Matt Jensen (Minneapolis, MN) plays and teaches bluegrass mandolin, guitar, fiddle, banjo, and upright bass. When he retired he fell in love with playing music with other people in bluegrass, old time, and sessions. He now performs with several duos and trios, and jams most days of the week. He leads a bluegrass beginners jam and one for learning bluegrass fiddle tunes. Remembering how difficult and scary it can be to start playing music with other people, he works to create jams that help people get started and enjoy playing right from the get-go.
“Matt is a natural teacher. He creates an environment in which it is easy to be yourself, make mistakes, have fun, and ask questions you may be afraid to ask skilled musicians. His ability to break down music theory into understandable concepts is incredible. Jamming in his beginner jam has changed my life. He’ll have you picking with friends before you know it!”
“Matt has a wonderful talent for making beginner musicians feel welcome to the world of jamming. He meets people where they’re at, explains things in an approachable way, and has an impressive knowledge of bluegrass. Also he is probably one of the remarkably nicest people you will ever meet.”
“I went to Matt’s Beginner Jam with some trepidation, but I found a warm environment where it felt safe to enter into the vulnerability of playing with others for the first time. Matt is a friendly facilitator, explaining jam guidelines, keeping the song selections in common and tempos nice and slow. The Minneapolis bluegrass jam scene is great for beginners due to Matt’s well-run jams and instruction.”
“Matt hosts the best beginning bluegrass jam I have ever attended. The jam and his coaching have helped me improve my skills immensely.”
“It’s wonderful to have an instructor who hasn’t forgotten what it’s like to be a beginner. Matt is a kind, encouraging, and patient instructor. His enthusiasm is infectious, and he’s wonderful at breaking new concepts down into easy blocks.”