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University Advancement

Media Contact: Keion Moradi or
Carmen Ramos Chandler
(818) 677-2130
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Public Relations and Strategic Communications


Award-Winning Musician, Composer Gordon Goodwin Returns to
Alma Mater with Summer Jazz Workshop for Teens

(NORTHRIDGE, Calif., July 18, 2007) — Award-winning Cal State Northridge alumnus Gordon Goodwin will launch his first summer jazz workshop featuring his Big Phat Band on Monday, July 30, at his alma mater.

The camp runs through Aug. 4, providing an interactive learning experience for teens ages 14 through 18. Together with CSUN music professors Ron Cunha, Matt Harris and Gary Pratt, Goodwin designed a curriculum covering such topics as jazz history, music technology, music business and improvisation. The Big Phat Band also will be offering master classes.

The Big Phat Band will perform opening night for the campers. The band will hold a midweek concert, where students will be invited to play along with the band. The summer jazz workshop wraps with a public show 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 3 at the Northridge United Methodist Church, located at 9650 Reseda Blvd., Northridge.

Goodwin credited his experience at a summer jazz camp while he was in high school with propelling him toward his career as a professional musician. "It was truly a life changing experience. I learned more in that week than the entire year preceding it," he said, adding he wanted to share that experience with today’s young musicians.

Goodwin said he enjoyed his time at Northridge, with its strong music department, and felt it was the obvious location for his camp.

Goodwin honed his jazz skills at CSUN, where he wrote his first film score for the cult film Attack of the Killer Tomatoes in 1978. Since then Goodwin won a Grammy Award for scoring The Incredibles and has scored other popular films like The Guardian and Snakes On A Plane. His latest album, "The Phat Pack," was nominated for a Grammy Award. The band has a new album slated for release later this year.

"The short term goal is to educate and inspire young jazz players, but from a broader viewpoint, the survival of jazz is dependent on exposing the music to younger people whose taste is still evolving," he said. "Many of the musicians that come to this camp will no doubt go on to be professional players, but even those that donít will retain a love of jazz and all music content. And that is a worthy goal!"

For more information about the Big Phat Band Summer Jazz Workshop, visit, contact Cunha at (818) 677-3158 or

Cal State Northridge is home to several internationally acclaimed music ensembles, including its Symphony Orchestra, Jazz A Band, Wind Ensemble and the Northridge Singers. The university’s music department is full accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music and is ranked in the top 25 accredited public university programs in the nation.

California State University, Northridge has 34,500 full- and part-time students and offers 62 bachelor’s and 50 master’s degrees as well as 28 teaching credential programs. Founded in 1958, CSUN is among the largest single-campus universities in the nation and the only four-year public university in the San Fernando Valley. The university serves as the intellectual, economic and cultural heart of the Valley and beyond.

California State University, Northridge at 18111 Nordhoff Street, Northridge, CA 91330 / Phone: 818-677-1200 / © 2006 CSU Northridge