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  1. #1

    Help university jazz guitar programs?

    Does anyone have any reviews they'd like to share on the jazz guitar program at either Duquesne University (Pittsburgh) or Capital University (Columbus)? I'm trying to find out as much information as I can for a student. Thank you!

  2. #2
    No but I just scanned both. Capital looks pretty small. Here are a few things one can do:


    1. Visit the schools
    2. Look at their curriculum. Compare it to UNT, Berklee, MSM, USC, other big programs. How many improv courses? 1-2 aren't enough IMHO. Jazz harmony? Jazz arranging? Ensembles align with your interests? How many semesters of private guitar study?
    3. Find out how many students are enrolled in the jazz studies program. Downbeat lists that but they did that a few months ago.
    4. Find out if they have any ensemble awards
    5. Faculty is huge - look into their teachers. What are their accomplishments in the real world (so to speak). Do they specialize in a style or styles that align fairly closely to your interests? Will you study directly with one of them? Do the best instructors only teach the top students or grad students?
    6. Ask the dean or director of admissions etc. if you can get the names of some current students (seniors and juniors) and interview them regarding their impressions.


    Good luck.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Portland, Maine US
    Posts
    505
    I encourage players graduating from high school to study at a university rather than at a stand-alone music school.

    An overwhelming proportion of people change their mind about what they want to do in life between 17 and 25 (including one hundred percent of the author of this post). If you are at NEC or MSM or Bzerklee and you want to explore Chemistry you drop out. If you're at Oberlin or Purchase or Rutgers or Tufts/NEC you add a class.
    "Don't worry about that. Everybody talks about finding your voice. Do your homework and your voice will find you." - Branford Marsalis

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    5,040
    College for music has been discussed many times on this board. A UNT professor said, of the students at UNT, the top 5% are good enough that they don't need music school other than for the networking benefits, the next 10% can really benefit and this can be the difference to them making a career in music, the bottom 85% won't have a career playing music.

    That was a while ago so it may have gotten worse. You want to be in that second 10%.
    B+
    Frank (aka fep)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Eden Prairie, MN
    Posts
    51
    the description by fep pretty much nails it. BUT I will say the experience and time spent in Denton while at UNT were some of the best years of my life...its not just what you learn in class but all the other experiences you are having while going there that make it a special time. whatever you decide, good luck!!

  6. #6
    You might try reaching out to Sheryl Bailey, a well-known jazz guitarist in NYC.

    I believe she studied at Duquesne... A few yrs. ago, but she may still be in touch with people there.

  7. #7

    Thank you

    I appreciate the suggestions so far - they're extremely helpful in considering these (and other options). I'm open to any and all pieces of advice;

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Sherry View Post
    I encourage players graduating from high school to study at a university rather than at a stand-alone music school.

    An overwhelming proportion of people change their mind about what they want to do in life between 17 and 25 (including one hundred percent of the author of this post). If you are at NEC or MSM or Bzerklee and you want to explore Chemistry you drop out. If you're at Oberlin or Purchase or Rutgers or Tufts/NEC you add a class.

    Maybe, but I remember being enrolled in 2 and even 3 colleges and universities for a few semesters to get the classes that I wanted. Sure, it's more of a hassle to do that but...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Durham, NC
    Posts
    108

    Well...

    I can say I'm not the best guitarist, I work VERY hard for all the tools, skills, and abilities I can acquire (im 30 and to some degree, i feel the learning curve already falling off being around a bunch of kids who havent ever paid a bill in their lives and have an 18 y/0 brain to focus on guitar all day long). As a current student in a very well rooted and intense jazz guitar program I can say, this experience (Im almost done last semester full time, next semester is just acquiring ensemble credits) has been eye opening. That student you're speaking of may not be a guitarist. They may not even know it yet. Exposure of this nature can "separate the men from the boys" on the level of performer, and can do a lot of different things to ones appreciation for music. THAT BEING SAID, this experience will hopefully open this kids eyes to composition, and a number of other really important constructs of the music, all of which can be turned into business. Even if this kid isnt a "made musician" in one year where its all 4* and up hotels and 1k dollar gigs etc etc. Certainly it can give the student the ability to write a lesson plan for musicians to learn from educationally and those types of skills, which dont involve even holding a guitar, can be a life changing course of experiences. If he/she loves the music... the music will love back... I was speaking to a friend who is VERY well known in the jazz world, covers of magazines etc etc a week ago at dinner, and we both agreed that of course you should play, but honestly in this day and age, you cant ONLY play to make money... I hope your student gets into a school they want. PM me if i can help!

    Best-
    Thelonious

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