CMC faculty Scott Foster on teaching and his upcoming CD release

scott foster

Scott Foster, jazz guitarist extraordinaire in San Francisco, and his Jazz Quartet will perform at their CD Release Party at Bird and Beckett Books and Records on Friday, December 16, from 5:30 to 8:00 pm.

Scott Foster and his Jazz Quartet have played monthly in the Jazz Series at Bird and Beckett for the past 14 years.

Bird and Beckett has this to say about Scott’s group on their website: “Scott Foster assembles a fresh group with a new focus every month.  Always an amazing session!  Scott Foster has a facility, swing, and soulful intelligence that sets him on a high plane indeed.  The musicians he brings to the stage span generations and share his deep connection to Jazz and its many traditions.”

Scott Foster is both a jazz guitarist and a music educator.  He teaches Jazz and serves as the Chairperson of the Performing Arts Department at The Urban School of San Francisco, and also teaches at Community Music Center of San Francisco.

Scott Foster shares his love and passion for music, and sharing the joy of music in our community:

Anh: What was your early music education like?

Scott: I started on bass at 13 and soon switched to guitar. I played in a garage band with buddies in high school.

Anh: Tell us about how you got interested in going to Berklee School of Music in Boston?

Scott: I went to the Berklee summer session my senior year and had my eyes opened to a whole new world of music study and musicianship.

Anh: What was that like?

Scott: I realized then that I had a lot of practicing to do.

Anh: How did your experience at Berklee School of Music shape and develop your music direction and career?  What were the main things you learned there?

Scott: At Berklee, not only did I learn the fundamentals and dedicate myself to practice but I had a chance to hear and play with the finest young musicians in the world.  Invaluable experience.

Anh: Tell us about your teaching at The Urban School of San Francisco.  What’s that like?

Scott: I have been teaching at Urban for close to 15 years and am proud to have built a respectable music program from what was just a small combo of disparate  instruments when I took over. Working with young people is inspiring. Seeing them light up and in some cases take off and grow so much is what makes all of the hard work worthwhile.

Anh: Could you please share with us your teaching at the Community Music Center of San Francisco?  What classes do you teach there?  Since what year have you been teaching at the CMC?

Scott: I began teaching at the Community Music Center in 1994 and currently am teaching the Inner City Young Musicians Program which is a scholarship program for high school music students. They get private lessons and the theory/ensemble class with me.

Anh: How did you first get into teaching at the Community Music Center?  What’s that like teaching at the CMC?

Scott: It feels really good to be giving back to the community I live in through music.

Anh: Please tell us about the students you teach there.  What are their backgrounds in music?  What are their aspirations in music?

Scott: Students at the Community Music Center are dedicated and hard working young musicians who don’t have many of the resources at their disposal. Most use loaner/rental instruments.

Anh: And what about your involvement in the Jazz Series program at Calvary Presbyterian Church in San Francisco?

Scott: I played Jazz guitar with the Dave Len Scott Jazz Quartet. We played in the series of evening Jazz Vespers from 2010 to 2015.

Anh: How did you first get interested in Jazz music?

Scott: When I heard Jimi Hendrix and Carlos Santana and realized they were improvising it eventually led me to Monk and Miles and Coltrane and then I was in deep and not looking back.

Anh: Please tell us about your CD Release Party.

Scott: On Friday, December 16 we will be celebrating the release of a CD recorded live at my regular gig at the Bird and Beckett Bookstore the third Friday of every month. This night was with bassist Dan Seamans and clarinetist Cory Wright but I change the line up every month to incorporate Blues, composer profiles, Latin music or whatever strikes my fancy for a genre or theme to explore.

Anh: Are the programs and performance groups in the Jazz Series at Bird and Beckett for families and children?

Scott: The Bird and Beckett Bookstore and Jazz Series is a family friendly venue that has live music 4 times a week.

CD Release Party
Friday, December 16, 2016
5:30 – 8 PM
No cover charge.  Donations accepted.
Bird and Beckett Books and Records
653 Chenery Street (Glen Park area)
San Francisco, CA
(415) 586-3733

Accessible by MUNI and BART

ANH LE is a writer and independent journalist in San Francisco, California.



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