About Jody

 

Banjo_AboutMe

I’ve performed, taught and composed for over 25 years.  In addition to playing as a solo artist, I perform with the Chuck Nation bluegrass band, and in the Banjo+Cello duo with my wife called Bow N’ Banjo (www.bownbanjo.com).  Beyond maintaining my own private lesson studio I also teach guitar in the Fulton County Elementary School system.  Get them started in music young!

I consider myself fortunate that throughout my career I have played onstage at prestigious venues like Carnegie Hall, The Grand Ole Opry, Ryman Auditorium, Merlefest, and the Philadelphia Folk Festival.

Why am I different than the typical banjo player? Or the typical musician?
My background and interests range from bluegrass, jazz, classical to the unique rhythms of Latin America and Cuba. My extensive training in a variety of musical systems has given me knowledge of both the formal and aural/traditional systems.

Just a few topics I’m knowledgable and passionate about:

Correct Posture, Technique Mechanics, Harmony, Music Theory, Improvisation, Bluegrass and Old-time Music Vocabulary and repertoire, Arranging and Composing techniques, Advanced Rhythmic and Harmonic Devices from jazz, Ear training, Sight reading and basic sight-singing as well.

Awards won include-2006 Merlefest Banjo Competition Winner, Three Time Winner of the Georgia State Flatpick Guitar and Banjo Contest

Musical Training:I studied Music Theory and Jazz Improvisation under nationally acclaimed pianist Kevin Bales for five years. Studying improvisation as a guitarist under a pianist provided me with a unique outlook for all of my music studies.  As a teenager I studied banjo for two years under Dan Acheson (I started at age 15). I also took vocal lessons under Tricia Grey for 8 months, learning how to mix chest and head voices using healthy singing techniques.  Even today I still spend hours learning and studying music, as it is a never ending journey.