I’ve been looking into some of my limiting beliefs about both my ability to create art and about how we all create art in general. This memory – a mix of good and bad feelings – is prominent enough that I think about it often. In the 3rd grade I read a book called Dominic, … Continue reading “Did you draw those yourself?”
This is the continuation of some thoughts I’ve been thinking and discussions I’ve been having around the idea of talent. As a guitar teacher, I spend a great deal of lesson time on the mechanics of playing the guitar. The sounds that musicians are able to achieve from the guitar are wildly varied, and it … Continue reading Drawing Circles – Counterclockwise/ Clockwise, Eyes Open/Eyes Closed
I keep track of the number of times I do certain activities in my life. This comes from a pretty severe case of perfectionism/”fear of the blank page”. Keeping track of this stuff has helped me immensely over the years, and is actually how I developed the Sticker Method: Creating a Habit of Practice. You … Continue reading Stuff I Keep Track Of – Totals for 2020
Here is the zine for How to play Twinkle Twinkle Little Star on your Harmonica. Also, this zine contains a very fun song about everyone’s favorite snack, a Juice Box! You can learn the Juice Box song here. And, here is a video that will show you how to fold your zine, once it’s printed. … Continue reading How to Play Twinkle on your Harmonica Zine
Every year I teach the Music Station at an incredible sports/art/music/community-building camp called Basketball in the Barrio, in Segundo Barrio, El Paso, Texas. We couldn’t hold the camp in 2020, so Coach Denisse Franco and I wrote a theme song which, hopefully, we’ll all be able to sing for camp in 2021. Give it a … Continue reading Básquetbol en el Barrio – Theme Song for Basketball in the Barrio Camp
I take visual art classes with the most amazing person; Kaye Buchman. Her art classes have moved online and it has been a highlight of the week to meet with her and the other students. I’ve been saying that the pandemic has taught me that, “A good teacher in person is going to be a … Continue reading KB’s Theme – song for my art teacher
Available now from Etsy! This fall I published my latest zine, The Sticker Method: Creating a Habit of Practice. This is a method for taking a lot of the stress that can come with being a learner/do-er out of our lives. I’ve developed the method over my lifetime as both a teacher and a student. … Continue reading The Sticker Method: Creating a Habit of Practice
I’ve been playing guitar for a long time. And, I teach a lot of guitar players that haven’t played for very long (comparatively). Learning to play is a lot of work, and for the most part it’s very solitary work, so “the public” only sees the “finished” product. As a teacher, I can tell that … Continue reading On Practicing – Sept. 2020
I was inspired to write this tune after a recent conversation with my friend Amanda Healen in which we were talking about my mending from some physical health challenges and about her time tending to her garden. I wrote it on my tenor banjo. Give it a listen below. And, you can download the standard … Continue reading Mending and Tending – a tune about taking care of ourselves
We can’t have camp this year because of the pandemic. So, Coach Denisse Franco and I wrote a little song to share with the campers. Today, in Segundo Barrio, El Paso TX, some of the coaches will be distributing care packages with books, sports equipment and a zine with this song. It’s called Amigos de … Continue reading Amigos de Basketball en el Barrio – New Song
The title of this tune was inspired by a banjo video that Jonas Friddle recently published on Youtube. I didn’t have an empty pickle jar to put a lager in, so I opted to include a jar of pickles. Here is Lager in a Pickle Jar! And here is the video that inspired the title.
I don’t know about you, but as the social distancing continues, I sure am missing eating lunch with my friends. That made me think of this song that I wrote with some 3rd graders at Hibbard Elementary a few years ago. It’s rockin! Here is a recording of the song and a lyric and chord … Continue reading Lunch Time! With Hibbard Elementary Room 208
I spent the day working on “social distance sound”; both my own and others’. I run in a community of educators and teachers who, like many people in the country, have been thrown into a world of having to have what amounts to a television studio in their apartments. We’re all grabbing all the equipment … Continue reading Cheers to the Sound Engineers!
Why do you play video games? Make music? Draw pictures?
Is it Skill and Achievement? Social? Money? Role playing?
Reflecting on a recent episode of Imaginary Worlds.
It’s Saturday and for many people that means pizza! Here’s a fun song to go along with your pizza party. Some second graders from Hibbard Elementary and I wrote this song in 2018. Here is a lyric and chord sheet that you can download to learn to play the song yourself!
