The River Valley Music Center has all the traditional elements of learning music with the convenience of learning in a studio space.
“When I was growing up, I went to someone’s house to take lessons,” owner Jason Muncy said. “River Valley Music Center takes you away from not knowing what is going on in someone’s house and putting it into a more forefront business that says this is what we do.”
And what does the River Valley Music Center do you might ask.
“We teach music to people, that’s what we do,” Jason Muncy said.
Jason and Lana Muncy purchased River Valley Music Center back in 2011 and haven’t looked back since. “Music stores, a lot of times, will offer lessons but it almost seems like an afterthought. You go into a music store and there is a room in the back,” Jason said. “This business was created so we could take the importance of learning how to play to the forefront instead of having it be something else that we do. It’s what we do.”
Located on 2503 West Main Street, River Valley Music Center offers music lessons for all ages. “As early as three years-old and we have even had students start in their 80s,” Jason said, “so young and old. Age is just a number right?”
River Valley Music Center employs eight instructors, and most have a music degree. The instructors teach a wide variety of instruments: piano, guitar, bass, violin, drums, cello, woodwinds and brass. “All of us that teach here are confident and are all very educated in what we are doing,” Jason said. “I’m one of the few that does not have a music degree. I grew up playing piano, taking lessons, and gained experience through the years of playing, but my formal education is in elementary education” he added.
The music center also offers Kinder Music, which is a program designed for toddlers and infants starting at 6 months old. “They use music as a vehicle to learn music skills, physical skills, language and literacy, cognitive skills, speech, emotional and social skills,” Jason said. “So much can be learned in music class at that age.”
Cost for instrument lessons at the music center is a tuition based payment system. “All of the lessons are a flat fee of $85 a month,” Jason said.
Most of the music center’s clients are student age. Lessons are offered on weekdays and are set up in appointment style.“So if it’s at Thursday at four then it’s every Thursday at four,” Jason added.
At the River Valley Music Center anyone is welcome to come learn how to play a musical instrument, or hone their playing skills. “There is this mystery around music that you are born with it, but that is not always true,” Jason said. “Our mission is to help people get to where they want to go in their music career. We have taught a lot of students through the years on how to be better at their music. We feel very blessed and very lucky to get to do that and be at that part of someone’s life.”
Music has a way of impacting communities as well. “The music scene here in Russellville is getting brighter every day,” Jason said. “The longer this business is here, the more I have seen students that have taken lessons from us playing here and there. And that is really great to see how by taking a little bit of time through the years can influence someone for the rest of their life. That is what music does. I always tell parents you can never outlive the investment you make when you give the gift of learning an instrument to your child. From a very young age it helps them with reading, mathematics and logic skills. Music just has so much overlap in everything that we do during school time and school age. And playing music even when you get older is a way to keep you brain sharp because it is a whole brain activity generally.”
Jason insists that it is never too late to start. “As an adult, I understand that life happens,” Jason said. “We all take the approach of being patient and tailor the experience to each student. So we want that to be the first assurance to them that it will work out. Even if a client is at the working age and they have always wanted to do this, now is the time to start. So let’s get started.”