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  • George Russell's Lydian Chromatic Concept

    The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization (LCCOTO) resonates supreme at the epicenter of George Russell's prodigious life work. This innovative band leader, influential composer, legendary educator and philosophically profound master of music devoted 50 years of tireless, purposeful development in forging and generously disseminating his visionary theoretical system. Maestro Russell's singular world-renowned theory reveals an objective, illuminating vista of interrelated and boundless insights into what music is telling us about its own innate nature and reciprocal architectonics.


    "The Concept" establishes an open-ended, pan-stylistic foundation in which levels of tonal gravity act as prime, integral moving forces within music.

    MARCH 2022 NEWS UPDATE: The 2001 fourth and final edition hardcover Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization book, published by George and Alice Russell's "Concept Publishing Company" currently remains in print, ships worldwide, and is now exclusively available on both the official and websites. PURCHASE THE BOOK directly from Concept Publishing AT THIS LINK. There is now a "pay over time by installments" option, and you can pay using PayPal, Venmo, and all major credit cards. You do not need to have a PayPal account to purchase the book.
    (Please note: the book is no longer available for purchase through

    Andy Wasserman has been continually active as a teacher of "The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization" since 1982 when he was designated by George Russell as a certified instructor, authorizing him to teach Russell's "Concept" in it's entirety. He was an editorial assistant to Maestro Russell from 1980 until Russell's death in 2009. Information about Andy Wasserman's private teaching can be found HERE. He offers customized online private lessons to students around the world via video chat, phone and email. A website dedicated to Andy's customized internet distance learning music courses can be viewed AT THIS LINK.

    Wasserman's primary aim is to maintain the integrity, authenticity and purity of George Russell's life's work by dedicating the transmission of its invaluable innovation explicitly as Russell and his wife Alice Norbury Russell intended it to be shared - thereby respecting and honoring his monumental legacy for future generations.

    Here is a letter of recommendation written by Mr. Russell about Andy Wasserman and his work with the Lydian Chromatic Concept



    Wasserman first heard Russell's compositions and arrangements on the 1959 Decca Records LP "New York, N.Y." As a native New Yorker who grew up in Manhattan, Andy felt a strong connection with the message, the music, the sounds and the emotions of this brilliant work.

    One of the most comprehensive and sensitive reviews ever published on George Russell's music with primary focus on the "New York, N.Y." recording is by Steven Cerra. You can read this informative, well-written article at THIS LINKto the Jazz Profiles Blog where it was posted on April 27, 2013, or the text only on this site HERE.

    Andy made the decision to move to Boston in 1978 to enroll at the New England Conservatory of Music (NEC) with the definitive aim of apprenticing under the guidance of George Russell, a long-standing Department of Jazz Studies faculty member.

    He performed an original solo piano medley arrangement of Billy Strayhorn compositions in person for Maestro Russell as his entrance audition in Boston, and was approved as a full-time student in the Jazz Composition Division due to Russell's written evaluation endorsement, which declared "applicant accepted: good sense of harmony and orchestration."

    While attending NEC, Wasserman interned as a substitute instructor for Mr. Russell’s classes in the Lydian Chromatic Concept whenever the Russell's “Living Time Orchestra” was on international concert tours and carried out a variety of publishing responsibilities as an editorial assistant for the fourth and final edition of "The Concept."

    He received his Bachelor of Music in Jazz Composition as a protege of Mr. Russell in 1982 along with a certification directly from George Russell to teach "The Concept" privately and in seminars. He has had the honor of assisting George and Alice Russell in preserving and propagating this exceedingly meaningful work ever since.

    Andy Wasserman is one of only a handful of people selected, certified and sanctioned by George Russell to represent his work exactly as he intended it to be taught and shared exclusively using the fourth and final edition book. Wasserman worked on this masterpiece - 20 years in the making - as editorial assistant, and had the honor of writing the foreword.

    Click HERE to view a poster from a seminar Andy gave at The Jazz School (now known as The California Jazz Conservatory) in Berkeley, California.

    George Russell was Andy's mentor in not only the Lydian Chromatic Concept, but also in the art and science of musical composition. Read more about that HERE.


    George Russell stood tall and resolute as a vertical man, meaning he acknowledged, listened to, and gave his undivided attention to a potent transforming magnetic center within. It is this deeply meaningful internal process - his essence -which guided him each and every day. A very high level of integrity, refinement and excellence prevailed in his life. Beauty, truth and goodness took precedent above and beyond anything else.

    An influential and authentically innovative figure in the evolution of modern Jazz, George Russell (June 23, 1923 – July 27, 2009) was one of its greatest composers, and its most important theorist. His The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization, first published in 1953, is credited as a great pathbreaker into modal music, as pioneered by Miles Davis and John Coltrane.

