Eddie Lewis’ Teaching Philosophy

If you are interested in studying with Eddie Lewis, it may help you to know more about what makes him different from other teachers in the area. All of Mr. Lewis’ students take lessons with him for very specific reasons. They want in their lessons precisely what he offers as a teacher. Perhaps, if you know what he has to offer, you may want to sign up for lessons too.

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YOUR Goals

When you take lessons with Eddie Lewis, one of the very first things he will ask you is “What do YOU want to accomplish as a trumpet player?” The focus is always on you and what you want to accomplish through your music. Don’t know what your goals are yet? No problem! Mr. Lewis can help you with that, too.

Mr. Lewis is not looking to create Eddie Lewis clones. Instead, he makes it his top priority to help you reach the goals you have as a trumpet player. This is probably the most important aspect of his teaching philosophy. It is what set’s Mr. Lewis apart from most other teachers.

Of course, there are the standard goals, and Mr. Lewis is more than happy to help you “make first chair” or “make an All-State band.” By far, the most common goal has been “to be a better player” and Mr. Lewis will help you achieve that through your lessons if that is your goal too. But you may be surprised by some of the other goals students have had in the past twenty years. (A brief list of trumpet student goals can be found at the bottom of this page).

Mr. Lewis uses his own expertise and experience as a trumpet player to spell out exactly what kind of effort and commitment your goal will require of you. He is able to do this better than most teachers simply because his career as a professional trumpet player is one marked by variety. Mr. Lewis is what used to be called a “studio player.” Although he has an impressive list of recording accomplishments, being labeled a “studio player” is more than just recording. Studio players have professional level competence and experience in many different styles and genres of music. He knows what it takes to perform the different styles of music and to accomplish different goals. He will use this knowledge and experience to help you in any way you need him to. Think of him as your trumpet coach, or your trumpet personal trainer. He has the skills and is more than happy to share them with you.

Practice Techniques and Habits

To help you achieve your individual goals, Mr. Lewis is dedicated to helping you learn the best ways to practice. Yes, there are times when he will sit with you and teach you how to play a specific piece
of music (the way most teachers do). But lessons with Eddie Lewis are so much more than learning how to play the music. He wants to give you the skills you need to play any song you want. He wants to teach you how to practice so you can apply those skills on your own.

One of the ways Mr. Lewis breaks from traditional lesson procedure is in his reaction to when the students don’t practice. What is a typical response from most teachers? One severe response is for the teachers to become frustrated and terminate the lesson. They find it offensive if the students don’t practice and take it personally. Another common reaction is the opposite. Some teachers figure that you don’t care about music, so… why should they??? They look at it as a time for them to goof off with the student, waiting for your time (and your money) to run out.

Jay Herder 027In contrast, Eddie Lewis believes that the number one reason why students don’t practice is because they really don’t know how. When his students show up to a lesson unprepared, he uses that time to guide them through the practice process. Mr. Lewis sees it as an opportunity to teach practicing techniques with a “hands on approach”. That way, students leave the lesson not only being able to play something they couldn’t play when they arrived, but also having learned a little more about practice techniques and how to use them. No guilt trips! No lectures! No negativity!

Mr. Lewis also keeps tabs on the students’ practicing habits and offers suggestions and motivations to change those habits at home. We understand that very few of our students have intentions of ever becoming full time pros. Yes, we have worked with that level of student, but they comprise no more than 5% of the students Mr. Lewis has worked with since he began teaching in 1980.

Although many of our past students do continue to play music, they make their livings as doctors, lawyers, architects, engineers, teachers and programmers. The way we teach these students is different from our approach with those who have ambitions to become full time pros. And rightfully so.

The are many myths about performing music that discourage students from continuing their music studies if they cannot afford to make huge sacrifices for it. We cut through those myths and teach students how to maintain a music “career” without having to dedicate their entire lives to the art.


We believe this is the best way to motivate students to practice. When you combine this personal goal setting with the knowledge of powerful practice techniques, it gives the student direction and the skills it takes to move forward. And, when that direction is motivated by the students’ own goals, WATCH OUT!!! They will jump into the music with a passion unmatched by any forced “program”.


Eddie Lewis is a teacher who will motivate you and give you the skills to carve out your own niche in the music world. He will help you work towards your own goals and to accomplish your own dreams in music. He will not only help you with the music you want to perform but will also give you the skills you will need to progress on your own.

Office Pix 074Testimonials and Resume

To read what other students have said about Eddie Lewis, feel free to browse the “Kudos” page on this site. Eddie Lewis is highly regarded not only as a teacher but also as a performer and composer. The “Kudos” page gives the casual visitor to this site an opportunity to see what other people are saying about him.

For comments specifically about Mr. Lewis’ teaching, we now have a Private Lesson Success page and encourage you to read the things his past students have had to say about his teaching.

Mr. Lewis’ resume is also available on this site. This resume shows how active he has been as a professional musician and as a teacher.


We also have an account on Thumbtack.com. We started this account because we understand that some parents may be reluctant to take their children to a stranger’s house for private tutoring. Thumbtack performs background checks to verify businesses’ trustworthiness. We have applied for all of the checks which are displayed for your convenience on their site.

Personal Goals List

The following is a list of the kinds of goals some of Mr. Lewis’ students have had since 1982.

  1. To learn the trumpet as a beginner  (Eddie has taught
    literally hundreds of beginner trumpet players of all ages).
  2. To make All-State (or All-Region).
  3. To make first chair in band.
  4. To make a higher band at school.
  5. To bring band grades up.
  6. To work on the bugling and music merit badges for Boy Scouts.
  7. To change embouchures.
  8. To gain a higher range.
  9. To learn how to play jazz.
  10. To learn how to improvise (independently of jazz).
  11. To work towards being a better professional player (Eddie Lewis has been teaching other professional musicians, both locally and internationally, for twenty years).
  12. To “come back” after many years of not playing trumpet (we refer to these as “come back players”).
  13. To help prepare for college auditions.
  14. To learn specific songs including:
    1. Feel So Good (Chuck Mangione)
    2. Rise (Herb Alpert)
    3. Somewhere Over the Rainbow
    4. The Haydn Trumpet Concerto
    5. Giant Steps
    6. Many, many more… (this is not Mr. Lewis’ favorite kind of teaching, but he is dedicated to giving the students what they want…fulfilling the entire “your goal not his” concept. When students only want to learn a new song, that’s what he helps them with.)
  15. To get into HSPVA  (Eddie Lewis has helped six different trumpet students prepare for their
    HSPVA auditions and of those six, only one did not get into the school)
  16. To just have fun playing music!!!
  17. To get back into shape after years of bad practice habits.
  18. To learn how to organize practice sessions.
  19. To review Mr. Lewis’ books (Eddie Lewis’ books are sold worldwide and students fly from all over the world to get his first hand advice about how to use those books).
  20. To help make a qualified decision about a new equipment purchase.

If you’re not sure what your goals are and you just want to learn how to play the trumpet, that’s no problem either. There are a lot of students who simply want to get better. That is their goal and we work together at creating sub goals to help them continue to grow as musicians.