Nashville Notes

David Petrelli

The calendar has turned to a new year, and the holidays are now behind us. But a few months ago, Christmas came early for some young Berklee alumni who are new to Nashville. On November 7, 2011, Nashville's famous Music Mill Entertainment (now home to the Nashville Songwriters Association International) hosted a workshop for recent Berklee transplants on the do's and don'ts of moving to Nashville.

The Woodshed: The Logistics of Circular Breathing

Players of various wind instruments use the circular breathing technique to play long, sustained notes without interruption. Musicians of diverse backgrounds who play the shawm, Australian didgeridoo, Sardinian launeddas, traditional Asian oboes and flutes, and more have employed the technique. Jazz players such as saxophonist Rahsaan Roland Kirk, trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, and Trombone Shorty, and such classical musicians as saxophonist Eugene Rousseau, clarinetist Martin Fröst, and oboist Marcel Tabuteau have also used the method.

Ten Things Alumni Should Know About Berklee

Luis Alvarez

Since my graduation from Berklee in 1983, I have observed the college's amazing evolution as a music education icon. I have watched this transformation as a Berklee in Puerto Rico program supporter, as the producer of the Puerto Rico Heineken JazzFest, and as a trustee.

L.A. Newsbriefs

Justine Taormino

In typical fashion, the Los Angeles Berklee Alumni Chapter closed out 2011 with its annual Southern California Holiday Party. As proof of the vibrancy of the Los Angeles alumni community, nearly 300 alumni attended and helped to make the event a smash hit. This year brought enormous success and accomplishments to the Berklee Los Angeles chapter, and we look forward to bigger and brighter things in 2012.

L.A. Spotlight: Karmin

Peter Gordon

In spectacular fashion, the story of Berklee alumni phenom Karmin continues to unfold.

Follow The Money

Eric Jensen

Developing a music career today requires a broad set of musical, business, and social skills mixed with a healthy dose of out-of-the-box thinking. That's because the industry continues to shift from a commodity-driven business (e.g., recorded music) to a service-oriented one. As career self-management tools develop and as the barriers between musicians and their audiences break down, gatekeepers and middlemen become less relevant. Music licensing, performance, teaching, and music-related byproducts have become essential elements of a career strategy.

Faculty and Staff Donate $50,000 to Establish Scholarship in Walter Harp's Memory

With thanks to the collective efforts of over 50 faculty and staff members, an endowed scholarship has been established in memory of faculty member Walter W. Harp. The Walter W. Harp Liberal Arts Music and Society Scholarship will be awarded annually to a student who has demonstrated outstanding achievement in civic engagement: the use of music, including composition and performance, to transform individual lives and society through community service, social activism, and humanitarian efforts on a local, national, and/or international level. The first scholarship will be awarded to a deserving student this fall 2014 semester.

Expert Testimony - Given by Steve Swallow 
to Mark Small

Mark Small

In jazz circles, former Berklee faculty member Steve Swallow is best known for his lyrical electric bass playing and prolific jazz composing. During the 1970s, about a dozen of his tunes appeared in the original Real Book bearing cryptic titles such as "Como en Vietnam," "Hullo Bolinas," "Falling Grace," "Domino Biscuit," "Doin' the Pig," and "Hotel Hello." After Gary Burton began performing "Falling Grace," it became one of Swallow's best-known pieces and has since been performed extensively and recorded by numerous jazz musicians.

Coda: The Art of the Road

Eve Fleishman

"Surfin' USA" is an apt description of my latest musical endeavor-and I'm not referencing the Beach Boys' song. I'm talking about couch surfing and Net surfing. Both are valuable skills for the independent touring musician. This kind of surfing requires strong networking skills as well as finding a niche among those who support your artistic vision and can offer you their couch for the night.

California Dream Studios

Mark Small

A Room With A View

After clocking thousands of hours in recording studios as an in-demand film composer and session musician, Richard Gibbs '77 had a vision for his own studio. "I'd been in so many studios around the world that I had a pretty strong opinion about how my dream studio would operate," he says. "I wanted everything that makes it look like a studio hidden. This place can pass for a beautiful living room but has full functionality as a studio."