Kristi Lecocq has been teaching voice, piano, and guitar with Music Therapy Connections for a little over two years now, and just this fall joined our team of Listen & Learn class teachers! We love having Kristi as a member of our team and are so excited to share a little more about her in this month’s teacher feature! Check out what she shared about her musical background.
“I grew up in a very “von Trapp-esque” family. My parents, siblings, and I all sang in multiple choirs at church, and for several years we were even part of a larger community choral group called Festival Singers that performed around the St. Paul/Mpls area during the holiday season. Most of our extended family gatherings during my childhood incorporated some form of jam session or sing-along.
I earned a bachelor of music in commercial music (vocal emphasis) from Millikin University. After graduating, I moved to Nashville, TN to soak up the singer-songwriter life for a few years. I returned to central IL in 2001 and have been performing in local rock bands ever since. Bands included Blue Bus, Equinox, Pancake Supper, One-Eyed Red, Alligator Wine, and currently the original rock band, Fireside Relics, which released its second original album this past March. I was also an adjunct faculty member in Millikin’s music industry department from 2004-2009 and taught songwriting and vocal styles classes. I am also currently part of a Springfield musical duo called the Tater Tots that performs children’s music for sing-alongs, parties, and events.
Some memorable and unique musical experiences over my lifetime include: playing in the Rosemount MN High School Marching Band at the Metrodome for the 6th game of the 1991 World Series between the MN Twins and the Atlanta Braves; singing with the Millikin University Choir and Vocal Jazz Ensemble in Haiti and the Dominican Republic; singer-songwriter performances at the infamous Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, TN; a recording session two summers ago with my husband Scott (who is also a musician) and our two children at Sun Studio in Memphis, TN.
In addition to teaching voice, piano, guitar, and Listen & Learn classes at MTC, I also play the ukulele and the flute.”
Kristi also took the time to answer a few questions about her favorite things and share a couple fun fact about her personal life.
Favorite place to visit: Twin Cities to see my family and anywhere “up North” in MN, but especially the Boundary Waters
Favorite day of the week: Friday
Favorite non-musical activity: I’m a huge photograph nut. I love looking through old family photos, making photo books, and dabbling in photography, especially of my kids; I also enjoy being a “backstage mom” and “gymnastics mom,” volunteering at my children’s school with LEGO Club/library, and participating in political activism.
Weird talent: ??? I cannot think of a single one. My husband says I’m mundane! (I do shoot pool left-handed even though I’m a righty. Not sure that qualifies as “special.”)
We think Kristi is anything but mundane! She is a truly special part of MTC and we know all of her students agree. Let us know if you have a question for Kristi or if you are interested in filling one of her available lesson times.
If you’re asking this question, then you’re in the right place! First, let’s chat about the difference between a studio and individual lesson providers.
Individual providers offer lessons, often out of a small location or home studio, to developing musicians studying one or more instruments.
Whereas a studio, like Music Therapy Connections offers lessons from many teachers with different backgrounds, specialties, and instrumental experience. Because we have so many fantastic teachers, we are able to offer ukulele, voice, piano, and guitar lessons ranging from traditional and classical to nontraditional lessons and all along that spectrum.
We love that we can talk with a new student and find his or her right “fit”. We want our students to work with a teacher who best suits their needs, style, and goals. As students grow and develop, they sometimes benefit from a new teacher, either for a fresh start or a new challenge. What is most wonderful is that our students at MTC have options!
We are a team at Music Therapy Connections, and more than anything we hope to instill the love of music into the lives of the people of Springfield and beyond!
Do you know someone who would benefit from an individualized lesson teacher? Register below!
At Music Therapy Connections, we have people with a wide variety of experience and talents come through our doors. I think I can speak for our team when I say that we love using our expertise to serve the community in this way!
We have 5 year old beginners and 60 year old beginners. We have guitarists, vocalists, and pianists alike. I have a special place in my heart (and schedule) for homeschool students!
I know that many homeschooled students have limited options for exploring the arts within their school days. Our teachers offer music lessons focusing on those foundational musical skills and terms that students would otherwise learn in school music classes. Students learn how to execute new skills and are able to learn at their own pace with a 1:1 teacher.
Best of all, we are happy to offer daytime lessons! We have availability during the regular school day hours, so your student won’t miss a beat!
Are you ready to expand your student’s repertoire of skills?
Next in the “Teacher Feature” lineup is Reid Muchow! Reid has been teaching at MTC for 2 years. He is a Springfield native and currently teaches percussion, piano, guitar, and vocals. Reid has lived in both Chicago and New Orleans as part of his musical journey, and has a huge variety of experience that he pulls from when working with all of his students. We asked Reid to tell us a little more about himself. Check out what he shared:
Tell us about your background.
