NASHVILLE, Tenn. (August 29, 2007) Yamaha is proud to announce 28-year-old jazz pianist and teacher Matthew Fogg is the first endorsee under a new program titled Artists in Education. Living up to Yamaha's long and dedicated history of supporting music education, Yamaha Corporate Artist Affairs, Inc. has developed this new program to support those devoted to both creating and teaching music.
"This program was important to us because we wanted to be able to support the world-class musicians who also dedicate their time to education," says Chris Gero, vice president of Yamaha Corporate Artist Affairs, Inc.
Fogg said he couldn't be more thrilled to be welcomed into the Yamaha artist family and to be recognized for both his playing and his teaching, two things that hold equal importance in his life.
"It is an exciting new step forward for all of Yamaha as we recognize the contributions to music and music education by these new Yamaha Artist Educators," says Mike Bates, director of Yamaha Institutional and Commercial Services. "Far from the old adage 'those who can't perform teach,' these fine musicians are also straight-ahead great performers, inspiring their students to reach for the highest quality performances they can achieve
showing them how it's done."
Fogg's musical journey began as a trumpet player at the age of 10, but after taking an interest in legendary jazz musicians Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans and Keith Jarrett during his high school years, he quickly developed a passion for jazz piano.
He graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a degree in Music Education with an emphasis on piano. Following graduation, Fogg embarked upon a career as an educator, working as the director of choral music at Morse High School in Bath, Maine. However, ever drawn to the world of creating and performing, Fogg maintained an active schedule as an artist as well.
"It was never a question of either/or for me. I always wanted to be a teacher, but playing came very natural to me as well," says Fogg. "Ultimately I ended up with two separate career paths that were joined by the love of music. I feel like being an educator complements being an artist because it leads me through a constant process of discovery."
While at UNH, Fogg began a musical collaboration with vocalist Nicole Hajj, and it was with her that he recorded Live at the Azure Café, an album that garnered glowing reviews and received airplay in numerous states and half a dozen countries.
In 2005, he was asked to join an impressive roster of artists performing for jazz legend Clary Terry's 85th birthday celebration. In May 2006, he released This is What You Want, an album that allowed Fogg to experiment with vintage keyboards and embraced a wide range of musical styles. As with Azure, it was greeted with consistently positive reviews and earned him special praise for his keyboard and arranging skills.
Fogg continues to educate, currently spending his daylight hours as the Music Education/Choral Music Director for the Lyman Moore Middle School in Portland, Maine. He is also the adjunct professor at Bowdoin College and at the University of Maine at Augusta.
In the fall of 2006, he joined the band Jaye Drew and A Moving Train. They are currently working on their debut R&B/funk/rock album.
New Program Celebrates Educators and Musicians