: Tone Rows, Rhythmic Rows, Studies in Intervallic Relationships, Performance with Graphic Scores, Performance with improvised Dance.

Date: September 15, 1993 – January 15, 1996
School: (Not @ School)
Degree: Alto Saxophone study
Description: Studied Saxophone under Saxophone extraordinaire Ken Vandermark and also Ari Brown while living in Chicago.


Date: July 15, 2019 – July 15, 2019
Organization: Benjamin Miller’s Senorium Orchestra of Detroit
Title: Band Leader and Conductor
Description: rehearsed and performed renowned minimalist classic composition by Terry Riley at Trinosophes, Detroit. The audience was ecstatic due to the magic of the composition – which always sounds different every time it is performed!

Date: November 15, 2014 – November 15, 2014
Organization: Anis Gras, Paris FR
Title: Artist in Residency: Transistor
Description: Collaborated as Vocalist with French electronic artist Franck V. Also collaborated with French poet Charles Robinson. Composed new work with both Collaborations and presented a multimedia performance.

Date: November 15, 2017 – November 15, 2017
Organization: Ben Miller
Title: Multiphonic Guitar and Vocal
Description: I performed the eastcoast and had recording sessions in Paris with poet Stephanie Boubli and techno artist DJ Myako.

Date: April 15, 2010 – April 15, 2010
Organization: Maryland Institute College of Arts
Title: Artist in Residency: Creative Sound Workshops
Description: Workshop on building small homemade musical instruments (Electric Cardboard Guitars, Straw Oboes, Tin Can Drums Sets) including basic instruction on Rhythm and Sound.

Date: April 15, 2012 – April 15, 2012
Organization: Maryland Institute College of Arts (M.I.C.A.)
Title: Artist in Residency: Creative Sound Workshops
Description: Workshop on Graphic Scores (pictorial music) and Found Sound (naturally occurring or sounds made without means of musical instruments)

Date: January 15, 2011 – January 15, 2011
Organization: C.A.S.A. (Music & Art School for High School Students in Harrisburg, PA)
Title: Artist in Residency: Creative Sound Workshops
Description: 20th Century Composition, Experimental Rock Orchestra, Collaboration between Music & Dance.

Date: January 15, 2013 – January 15, 2013
Organization: C.A.S.A. (Music & Art School for High School Students in Harrisburg, PA)
Title: Artist in Residency: Creative Sound Workshops
Description: Collaboration between Music & Poetry, Collaboration between Music and Painting.

Date: April 15, 2015 – April 15, 2015
Organization: Riems, FR
Title: Artist in Residency: Ruines
Description: Rehearsed as primary character (narrative/singing) in 60’ multimedia Play.

Date: April 15, 1992 – April 15, 1992
Organization: Columbia College Chicago
Title: Artist in Residency: 20th Century Creative Class
Description: Invited to present work on Collaboration, Composition, and Improvisation with my Art Rock Ensemble GKW.

Date: September 15, 2000 – October 15, 2009
Organization: Arts & Entertainment Television Network (A.E.T.N., NYC) and Real Estate (Chicago)
Title: Data Management
Description: Real Estate Database management (Chicago) and Database management of Film Rights, Actors Rights (NYC).

I was laid off in 2009 due to the Economic Crash.

Date: January 15, 2016 – February 15, 2016
Organization: Paris, Montpellier, Reims, Marjevols, Lille
Title: Performer
Description: Premiered in France as the primary character in a 60’ multimedia Play entitled RUINES

Date: April 15, 2017 – April 15, 2017
Organization: Performer
Title: Voix, Texte, Clavecine
Description: Brief Residency working on a new multimedia piece with Franck Vigroux

Date: March 15, 2017 – March 15, 2017
Organization: Performer
Title: Voix, Texte
Description: Performed RUINES in Perpignan and Paris

Date: November 15, 2017 – November 15, 2017
Organization: Performer
Title: Voix, Texte
Description: Final performance of the multimedia piece, RUINES – Metz, FR. For this project, I narrated, sang and played organ.


Date: March 15, 2011
Authority: Hudson Community College, Jersey City, New Jersey
Name: Introduction to Teaching
Description: 6-week course with the intention to get a Teacher’s Certificate. The Instructor stated half way through the course that we would have a 10% chance of getting a Teacher’s position. This is why I did not pursue in a costly Certificate.


Date: July 15, 2007
Authority: the Grammys
Name: one of 48 Artists selected to be nominated for the Grammies
Description: My Indie-Rock band THIRD BORDER released “Sun of Water, Sea of Light” on Radial Records in 2006. It was one of 48 selections to be nominated for the Grammies as the best Indie release for 2006. I was stunned. Of course SOWSOL was not nominated, but to be in a selection with Thom Yorke and other well-known Artists was an ego boost if I ever had one.


Language: English
Proficiency: Fluent / Native Proficiency

Language: French
Proficiency: Limited Proficiency

Language: Spanish
Proficiency: Limited Proficiency


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