Q: What or who is DC?
A: DC are the initials of Denis Chang, the founder of this website. He is found here speaking in the 3rd person. He is a guitarist based in Montreal, Quebec and he has a very peculiar sense of humor (or humour depending on your country of origin), that he hopes, won’t scare people away.
Q: I’m new here! How do I navigate this site? How do I purchase your super awesome products?
A: At the moment, the site is in BETA mode and is still not fully functional as we intend it to be. That said, products will gradually be released as they become available. To view our catalogue, click on the menu button that says Downloads/Lessons. Select the product that interests you; read the description; and if it seems like something you might be interested in, look for the button that says ADD TO CART. Click on it, proceed to check out, and follow the instructions. If it’s your very first time here, you will have to create a user account which you can then use to connect to the site for future downloads/purchases. Fill in the forms, and click on MAKE PURCHASE. It will take you to our paypal payment page where you can submit your payment information. Note that you do not need a paypal account to purchase items; we will accept most popular credit cards through the paypal payment system. For free downloads, follow the exact same steps, except that you will not be required to pay anything. Once the payment is complete, it will take you back to the website where you will receive a link for your downloads or a link to the video lessons. You will also receive an email with this exact same information, so be sure to provide a valid email address. For download based products (such as the playalongs), there is a limit of 3 downloads; a click on the download link is considered a download whether it completes or not. If you accidentally fail to save the download to your computer, please email us for assistance. For video lessons, all purchases are permanent; there are no renewal fees whatsoever, and all downloads within the video lessons are unlimited. Please refer to the next question.
Q: How do the lessons work?
A: At the moment, all video lessons are streamed directly on the website. To access them, purchase the lessons that interest you and log in to the site using the username/password combination that you created (Click here to access the login page or click on the LOGIN button on the top right corner of the screen). Once you are logged in, return to the catalogue page of the lesson that you purchased and it should now be unlocked. You will have access to all available videos, and whatever downloads (ie. support material such as pdf files) that may be available will be found within this page. Remember, once you have purchased access to a video lesson, it is permanent; in other words, there are no renewal fees whatsoever. Access to the videos are instantaneous; as soon as the payment is accepted, you will have immediate access to the lessons!
Q: Why can’t I download the videos in the video lessons?
A: There are two main reasons. First of all, we would like our users to consult the website regularly for updates. If any of our paid lessons are updated in any way (extra material/downloads, corrections), you will be able to access them there. Think of this as a software update; if, for example, by popular request, students ask for clarification on a specific topic in one of our video lessons, we will add the extra lesson there, free of charge! Second of all, unfortunately, piracy is a very strong reality in this business; it’s effect on our business is quite severe and slows down our ability to release new material. In the worst case scenario, it forces us to put a stop to all operations. That said, we strongly believe in the spirit of sharing which is why you will find many free lessons/downloads on this site. We understand that the economy is not even around the world, and some people have very little means to afford anything. Whatever support you can give us, by purchasing the paid lessons, is strongly appreciated! In turn, it allows us to produce an even greater number of free products! In other words, the more support we get, the more and faster we will give back! This is how we make our living, but money is not everything, and we strive to have a strong impact on music education.
Q: I’m having trouble accessing the lessons!
A: Often times, problems are due to user error; make sure you follow the instructions above. In the rare instance that there is, indeed, a system error, please email us and we promise to rectify the situation ASAP!
Here are a few common mistakes:
Q: What are the system requirements to view these video lessons? Will it work on my smartphone/tablet?
A: At the moment (as of 10/08/11), the site has been tested extensively on Mac and PC systems from within the past 4 years (exact minimum requirements will be posted shortly). A fast and stable internet connection is highly recommended. The videos will not work on Ipod/Ipad type products at the moment, though it is something we wish to implement as soon as possible.
Q: What is your policy on refunds.
A: We highly advise that you read the product description very carefully. Along with the description, each product has free samples so that you can make informed decisions on the product you wish to purchase. We also have a youtube channel with extensive video samples of each product. If you, somehow, accidentally purchased the wrong item; please email us immediately with a request for refund. Requests need to be made within the hour of purchase. Otherwise, given the clear descriptions and samples of each product, we do not issue refunds.
