Becoming a jazz piano virtuoso takes years of dedication. Prior to the online music education revolution, this process meant working with a private tutor or attending schools. Taking online jazz piano lessons became easier in 2015 when accomplished jazz pianist Hayden Hill founded PianoGroove, an online music school and community for like-minded musicians who share a passion for jazz.
London based, but with a worldwide following, PianoGroove has grown from a single instructor, Hayden Hill, to a team of eight internationally renowned and Grammy Award winning instructors recruited from various jazz hotbeds, like New York, New Orleans, and Seattle. As a content-driven business, Hill relies on ScreenFlow video editing, screen capture and recording software from Telestream to help create the hundreds of video tutorials he posts annually on PianoGroove’s website and YouTube channel.
“ScreenFlow is rich with features and capabilities yet easy to master. What I’ve found is that it’s easier to teach a jazz musician how to create and edit videos with ScreenFlow than it is to find video editors who are familiar with jazz techniques and specialised jargon. The fact that it’s easy and intuitive for people to learn and use means that our instructors can help keep our online library growing with fresh new how-tos on popular jazz genres and styles,” says Hill.
PianoGroove’s step-by-step online instruction is designed to give aspiring pianists an effective way to learn jazz, blues, funk, gospel, and Brazilian styles from exceptionally talented teachers when and where they wish. The PianoGroove workflow is designed to produce a tri-layered instructional interface that makes it easier for students to follow and grasp the teacher’s verbal instruction, the playing technique, and the corresponding musical notation and keys being played, all at once. ScreenFlow precisely synchronises all these elements into the final product whereby the music notation layer is over the light-up keyboard layer, which is over the video of the hands playing the piano.
To keep online students engaged and progressing, PianoGroove must continually produce and upload new online videos. According to Hill, “Adding lessons consistently is one of the most important aspects of running an online music school.” To keep the online video library fresh, Hill posts new content weekly, including lessons and live streams covering a wide range of jazz genres and styles.
ScreenFlow is PianoGroove’s video editing and creation software of choice because it encompasses all the essential video tools and capabilities Hill and his team need to produce professional looking piano tutorials from start to finish. And at $149 for the (Mac-only) basic software and $209 for the premium edition, its affordability allowed Hill to launch and quickly grow his online business.
According to Hill, “ScreenFlow makes time-consuming tasks – like screen capture, video recording, editing, and sharing – accessible from a single intuitive user interface so there’s no need to shuttle between different software environments. This reliable, streamlined production helps us maintain a consistently high-quality user experience even as we scale up to produce new tutorials more quickly. You can be the best teacher in the world, but if your online videos are poorly done, with bad quality visuals or audio, it’ll detract from what you’re trying to impart to your students.”