    Most of Jazz music’s most important developments since the 1950s — from modal improvisation to electronics, African polyrhythms to free form, atonality to jazz rock — were taken to another level by Russell’s pioneering work. Russell's Living Time Orchestra has performed throughout the world, including the Barbican Centre and Queen Elizabeth Hall in London, the Festival d’Automne and Cîté de la Musique in Paris, and Tokyo Music Joy. His career as a leader includes major label releases on LP and CD of more than 30 recordings,working with such musicians as Bill Evans, John Coltrane, Dizzy Gillespie, Max Roach, and Jan Garbarek.

    Among Russell's awards are the following:

    • the MacArthur Fellowship "Genius" Grant
    • the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA) American Jazz Master Award
    • two Guggenheim Fellowships in Music Composition
    • six NEA grants
    • three Grammy nominations
    • the American Music Award
    • the British Jazz Award
    • the Kennedy Center Living Jazz Legend Award
    • the Swedish Jazz Federation Lifetime Achievement Award
    • election to the Royal Swedish Academy of Music

    The New England Conservatory of Music bestowed an honorary Doctor of Music degree on George Russell in 2005 after Russell retired from the faculty, having taught 35 years in the Jazz Department (1969 - 2004). Learn more about NEA Jazz Master Russell's work at New England Conservatory HERE.

    Russell's music compostion commissions include the British Council, Swedish Broadcasting, the Glasgow International Festival, the Barbican Centre, and the Massachusetts Council on the Arts.

    He taught throughout the world, and was a guest conductor for Finnish, Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, German, and Italian radio. Russell has been the subject of documentaries by National Public Radio (NPR), NHK Japan, Swedish Broadcasting, and the BBC.

    The Music Division of The Library of Congress commissioned an essay for inclusion in the program notes honoring George Russell at his May, 1999 Living Time Orchestra concert in the Library’s historic Coolidge Auditorium in Washington DC. CLICK THIS LINK TO READ THE ESSAY IN PDF FORMAT.

    The Art and Science of Tonal Gravity

    George Russell's LYDIAN CHROMATIC CONCEPT OF TONAL ORGANIZATION - The Art and Science of Tonal Gravity is one of the most important music theories of all time.


    1. What is the Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization? The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization is a theory of music and the life work of George Russell. It has existed in a state of continual evolution since the early 1950s. The most recently released Fourth Edition (2001) is entitled “Volume One: The Art and Science of Tonal Gravity.” This new publication presents the work in a highly comprehensive and organized manner, totally surpassing any previous editions. Most people familiar with this body of knowledge refer to it simply as “The Concept.”

    2. What is the aim of the Lydian Chromatic Concept? The principal aim of The Concept is to grasp the behavior of all musical activity (i.e. – melody, harmony, rhythm and form) from the most objective viewpoint possible. It seeks to document observations within music’s “genetic code” by charting the framework of laws that act as guidelines for composition, improvisation and analysis. Its purpose is to provide a road map of the musical universe that tells you where all the roads are, but does not tell you which roads to take.

    3. What is the primary difference between the Lydian Chromatic Concept and all other theories of music? Unlike any other theory of music, Mr. Russell’s Concept establishes gravity as the driving force in music. By seeking what music ITSELF is telling us about its own elemental structure, The Concept supplies the necessary means to conceive that a gravitation field of tones exists as a self-organized order of unity. The Concept does not disprove the discoveries and contributions of other musical theories, but rather explains where their truths rest in the context of tonal gravity.

    4. What is Tonal Gravity? Tonal gravity is the heart of the Lydian Chromatic Concept. Simply put, the basic building block of tonal gravity is the interval of the perfect fifth. Every tone within Western music’s equal tempered tuning relates to every other tone by either being close to - or distant from - the center of gravity, which is the tonic (or “DO”) of the Lydian Scale. There are 3 states of tonal gravity: Vertical, Horizontal, and Supra-Vertical.

    5. Why is the Lydian Scale of paramount importance in this Concept? The Lydian Scale was not chosen as the primary scale for this system of music theory because it sounds nice or has some subjective or historical significance. Since the interval of a fifth is the building block of tonal gravity, a seven-tone scale created by successive fifths establishes the most vertically unified harmonic order whereby the gravity falls down each fifth back to the singular Lydian tonic. When seven ascending consecutive fifths (i.e. – C, G, D, A, E, B, F#) are arranged within one single octave, the result is the Lydian Scale.

    6. What is the fundamental difference between the Lydian and Major Scale? As described in the answer to the previous question, the Lydian Scale has one single tonic, otherwise known as the “DO” of the scale. The Major Scale is known as a diatonic (meaning: two tonic) scale. Therefore, the essential difference between these two scales is that the Lydian (a single tonic scale) is in a state of unity with itself, and the Major Scale, with its two tonics, is in a state of resolving.

    7. What is a Lydian Chromatic Scale? The Lydian Chromatic Scale is the most complete expression of the total self-organized tonal gravity field with which all tones relate on the basis of their close to distant magnetism to a Lydian tonic. 

