Jordan Lucero interviews Lauren Passarelli

On Mar 14, 2012, at 12:47 PM, Jordan Lucero wrote:

Thank you!
I loved reading all of your answers!

Hey Lauren,

I have to do an interview for my professional development seminar and I was wondering if you could answer some questions? It’s due by friday so the sooner you answer would be the better! If you could answer these that would mean the world to me! Thank you! Jordan Lucero

Here’s the questions:

1.What is it that initially got you interested in music? What’s your musical background?
2.Did you do anything musically before you came to Berklee?

Saw the beatles on Ed Sullivan when i was 4. Had a plastic guitar at age 2, got better plastic guitars every christmas til age 7. 1st guitar made of wood from EJ Korvettes Dept. Store, inherited from my uncle. Begged for lessons from 7-9 yrs old. A teacher in my town came to the house & said i was too small. Me Mom found another teacher in the town paper. Started lessons at 9. Got into the Modern Method books by Bill leavitt at age 11. Was playing 9 yrs before I came to berklee. Performing lots of private function gigs with bands. Writing songs since age 10. Recording since age 11. Taught lessons since I was 14.

3.What was your experience at Berklee like for you?

Berklee had just been accredited. I attended from 1978-1982 & it was still basically a trade school. Didn’t feel like a school. Felt like an old hotel. There were only 2 buildings 1140 & 150 Mass Ave. where I lived in the dorm for 6 semesters. There were very few women, even fewer women guitarists. I was put down for loving the Beatles, writing songs, & playing a strat. (Where’s your jazz guitar? “I have Carole king in my office”). There weren’t any guitar amps in the classrooms other than the hand made olivers that had 5 inputs 4 guitarists & a bass player would all go through one 8 or 10 in speaker. Instead of that, I wheeled my polytone amp to school on a luggage carrier & carried my strat in a hardshell case in the other hand to my playing classes. By then I lived on Peterborough St. I was a performance major on guitar & the first woman to finish the program.

4.Where did your career go after Berklee and what did you have to do to get there?

They asked me to stay & teach but I had to wait 2 years for an opening in the guitar dept. I still have the 2 or 3 rejection letters that they, “couldn’t hire me at this time”. I gigged at restaurants & hotels because they paid well. I babysat, taught guitar at a Russian school in Brookline & sold very few time-life books, & gave private guitar lessons. I was the first woman to join the guitar faculty in 1984 & later in 2009 first in the guitar dept. to be promoted to full professor. I’ve engineered other artists’ & bands’ recordings, played informally with Pat Metheny & Steve Rodby, Melissa Etheridge & Leni Stern. I am continually learning new recording techniques, software, new instruments, writing & recording new songs, reading books on all aspects of music, artistry & creativity.

5. Describe your life as a songwriter.

I’m a performing songwriter, multi instrumentalist, vocalist & recording engineer. I’ve always loved hearing the music in my head come to life in a recording by inviting friends to play or by playing the instruments myself. I co- founded an inde label (feather records) & publishing co. (cotton moon music, bmi) in 1989 with a friend from berklee, Cindy Brown. I love having written so much that I know I can turn on the creative muscle anytime. I always wanted to write perform & record my own music & i have been doing that. CDs include, Blast of Love, Playing with the Pieces, Back to the Bone, Shadow Language & Among the Ruins. I’ve had songs in soap operas, inde films & I was on major label for a one song deal. I’d like to have artists cover my songs, get more songs in films & sell out of my physical CDs.

6.What are you doing now and is there anything you would have liked to have done?

Well Blast of Love is brand new so I’ve been writing, arranging, recording, producing, mixing, singing, playing & mastering that. now i’m doing TV, cable, & radio shows promoting it. i perform twice a week on i teach on a world wide guitar forum called Jamplay, code #55DB3375AA. I’m writing a songwriting & creativty book, taping more videos for jamplay & teaching at berklee fulltime, getting better at playing drums & piano. I have tons of time off to dream & create. I love my life. I would have loved to have been a close friend of George Harrison’s.

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