Q: The free lessons are great! Me want more! MORE!! MOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORE!!!!! nom nom nom nom nom…
A: Thank you so much! Sharing is very important to us and we will definitely continue to produce more free lessons/downloads. However, in order for that to happen, we need more support from the paid products. If you find a paid product that interests you, please consider purchasing it. It will allow us to work faster, and therefore, allow us to release more free products!
Q: I don’t like you!
A: Hey! That’s not even a question!
Q: Tell me more about this school? What makes it different from other online music schools or any music school in general?
A: Short answer: DC Music School is so awesome that it caused the dinosaurs to go extinct eons before the site came into existence. True story.
Long answer: Our team is dedicated to bringing you the absolute best in music education. Our teachers are highly accomplished musicians and among the most respected in their genres. It is often said that world-class players don’t know how to teach; this is generally true, and many publishers often use their names to sell a product at the expense of quality instruction. This is not always intentional on the part of the publishers, as their area of expertise is marketing not production; they are often non-musicians or simply amateur musicians and thus, are unable to understand how quality music instruction is made. This is not the case at DC Music School; as producer, I, Denis Chang, am highly passionate about effective, and practical pedagogy and have given workshops to students all over the world, from beginners to seasoned pros. I do so, not because I have to, but because it has been a lifelong passion of mine. I am also a performing artist and have been blessed to have shared the stage at prestigious venues with artists such as Andreas Oberg, The Rosenberg Trio, Joscho Stephan, James Carter, etc… I understand what it takes to reach a high level of musicianship and I know how to transmit this knowledge to the next generation of aspiring musicians.
Q: So… Who are these artists giving out “wrong” information?
A: Well, we’re not in the business to criticize or badmouth our competitors but here’s what we’ll say: At DC Music School, we guarantee you that every lesson is accurate and taught by artists who are highly respected by their peers. Each artist works closely with the producer to offer the very best in instruction; every lesson is carefully crafted and made to be as clear and accurate as possible. We also fully welcome criticism; if you feel that some of our lessons are dubious, please let us know, we will gladly investigate, and rectify the situation . Our priority is simple: QUALITY!
Q: OK, what makes you so special mister “producer”?
A: I can eat 2 quarter pounders, a large order of fries and 20 pieces of Chicken McNuggets all on my own in less than 10 minutes.
I grew up speaking 3 languages and come from a very cosmopolitan and multicultural family; along the way I picked up the basics of a few other languages. I have a very good understanding of how people think and behave based on cultural upbringing. From a social aspect, I have had to deal with people of all walks of life. I am deeply fascinated by psychology which I believe is the key to transmitting knowledge. I firmly believe that learning music is like learning a language and immersing oneself in a culture. I find this analogy to be very true; sometimes, a language is more than just words. Culture plays a big part in a language; words and phrases change meanings between regions; accents and inflections change as well. I learned to speak English by watching American TV shows as a child. Quite frankly, I know very little about the rules of the English language, but I think you (if I may be so bold) would agree that my English is more than acceptable; is it not? All this from watching TV! I grew up in a French city whose culture is different from that of France’s but I went to school under the French (from France) system. As such, I grew up learning both idioms, and acquired the skill to hear the tonal inflections between the accents. I also grew up speaking an asian language with multiple tones. All this came in handy when I was learning to play music.
Musically, I come from two very distinct backgrounds, as I have formal training in music from a classical perspective, but I also learned to play music by ear with the Sinti gypsies (the tribe to which the legendary Django Reinhardt belonged) in France, Belgium, Holland, and Germany. I understand the thought processes from both schools. I rarely teach privately nowadays but some of my former students have won prestigious awards and have been accepted into prestigious schools around the world. My productions for Toronto-based company Hyperhip Media have received very positive reviews in magazines (Akkustik Gitarre in Germany; Guitar Techniques in the UK; Just Jazz Guitar in the USA; Guitarist Acoustic in France) and online.
Q: What’s with the dumb jokes?
A: What are you talking about???