Teaching Artist

When a tradition changes hands, it’s always personal.

At age 15, in the spring of 1967, I walked into a Mike Seeger concert at Groveton High School and heard John Jackson (1924-2002) – a remarkable human being and Bluesman.

At Seeger’s insistence, Jackson played three songs and my world changed forever. I walked into the auditorium curious about folk music, and I walked out a guitar player – who’d never touched the instrument before.

I started playing guitar a month later.

That was the first of many times that I’ve found myself in the presence of a senior player, lunging toward their music – taken by their spirit, as much as by the sounds they made; my ears and curiosity alert with delight.

Always heedless of present distractions or future obstacles, I have been lucky to have been so faithfully and fully broken open by a voice, a sound, a song, a tune.

– Scott Ainslie

An important part of Scott’s work involves going into schools an engaging with students. They are full of potential. They have varied inclinations and interests. They are dry tinder waiting for a spark. And there is no telling what will set them off.

It is incumbent on us to offer them a chance to catch fire: the chance that John Jackson offered Scott.

As a teaching artist, Scott presents educational concerts and assembly programs on various aspects of the African and European roots of southern American music. Frequently he meets with a subset of that audience for in depth follow-up workshop activities to expand and personalize their knowledge, experience, and engagement with the music and tradition.

Day long and longer term residencies are sometimes added to the performance work. The details of residency work are generally worked out with input from involved faculty well in advance.

Scott has a number of established programs for school audiences. And he is always happy to coordinate the content and focus of his work to suit both the grade level and educational goals of students and staff.

Booking inquiries for educational work should be directed to Loyd Artists.

 

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