The Teacher-Performer

Balancing a successful performing career with teaching can be a challenge and a delight at the same time. I am very excited to accept an offer to be the new Assistant Professor of Commercial Music at the University of South Carolina Upstate. One refreshing element of this faculty appointment is that my touring performance career remains important to the university and to our department in that we aim to train commercial musicians who are competitive in today’s music business. Helping to build necessary skills for these students requires teachers that are true artists out in the real world providing real music for real audiences… Since the university has given me its blessing in continuing to pursue my international recording and performance schedule (much like the role of violinist Midori Goto at my alma mater, University of Southern California), I am thoroughly stoked to begin this work alongside my creative work.

There are scores of professionally touring jazz and classical musicians currently thriving in faculty positions at universities and schools of music throughout the United States and the rest of the world. This fortunate evolution ensures that our music students are being taught by the leaders in their field. I am honored to now join the ranks of other teacher-performers who lead by example and who fulfill their teaching obligations while pursuing parallel performance careers that add beauty and art to the world. One of my heroes, acclaimed vocal pedagogue and singer Dale Moore, once took me aside and confided: “You are in the very best profession in the world.” Dale, I can honestly say that I’m beginning to see the light!

Please join me for my first faculty recital at University of South Carolina Upstate on September 11 at 8pm in the Humanities and Performing Arts Center. I will be joined by the Faculty Jazz Combo featuring pianist Gregg Akkerman, guitarist Adam Knight and drummer Tony Christopher. For more information see


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