"I realize that most students are not here because they want to take a science class, so I want them to see that what we're talking about in class is absolutely relevant to their everyday lives, whether or not they think of those things as science, per se. Whatever's on the news, we'll be talking about it in class. Somewhere over 4 million people have been affected by the floods in Pakistan. They're not getting food; they're not getting water supplies that are safe to drink. That starts a lot of political unrest, and that's all related to the environment. The oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico absolutely has relevance in terms of seafood supplies, economic impact to the United States, etc. Hopefully we can tie all of those in and see why they should care about those things."
"I try to teach the way I learned how to play. I use more ear-type training than music and hand-out sheets. In the real world, on gigs, 90 percent of the time you just get a CD to learn tunes. I have the students transcribe songs, not necessarily writing them down, but a lot of learning by ear, a lot of call and response stuff, transcriptions off records and CDs."
"I can bring to students a long life of experience of rejection and failure and success as completely interconnected pieces of a puzzle to show them that everything they're doing—conversations they're having with their friends, experiences they're having on break, meals they're having with people, strangers they meet—can inform their creativity."
"I incorporate music into my Spanish classes. Each student brings in music twice per semester and talks about the music and the artist. My intermediate students write a music review in Spanish; and I use a lot of musical examples in grammar lessons. I try to present music as an aspect of culture, because there is so much Latin music. The music in Cuba is very different from the music in Argentina, which is very different from the music in Colombia. Students get to truly understand the diversity of the Spanish-speaking world through the lens of music."
"A good producer needs perspective above all else. You need to be clear about what you've been hired for, what the artist's real goals are, what is possible and what is not within the confines of budget, ability, time, and personalities. And you need to be able to step back and know when to stop."
"Teaching exists as a service to the students first and foremost. I find it important to discuss everyone’s interests at the beginning of a semester and to be able to adjust my curriculum or one-on-one meetings to accommodate the ultimate learning goals of the students."
"When I'm performing I'm a storyteller, and my compositions are narrations. I'm completely embedded in the creation of the music in the moment. I don't need to have deep meaning in my lyrics all the time, but I like to connect music and words to tell a story."
"The Music Synthesis major, particularly at the elective course level, is diverse by design. We are teaching our students to be highly creative with a wide variety of electronic tools. That creativity could take the form of composition, production, performance, sound design for film/television/video games, software design, or a unique combination of several forms. For some musicians, their identity is with their instrument. For us, it is an electronic sound palette put to innovative and musical use."