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Marlin McKay named Director of Bands and Assistant Professor of Music at Georgetown College

As a new member of the faculty at Georgetown College, Dr. Marlin McKay brings a unique skill set and a fascinating background to his role as Director of Bands and Assistant Professor of Music.

McKay, a jazz recording artist, is originally from Amarillo, Texas, and studied Education and Jazz Studies at the University of Wisconsion–Stevens Point. For McKay, his time achieving his bachelor’s degree was crucial to his love of performing.

Marlin McKay

“While attending UWSP, I discovered my love for jazz as a performer and recorded my first record that landed me a spot in the prestigious Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Residency,” said McKay. “This residency provided me with an amazing opportunity to study alongside other young artist from around the world with jazz legends in the field.”

From there, McKay went on to participate in the Stearns Institute for Young Artists, where he would eventually meet his musical mentor, the late Dr. David Baker. It was through Baker that McKay would receive an offer attend Indiana University to study and perform in the acclaimed Baker Band.

“While studying at IU, I had the great fortune of also examining commercial music through my graduate assistantship with the IU Soul Revue, a group dedicated to preserving, performing, and advancing the diaspora of Black American Music,” McKay said.

After graduating with his master’s degree from IU, McKay worked in the music department at IU before eventually taking a professorship at Kentucky State University, where he taught for several years before recently accepting his position at Georgetown.

McKay said he has big plans for his time at Georgetown and is excited about the possibilities in his new position. “I plan to expand the size of the ensemble and bring my experience with Jazz and Commercial music together to create a one of a kind experience with a modern New Orleans infused marching style to Georgetown College,” McKay said.

His unique position as both a musician and a professor is a benefit to music students in helping them gain real-world, relevant knowledge. “In addition to my teaching philosophy, my biggest joy in my career has been my ability to have one foot on the bandstand and one foot in the classroom,” McKay said. “I feel that this keeps the information relevant for the classroom by keeping a finger on the pulse of a changing world.”

From Georgetown College

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