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Joe Locke's Education Projects

Joe Locke talks about the challenges of practicing regularly and the importance of self motivation. Recorded Oct 2012 at the RNCM, Manchester (special thanks to Simone Rebello), at Brighton Jazz School (special thanks to Wayne McConnell) and at the RCS, Glasgow (special thanks to Tommy Smith and Kurt Hans Gödicke). Rhythm section: Alyn Cosker, Mario Caribé, Steve Hamilton (piano)


International Vibraphone Consultant at the Royal Academy of Music, London

quote start I am happy whenever I have the opportunity to share my knowledge and love of music with students and band directors alike. For me, it is an eye-opening experience, and I always learn something about myself in the process.

I have been involved with education projects throughout the United States and around the world, and continue to seek out opportunities to work with young musicians who are really hungry to learn more about the art of improvisation.quote end

Joe Locke and Neil Percy in conversation

In 2008 Joe accepted the position of International Vibraphone Consultant at the Royal Academy of Music (RAM) at the invitation of Jonathan Freeman-Attwood (Director of Studies).

Neil Percy, head of the Percussion and Timpani department, brought Joe to the RAM for a series of workshops and master classes in October 2008, which culminated in a concert of Joe's original music for percussion ensemble and soloists from the RAM jazz department.

Other activities included an educational tour of Texas, culminating in a concert with the Texas Lutheran University Big Band, and a concert and workshops in Rochester, NY with the School of the Arts jazz ensemble (through The Commission Project). This proved to be a memorable and rewarding experience.

quote start I worked with the students for several weeks leading up to the concert, and real friendships were forged in that time. The name of the event was Pass it On! - the implication of the title being that I was passing on my knowledge and experience to a new generation of musicians. But it was such a mutual exchange... I learned as much from them as they did from me. The experience put me back in touch with one of the reasons I fell in love with music in the first place, namely, the sense of community that comes from creating something with others. quote end


Some of the topics Joe addresses in his workshops and master classes include:

Contemporary Jazz Harmony
how to create good chord voicings, and create interesting harmonic progressions.

Linear Improvisation
how to develop good single line playing / achieving clarity and excitement in a solo.

4 Mallet Technique
ideas and exercises to help develop strength and fluidity at the keyboard with 4 mallets.

finding a voice as a songwriter.

The Spirituality of Imperfection in Music
a talk on the subject of how our shortcomings, as well as our strenghths, inform our music for the better; a glimpse into the humanity of the musical process.

Lead Sheets:

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Joe Locke lead sheets

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Comprehensive Joe Locke discography incl. music samples.

  • For The Love Of You
  • Force of Four
  • Van Gogh By Numbers
  • Live in Seattle
  • Mutual Admiration Society 2
  • Sticks and Strings

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