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Music Professor Sounds All the Right Notes

By Alex Thomas

Spectrum Staff Writer

Bowie State University is home to many gifted and talented students, and the next success story in the world could come from this institution because of an instructor, like technical music professor Dr. Gilbert Pryor, who helped them along the way.

Pryor earned his degree in technical music from Howard University. He is always willing to offer help, and individual time to anyone who needs assistance with their music. His experience working with other musical acts helped to expanded his knowledge of the industry.

“I was fortunate enough to be in the orchestra of Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight, The Temptations, and The Four Tops," Pryor said in a recent inter view. "A lot of those acts came through Washington, D.C. That experience enabled me to bring to the classroom an actual application that I can share with students about the exposure of the industry from my point of view as it affected me as a musician."

Pryor’s experience put him in position to be the perfect instructor for the students here at Bowie State. Pryor always is willing to lend a helping hand to anybody with questions. He is well equipped with knowledge of various aspects of the music industry. “I am the coordinator for music technology; which employs the technical tools that people use today for music production.”

The impact music can have on a community is huge. Music is something that brings people of many diverse backgrounds together. The sound, rhythm, and art of music is an amazing thing. Pryor will showcase his talents at Jazz @ 5 on April 29. He is co-directing the event with Dr. Clarence Knight, retired chair of the Department of Fine and Performing Arts. The event will be presented by the 100k Bulldog Club & Bowie State University Department of Athletics.

“That’s something Dr. Knight and his Masonic lodge have put together," Pryor said. "We have been doing that for close to ten years. The community jazz ensemble is a group of people who come together. ... to keep the message and meaning and the purpose of jazz alive. Because culturally, that’s our music, that’s black music."

The event will run from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. at 8950 Good Luck Road in Lanham, Maryland. The donation is $55 and a portion of the proceeds from the event will benefit the athletics department, Pryor said.