    8. Are there any historical and acoustical foundations underlying the Concept? The recently published edition of the Concept goes into great depth and discussion concerning the historical and acoustical foundations underlying the Concept. These ideas are critical to understanding the significance of this theory, and are too involved and elaborate to post on this website. It should be noted that the current book presents these specific subjects far more extensively than in previous editions.

    9. Who can most benefit by studying the Lydian Chromatic Concept? One of the beauties of The Concept is that it is designed for musicians and non-musicians alike. Its contribution is relevant in all stylistic genres of music and from all time periods. It even extends beyond Western music to some ancient forms of non-Western music. Most students of The Concept tend to be composers, improvisers, and people interested in the analysis of already existing musical compositions. Many people outside of music are drawn to The Concept due to its objective view of tonal gravity. George Russell’s indelible mark as a jazz innovator, composer and band leader (along with his work as a theoretician) has established a platform worldwide for this work that is intrinsically tied to the development of jazz dating back to the early 1950s. 

    10. Does a student of the Concept have to abandon their already existing knowledge of Western music theory? Students of this work are able to adapt their own musical perspectives to the ideas presented by the Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization. For example, analysis of compositions by J.S. Bach and Maurice Ravel are included in the current volume to reinforce the all-inclusive nature of tonal gravity.

    GeorgeAndy1996cropWEB11. Is the current revised edition dramatically different from the previous editions? Yes. Generally speaking, the previous editions of the Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization (dating back to 1953) were focused more on the “how-to” aspect of improvising. The more robust, comprehensive and detailed current volume adds never before published depth and dimension through exhaustive examples of analysis, scales, background information and test examples for the student.

    12. What are the extra-musical considerations of the Lydian Chromatic Concept? George Russell’s Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization stretches far beyond the usual parameters of music theory, having deep roots linked to the science of acoustics, physics, world culture and political history. Its framework is applicable in almost any stylistic genre of music – both Western and non-Western – encompassing the European classical tradition as solidly as the lineage of jazz innovators. On the esoteric side, the “Concept” makes connections with psychological disciplines and spiritual pathways, nurturing a balance between both the internal and external extra-musical elements critical to any artistic process.

    13. Are there any connections drawn in The Concept between music and psychology? No art form or theory is complete without some basis in psychology and spirituality. Artists most often describe the process of creativity in transparent and intangible terms. Most - if not all - music theoretical systems have chosen to ignore the inclusion of this key internal element. While Mr. Russell’s system encourages each student of the “Concept” to explore their own ideas and paths, it freely discusses many potent ideas underlying some specific psychological perspectives and ancient wisdom traditions and the relationships between one’s ‘essence’ and ‘personality’. Ancient psychological systems made analogies between the evolution of a person’s mind and being and metaphorical terms such as scale, harmony, vertical and horizontal.

    14. Has the Lydian Chromatic Concept been taught at any established educational institutions? Mr. Russell played a key role in the famous Lenox School of Jazz, and went on to teach The Concept at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston for over 30 years. He has given seminars in this work around the world and has personally guided countless private students. The Lydian Concept is being taught by accredited teachers at the Universities of Massachusetts and Indiana, the Longy School of Music, and the Josef Hauer Konservatoriums in Austria. The previously released versions of the book have been used to teach the LCCOTO at colleges and universities around the world over the last 40 years.There are currently a small number of instructors in the United States, Europe and Japan who are formally certified by George Russell to teach the Concept.

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    The following text, written by Andy Wasserman, is the foreword to the current, in print publication of George Russell's Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization - Volume One, The Art and Science of Tonal Gravity (Fourth Edition, 2001, Concept Publishing Company)

    GeorgeLeadsPathWEBAs you will soon discover for yourself, the Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization requires us to think in a new way. While it is inevitable that you will bring what you know to the Concept, you will soon realize the dramatic difference of this musical landscape where tones, scales, chords, and modes resonate within the Principle of Tonal Gravity. In order for this to begin to work within you and within your music, it is strongly suggested that you give these ideas your complete openness and attention, and, even for brief moments, let go of your preconceptions of the theoretical foundations of Western music. The knowledge that appears in this volume of the Lydian Chromatic Concept has been distilled very carefully to allow students of the Concept to adapt their own musical perspectives to this one.

    The unified core of ideas at the root of the Concept has the potential to transport music into a realm of deeper meaning. Opening up to those possibilities requires patience, concentrated thought, and dedicated study. Therefore it is important to realize that you cannot assimilate these ideas from too narrow a basis, either intellectually or emotionally. By making the effort to absorb the terminology and structure presented here, your musical foundation can be made stronger and the connections between you and your music more intelligent. Once the unity of the Concept begins to penetrate your practical understanding, everything in it becomes useful. It is then that its message challenges you to inquire musically and psychologically into the things you think and feel. For this reason, it is crucial to embrace the Concept from an emotionally receptive position of seeking something genuine for yourself in a world where most music is far removed from innovation and excellence. To do this requires a willingness to learn that emanates from self-motivation. The Concept has a unique way of interpreting and translating the things of great value that music can tell us--something about the meaning of organization and gravity. Its purpose is to generate new pathways toward greater freedom in exercising aesthetic judgment and discernment that invoke a more objective fulfillment of musical statement. The focus, attention, and consciousness you put into the study of the Concept will uncover greater meaning and an expansion of your musical understanding, regardless of the stylistic genre of music to which you apply it.

