Steve Garrison: Multi-talented BSU Musician is on the Move
By Armand Hodge
Music is all around us. Anywhere you turn, music can be heard in any direction. It can be heard in our cars, our homes, even in our classrooms. Even here on campus you will see students listening to different types of music as they walk to class or pursue other tasks on campus. It's not even a surprise that we have so many musicians here at Bowie State. After all the D.C. metropolitan area is one of the most talented music scenes in the country. But what is surprising is that we have some musicians who have already begun that step of not just trying to become a great musician in the country, but in the world.
Steve Garrison has already begun to take that giant step. Garrison currently a sophomore music technology major here at Bowie State shows many talents when it comes to music. Garrison is a saxophone player, flute player, piano player, and a songwriter as well. Even though Garrison loves playing and fell in love with the saxophone when he was younger, it still wasn't the first instrument he learned to play.
"I started playing the piano at 7 years old. I couldn't find anybody who would give me saxophone lessons, so I figured I try the piano." Garrison recalls when he first fell in love with the saxophone. "A guest saxophone player at my church, I remember hearing and enjoying the song he played and ever since then I fell in love with it."
Growing up, Garrison gained the support of friends and made more friends playing the saxophone. "My circle of friends actually grew. They actually supported me; most of my friends liked music as well, so it really wasn't no problem. Garrison recalled growing up he listened to oldies. "I listened to a lot of oldies, Donny Hathaway, The Isley Brothers, all types of old school." Unlike most jazz musicians his age, Garrison has performed at Blues Alley in Georgetown, Bohemian Cavern in Washington, Disney World and Universal Studios.
Garrison said his most important performance so far would have to be when he performed in Japan. "Performing over there taught me that people oversees appreciate music more, they enjoy and are willing to listen to different types of music more than people here in our country."
Many artists from different genres have inspired Garrison. Some to name are Jazz artist Gerald Albright, R&B artists Maxwell and Dwele, and Gospel artist Fred Hammond. Even though many artists have inspired Garrison, there is one artist he would like to perform with if he had the chance. That artist would have to be Maxwell. "I like his style of music. He allows his band to play freely and express themselves. I like having that feeling of being free and being able to express myself."
Garrison believes he brings something else to jazz music. "I want to reshape the sound of the saxophone. When I play I want my music to be down to earth. I definitely want to take jazz to another level."