Music

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Music students have performance opportunities from the first semester onward.

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Stellar faculty includes 19 members of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Grammy winners and performing and recording artists, augmented by guests such as acclaimed DSO conductor Jaap van Zweden.

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Numerous ensembles and programs, including the Meadows Opera Theatre, provide multiple opportunities for performing on and off campus.

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Multiple degrees are offered in performance, composition, music therapy, education and more at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

John Bryant

Adjunct Lecturer, Drum Set and Analysis of Music Production; Interim Director of the Meadows Jazz Orchestra

John Bryant is a drummer, percussionist, composer and music producer residing and working in Dallas, Texas. Originally from Virginia, he moved to Dallas and majored in music at the University of North Texas, where he performed and recorded with the One O’Clock Lab Band. He has recorded and/or performed with numerous artists including Ray Charles, Delbert McClinton, Joe Walsh, Lightnin' Hopkins and Doc Severinsen. Bryant has played, composed and produced music for many different types of projects that include regional artists, touring shows, major motion pictures, and documentary films for PBS and National Geographic.

In early 1974, Bryant joined the acclaimed world music group Paul Winter Consort, playing drums and percussion. Based out of New York City, he toured extensively throughout the country doing concerts and university clinics; he also recorded with the Consort and Paul Stookey in New York, working with producer Phil Ramone.

In 1975 Bryant moved to Los Angeles to join Ray Charles. He toured for two years throughout North America and Europe, playing TV shows and concerts in addition to recording three albums with him. He continued to work with Ray Charles from 1995 to 2001.

Bryant moved to Dallas in 1976 to form and lead the group "Phyrework." The group had a national LP release on Mercury Records in 1978 and toured extensively through 1986. From 1986 to the present, Bryant has undertaken studio work as a player and/or producer on many hundreds of sessions for various artists, film scores and commercials. He also performs regularly with regional acts and touring shows that require versatile musicianship. In addition, he has been commissioned to compose three works for the Dallas Black Dance Theatre.

Bryant is a founding member of the world music percussion group D’Drum, and acted as producer of the group’s collaboration with composer and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame drummer Stewart Copeland and the Dallas Symphony on the world premiere of Gamelan D'Drum, a three-movement concerto commissioned for D'Drum.

John Bryant has performed live and/or in the studio with numerous musical legends, including Ray Charles, Wayne Brady, Eric Burdon and the Animals, Paul Stookey, The Neville Brothers, Lightnin' Hopkins, Ray Price, Jerry Jeff Walker, David 'Fathead' Newman, Gary Burton, the Paul Winter Consort, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Oliver Nelson, Thad Jones, Doc Severinsen, Della Reese, Red Garland, Leslie Gore, The Drifters, Mary Wells and the Supremes, and Little Anthony and the Imperials. He has also rehearsed with Paul McCartney, the Doobie Brothers, Peter Frampton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Keb Mo, and James Jamerson.
At SMU, he serves as an adjunct lecturer teaching drum set and analysis of music production.

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