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B.A. University of Iowa M.A. The Ohio State University Ph.D. The Ohio State University, Ethnomusicology
Many national and international concerts and tours from 2003- to present including recent tour of India (10/14-11/14)
2014 Performance Travel Grant, Greater Columbus Arts Council
2014 Professional Development, Greater Columbus Arts Council
2012 Ohio Arts Council Artist in Residence
Louis Armstrong Jazz Award
Bowling Green Outstanding Soloist Award
Music is the center of my life, and sharing the knowledge and joy with students is my passion. I have been playing professionally for two decades in a variety of styles, and I hold a Ph.d. in Ethnomusicology from The Ohio State University. I have performed in around the world and recently completed a tour of India. Two of my recent albums were selected for the final 2015 Grammy Ballot. As a jazz musician, I have performed with artists like Dizzy Gillepse and the Grammy winning artist Steve Gorn, hip hop artists like Dr. Dre and Public Enemy, and top world music artists like Latif Bolat, Hidayat Khan, and Paul Winter.
My teaching experience extends from my undergraduate years where I taught guitar at the Univeristy of Iowa. Since then, I have taught all age ranges of students, from age five onwards, both in person and online. My experience ranges from academic institutions such as The Ohio State University and Capital University, to workshops, lectures, and master classes. I set three primary goals for my teaching: to educate, challenge, and inspire students. As an ethnomusicologist, I invite students to discover diverse world cultures, repertoire, and musical systems,encouraging critical listening and independent thinking. I follow a similar template to introduce students to classical and popular music, presenting both repertoire and the historical and human dimensions behind the music. Learning music should be an enjoyable experience, and I strive to let every student shine.
My teaching methods are largely dependant on the needs and experience of the student. For begining guitar, bass, and key board students I generally work with several method books, and supply supplimentary materials as required. I believe that each student is unique, and what works for one student might not be sutiable for another. I assess a students learning style and develop lesson plans that emphaisze their strenths, and encourge them to develop.
To me, music is the perfect marriage of discpline and freedom. In order for students to develop the ability to express themselves through music, My approach combines technical skills with creative development. With each student, I design an invidiual cirricullum that allows them to clearly see their progress over time and experience the joy and satisfaction of acomplishment. Whatever a student's goals, I develop lesson plans that will accomplish them, and I encourage students to develop their own capabilities.
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