George Garzone

Professor
617 747-8188

"I think tradition is something I learned here at Berklee when I was a student. I think the tradition is responsible for how you play, no matter how far out you go. But at the same time, my job is to get the kids to stretch out. I want to take them away from the tradition."

"Avant-garde is still a dirty word among a lot of academics. Their attitude is, 'How can you teach the kids all the crazy stuff, when they don't even know bebop?' Well, I give them the tunes sometimes, but then I ask them to go beyond that. I also expose them to something that's a little different."

"If you're going to play free, it's up to you. You got it. I'm not going to yell directions to the ensemble or the soloists as they play. You got it. If the music stops and you're flailing, that's your problem. It's up to you to pick it up and make it happen. That happens to everyone; the music comes to a settling point and now it's up to someone to pick the ball up and go with it. You can't leave it there. So one thing they're learning is how to keep the momentum going. They're learning how to keep the music in motion, and it doesn't have to be with a lot of notes, either. It's something that transcends paper, the staff, the lines, the key. It's stuff that a lot of people don't learn in school. My ensemble gives them an opportunity to do that."

 

Career Highlights

 

  • B.M., Berklee College of Music
  • Performances with the Fringe, Kenny Barron, Harvie Swartz, Dan Gottlieb, John Pattitucci, Bill Stewart, Jamaaladeen Tacuma, Tom Harrell, Don Alias, Danilo Perez, Lenny White, Joe Lovano, Marvin "Smitty" Smith, Gary Peacock, Dennis Chambers, Anton Fig, Cecil McBee, Dave Holland, Stanley Cowell, Bob Moses, and Dave Liebman