MODE Music Studios, West Seattle

We provide music lessons for all ages!
Private piano, vocal, guitar, bass and drum lessons as well as Kindermusik for 0-5 years of age.

(206) 659-4018 Email Us

About Our Studio

Mode Music Studios began life as Erin Rubin Piano Studios. After four years, and with an ever-growing clientele and continuing community interest, we decided to move into a new, bigger space: creating more opportunity for young musicians to find their musical voice through piano, guitar, percussion, and vocal instruction.

“When I was six years old my piano teacher looked like Cher, made me laugh and brought me on stage to play with her. She was young and fun and this inspired me to practice and keep going. I want to give children the opportunity to love music and learning in the ways I was given.” -Erin Rubin-Tate

Our Philosophy

Our teaching style incorporates all types of learning. All of our students are exposed to technique, ear training, sight reading, chart reading, composition, arranging and some even singing and songwriting. We have a background of playing live in bands and continue to put ourselves through private lessons. We can’t get enough from learning and growing personally to keep up with our students and put ourselves in the students' seat.

Private lessons give us the freedom to apply different approaches for each individual child’s learning style. We are sensitive to the student and their needs. There is a general lesson plan with a lot of room for amendment and we enjoy each lesson as a chance to give the student exactly what they need based on their interests and ability.

Although we provide two recital performance opportunities a year, we don’t view our style as performance based. Building a repertoire and having songs available at all times is a priority and we love being able to show it off at our winter and spring recitals at The Sanctuary at Admiral. We also offer rock band camps in the summertime to encourage playing music with others and the chance to experience a different type of performance. The Skylark Cafe has provided us with their stage to do so and gives the kids a day to show off their talents on a rock stage. It’s one of our favorite times of year for the children!

Please let us know if you have any questions regarding our philosophy. This has worked for 99% of the kids that we have had the pleasure of teaching and we find that, from our own personal childhood piano lessons, when music is fun they will stick with it, and learn in the process!

Private Lesson Rates and Policy

Lessons are $26 ($25 cash/check) for 30 minutes and $47 ($45 cash/check) for an hour on a weekly basis. Payments are made monthly on the first lesson of every month.

The first lesson is offered with a “satisfaction guarantee.” We include this lesson in continued students’ tuition but wave our lesson fee if you walk away unsatisfied. We are confident in our approach and connection with the kids while understanding the importance of an initial vibe between student and teacher.

Missed lessons are made up through Performance Classes offered at the end of most months throughout the year. These are an hour long group classes offered to all students to encourage stage performance and group critiques. You have a 3 class cycle to cash in your make up. These classes are also available to students without a missed class for $20.

We are closed October 31st for Halloween, November 27th and 28th for Thanksgiving, December 2014 22nd through January 2nd 2015 for Winter Break and May 25th 2015 for Memorial Day.

Summer Policies

Music lessons DO continue throughout the summer. We’ve changed our policies this summer to better fit your vacation schedule and additional needs.

One optional credit will be given in July as well as one optional credit in August for vacation time. You can choose to use this credit or continue with lessons as usual.

Summertime is also a great time for families to get their preferred time slot. If you are a student continuing through the summer, you will keep your current lesson time for the fall. Reschedules will be flexible and earlier times are available temporarily for summer. We are also able to move you to an earlier or later time any day of the week depending on availability. Your schedule will take priority over those who have left.

We encourage students to continue through the summer to minimize a loss in a music education momentum. If you choose to terminate lessons for the summer, you will lose scheduling seniority and may find yourself struggling to fit in our fall schedule. Please let us know as soon as possible if you are unable to continue lessons in July and August.

For those of you that are taking summers off, please contact us in mid-August to get back in the September fold. We do realize not all families’ schedules are able to accommodate private lessons in the summer and will do our best to fit you back in with your preferred teacher in the fall.

Email us with any questions regarding summer policies.

Our Teachers

All of the teachers at Mode Music Studios are working musicians getting paid to write, perform and record. Our teachers also have a passion for what they do. We feel fortunate to be able to pass that down to the younger generation and get them excited to play music in the same way we have been throughout our careers.

Erin Rubin-Tate

Erin has been playing music since the age of four. At twelve, she was on stage with the local working musicians at The Scarlett Tree every Tuesday night. She has written music for and performed with many Seattle bands including: Wesafari, The Exploding High-Fives, People Eating People, and “Nouela.” Erin has worked as a hired studio musician since the age of 17 in Bellingham, Seattle and Los Angeles. Erin found her calling as a teacher in her early twenties and dedicated over three years at Westside Music Academy. She believes a healthy balance of technique, theory and arranging songs the child loves is the fast track to any student’s success in music lessons. Ready to go out on her own, she started Erin Rubin Piano Studios in the basement of her West Seattle home in 2010. Erin teaches piano and voice.
~ erin@modemusicstudios.com

