Teen and Adult Music Classes

Read more about Music Classes
“Some people think music education is a privilege, but I think it’s essential to being a human.” -Jewel.

The music classes at Jonesborough’s Mary B. Martin Program for the Arts opens the door to your musical side, providing a fun and comfortable environment. We believe that music is important in the lives of people of all ages. Musical experiences for youth and adults however, is most important for many reasons.

Most beginner classes at the McKinney Center are offered in a group setting, where students feel comfortable strumming together as they learn. No prior experience is necessary. As skills further develop students are encouraged to take private lessons with instructors, to receive one-on-one guidance to strengthen their technique. Classes are less theory and more practical application for beginners, and teach basic terminology and foundational aspects of playing instruments such as chords, melody, counting, and rhythm notations.

Music instructors at the McKinney Center are accomplished artists with in-depth musical knowledge and teaching experience and who also create enthusiasm and motivation in their students. It is important to our instructors that the classroom environment be comfortable and that students stay positive even when progress is not as quick as the student may expect.
Under direction of our faculty students will gain a full value of an education in music along with the foundations of playing your chosen instruments. Technical skills are not the only things you learn from taking a music class. There are other benefits to learning to play a musical instrument. These include: social skills, responsibility, self-confidence, coordination, and team work.
For beginners we suggest taking a group a class. Learning to play with a group is rewarding, builds team work skills and you make friends while doing it. It is also nice to be in a room full of like-minded individuals.
Studies also show that playing an instrument can enhance emotional well-being, brain health, cognition and hearing function. One of the biggest advantages for youth and adults who learn to play is the relaxation and stress reduction that playing an instrument offers. With stresses of school or for adults who have high stress or demanding jobs playing music facilitates relaxation and renewal after a challenging day.
At the end of each semester students will have the opportunity to perform together or solo at a student celebration usually held the first Thursday in December for Fall classes or the second Thursday in May for the spring classes.

Class schedules and fees vary each semester. Please review the most current class catalog for specific detail and always feel free to call the McKinney Center to discuss what class is best suited for your child

Beginning Acoustic Guitar – Group Class

This group class is a great way to determine if guitar is right for you. Students will learn how to play guitar in an easy-going, fun environment. Students will learn basic terminology, foundational aspects of playing the guitar, chords and melodies. This class is less theory and more practical application for those who wish to play and pick at home, with a recording or with each other. Students will need to supply their own guitar, guitar strings and picks. The class may be divided into two separate classes depending on the number of students who register and age range.

Beginning Acoustic Guitar – Private

These private lessons are for beginners or those with past experience who are looking for an easy-going, fun environment. Students will learn basic terminology, foundational aspects of playing the guitar, chords, and melodies. Class is less theory and more practical application but can also be adapted to the needs and wants of each student. Students will need to supply their own guitar, guitar strings, and picks. Sessions will re-start every 4 weeks.

Bucket Drums

Rhythm is one of the most important concepts in music. In this high energy and fun class, students will learn how to count and read basic rhythm notation, recognize common rhythm patterns, engage in group sessions that will foster hand coordination, and learn to play and make music together through the fun and physically invigorating bucket drumming activity. Students will work as a drumming ensemble, learning lessons which will lead to final group performance piece, performed in front of an audience.

NEW! Individual Flute Lessons

For individual flute lessons, each student’s current level of playing will first be assessed, and then technique, sound production and a broadening experience of repertoire and styles will be introduced. Lessons can be tailored to the interests of each student including length of class. Before registering you will be placed in touch with the instructor to discuss what is right for you. Students will need a flute in good working condition and a spiral notebook. The instructor will provide recordings to listen to and a substantial lending library of sheet music. Sessions will re-start every 6 weeks.

Help your community by fulfilling McKinney Center's mission.


The McKinney Center at Booker T. Washington School is a multi-use facility providing arts education through Jonesborough's Mary B. Martin Program.


Phone: 423.753.0562

103 Franklin Ave.
Jonesborough, TN 37659