Michael's Published Articles
Michael Montgomery, "Can Every Child Really? What Do Other Authorities Have to Say About Suzuki Concepts?" in American Suzuki Journal, volume 40, no. 2, (2012): 30-33.
Michael Montgomery, "Training as a Teacher in Argentina- Ways to Teach Young Bassists- Where to Turn for Ideas" in Bass World, volume 34, no. 3, (2011): 5-8.
Michael Montgomery and Montgomery, Lourdes C., "How We Did It in Sabana Yegua, A Music Mission in the Dominican Republic" in Pastoral Music, volume 27, no. 6, (2003): 10-13. Dominican Republic Article
Michael Montgomery, "What Do You Mean, Someone Wants to Play Bass for My Choir" in Pastoral Music, volume 25, no. 5, (2001): 11-15. Bass Article
Below are lists of music that I use in lessons for the different instruments. Click on the individual selections to order them directly from SheetMusicPlus.com
The Ozark MiniBass Project
"Giving a new generation of young musicians the
Just thirty years ago it was inconceivable that any student under 17 year of age could study or play the double bass due to its large size. Today companies such as Shen (http://www.cscproducts.com) are making basses in 1/8 and ¼ sizes, but at $1500 they don't come cheap. If a child has access to one of these small instruments, the Suzuki Music School of Arkansas (SMSA) currently provides a method of music study (to over 200 children!) and the Ozark Philharmonic Youth Orchestra provides (OPYO) provides (over100!) six to eighteen year olds a symphony orchestra in which to perform. Won't you consider a tax deductible gift to sponsor a young aspiring bassist?
Your gift of $1500 buys
Your gift of $900 buys
Make your tax deductible check payable to:
Ozark Philharmonic Youth Orchestra
Contact: Michael Montgomery
In addition to being the double bass instructor at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, I teach string bass & guitar at Fayetteville's Suzuki Music School of Arkansas (SMSA).
This school is located on the University of Arkansas campus in Fayetteville. I can meet students for lessons there -OR- at my home studio in Rogers, where I teach beginners piano and violin as well as bass and guitar.
Considering Starting Your Child in Music Lessons?
Most people would agree that listening to music is a very enjoyable experience. Playing it on a musical instrument can be even more enjoyable. Mastering a music instrument is a challenge, but one who does so has added a dimension to their personality, and they are interesting. The ability to play an instrument brings with it a social dimension as well: musicians of all ages and abilities are often asked to lend their skills at parties, camps, church functions, etc.
How Does One Know When a Child is Ready to Start Lessons?
In order to begin taking lessons a young person must show not only an interest, but a willingness to put forth effort. They must understand that attending lessons involves a serious commitment to attend a weekly class, one that is not to be missed except in the case of serious illness or acts of God. Students must also take seriously their responsibility to arrive on time for every lesson well rested, attentive, prepared- and, barring extreme circumstances, it is important that they practice every day. In addition, they must care for their instrument and music at all times. These are the challenges the student should be ready to face.
Just Where Does the Parent Fit Into All This?
In the collaboration that exists between teacher, child, and parent in the Suzuki approach, the role of the parent is an important one, one that will ultimately bring the family closer together. (For a deeper perspective of the many potential benefits music study may bring to your child and family, consider taking the time to read Dr. Suzuki's book "Nurtured by Love".) It is the parent who will encourage the listening to and practice of assigned music in the home, a role similar to that the parent played when the child was learning to speak- so, at home, the parent IS the teacher.
The parent must take notes during lessons and then guide the course for things during home practice time, offering encouragement, motivation, and praise when a job is done well. Being the responsible adult, the parent must also provide the long view. There will be those times when interest wanes and discouragement sets in, when the student does not wish to practice and may even wish to quit. The parent must be a source of wisdom and understanding at these times, knowing that with patience, persistence, possibly even diversion, things will eventually get back on track. It is progress made over time, despite lulls, that will ultimately bring satisfaction and a meaningful sense of accomplishment.
Study habits will be mastered as the student develops skill on a musical instrument. The discipline, diligence, self motivation involved, as well as the ability to analyze, tackle, and solve problems- all these are important tools the student will take with him as he works his way through school, career, and life. He will be more interesting socially, better positioned for college scholarship funds, and poised for a lifetime of involvement with orchestras, bands, church groups, or even a possible career performing or teaching music. And perhaps the most important acquisition is the sense of confidence that will develop as the child grows to learn that he can master something as intricate as the ability to play a musical instrument.