Nouela

Nouela Johnston is a studio and touring musician from Seattle. She has been writing and performing original music for over ten years under the monikers Mon Frere, People Eating People, and “Nouela.” After being signed to a record label at the age of 18, she spent a decade touring the world in support of her own music. She also has played as a hired hand for other notable bands. Her music has been licensed for international campaigns as well as hollywood movie sound tracks. Being a multi-instrumentalist with extensive background in multiple genres, she is a creative, intuitive, and passionate teacher who believes a music education is an integral tool in crafting a successful life. Nouela teaches piano and voice.
~ nouela@modemusicstudios.com

Jacob James

Jacob James is a renegade student of classical music. After studying french horn at the Peabody Conservatory, he joined Seattle band The Lashes and spent his mid-twenties touring the country. He has twenty years of experience at the keyboard as well as 14 years as a professional vocalist. He has been teaching private music lessons since the age of 15. His unique understanding of pop form, as well as his enthusiasm, have made him a favorite among students. Jacob teaches guitar, bass, voice, and piano.
~ jacob@modemusicstudios.com

Michael Knight

Michael Knight has been playing drums since age 11 and teaching lessons since 2008. A true student of his craft, he loves his practice and has studied with many great teachers. Having played in bands his whole life, he often draws upon his experience in performing, touring and recording as a major source of inspiration in the lesson room. Michael is currently drummer for Seattle artist Shelby Earl and is one half of the grizzled rock band known as Transmissionary. Some performance highlights in 2014 include: SXSW Austin TX, Sasquatch festival and Bumbershoot. Michael teaches drums.

Nils Petersen

Nils Petersen is a life long student of music in the form of classical, jazz, choral and rock. He studied violin at an early age before settling into piano, guitar and trombone from youth on through his teenage years, along with vocal studies in all different formats. He tours internationally with Sub Pop band Rose Windows and plays around town with Ole Tinder and his solo project Hotel Vignette. He has been teaching private lessons since he was 17 and offers an approach that helps the student grow musically in the interests that excite him or her while solidifying a base in core musical concepts. Nils teaches guitar, bass, voice, and piano.

Leif Andersen

Leif Andersen has been a working musician for the last 13 years touring, recording and performing with a variety of bands and artists including: Pris, Green Apple Quick Step, Tighty Whitey (featuring members of Third Eye Blind) Kim Virant, Vendetta Red, Sirens Sister, The Guessing Game, Aaron Crawford and Rockaraoke. He studied guitar with Jay Roberts and has been teaching multiple instruments in various Seattle institutions for the last 11 years. He instructs individuals to play with a high level of proficiency, ease and confidence on their instrument of choice from lesson to lesson. Leif teaches guitar, bass and piano.

Jenn Ghetto

Jenn Ghetto is a guitar player from Seattle with 25 plus years of music experience. She started in elementary school with band instruments, mainly trumpet. Then, at the age of 14, she made the switch to guitar. She spent the better part of her late teens and young adult years in the band Carissa's Wierd. Later, Jenn began performing under S, touring all over the US and Europe. After picking up the piano in 2010, there have been more projects, albums, and tours. Jenn has a super fun and casual approach to teaching guitar. She guarantees an awesome time while learning a lot. Jenn teaches guitar.

Aaron Benson

Aaron has been a working multi-instrumentalist for the last 18 years, skilled in drums, percussion, guitar, bass, and vocals. He has extensive experience in performing live, recording, producing and touring with over 22 bands in the last 6 years alone. His involvement in bands such as; Siberian, Kay Kay & His Weathered Underground, Damien Jurado, Tilson XOXO, Sean Nelson, and The Wild Orchid Children helped him to develop a better understanding of various genres of music. His versatility allows him to cater to the desired style of the student, creating a fun and productive learning environment. Aaron teaches drums, guitar and bass.

Susy Sun

Susy Sundborg is a singer/songwriter, trained classical pianist and experienced instructor. She has been writing and performing original music since childhood and currently is working on her solo project under the name Susy Sun. She began singing before she could speak and started playing piano at the age of 6. Susy went on to study music and business at Central Washington University. After working for Microsoft for a period of time, Susy decided that she would rather be pursuing her passion for music. Susy has taught music at prestigious boarding schools in London and Switzerland for 4 consecutive summers. She has recorded two solo albums and performed internationally. Her vast musical background allows Susy to teach rigorous theory in creative ways that makes it fun and interesting for the student. She enjoys the serious side of learning, but also loves to have fun and develop a unique rapport with each individual. Susy teaches piano and voice.

Chris Totten

Chris is a jazz and rock-oriented multi-instrumentalist Chris began playing music at the age of 6, when he started taking piano lessons. At the age of 11, he began playing drums and taking drum lessons. While studying jazz in college, he picked up vibraphone and, through the years playing in touring bands and recording projects, picked up guitar and bass. His past local bands include The Quiet Ones and The Exploding High Fives. Chris believes in teaching kids the tools they need to express themselves as individuals with music, and most importantly, to have fun doing it. Chris teaches piano, drums, bass and guitar.

Kindermusik

Our music studio also offers group classes for the ages 0-6 years in the way of Kindermusik. We have 3 certified teachers excited to give children a jumpstart on their musical education. This program encourages children at a very young age in movement, song, dance, play and story time all in one 45 min class. More can be found about Kindermusik’s program and material at www.kindermusik.com.

