Nick studied at the Berklee College of Music with ear training as a main focus. He took Ear Training level 1-4, Advanced Harmonic Ear Training, and Advanced Ear Training. Nick believes that having that connection between hearing what’s happening, understanding it, and being able to play is the most important skill as a musician. I agree and it's those same skills that I am trying to nurture so I definitely wanted to see what someone with this area of expertise had to teach.
Some of the points covered were:
How melody and harmony relate - how the notes relate to the chord of the moment.
Singing/humming root notes at chord changes to better hear where the motion is happening.
Writing out the scale degree for each note in the melody.
Chord inversions - singing descending and ascending triads in all inversions.
"Voice led" chord progressions in different places on the neck.
It'll take a long time and a lot of work to fully realize these conceptual practices, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I plan to take additional Skype lessons from Nick DiSebastian once I've had time to let some of this sink in. To schedule your Skype lesson with Nick, check out his contact page or email.