    Throughout this course of study you will notice that terms like vertical, horizontal, and the relationship to states of tonal gravity signal an eloquent departure from the major-minor consonant-dissonant system that is commonly taught to students. This specific language, when integrated into your thinking, can bring about personal advancement that will convey insight and innovation to your craft. The ideas are interrelated for a unity like that of a mandala, rather than the compartmentalized, noncontiguous elements that form commonly accepted notions of musical behavior. By its very nature, the Lydian Chromatic Concept will give you a fresh outlook that can aid in bringing life to your musical understanding. This requires you to master a sense of independence and self-awareness. Try to "visualize" the relationships presented in this book by "hearing" its knowledge with an inner ear that is capable of formulating your own singular musical ideas through the experience of an internal focus. This focal point can help you decipher between the superficial, mechanical associations you may be accustomed to making in your compositions or improvisations and the quality of consciousness that allows many levels of subtlety to come into play. Simply to imitate what others have played and composed is not enough.

    It may be beneficial for you to consider adopting a reciprocal attitude to digesting the Concept whereby the energy you give while implementing its ideas will fuel your passage through unexpected doors of discovery. Having a specific aim while working with the Concept can he helpful. Whether you are a composer, instrumentalist, improviser, educator, arranger, or theoretician, and even if you come to this book from outside the profession of music, finding an aim as you work will allow you to put this knowledge into action and have it work for you. Use this book as a map to help you aim for that which extends beyond your customary approach. This will require you to examine some basic questions about the meaning behind an organization of musical tones and why you play or write music. As you absorb this knowledge and become more intimate with its fundamental principles, such as the actuality of a passive "do" which yields to everything in scale that is higher that itself (Chapter II), you can begin to unearth a vision of your innate "response-abilities" within your musical discipline. At its essence, The Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization creates a self-organized and infinite range of possibilities for us to master.

    Used by Permission: Concept Publishing ©2002 All Rights Reserved


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  • Piano

    PianoConcertHallMOwebThe piano is Andy Wasserman's main instrument and the heart of his life's work in music. It is a perfect vehicle for the totality of his creative artistic expression. 

    His solo piano compositional and improvisational style fuses spontaneity, expressive nuance and subtlety, harmonic intimacy, rhythmic intricacy, and an eloquent spectrum of polished dynamic gradation.


    Andy Wasserman began exploring piano at age 3, and started lessons at 7 in the innovative Robert Pace multi-key method. He studied piano and theory at the Metropolitan Music School with Anne Dodge from elementary through high school in Manhattan, moving on to develop a life-changing 30-year relationship with Jazz piano virtuoso Dwike Mitchell. Mitchell discusses mentoring Andy in the "New York" chapter of his biography written by William Zinsser entitled "Mitchell and Ruff." (photo: Maestro Dwike Mitchell and AW)


    MARCH 2021 UPDATE:Two of Andy Wasserman’s 2020 piano albums, “FLOWERS” and “THE SEVEN VERTICAL SCALES” received nominations from for “ALBUM OF THE YEAR” in the JAZZ genre category - alongside Jazz pianist Alan Pasqua’s beautiful album “DAYDREAM.” Gratitude and best wishes goes out to all the piano aficionados, appreciative listeners and the staff at SoloPiano who continue to support the artistry of solo piano music!

    JANUARY 2021 UPDATE: A review in The New York City Jazz Record magazine of Andy Wasserman's solo piano Live Stream concert on December 13, 2020 entitled "PoleStar."  Click HERE to read the review

    DECEMBER 2020 UPDATE: Andy Wasserman celebrated his 25th consecutive Sunday evening Livestreaming Concert series entitled "The Listening Experience" featuring live performances of his original music: SOLO PIANO improvisations, compositions, Jazz and Blues, performed on his beautifully restored classic 1924 Steinway Model "M" grand piano. CLICK HERE to read more about this milestone in an article on Andy's blog.

    These programs are free-of-charge and require no registration or login to view.


    A MESSAGE FROM ANDY WASSERMAN - "On The Source of Inspiration I Have To Share With Listeners"
    ~ As pianist and musical artist, I aspire to connect the totality of fingers, open heart, style, temperament, chord/scale unity, rhythmic solidarity and flowing, singing melodic lines.
    ~ To be imbued with resonance from the core of my soul, infusing my touch on the instrument with poetry, wisdom, intuitive intelligence, love and imagination through vertical and horizontal wonderment.

