David Scott

Associate Professor
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David Thorne Scott is a singer and instrumentalist who performs in jazz, pop, and classical styles. He is also a composer, arranger, bandleader, and teacher.

  • Career Highlights
    • Vocalist proficient in piano, bass, and trumpet
    • Leader of David Thorne Scott Quartet, Hopeful Romantics, and Vocalogy 
    • Member of Syncopation, Meta-Beat, and Philovox Choir
    • Performances with Boston Pops, Four Freshmen, Vocalogy, Blue Heron, and Paula Cole
    • Shade chosen as Top 5 Vocal CD by Jazz Education Journal
    • Arrangements published by Hal Leonard and UNC Jazz Press
    • Director of Berklee’s summer program Vocal Summit and an active clinician who directs all-state jazz choirs
    • Recordings include Hopeful Romantic (2013), Refilled (2012 with Vocalogy), Wonderful You (2008 with Syncopation), DYAD (2007), and Shade (2004)
    • Studied with Phil Mattson, Mark Baxter, and Larry Lapin
    • Presentation of research entitled “New Vocal Group Music From Old Sources” at the International Association for Jazz Education Convention
  • Awards
    • Top 5 Jazz Vocal CD (Jazz Education Journal)
    • Berklee Faculty Fellowship and recording grant for Boswells to Bop research and recording project
    • Finalist in the New England National Association of Teachers of Singing's Song and Aria competition, Professional Division
  • Education
    • M.M., University of Miami, jazz vocal performance
    • B.A., Drew University, English and music (magna cum laude)
    • A.A., School for Music Vocations, Southwestern Community College, professional music

In Their Own Words

"I try to remind students why we're doing music. It's about creating beauty, and it's something you enjoy, something your audience will enjoy. Musicians can get really competitive. If you're just trying to do better than the other guy, or if you're trying to get better out of fear of being exposed as a fraud, you're not really in the right space. If you're singing out of fear, you have a 100 percent chance that it's not going to be right. Even if the notes are right, even if you're doing everything correctly, your listeners are going to be able to tell, and it's just going to ring false somehow. Now if you have a spirit of joy in creating music, you still might mess it up. Maybe then you have a 50 percent chance of getting it right. But at least you give yourself a chance. Yes, everybody should learn to play the piano and should learn their 251s and should learn music theory and sight reading—I'm all about competence. But I never want my students to forget that this is all in service of something that's supposed to be beautiful and supposed to be a pleasure."

"I don't think people realize that music school is hard. When my dad went to college, he thought he wanted to be a music major. He did that for a semester, couldn't hack it, so he got a biology degree and went to med school instead. I actually sat next to a guy at Fenway one time who said he was a Berklee student 20 years ago. He only lasted a semester; it was too hard. I asked him, 'What do you do now?' 'Oh, I'm an aerospace engineer. I work for NASA.' It's harder than a lot of people realize."