Student Life

"see blue." #selfie: Coleman Scott

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 13, 2016) Want to get to know the people behind some of the biggest student leadership positions on campus? We did, too! That's why we've introduced "see blue." #selfie — a series on UKNow that lets student leaders from across campus tell us a little bit more about themselves and their organizations. Up this week, sophomore music education major and trumpet sensation Coleman Scott!

Coleman Scott is a sophomore education major from Frankfort, Kentucky. Last January, he was named an International Trumpet Guild Young Artist by the largest trumpet organization in the world! Among being involved in more than seven ensembles in the University of Kentucky School of Music as well as marching band and pep band, he also has started his own group called Rose Street Brass. Scott expresses his passion for music in his "see blue." #selfie!

UKNow: What is your major and what year are you?

Coleman Scott: I am a sophomore and I'm a music education major.

UK: Where are you from?

CS: Frankfort, Kentucky.

UK: What made you decide to be a music education major?

CS: Well, I knew I wanted to go into music for a long time — since I was a sophomore in high school. Freshman year was my first year in band. I went to a private Catholic school and we didn't have a band, but after a year under my belt I knew it was what I wanted to do.

UK: In January 2016, you were awarded with the International Trumpet Guild Young Artist Award. Tell me a little about receiving this.

CS: When I came to audition at UK, Dr. (Jason) Dovel told me he wanted to nominate me for this award. It's the largest trumpet organization in the world. He is high up in this organization and he told me he wanted to nominate me. They award it to four people every year. They have a quarterly publication where they feature each winner. It's a worldwide search. I ended up winning! So, I was featured in their journal!

UK: What are some of your involvements at UK? 

CS: I am involved in many ensembles. A lot of people think as a music major the only ensemble is marching band. That's not true. I am in seven or eight in the School of Music. I'm in the UK Symphony Band, the UK Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Combos, the UK Trumpet Ensemble and in the Baroque Trumpet Ensemble. I also founded my own group called Rose Street Brass. We are a brass quintet. We started this because we love music and want out in the community to play for churches and weddings. We play for other people's enjoyment. It's something we believe in. We plan to do a recital here on campus soon. And I am in marching band and pep band.

UK: How old were you when music became a passion of yours?

CS: I was very young when I started to really enjoy it. Music has been playing for as long as I can remember in my house. It has been a big part of my family's life. My mom was a clarinet player and she didn't end up pursuing it into college, but she enjoyed it in high school, and that's how I started to play. She wanted me to try it out. In middle school, I tried out trumpet but I wasn't taking lessons. I had one book and would fool around for half an hour a week. When I got to high school it was cool because I played with other people and that's where it took off. My mom has a video from when I was younger of me conducting to music. So, it's always something that sparked my interest.  

UK: Where do normally perform? 

CS: Normally we perform at the Singletary Center for the ensembles. With Rose Street Brass, we play all over Central Kentucky. We have recitals here in the Singletary Center! For marching band and pep band, we perform at home games and some away football games — we will be going to Jacksonville for the halftime show of the Taxslayer Bowl. Last year, we did a show at the Bands of America Grand National Championship in Lucas Oil Stadium. The next morning, we drove down to Tennessee for the Vanderbilt versus UK football game. We are all over the place when the basketball team plays.

UK: If you could have one super power, what would it be?

CS: I'd probably like to be invisible. That'd be kind of cool!

UK: I hear you went to Utah for a pretty unbelievable opportunity this past summer. What was that like?

CS:  My senior year of high school, for All-State Jazz Band, the director completely changed my outlook on music education. He's my role model now as far as a music educator. He runs an extracurricular music, specifically jazz, program in Utah for students 18 years old and younger. He has 19 ensembles that he runs out there. The program is called Caleb Chapman's Soundhouse. His top band, Crescent Super Band, has played with Maroon 5, Journey, Dave Matthews Band and Trombone Shorty, and his recordings sounded fantastic. I had contacted him after he directed Kentucky's All-State Band and asked if I could come to Utah and observe him. I went this past summer and I got to work with one of his middle school bands which was going on tour in the British Isles. While I was there, he asked me to play on the Crescent Super Band Christmas album called "A Crescent Christmas, Volume 2" which will be on iTunes soon! So, they recorded half while I was there and the other half they recorded after I left.

UK: Do you have any future plans for a music career?

CS: From here, I'll go right into graduate school. I'll get my master's degree, but I'm not sure if I will pursue a doctorate. If I teach at a college level, I'll have to. I am really interested in that. At the same time, I would enjoy teaching middle school, high school or elementary kids doing something like Chapman is doing by opening up his own thing. There are lots of things I would be interested in, but I know I want to play as much as I can and I want to be teaching — both are passions of mine and what you have to do to make progress.

UK: Has there been a mentor that has guided you while at UK?

CS: Vince DiMartino. He used to teach trumpet here for a really long time. He's one of the greatest trumpet players to walk the face of this earth. He's almost 70 and he still plays. I went and played for him last week. Vince comes to UK and still does some stuff with us. He's been the biggest influence on me as a musician. Every time I see him, I feel like I need to practice!

UK: When you have 30 minutes of free time, what do you do?

CS: A lot of times I look for more stuff to do! I am starting a smaller organization, a chapter of the International Trumpet Guild. The goal is we want to meet quarterly and we want to bring in people to do master classes and provide educational and performance opportunities for students in Central Kentucky. Young students can come as an extra place to learn, as well as older people who may have another career but would like to play are also welcome. People who are retired and just beginning to play an instrument are also invited!

UK: Have you made a lot of friends through the School of Music?

CS: For sure. With marching band, it's great for making friends because we get here a week before anyone else does and you get to meet 300 new people that you will be best friends with before school even starts. It's such a close-knit community here and classes are small and together all the time so you become close to them, whether you want to or not — but you do want to because you share the same passion.

UK: What advice would you give to a high school student who wishes to pursue a degree in music from UK? 

CS: I would say that if it's something you're passionate about, then you should follow it. If it's something you're not really sure about, then maybe do something else. If you're passionate about it, don't worry about the job security and money. I've found a lot of happiness because I'm doing what I want to do. As musicians, we are ridiculously brave people. We don't know what job we are going to have or even if we will have a job but that is one thing we all have in common — a deep love for it. If you feel in your heart that you want to do it, don't worry about it, it'll take care of itself.

"see blue." #selfies will appear every other Tuesday on UKNow. Know a student leader we should feature? Contact Rebecca Stratton at rebecca.stratton@uky.edu to nominate someone.

UK is the University for Kentucky. At UK, we are educating more students, treating more patients with complex illnesses and conducting more research and service than at any time in our 150-year history. To read more about the UK story and how you can support continued investment in your university and the Commonwealth, go to: uky.edu/uk4ky. #uk4ky #seeblue