For someone who is relatively new at playing music, learning a new tune, or a bunch of new tunes can be overwhelming. Because of this, I thought I would share my process for learning tunes. Maybe you’ll find it helpful to see how I do it. In this video I learn the tune Nancy on … Continue reading How I Learn Old Time Tunes – Learning to Play the Tune, Nancy, from a Recording by Jonas Friddle
Here is a quick guitar lesson for total beginners. This is my usual first lesson for both youth and adult musicians. If you can do this, you can do anything on the guitar! This will get you started. If you do get started with this lesson and are looking for some more in depth study, … Continue reading Rain, Rain Go Away – First Guitar Lesson
During this challenging time of life I’ve been inspired by the Marquette Makers’ Project to keep busy with some creative work. I’ve made a lot of lessons like this, but this is the first one where I used a virtual whiteboard and recorded my voice along with the drawings I made on the whiteboard. It … Continue reading How to Find the Minor 2 (ii) Chord in a Major Scale – Video Lesson
Thank you to Huxley and Theo for their help making this music video for my song, Juice Box! This song was written with young students like them in mind. I you’d like to learn the song yourself, you can listen to just the audio recording and download a FREE handout to help you learn the … Continue reading Music Video for “Juice Box” – a new song for youth musicians
Wow! What great musicianship at the packed house for Family Harmonica Workshop at Saturday’s 2020 Winter Roots Folk Festival! Most of the attendees had never played the harmonica before and they plowed through ALL of my teaching material for the day. Three of the songs were the classics – Hot Cross Buns, Twinkle Twinkle Little … Continue reading Recap: Family Harmonica at Winter Roots Festival
Hi everyone, Today I’m teaching my first workshop as part of Winter Roots Festival in Marquette, MI. In honor of this big day I wrote a new song for you to learn on your harmonica! It’s called Juice Box and it’s all about everyone’s favorite drink . . . a juice box! Here is some … Continue reading Juice Box – A Harmonica Song for Youth Musicians – Notation Download a Audio Recording
Recently, it was a very snowy morning here in Marquette, MI. I was waiting for some of my students to have their lesson and I wrote this song. I made a video of me playing the song, and there is a .pdf of a zine that you can print out to help you learn it. … Continue reading Snowy Day – A Song for Young Musicians – Video and Zine
Last Friday, the 3rd graders at Jane Ball Elementary in Cedar Lake, IN and I had a great time starting up our Harmonica Orchestra . We got right down to business, learning how to hold it and learning how to play only one note. Then we dove into some Hot Cross Buns and Twinkle, Twinkle … Continue reading Harmonica Orchestra in Cedar Lake, IN – January 2020 – Wrap Up
Fargo Skateboarding January 2020 from Jason McInnes on Vimeo. It was a packed session tonight at Fargo Skateboarding. These photos are from later in the evening when it was starting to slow down. Something interesting happened that I wasn’t anticipating. Because I was so full I had to make the most of my opportunities. When … Continue reading Evening Session at Fargo Skateboarding
Originally posted on Facebook, Jan. 11, 2020 My teaching station this morning at Ore Dock Brewing. I have just a few lessons today, but I sure hope to do more here. It’s been a long time since I taught a chunk of lessons on a Saturday and I am feeling nostalgic and loved. Thanks to … Continue reading Teaching Station at Ore Dock Brewery
Life has been so full of upheaval that I feel like I haven’t really been able to take advantage of the natural wonders I’m living among. I made an “artist date” with myself today to go snowboarding at Marquette Mountain. I’m REALLY missing skateboarding, and I figured that this might quench some of that thirst. … Continue reading Tackling Marquette Mountain – First Snowboarding Lesson
Award-winning music educator, Jason McInnes, will be leading youth, family or adult music lessons this January at Ore Dock Brewing. Sign up for a 30 minute lesson in: * Guitar * Harmonica * ‘Ukulele Beginning, intermediate and advanced students welcome. Jason has over 17 years of experience leading music lessons that empower students to find … Continue reading Join the Band! – Music with Jason at Ore Dock Brewing
I keep track of several things during the year. Here are the final numbers. A brief description of what these numbers mean and their relationship to last year follows. The Chalkboards I keep track of this stuff on a chalkboard. In the past, I’ve used a HUGE chalkboard which took up most of one of … Continue reading Stuff I Keep Track Of – Totals for 2019
Here is a copy of my newest zine, How to Play Auld Lang Syne on Your Harmonica! Auld Lang Syne is one of my very favorite songs. I actually wish that it was socially acceptable to play it all year long. If you’d like to play it with me, I sure would love that. Print … Continue reading Learn to Play Auld Lang Syne for the New Year!
At the end of November, 2019, I left Chicago (my home for 24 years) and moved north to the Marquette, MI area. The pace of life in Chicago had gotten to be too much for me. I’m looking forward to finding some space to hibernate beside Lake Superior. I wrote this tune on one of … Continue reading Along the Chocolay – A New Tune and a New Home
The summer/fall of 2019 has been a time of great upheaval in my life. I was glad to have a set of music together to help process these experiences. On Sept. 24, 2019, I presented a set of music by the songwriting duo of Jerry Garcia and Robert Hunter at the Grafton Pub, in Chicago, … Continue reading Some of Jason’s Thoughts about the Grateful Dead
“If you go ahead, if you keep on running, wherever you run you will meet danger and evil, for it drives you, it chooses your way. You must choose. You must seek what seeks you. You must hunt the hunter.” – Ogion the mage to Geb from Ursula Le Guin’s A Wizard of Earthsea I … Continue reading A New Understanding of Fear
Follow My Blog
Get new content delivered directly to your inbox.