    Click this "track" button to get current and upcoming live stream concert updates for Andy Wasserman music events at Bands-In-Town:

    ~ NEW FOR 2020 ~Andy Wasserman's solos, compositions and arrangements for piano TRANSCRIBED from recordings. These videos allow you to enjoy note-by-note transcriptions as they scroll, synchronized to the audio tracks. Watch, follow and listen! Sheet music PDF files available! CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE TRANSCRIPTION VIDEOS

    Andy earned his degree from New England Conservatory as a protege of Jazz composer George Russell and the Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization (LCCOTO) and received advanced classical piano training under Ms. Jeannette Giguere.

    Wasserman developed his signature sound, combining an expressive piano touch with an impressive technique. His performances merge his original compositions along with original arrangements and unique interpretations of the Jazz, Hollywood and Broadway "American Songbook" legacy. He is well versed in modern and traditional Chicago & Kansas City Blues and Boogie Woogie piano styles, 'new age', traditional standards and pop repertoires. His rhythmic invention and elegant harmonies stand as a living tribute to the tradition of fine music, past and present. Wasserman is a highly respected and experienced performing musician, popular throughout the United States since 1971.


    In addition to his experience in a wide variety of ensemble settings, he has established himself as one of New York City's premier solo piano and electronic keyboard stylists. Wasserman was under contract with the American Federation of Musicians Local 802 from 1987 through 1996 for an uninterrupted nine-year solo piano engagement, performing every weekend on the Steinway grand in the Ambassador Room of the United Nations Plaza Hotel across from the United Nations in New York City. He has been a regular pianist at other fine New York City establishments that include the Grand Hyatt Hotel at Grand Central Station, The River Cafe at the Brooklyn Bridge, Dish of Salt at Rockefeller Center and Manhattan's Hotel Intercontinental, among many others.

     As of 2017, Andy Wasserman continues to perform in club and concert settings, at festivals, special events and private parties.


    He is also a highly experienced and in-demand instructor of piano for beginner, intermediate and advanced students in all styles. Click THIS LINK if you would like to learn more about taking piano lessons with Andy Wasserman, and visit THIS LINKon this website, or visit his PIANO LESSON CITY website for in-depth information on his customized private real-time online music lessons (internet distance learning) via webcam video chat, phone and email. To read student testimonial reviews CLICK HERE.

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    All music composed, arranged, performed, recorded and produced by Andy Wasserman

    Listen to his latest album releases: now available for purchase on BANDCAMP

    Each album jukebox player contains the entire album playlist with all tracks! Click the "track advance" arrows in lower-right of each player to hear more tracks.



    AWlogo2webAndy was nourished and nurtured with an enduring foundation in the American Songbook treasures of show tunes and standards through his Mom and Dad.

    Their West Side Manhattan apartment life was invigorated by aesthetic sophistication and an unwavering reverence for all artistic disciplines, especially the deep love and devotion to great music. Eating supper together around the dining room table was a happy family time spent listening to and joyously singing along with the best of Broadway musical soundtrack records spinning on the turntable.

    From the 1950s through the 1970s, Andy's parents afforded their son nonstop opportunities to attend Broadway shows live on stage and experience a myriad of classical, jazz and world music concerts along with frequent visits to Manhattan's landmark museums and public cultural events. This inspirational upbringing was monumental in fostering Wasserman's cultural awareness as he matured into the artist he is today, for which he remains eternally grateful.

     Here's a 59 track compilation mix :: "THE BEST OF" Andy Wasserman on SPOTIFY

    Over 5 hours of piano music for your listening pleasure

    Andy Wasserman Standing By Steinway Grand Border LoRez GooglePost web 

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  • Private Lessons



    40 YEARS TEACHING EXPERIENCE; teaching online since 2010 to students worldwide!


    Interactive, personalized instruction on the internet, customized and tailored to your level, musical taste, preferred stylistic genre and goals!
    Advanced and high-tech online teaching studio with state-of-the-art audio, video and software teaching tools.


    Musical artist and educator Andy Wasserman has been giving private music lessons online since 2010 with highly interactive, customized and personalized programs of study via video chat in real-time for students around the world (all ages and all levels). Click THIS LINK to find out more about his online lessons within this website.

