Incredible performance by a 9-year-old

emmaThe coffee shop jam is the most awesome thing I do as a guitar teacher, and this past Jam, on May 30th, was even more awesome than usual.

This was partly due to the venue. The Columbia City Theater, a mid-sized music club in southern Seattle, has a glorious sound system and a three broadcast-quality video cameras. We’ve come quite a long way from our days of performing in the corner of Caffe Bella coffee shop, through one PA speaker, which barely competed with the noise of the espresso machine.

But there was also some inexplicable mojo in the air. My students performed with skill and energy that I hadn’t seen before. Usually, the pressure of performing for a big audience (we had 60-70 people at both shows) mutes inexperienced students’ performances, but sometimes the crowd’s energy can elevate the performer. I can’t tell you why, but most of my students practically levitated on the audience’s enthusiasm.

Over the next week, I’ll highlight some of my favorite performances. I’ll start with Emma’s song, “Snow Day.” She wrote it in January after a storm dumped a foot of snow in Seattle and canceled school. Emma blows me away with her stage presence and talent for writing super-catchy pop hooks.

Here are all the videos and photos from the Jam.

Comments 18

  1. Awesome song Emma. Your performance reminded me exactly how I felt in January when it snowed in town and I snowboarded down the street instead of driving to work. I love it. (Great band too, monster guitar tone).

    1. Isn’t she awesome? Yes, she takes guitar lesson from me–at least, that’s what we call them. We do guitar, singing, songwriting, recording, keys–Emma just loves making music in all its forms.

  2. she’s great! It really brings you back to snow days when you were a kid! I absolutely love the line “It was hard to make a smile so i made him smokin!” lol so sweet haha

  3. I am so delighted by Emma and her charm, enthusiasm and charisma on stage. Her lyrics are fun and clever. You can tell she really gets it. I love that you are empowering kids to express their creativity. All the kids are awesome, but this performance is my absolute favorite.

  4. I love how natural she is on stage too. I teach a little girl her age who could be her clone. Too bad you live up there… they could have their own band. She does the Kings of Leon tune too. She’s written enough songs about animals to have her own album now. My favorite of hers so far is a blues tune called “Coffee Drinking Warthog.” I LOVE watching you with your students. Music should be fun. Emma totally ROCKS!

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