Born: November 7, 1950
Don Mopsick began his musical career as a teenager in his hometown of Linden, NJ, performing on trumpet and bass guitar for local ethnic dances. After High School, he attended Rutgers University and Berklee College of Music. His first professional gigs were with Rosemary Clooney around Boston.
Mopsick’s musical interests have always been eclectic and far-ranging. He was graduated from The Manhattan School of Music in 1977 with a degree in Tuba Performance. While in New York, he performed on tuba and bass with The Smith Street Society, Lee Castle (with the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra), Jim Chapin, John Carisi, Benny Ventura, the Paul Jefferey Octet and others....
Primary InstrumentBass, acoustic
LocationCape Coral, FL
Willing to teachIntermediate to advanced students
Credentials/BackgroundI studied Music Education at Rutgers University. I've taught classroom music at the Middle, High School and College levels. I created and designed a jazz recorder curriculum for grades 3-5 for Riverwalk Jazz. Available to travel for clinics, jazz camps, etc. nationwide.
Clinic/Workshop InformationFor younger students, my approach to teaching swing rhythm and improvisation is through first memorizing simple swinging riffs using one or two notes at the beginning stage; then ear training through mimicking and games. For older, more advanced students who read music only, my method of teaching swing rhythm feel is through listening to examples, having them first sing their written instrumental parts, then approaching playing "off the page" and soloing as above emphasizing swing rhythm and restricted note choices at first. Bass "master class" focus is on the elements of playing time using "beautiful quarter notes;" song forms 12-bar blues, then 32-bar AABA "I Got Rhythm." Also, I cover the elements of constructing walking bass lines...