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About me

My name is Michael Lake and I am a Grammy-nominated trombonist, writer, electronic musician, entrepreneur, and Dad to two fascinating teenage boys.

I am hopelessly curious and love to share what I've learned in order to help musicians. My passion is to guide musicians in how to think better about improvisation and the ability to connect their creative musical voice to their instrument, no matter which instrument they play.

The secret I share in my books, videos, courses, and talks is that the music is already inside you. Amplify it through your instrument by getting out of its way. If your improvising or musicianship is not all you wish it were, it's likely because you've been convinced that the music originates in your instrument or can somehow be manufactured through your analytical reasoning.

The music inside you will flow from your instrument once you confidently connect your instrument to your musical mind. THAT'S where your music originates and THAT's your state of flow. I've helped many musicians get much closer to that and I'd like to help you.


The Best of Music Savvy

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Improvisation Savvy course

Unleash the music within. Discover the reason your inner music is stuck. This complete course of short interactive videos will coach you to connect your mind with your instrument to play like you imagine.

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Level up your playing with these books & materials

Method books, specialized topics with great players, and ebooks on a variety of topics

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Read my blog

Direct and candid throughts, theories, and stories about life and the jazz within it.

Praise for Music Savvy

This is not your father’s method book.  Alto Trombone Savvy is a thoroughly 21st Century production by a master of the art and the instrument.

Stan Pethel, Professor of Music Emeritus, Berry College 

Michael's book is as comprehensive as it is insightful and practical. I highly recommend this book for all levels of trombonists and improvisers alike.

Steve Davis, trombonist, composer, educator

I firmly believe you are on to something great and in the process, reinventing how people learn to improvise.

Dr. Rodney Brim, Psychologist, Performance Improvement Executive, and Musician

The Art of Skill is a beautifully-designed book that chronicles and showcases Dave Liebman’s pursuit and attainment of living life as art. Read him and listen to him … you’ll be the better for it.

Peter Erskine, drummer, educator


Richie Beirach lays out such a well-thought out process regarding the way you can develop as a musician just by utilizing your own talents and assembled knowledge. Pay careful attention - this man knows what he is talking about.

Randy Brecker