(AUSTIN, TX) 11.07.16 – Students in the University’s Concert Choir spent some quality time on Monday afternoon with two musical legends, as they took part in master classes with jazz piano player Tyrone Jackson and vocalist Carmen Bradford.
Mr. Jackson provided pianists with tips and tricks to musical chords in jazz and gospel music, while also educating students on the ways chords are played to make specific complementary sounds. Did you know that harmony is determined by your base or an implied base note?
In order to make sure his three pianists grasped the concept of chords and base notes, he asked them to participate in an exercise of playing over a dominant seven scale, with each being responsible for a chord and a base note. This way, students were able to hear and see the notes of the song coming together.
In the master class with Ms. Bradford (a former Huston-Tillotson student herself), brave choral students stood in front of the class and opened themselves up for strict criticism and encouragement by Ms. Bradford. In the short time she worked with each student, their voices, pitch and tone improved. She provided each one with notes so that they can continue to perfect their voices as time goes on. A powerful vocalist herself, Ms. Bradford encouraged students to not only listen to more than their favorite musical artists, but to take the best pieces from them and move on to another artist they may not have listened to before. She encouraged each student who sang to not just sing to the audience, but to tell their story through the song.
It was truly a great experience to have Mr. Jackson and Ms. Bradford not only in the same room together, but work individually with our students.
Thank you for your dedication and thoughtfulness!