ALEC
VILLARS
HUNTLEY

Keyboardist - Jazz, Funk, R&B, Salsa, Rock, Americana

 

About

I am a jazz keyboardist, writer, and educator currently living in Denton, TX. I earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of North Texas in 2020. I currently work as both a musician and an English tutor.

I can be heard at small jazz venues throughout Denton and the DFW Metroplex, with the California Bay Area soul group The Anachronistics, and in many performances at the University of North Texas.

I teach private lessons both in person and online. To these lessons I bring ten years of experience as a teacher in private and academic settings, with children and adults of all ages and skill levels.

Professionally, I've worked not only as a performer and teacher of music but also as a college test prep tutor and paralegal. I'm an expert with the music notation software Sibelius, and I am comfortable with DAWs, synthesizers, and other music technology. You can download my CV here.

 

I am also available for transcriptions and notation projects. Check out a few of my transcriptions on my Soundslice page.

Please don't hesitate to contact me for inquiries about lessons, performances, transcriptions, or other services (or just to say "hi")!

Photo by Molly Kate Photography, 2018

 
 

Writing

I enjoy writing, and I hold my work to high standards. Here, I'll share some of my writing from graduate school. This is academic writing about music, but mostly I try to write in a way that is accessible even to non-academics and non-musicians.

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My dissertation for my 2020 Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of North Texas. In it, I identify and discuss the many elements that characterize the iconic sound of Vince Guaraldi: his stylistic influences, commonly played licks, and compositional devices. I conclude with a reflection on the seeming discrepancy between Guaraldi's widespread popularity and his lukewarm critical reputation.

This dissertation was accompanied by a lecture-recital, which was recorded live on October 26, 2020, and can be viewed here.

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In this paper, I discuss how Wind Waker uses adaptive and dynamic music during the game's battle sequences. Many aspects of the game’s soundtrack constitute “micky-mousing,” a term used to describe film music that cartoonishly mimics the on-screen action. Full transcriptions of the music of three battle sequences are included as appendices.

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In this paper, I formally analyze these twin compositions on one of my favorite Brad Mehldau albums. I examine the way the pieces use melodic repetition and motivic development to tell the story that Mehldau described in the storybook once published on his website.

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This paper reports on the history of the music and dance form Danzón in Cuba and Mexico. The genre has frequently been associated with African heritage (blackness), and this paper explores how that association has shaped its public perception over the last century .

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I argue in this paper that the first jazz musicians who experimented with the synthesizer used it in ways that were congruent with what they had already been doing. Though the synthesizer added a new tool to the arsenal of jazz keyboard artists, it did not fundamentally change their aesthetic goals.

 
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