    Andy Wasserman Online Music Teacher Callout Banner

    Andy Wasserman's Music Curriculum:


    PIANO - beginner, intermediate and advanced levels; all styles: Jazz, Classical, Pop, Standards and Showtunes, etc.
    DRUMS AND PERCUSSION - beginner and intermediate levels; drum set: all styles; West African and Afro-Cuban percussion
    ELECTRIC BASS - beginner level; all styles: Rock, Pop, Jazz, Funk, Hip-Hop, etc.
    DIGITAL MUSIC TECHNOLOGY - Music Software, Keyboard and Synth Programming, Electronic Drums, Looping, MIDI, Recording, Mac/Windows
    MUSIC AS THERAPY- instrumental lessons for Special Needs individuals of any age or level


    MUSIC THEORY - foundations of theory for arranging, improvising and composing; creating your own arrangements for all styles of music
    COMPOSITION and ARRANGING- beginner, and intermediate through advanced levels
    IMPROVISATION- beginner, and intermediate through advanced levels on any instrument
    RHYTHMIC TRAINING - for all instrumentalists and vocalists


    Click TRACK button to get current and upcoming live stream concert updates for Andy Wasserman music events at Bands-In-Town

    As of May, 2020, Wasserman works with 20 to 30 private students per week. He provides customized online music lessons to students around the world via video chat, phone and email. Please visit PIANO LESSON CITY, the companion website dedicated to Andy Wasserman's distance learning lessons for in-depth detailed information.

    For students in the Northwestern New Jersey area, he travels to their homes to provide the most convenient and satisfying music education experience.

    When students work with Andy, they benefit greatly by working with someone who is not only an educator, but a full-time professional musician who is involved in the creation of original music and continually focused on the evolution of his own artistry. Andy communicates that intensity of dedication, which in turn inspires and motivates his students to move forward. Music is a total commitment. The aim is to be able to hear it, then play it. This "emotional intelligence" helps a student become an artist, not simply a musician.

    AWheadshotHandOnFaceWEBFeel free to CONTACT ANDY to set up an appointment for an interview - which is free of charge and without obligation. At that time prospective students will receive a detailed policy regarding registration, tuition fees, payment schedules and lesson logistics. Scroll down this page to read testimonials from students. Scrolling further will reveal in-depth information about his courses, outlined by instrument and subject.

    As a full time professional musician and educator with over 35 years of teaching experience, Andy approaches every student as an individual regardless of their level. He does not have a preconceived rigid program or use a "cookie-cutter" plan that plugs a person into his methodology. Instead, he sees each student - regardless of age or level - in relation to their potential, addressing the student's own interests and goals and adapting to their strengths and unique talents.

    Wasserman's mission is to nurture, motivate and inspire the innate talent within each student. This is achieved by creating a unique program of study that leads to the fulfillment of their complete musical potential. He shares an enthusiastic dedication to his life's work in music, creating a fresh and vibrant atmosphere during the lessons by meeting the challenge to find what is most productive for each student. This educational philosophy allows room for experimentation in terms of course of study, books, and curriculum content. The goal is to allow the student to tap into the positive emotions and mindset that fuel the fire of passion for learning through the joy of music making.

    Unlike many other professional musicians who teach, he not only enjoys working with the advanced student, but is humbled and honored to be working with children with no previous experience. This is evident in the comfortable learning atmosphere he creates that fosters the development of a love and appreciation for all that music making can enrich our daily lives.

    The study of a musical instrument accelerates the growth of intelligence and establishes a keen sense of personal discipline while nuturing the valuable virtue of patience. By focusing the mind on listening and calming the nerves, music making is one of the healthiest outlets for self-expression, balance, creativity and joy - key ingredients in the development of SEL (Social and Emotional Learning).

    Additionally, Wasserman has had great success teaching music to those with special needs of any age, including those with developmental or neurological impairment, especially children with autism, Asperger syndrome, ADHD or learning disabilities. For more information, CLICK THIS LINK to browse the "Holistic Music Healing" page on this website.


    Andy Wasserman LinkTree Link Banner


    "Why study music with an very experienced, highly qualified, life-long music educator and professional musician when you have unlimited access to "learn music" YouTube videos and try teaching yourself?"

    The answer is this:

    Music is a deep and worthy subject to pursue.

    A deep subject must be studied deeply.

    A worthy subject must be studied in a worthy manner.

    In order to pursue music in an enjoyable, fulfilling, creative, connected and authentic way we must make a sincere intention and commitment to the process of learning as we grow to know it.

    To do that, we must study it correctly.

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    Lessons in Piano

    The piano is Andy's primary instrument.

    He has been playing piano for over 50 years and took formal lessons for nearly 30 years from a variety of highly experienced teachers. Wasserman passes along to his students the rich and diverse knowledge that he was fortunate to receive from his stellar mentors Anne Bacon Dodge, Dwike Mitchell, George Russell and Jeannette Giguere. As a graduate of New England Conservatory of Music, Andy is well versed in a multitude of stylistic genres - yet many of his students come to him for his experience and expertise in Jazz, Blues, improvisation and the ability to create arrangements for solo piano.

    Click THIS LINK to learn more about Andy's professional career as a pianist.