We offer two types of classes. Our drop-in family classes for all ages with parental/guardian participation are available every Saturday. Age specific classes require sign-ups beforehand and are on a 4 week class cycle. The price of these “private” group classes include digital home materials. The schedule below shows our offered classes, but we do add classes for groups on a sign up basis with a 4 family minimum per class cycle.

Weekly Kindermusik Class Schedule

  • Saturdays
    Time TBA Wiggle & Grow Family Class* (all-ages)
    $17/child per class, $5 for each additional child

*Our Family Class is a one-time class that requires sign-up and payment upon arrival. Your first class as a family is FREE! Please contact us if you’d like to attend. (This class does not include home materials.)

Kindermusik Licensed Educator

Classes Available By Request

  • Cuddle & Bounce (newborn - 1 yr)
  • Sing & Play (1 - 2 yrs)
  • Wiggle & Grow (2 - 3 yrs)
  • Laugh & Learn (3 - 4 yrs)
  • Move & Groove (4 - 5 yrs)

$70 for a 4 week session. Price includes digital home material download (Kindermusik CD, visuals, e-book.)

Please contact us if you would like to set up any of the session classes offered above.

YEAR ROUND ROCK BANDS & SUMMER CAMPS 2014-2015

We are finally offering our rock bands year round. This is a perfect outlet for drummers, bassists, guitarists, keyboardists and singers that are ready for that next step. Please feel free to email or speak to a teacher about which camp is best for your child.

ROCK BANDS

BEGINNING ROCK BAND: taught by Nouela
boys and girls ages 6 to 11 yrs | $150 ($120 student cost)

Saturdays 11/8-12/13 2:00pm-3:00pm with a free performance on 12/13 at The Skylark 5:00pm
Saturdays 1/10-2/7 2:00pm-3:00pm with a free performance on 2/7 at The Skylark 5:00pm

ADVANCED ROCK BAND: taught by Nouela
boys and girls ages 12 yrs and up | $150 ($120 student cost)

Saturdays 11/8-12/13 3:00pm-4:00pm with a free performance on 12/13 at The Skylark 5:00pm
Saturdays 1/10-2/7 3:00pm-4:00pm with a free performance on 2/7 at The Skylark 5:00pm

ROCK BANDS

The rock bands offer opportunities for kids to play music with their peers and experiment with different instruments in the process. Some participants will sign up for different instruments on different songs, where some may find their spot on one instrument and thrive. Singing and group vocals are encouraged, but not all have to take the mic.

We pick songs as a group and make our way through as much material as the group allows. We range from current songs on the radio to the classics. The performances are free at The Skylark Cafe on Delridge under the West Seattle bridge and are always so much fun. If you can’t make it in the camps, please bring your families out to support the shows. Having fellow students and their families in the crowd makes for the best audience!

Feel free to email me or your teacher if you have any questions on which camp is right for your child.

Summer Camps 2015

We offer several camps throughout the summer. Below are descriptions and schedules for July and August. Age groups are suggested but we encourage you to speak to your teacher and have them recommend the camp for your child.

All camps are $300 for 15 hours of instruction including a rehearsal and performance unless priced otherwise. Deposits of $50 will need to be made upon time of signup to guarantee your spot in the camps. Discounts are available to families with more than one child attending or students in multiple camps. Please email with any questions regarding tuition.

Classes taught by the Mode Music staff.

JULY

  • BEGINNING GIRL BAND - girls ages 6-11 yrs old
    Dates and times TBA with a performance at The Skylark*
  • BEGINNING ROCK BAND – boys and girls ages 6-11 yrs old
    Dates and times TBA with a performance at The Skylark*
  • ADVANCED GIRL BAND – girls ages 12 yrs and up
    Dates and times TBA with a performance at The Skylark*
  • ADVANCED ROCK BAND – girls ages 12 yrs and up
    Dates and times TBA with a performance at The Skylark*

AUGUST

  • BEGINNING GIRL BAND - girls ages 6-11 yrs old
    Dates and times TBA with a performance at The Skylark*
  • BEGINNING ROCK BAND – boys and girls ages 6-11 yrs old
    Dates and times TBA with a performance at The Skylark*
  • ADVANCED GIRL BAND – girls ages 12 yrs and up
    Dates and times TBA with a performance at The Skylark*
  • ADVANCED ROCK BAND – girls ages 12 yrs and up
    Dates and times TBA with a performance at The Skylark*

ADDITIONAL CAMPS OFFERED

MINI ROCK BAND** - boys and girls ages 3-6 yrs old ($150)

VOCAL WORKSHOP - boys and girls ages 9 yrs and up

LITTLE HANDS RAINY DAY STUDIO

We look forward to having you all be a part of our summer extravaganza!

*Please plan on setting aside 12:00pm-5:00pm on the performance day. Performances will take place at 3:00pm on their given day with a quick run through at the studio beforehand.

**Added camps: Prices are as marked.

Location

Mode Music Studios is located in West Seattle at the northern end of Delridge Way SW, right next to the Skylark Cafe.

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MODE Music Studios, West Seattle