Monday, March 07, 2016

Music Education Monday: A master class
in improvisation with Gary Burton

Regarded as one of the most significant and versatile jazz musicians ever to play his chosen instrument, vibraphonist Gary Burton has been an important figure in improvised music since the early 1960s.

Now 73 years old, Burton (pictured, left) is a multiple Grammy award winner known for his innovative four-mallet technique, his pioneering albums fusing jazz with rock and other popular musics, and for hiring as sidemen a series of guitarists who have gone on to greater fame, including Larry Coryell, Mick Goodrick, Pat Metheny, John Scofield, Kurt Rosenwinkel, and most recently Julian Lage, who currently works in Burton's group Next Generation.

Burton also is known for his longtime involvement with jazz education. A 1961 graduate of Berklee College of Music, Burton served his alma mater in various capacities for more than 30 years before retiring in 2004, and also has presented many master classes, lectures and workshops at other universities and colleges around the world.

Today for Music Education Monday, you can get a look at a video of one of those master classes, a session focused on jazz improvisation that Burton led in 2011 for students at Loyola University in New Orleans. And if that whets your appetite, it looks like Burton once again is teaching a free six-week online course in improvisation via Coursera, as featured in this space last year

You can see the video of Burton's master class at Loyola University after the jump...

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