Jamshied Sharifi Interview, February 27, 2012
Oral history interview with Jamshied Sharifi, MIT Class of 1983, second director of the MIT Festival Jazz Ensemble, 1985-1992, composer, keboard player, producer and arranger. Interviewed by Forrest Larson, MIT Video Productions studio. Topics include: family and childhood in Kansas City, growing up in a two-faith household, singing in a church choir and piano lessons, high school glee club, jazz fusion band, guitar lessons, starting at MIT, early interest in synthesis and owning a Minimoog, joining the Festival Jazz Ensemble, counterpoint with Ed Cohen, senior thesis work with Marvin Minsky, composition for an improvisational ensemble, FM synthesis with Barry Vercoe, Bartok with Stephen Erdely, FJE audition, Herb Pomeroy's character, Herb's approach to jazz education and bandleading, studying line writing with Herb at Berklee, acoustics with Amar Bose, musical colleagues at MIT: Dave Ricks, Forrest Buzan & Charlie Marge, limited use of the MIT Music Library, studying jazz composition & arranging and film scoring at Berklee, Herb's harmony and arranging class, succeeding Herb as director of FJE, running auditions with Everett Longstreth and the MIT Concert Jazz Band, updating the "old experimental direction" of FJE, the role of music at MIT, different theoretical approaches to improvisation, West African, Middle Eastern, and Persian influences in composition, Agbekor drumming group at Tufts, defining jazz, more on composing for improvisation, recent work with the MIT Wind Ensemble and Fred Harris, Persian and Arabic melodic modes, hybridizing world music, film music experience, Jon Hassell and "fourth world music," Duke Ellington's wide ranging influences.
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