    Andy's original approach and time-tested teaching methods place emphasis in these indispensable areas of music pedagogy:

    • developing a masterful piano touch with a full range of dynamic expression by working with gravity and relaxation
    • recognition of patterns in music; understanding the theory of music as a language
    • rhythmic training: how to count solid, steady beats in even and odd meters; develop rubato, swing, shuffle and syncopation time in different tempos with special focus on note sub-divisions
    • how to become a better listener and gain confidence in playing songs by ear: "if you can hear it, you can play it !!!"
    • using the piano as a creative activity for self-expression and inner, emotional awareness
    • establishing a vast piano repertoire in a variety of styles and genres
    • understanding how to play as a member of an ensemble, rhythmic section and in jam sessions
    • techniques for working as an accompanist - either of your own singing or for others
    • learning the many preparation and rehearsal skills required to feel comfortable and confident in order to enjoy performing your chosen repertoire in public - for family and friends, holiday celebrations, music recitals, talent shows, etc.

    Lessons in Drums and Percussion

    AWalexDrumLessonWEBThere is an ancient wisdom expression that says that the only thing a person can do to truly help their fellow human being is to improve their rhythm. Of course, this axiom relates to rhythm in the most general sense, such as the "bounce" in someone's step or the rhythm of their daily life.

    Andy brings a high level of discipline to his student's rhythmic training, mixing technique, playing by ear and note reading. He specializes in Funk, Hip Hop, Rock, Pop, Alternative, Jazz and Afro-Cuban styles structured for beginner through intermediate level students of any age.

    His unique methods reinforce the musicality that can be expressed on the drums beyond just keeping time or playing grooves. He is currently working on an instructional book that explores the underlying universal rhythmic code that structures all rhythmic patterns.

    As a multi-instrumentalist, Andy often accompanies his drum students on piano, keyboards and/or his electric bass. This helps them to learn to hear what a "rhythm section" sounds like and how it works.




    • Drum student and performer in his school bands from 5th grade through first year of college.
    • Accepted to the High School of Music and Art (Manhattan) on drums and orchestral percussion.
    • Drummer in various rock, blues and jazz bands in the New York City area ages 12 - 17.
    • Performed and studied orchestral percussion (timpani and mallet instruments) in grades 7 through 10.
    • Performed in many New York City Fifth Avenue holiday parades on snare drum in Boy Scout marching bands.
    • Decades of private and group study on non-Western hand percussion, drum kit and electronic drums.
    • Over 35 years of performing drums and percussion in his World Music Experience arts-in-education concerts

     (click THIS LINKto learn more)




    Lessons in Composition, Arranging, Theory and Improvisation

    Andy Wasserman is an accomplished BMI composer and arranger (click THIS LINK to read more about his composition background and experience) who also gives private lessons to aspiring musicians who wish to create their own music. He welcomes beginners who are new to composition and/or arranging, as well as the more advanced musicians and songwriters who have already begun to craft their own music.

    His current roster of composition students consist of very motivated and inspired budding composers in elementary school, middle school and high school grade levels, as well as adult students and professional musicians.

    Private lessons in composition very often include instruction in George Russell's Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization - the art and science of tonal gravity. Maestro Russell was Wasserman's composition and theory professor at New England Conservatory of Music. This "Concept" is easily assimilated by students who have little or no previous study in traditional Western music theory. The fundamentals of music theory are essential to the study of composition, and "The Concept" is a map that explains what the music itself is telling us about it's innate structure.

    Click HEREto read more about Andy Wasserman's work with the Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization

    Wasserman's composition students are encouraged to find their own voice, their own message, and their own story. He gives them the tools that work best for them to break down the barriers between their musical truths and the expression of those truths. His students in arranging learn how to arrange either original compositions or already existing repertoire from any stylistic genre in pieces for any instrumentation, ensemble or vocal group. Notation software is also taught as the latest way to create your own professional sheet music.

    Andy Wasserman specializes in teaching his students the meaning behind the music through traditional Western music theory and George Russell's Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization. He includes quite a bit of theoretical information in his instrumental lessons but is also working with a few students whose entire focus is the study of music theory.

    Additionally, Andy teaches musicians how to improvise and express themselves freely and with originality on any instrument. The two disciplines of music theory and improvisation go hand in hand. Think of music theory as learning how to speak a language and improvisation as then deciding what it is that you wish to say in that new language.

    A student must be an advanced beginner on their instrument and at least 9 years old in order to pursue these subjects.

    Anyone can learn how to improvise within any style of contemporary music, but the art of improvisation is often best suited in the context of Jazz - American's indigineous improvisational music.

    In this study the student learns to listen and build phrases that communicate a coherent, simple and clear meaningful musical statement while exploring rhythmic invention. Andy gives you the tools to build your own improvised sound with a time-tested method of teaching from the perspective of self-expression and creativity. After all, that's what improvisation is all about - and music theory gives you the map with which to navigate your journey of exploration. These lessons can be of tremendous help to aspiring songwriters and composers in mastering their artistic and aesthetic judgment as well.

