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Ben McNicoll

Saxophone Lessons | Theory Lessons

  • Pricing: $50/hour, $30/half hour.
  • Styles: Jazz, blues, pop, rock and roll, contemporary styles.
  • Suitability: Adults & Children - beginners to advanced


Studied at Massey University, Wellington majoring in Jazz Performance. Playing and teaching professionally in Auckland since 2000. Plays and teaches tenor, alto, baritone and soprano saxophones.

Working musician, experienced in a wide variety of styles: jazz, blues, afrobeat, funk, reggae, swing, contemporary.

Selected, past and present playing experience:

– Ijebu Pleasure Club (afrobeat)
– Spammerz
– Auckland Jazz Orchestra
– North Harbour Big Band
– De Vine Trio
– McNicoll Brown Orme organ trio (jazz)
– Homebrew (Hip-hop. Performed on gold-selling debut album; live performances at Big Day Out, R&V, Homegrown, Tiger Translate, NZ Herald Sundae Sessions and others)
– The Hot Grits (Afrobeat/funk. Auckland Festival, NZ tours, support act for Roy Ayers)
– Gahu (afro-jazz fusion. 2 original albums. Queenstown jazz festival, supported James Brown.)

Ben helps run CJC Creative Jazz Club Aotearoa, and in 2014 launched the Auckland Jazz Festival. He also leads the CJC jazz jam session, and plays regularly at Tom Tom.

Teaching Info

Individual lessons tailored to your learning goals and level. Young and old, beginners to advanced.

A jazz-based approach equips you with the skills to play most styles of contemporary music.

Lessons can include:

– Correct saxophone technique
– Music theory
– Reading music
– Playing by ear
– Effective practise (how to get the most out of the time you put in)
– Improvisation for blues, jazz, contemporary styles
– Role of sax in a band
– Solo and backing techniques
– Transcription (learning from recordings)

Depending on age and level, lessons can be weekly, fortnightly, or casual.

Contact Ben McNicoll