ExpertiseJournalist,Music Educator,Professional Musician,Composer,Professional Consultant
- Aaron Copland School of Music: Master of Arts in Music Performance
Music Writer Highlights
Jim's first article contribution was in 1992 when he wrote a transcription and analysis of a Pat Martino guitar solo for DownBeat Magazine. Jim went on to write three more articles for DownBeat, including transcriptions of guitarist John Scofield, trumpeter Miles Davis, and an educational piece on harmony for composers. Among his many credits are educational articles and reviews for:
- Acoustic Guitar
- Jazz Improv
- Just Jazz Guitar
- Cadence Magazine
- All About Jazz
- The Newark Star Ledger
- The Asbury Park Press
- The Monmouth Journal
In 1998 Jim wrote a transcription book on the music of guitarist Joe Pass for the Hal Leonard Publishing Corporation.
Lifelong Guitar Enthusiast
Jim's journey in music started in an unusual place; on a day trip to Nogales, Mexico, with family friends from Scottsdale Arizona, when Jim was 11 years old. Guitars seemed to be everywhere, and after much pestering, Jim's mom bought him the toy; a beaten up old acoustic guitar with the strings practically falling off.
Becoming a Dedicated Young Musician
Upon returning home to New Jersey, Jim registered for music lessons and the guitar soon became his favorite toy. A few months into the lessons Jim's assignment was Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, and he realized if he practiced hard enough he could play it correctly. That was extremely important to Jim and made his parents very proud.
An Introduction to Jimi Hendrix's Music
A short time later, a neighborhood friend took the chance of sneaking Jim into his older brother's bedroom to share absolutely off limits Jimi Hendrix records! After hearing the virtuoso guitarist for the first time, Jim's life was changed forever.
Music Performance Master Degree
Jim went on to pursue music professionally and achieved his Master's degree in Music Performance from the Aaron Copland School of Music in 1998. The list of amazing musicians Jim has studied with includes:
- Jazz legend Pat Martino
- Steely Dan guitarist Steve Khan
- New York studio ace Rodney Jones
- The late, great guitarist, composer and arranger Ted Dunbar
- Jazz pianist extraordinaire Kenny Baron
- Classical guitar virtuoso Christian Taggarty
- World-renowned saxophonist Jimmy Heath
- The late pianist and composer Sir Roland Hanna
One of the biggest highlights of Jim's performance career was a night at Lincoln Center in 1998 celebrating the career of Jimmy Heath with an all star band featuring Wynton Marsalis, Lew Soloff, Mike Mossman and others.
After studying with Ted Dunbar at the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University for four years, Jim realized his greatest passion was composing music. In 2006, after a five year crash course in computer based home recording from one of his top students and master musician Jason Mattia, Jim began to license his original music to television, advertising and film. To date, his music has appeared in over forty television shows including:
- Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations on the Discovery Channel
- True Life on MTV
- Clean House on the Learning Channel
- The History Detectives on PBS
- Commercials for Delta Airlines and Rutgers University
- The independent films Brunch and Cold, Dark and Yesterday
Music School Instructor and Founder
Jim started teaching his first guitar lessons at age 19. He realized immediately he had a passion for sharing music with students and in 2003, after teaching for private schools and two colleges, he rented commercial space and opened his own music school in New Jersey. Through trial and error, hard work, and with the help of business consultant Sam Beckford and self-help and motivational guru Steve Chandler, Jim built the teaching business. When he started, he was the only teacher, teaching some fifty to sixty private students. The School of Music and Drama now has a front desk staff, ten teachers, and continues to be successful.
Jim has also advised and been a consultant for several companies such as Master Strap Guitar Straps and Best Music Stuff.
More About Jim Josselyn
If you'd like to learn more about Jim, the School of Music and Drama, or any of his other endeavors, you can connect with him via LinkedIn.