    Lessons in Digital Music Technology

    Andy Wasserman instructs his students in the art and science of using digital music technology in the most creative and productive way. Designed as an individual track of study or incorporated into lessons in compostion, arranging, theory, improvisation, instrumental music, recording and production.

    As of 2017, it is practical and extremely economical for anyone - at any age and at any level - to incorporate the current digital music technology into most phases of music composition, production and even performance. The tools that a musician can use on a daily basis are more readily accessible and affordable than ever. At the heart of the digital music techology is the personal computer.

    Wasserman has been using a personal computer in his music creation and production since 1986 when he started with the Macintosh Plus, Mark of the Unicorn's Performer version 1, Sound Tools version 1 (which later evolved into today's most popular recording software "Pro Tools"), Finale version 1 and the Akai S900 digital sampler. He has adapted to the myriad of upgrades in technological evolution that have taken place in the last 22 years and now uses a the full spectrum of currently available digital music hardware and software suites to be as creative as possible. Click THIS LINK and scroll down that page to read about Andy's current work in the field of Music Technology.

    Andy's teaches his students how to create and use their own digital music workstation with a simple computer and keyboard interface. He then instructs them in the applications of musicality in the following disciplines of study:


    learn the art of notating your charts, lead sheets, compositions or arrangements by using software that allows your printed music to look professional, clear and accurate.


    learn to use music sequencing software along with a MIDI keyboard to assign different instruments of the band, choir or orchestra to different MIDI channels and hear back your music as an ensemble.


    take advantage of the full spectrum of digital music tools to structure, produce, record and notate your own music.


    learn to incorporate digital music technology into every phase of your production, from conception to the final CD or MP3 files for the internet


    learn how to build your own affordable and professional sounding home workstation and mini-studio to record, edit and master tracks for both acoustic and electronic music.


    any instrumentalist can use digital music technology to help them use notation, recording and production in their practice routines and performance techniques, including ear training and rhythmic training.


    there are many software programs available today to help students of music theory master the fundamentals and hone their craft.

    Take Music Lessons in Real-Time Online via Video Chat


    Andy teaches students outside of New Jersey through a high-speed internet in his recording studio for personalized, one-on-one webcam private lessons via real-time streaming video, audio and file sharing

    This online distance learning can be accessed using your choice of the free call service platforms Skype video conferencing for face-to-face webcam streaming. Your lessons can be recorded during the call and archived, stored on your device for future reference. Or if you prefer, we can communicate via phone calls and email too.

    Wasserman's studio configures an Ethernet-wired connection, two Hi-Def webcams (switching views between face and Steinway grand piano keys) a studio condenser microphone and Pro-Audio USB interface for smooth, superb sound and picture.

    Andy has 3 free services available by request to supplement the video chat for an enhanced learning experience: the whiteboard web program, with audio, document upload and text-chat functions for charts and sheet music (Andy draws on whiteboard in real-time during lesson with Wacom Tablet); music notation software file sharing, and cloud storage for custom video and audio practice files he produces individually for each student.

    CLICK HERE to send an email directly to Andy for more details on his one-on-one, distance learning private lessons, as well as CLICK HERE to view a page on this site dedicated exclusively to his REAL-TIME ONLINE LESSONS:

    Interactive and personalized instruction on the internet, customized for you!


    • Quality of the teacher:  Most educators agree it is better to have Skype lessons with an excellent teacher than it is to have in-person lessons with a less qualified teacher.
    • Searching for the best match to suit your needs: Seeking a new teacher using Skype broadens the search possibilities since choices are not restricted to one's local geographical area.
    • Connecting with the right teacher: Skype gives students the opportunity to find the best teacher whose expertise can help them attain their goals.
    • Added benefit of Recording the Lessons: While students always have the option to record their in-person lessons, it rarely happens. But students can easily record Skype lessons for review at a later time with digital recorders or free apps that plug into Skype during a video call.
    • Immediate Practicing: Long-distance students can practice immediately after the lesson when ideas are fresh and when energy levels are still high.
    • Warming Up: Students can warm up on their instrument and review their assignment right before their lesson, and have the advantage of playing their own instrument during the Skype lesson.
    • Increased student performance:Research studies have found that people tend to be very focused when interacting via webcam with minimal off-task distracting behavior during the lesson.

    Click THIS LINK to visit Andy Wasserman's PIANO LESSON CITY website dedicated exclusively to his online music lessons!

    Visit Andy Wasserman's listing on the international MUSIC TEACHERS DIRECTORY website.

    A 2015 testimony from an adult study who takes weekly long-distance private lessons online:

    Andy:  I want to thank you for the time we’ve spent together at the piano during our weekly online Skype video chat calls. I’ve enjoyed listening to the audio I record to document our weekly lessons while driving my car each day. You’re really a gifted teacher and although I’m one of your new students, you have already given me a sense of calm, confidence and excitement when playing the piano and/or composing. I’m very thankful to have been exposed to both you and George Russell’s “Lydian Chromatic Concept of Tonal Organization.”