In today's episode, we cover:
- Lance is leaving town for two days and everyone is happy about it
- Welcome to Abby Lannan to the Pedal Note Media team!
- Doc's various names
- JustNix is yummy!
- Rage Medley viral video hit over 120M views
- New Pedal Note Media podcast, "Doc Nix Talks To..."
- Air Bud and Beethoven
- Listening and learning
- Black Lives Matter
- Driveway chats w/Doc Nix while Andrew's kid made minivan inventions
- Recent Doc FB post
- Continually Winded
- The pain of people missing the point
- Can you shore me up
- Being assaulted by a skinhead in Altenberg, Germany
- Three Kings movie, Michael Jackson story
- Being on the train in NYC encountering the skinhead's doppelganger
- Realizing he wasn't powerless
- The influence Slick Rick and Doug E Fresh
- Trying to unlock the power of the composer
- Don't just walk in their footsteps, seek what they sought
- Rapping in his recital at U of M
- Black Music Matters, Ed Sarath
- Performing on stage with Nas and the National Symphony
- Dave Porter's encouragement
- Founding a fife and drum corps at George Mason University
- Green Machine as an umbrella for a great array of music-making groups at GMU
- Getting away from "sameness" in the university music curriculum
- Music school recruiting event in NYC
- Producer=Composer story
- Drum corps story
- GMU basketball player story
- His time at Yale as a legacy
- Just keep doing work
- Lance on Tuba and Turntables
- FB tuba-euph groups
- Deciphering systems
- Why his tubas smell like burgers and beer
- Crediting Michael Parker for the turntable idea
- Embracing the true meaning of Black Lives Matter
- Commissioning project featuring black composers writing solo pieces for each of the brass instruments
- Working with the Association for the Transformation of Musical Academe
- Yale document on music in inner-city schools
NOTE: Weston Sprott also generously shared some resources for everyone hoping to learn more. Thank you, Weston!
- His own articles
- Recommended Books (note: we do not receive a % of any Amazon purchases)
Want to help the show? Here are some ways:
Expertly produced by Will Houchin with love, care, and enthusiasm.
Serving as Director of Campus Life Ensembles and Collaborative Arts, and as an Associate Professor of Music, Dr. Michael W. Nickens (a.k.a. Doc Nix) is most recognized as the leader of the “Green Machine”, which in 2015 was named the #1 pep band in college basketball by the NCAA and commended by the Senate and House of Delegates of the Commonwealth of Virginia. In addition, Dr. Nickens launched Mason’s fife and drum corps and WGI world-champion drumline, and oversees Mason’s winterguard. This collection of performing units, known as the “Green Machine Ensembles”, are internationally known for their thrilling, high-energy performances at Mason ceremonies and basketball games, professional sports games and events (Capitals, Nationals, Wizards, and Redskins), community events (Celebrate Fairfax, and the Nike Women's’ Half Marathon), and marching competitions, as well as their popular internet videos that have over 100 million views collectively.
Dr. Nickens was named the 2016 Faculty Member of the Year by the George Mason University Alumni Association. He served as a Faculty Representative to the Board of Visitors, Chair of the Faculty of the College of Visual and Performing Arts, Chair of the CVPA Diversity Committee, and as a member of the School of Music’s Graduate Committee. Having joined the faculty of Mason’s School of Music in fall 2006, he has taught courses in sight-singing/ear training, popular music in America, improvisatory music, brass methods, applied tuba, composition, chamber music, and jazz improvisation, as well as collaborations with Mason’s School of Dance. In addition, he was a co-founder and co-conductor of the Colonial Athletic Association’s “Breakfast with the Bands” intercollegiate pep band showcase.
During summers, he has taught tuba and euphonium, conducting, jazz performance, composition, improvisation, chamber music, large ensemble performance, and theory at the Performing Arts Institute at Wyoming Seminary in Kingston, Pennsylvania, the Music, Art, and Theatre (MAT) Camp in Evanston, Wyoming, and the Northern Arizona University Music Camp in Flagstaff, Arizona, and at Mason’s Potomac Arts Academy. He has also coached a professional marching ensemble, “Mix It Up”, at Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, Virginia.
Dr. Nickens was born in Washington DC and grew up in the Fairfax County Public Schools in Alexandria, Virginia. He completed his academic degrees from the Manhattan School of Music, Yale University, and the University of Michigan.