Q: Tell us about how you first became involved in music
I started playing trumpet in the band in the 5th grade.
Q: Is anyone else in your family a musician?
My brother is a trombone player and is also a band director for the past 35 years.
Q: Tell us more about your music education
I played trumpet through the 10th grade and moved to the baritone for the 11th and 12th. I started playing guitar in the 7th grade and moved to the electric bass in the 11th grade. Studied general music at Tyler Jr. College and finished my Bachelor Music Degree with a Minor in Education at UNT and my instrument at UNT was the Double Bass.
Q: Growing up, did you have any influential teachers/professors who guided you towards becoming a professional musician?
My high school band director, who was also a professional musician, had a great influence on my music career.
Q: What is your personal teaching philosophy?
Anyone can learn to play a musical instrument if they “want” to.
Q: You have taught orchestra for over 30 years in DISD, including at Booker T. Washington. What is your favorite part about instructing an ensemble? How does it compare to teaching private lessons? Working with ensembles helped me explore a great deal of string repertoire with a variety of textures. That is a lot of fun. When teaching private lessons the experience is still fun but more on watching the student’s growth.
Q: One of your string orchestras performed at Carnegie Hall in 2012. Tell us more about that amazing experience.
In one word is was “surreal”! The hours and hours of preparation with rehearsals and picking the repertoire perfect for the student’s level to maximize the experience was worth it when you hear the beautiful acoustics of the Hall. New York was amazing!
Q: What is your favorite music genre?
I am very moody about music genre. It depends on what instrument I have in my hands. My favorite when I play an electric bass is Classic Rock but when I am playing a string instrument my favorite is music from the Classical Period but when I conduct my favorite is music of the Romantic Period.
Q: Do you have a favorite musical memory?
Between meeting Itzhak Perlman or Elmer Bernstei or conducting at Carnegie Hall … Very hard to choose.
Q: When you are not teaching, what do you like to do in your spare time?
Play with my 5 Grand Kids.