There are many outstanding and uniquely
wonderful players, teachers, and writers who serve as the heroes in the
music-learning and music-making world. Then, among those exemplary artists and
educators, there is a small, finite group we hail as THE MASTERS: they
represent the gifted hearts-and-minds who go far beyond the scripted curricula;
and they create magical moments, time and time again. Antonio García is one of
those rare individuals who knows exactly the right thing to do at precisely the
right moment. As a result of this innate talent, he continues to serve as a
heroic model for all who proudly wear the title of MUSIC EDUCATOR.
Tony’s contributing efforts and energies do not
stop at the end of a class or a rehearsal: he is always searching for and
discovering new avenues of communication to advance our art form to next level
of excellence. He is constantly “raising the bar” and adding to the growing
library of valuable tools that are wanted and needed by all. Professor García
not only “walks the talk,” but he is carving new and exciting pathways as a
part of his endless quest for quality jazz education.
In your hands you are holding a one-of-a-kind
great resource. Jazz
Improvisation: Practical Approaches to Grading is a book whose time has come. In day and age
of assessing every facet of learning, it is imperative that we are well-versed
in a language of evaluation that is understood by students, colleagues, and
administrators. Perhaps there is no greater challenge than to sculpt and adapt
a definitive measuring tool designed specifically to address the discipline of
jazz. Tony has brilliantly achieved this goal and gone far beyond by
spotlighting the practices of successful jazz educators across the country (and
around the world).
By reaching beyond a one-dimensional blueprint,
Tony avails the reader to a buffet of possibilities encouraging each of us to
tailor a grading system that not only fits our personal objectives, but also
offers the young players an extended landscape of exciting growth and development
as they pursue their own musical journey. From testing the students on the
performance of chords and scales to developing the ear via writing
tune-progressions, the reader is gifted an endless combination of gradation
aspects for all-that-jazz: the toolbox runneth over.
I would be remiss if I didn’t highlight the
caring-sharing personality of Tony García. You will “feel it” as you consume
the wisdom he unselfishly brings to this scripted masterpiece. Having witnessed
his signature style of connecting with people of all ages, I stand in awe of
his level of commitment and dedication to the profession. Jazz education isn’t
something Antonio García does; jazz education is something he IS.
CONGRATULATIONS to my dear friend, Tony García:
you bring a treasury of benefits to the world of jazz, and you boldly remind us
of our responsibilities to do it THE RIGHT WAY and for THE RIGHT REASONS. BRAVO!
Lautzenheiser began his teaching career at Northern Michigan University.
then moved to the University of Missouri, and from there to New Mexico State
During that time, Tim developed highly acclaimed groups in both
instrumental and vocal music.
He presently serves as Vice President of
Education for Conn-Selmer, Inc., and President of Attitude Concepts, Inc.
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