I started playing drums on a drum set that I made out of boxes and duct tape. I played drums throughout high school and discovered my dad’s record collection which exposed me to genres like jazz, soul, funk, classical, and rock. This gave me an interest in learning many different instruments and in many styles of music. I studied music with professor Jane Hartman at LLCC in Springfield, IL for a 2 years and moved to Chicago in 2008 to study jazz music at Roosevelt University studying with drummer Paul Wertico (Pat Metheny Group), music theorist Scott Mason and composition and arrangement with Tom Garling(Buddy Rich, Maynard Fergusson).
After graduating in 2011, I performed internationally and nationally with several groups including Chicago based-groups The O’My’s, And The Heard and currently I am in Memphis blues artist Brandon Santini’s band.
What else have you done musically?
Performed at Lollapalooza 2011
Played at Edmonton Blues Fest in 2016
Performed with Chance The Rapper
Been on an album that’s been in the Billboard top 100 (ZZ Ward – Til’ The Casket Drops 2012) playing drums
Currently on Grammy nominated Chicago artist Vic Mensa’s 2017 album The Autobiography playing drums
What is your favorite:
Color – Red
Food – Pizza
Game – Monopoly
Day of the week – Friday
Non-musical activity – Yoga
Music to play – anything as long as it’s good music!
Do you have a weird talent?I can pop my toes without my hands
What else do you enjoy doing?I enjoy playing with my 2 cats Lucy and Simba, reading, doing yoga and exercise, cooking, recording music, and spending time with my girlfriend Rachel.
I was thirteen if I remember correctly. I was wearing a pink shirt and jeans and my mother’s perfume. We drove up on an old school in Patterson, Illinois and hopped out of my dad’s truck. I remember buying our tickets, passing the scent cloud of popcorn and chili as I walked into the old school gym. The basketball hoops were up and the nets swayed in the breeze of the four foot fans blowing air through the gym on that summer night.
At the time, I had no idea what an opry was, but my teacher had suggested that I perform there. Little did I know that I would fall in love for the first time that night.
I was shaking as I took the stage and grabbed ahold of the microphone, waiting for the band to start playing my song. Once I sang the first words of “Independence Day” by Martina McBride the rest just fell out of my mouth. I watched as my mom breathed a sigh of relief, my dad smiled, and my grandmother who always loved my music in a way I can’t understand even now, laid back in her chair as if she wasn’t surprised at all. In the blink of an eye, it was over and I was in love, not with the thrill of being on stage, but that moment. When I looked out to see my family and they were experiencing that moment with me. We were in it together.
It has been a little over ten years and a music degree since that day. I was just out at an open mic last weekend. I performed a few of my favorites for my family, which has now grown to include my husband. Even now I go back to that place. When I’m performing, I drop my titles. For three minutes I am not Alisabeth the music therapist, the teacher, the daughter, the wife; I am just me. And even better, that is when I get to share just me, with the world.
When people ask me “why music?”, the answer is simple:
Music is where I see myself. It is where I am safe, in love, happy, angry, sad, and everything in between. Music is where I see my grandmother who moved on years ago. Music is where I can be myself.
This is why I do what I do. I hope to share my music and myself with my clients and students to help them grow and learn. This is my story.
We all have those moments. Heres my most distinct breakthrough as a therapist, teacher, and musician.
It was my fourth semester studying music therapy at Western Illinois University. I was in my required weekly voice lesson. I chose voice as my primary instrument and honestly had no idea what commitment I was making. My professors office was small, cramped, and there was sheet music on top of her upright, acoustic, and slightly out of tune piano. It was humid and the windows were open allowing a warm breeze to fly through the room on occasion.
I was practicing a German art song when my professor stopped me, for the fifth time and the same reason. I just. Couldn’t. Get. The note. If I remember correctly its was a G… that pesky G. I had convinced myself that because I couldn’t sing that note the way I wanted to the first time, that I would never be able to do it.
She knew I was wrong.
It was in that pause that she had a talk with me that I would repeat to my students in the future.
“We are all growing. We have all built walls. When something challenges us we have to chose to say no, you’re wrong, you CAN do this. you WILL do this.”
We began the song and I did it. I hit the G. I achieved the impossible — or apparently, the possible.
As a therapist and a teacher at Music Therapy Connections I have these talks frequently. I try to encourage my students of all ages regularly, especially when I can see that they have hit a wall. I know that all of our teachers at MTC do the same. My favorite days are when I get to witness a student having a breakthrough. Those days are why I love what I do.
So, if you..
1. Have taken lessons (voice, guitar, or piano alike) and quit for whatever reason, but still want to learn.
2. Have tried to teach yourself, but felt stuck or frustrated with some of the material.
3. Have taught yourself how to play but feel as though you can’t reach your full potential because you haven’t had a chance to learn the theory.
Then click the link below and register and someone from our team will email you to help you find the right teacher, day, and time to help you finally achieve your breakthrough!