Growing up, we didn’t have the money for me to take private piano lessons. Instead, my dad showed me how to play chords and scales at the piano. I’d go through his piano books to learn as much as I could, but learning from books as a kid was difficult. As a result, my piano upbringing was unconventional, taking from this source and that source to try to learn what I wanted to learn...how to play songs. I was given a gift however—the desire to learn. So, I taught myself how to read music and improvise and furthered my “less traditional” path to learning the piano.
At 16, I discovered my passion for teaching and a knack for breaking down complicated piano concepts thanks to my unique approach to music. Since then, I’ve published over a dozen music books and created PianoWithWillie, a method for all ages and abilities.
Willie has both been involved in the arts for over 25 years. Willie has written dozens of JazzKids® music books, toured with his group Katahdin’s Edge™, given workshops throughout the US and abroad, published by Alfred® and Melbay® music publishers and still performs several times a month with various musicians and vocalists throughout New England.