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School of Music


Jazz Audition and Scholarship Information

Students must play a jazz audition for the jazz faculty, but will also be expected to play for the teachers of your primary instrument (applied area). Contact the appropriate area for specific audition expectations:

Students must complete a jazz audition for the jazz faculty, but will also be expected to audition for the teachers of your primary instrument (applied area). Look for specific audition expectations by the appropriate area:  Piano, Woodwinds, Brass, Percussion, Strings (Guitarists contact Bert Ligon).
Contact Bert Ligon or 803-777-6565.
Prepare 3 "standard" tunes:

  • Medium Swing
  • Ballad
  • Straight eighth (bossa nova, samba)

Be prepared to play melody and improvise on each tune.

  • Play "Blues" in any key of your choice. Be able to play a blues melody (head) and improvise.
  • Major and minor scales and arpeggios
  • The audition will also consist of sight-reading different styles of music. Jazz, Latin, Straight 8th (Latin or rock). 

Pianists and Guitarists are expected to play the melody and improvise and will be asked to "comp" the chord changes as well. 

Bassists will be asked to play basslines that outline the harmony and reflect the rhythmic style of the selection. Bassists may also choose to improvise. Bassists are encouraged to experience acoustic/upright and electric bass, and may audition on either or both. Some part of the audition should be on upright bass. Bassists should contact Craig Butterfield prior to audition.

Drums and Percussion
Contact Scott Herring at 803-777-2155.
Demonstrate various styles including:

  • Swing: Medium to fast swing and shuffle
  • Straight Eighths: bossa nova, mambo, salsa, samba, songo, funk, pop, etc.

Be prepared to play Etude: Drum Audition No. 1
Sight-reading: Be prepared to trade 4s and 8s on all of the above styles.

Jazz scholarships are available for outstanding undergraduate students of saxophone, trumpet, trombone, piano, bass and drums who are interested in pursuing arranging and performance degrees in jazz studies. There are a limited number of graduate assistantships available in jazz improvisation, jazz theory, arranging, applied lessons (jazz and traditional), small combos and big bands. There is an opportunity for the students to play and write music for all the ensembles.

Jazz Standards List

A Foggy Day
All Blues
All of Me
All the Things You Are
Autumn Leaves
Blue Bossa
But Beautiful
Cantaloupe Island
Darn That Dream
Days of Wine and Roses
Dolphin Dance
Don't Get Around Much Anymore
Fly Me to the Moon
For Once in my Life
Groovin' High
Have You Met Miss Jones
How High the Moon
I Remember Clifford
I Remember You
In a Mellow Tone
I've Got Rhythm
Joy Spring
Just Friends
Just in Time
Lady is a Tramp
Like Someone in Love
My Little Suede Shoes
My Romance
Night in Tunisia
On a Clear Day
Once I Had a Secret Love
Out of Nowhere
Satin Doll
Scrapple from the Apple
Someday My Prince Will Come
Song For My Father
St. Thomas
Star Eyes
Stolen Moments
Sweet Georgia Brown
Take the A Train
The More I See You
There Is No Greater Love
There Will Never Be Another You
Time After Time
Watch What Happens
Watermelon Man
Whisper Not
Yardbird Suite

Angel Eves
As Time Goes By
Body and Soul
Come Rain or Come Shine
Easy Livin'
God Bless the Child
Here's That Rainy Day
I Can't Get Started
I Love You
In a Sentimental Mood
It Might as Well Be Spring
Mood Indigo
Moonlight In Vermont
My Did Flame
My Funny Valentine
September Song
Sophisticated Lady
Stella By Starlight
The Nearness of You
What's New
When Sunny Gets Blue

Carnival (A Day in the Life)
Days of Wine and Roses
Girl From Ipanema
Green Dolphin Street
How Insensitive
My Cherie Amour
Old Devil Moon
Once I Loved
One Note Samba
Quiet Nights (Corcovedo)
Shadow of Your Smile
You are the Sunshine of My Life

All Blues
Au Privave
Billie's Bounce
Blue Monk
Blue Train
Blues Walk
Now's the Time
Sonny Moon for Two
Straight No Chaser
Tenor Madness

Long list of Jazz Standards

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.