Jazz Education as it relates to Life Skills

Posted on Thursday, September 27, 2012

As jazz educators we all strive to teach our students the techniques behind their instrument, to build their capacity to be able to perform in front of an audience, and to present them with methods of playing an ever-changing style of music, among many, many other skills – all of this in an effort to better themselves as student-musicians.  But are we enabling our students with the ability to transfer these skills to a “real world” situation, much less a profession outside music?

In a recent All About Jazz essay NEA Jazz Master David Liebman discusses how the “values” our students learn though the study of music assist them once they enter the professional world, regardless of the career path they choose.

What are your thoughts?


Steve Holley, posted Sept 27, 2012 © National Association for Music Education

  • Wes Arvin

    Students learn responsibility and professionalism…but they can learn these skills in any field of study.

    Jazz offers something that other fields of study do not: listening, improvisation, and musicality. When one can truly listen to another in a conversation, and then respond with a substantive idea, timed and executed with perfection, the conversation can take interesting twists and turns. It’s easy to spot those with arts backgrounds and those without in the business world. They are more entertaining to be around, and often think outside the box. Businesses clamor to find teamwork and creativity, which is a natural byproduct of jazz study.

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