At a recent meeting of around 30 young musicians and music education professionals, part of the Musical Progressions Roundtable we asked people "who or what has guided and inspired your musical journey so far?"
There was a broad group of people at the event - 11-year-old pianists, music students from many different genres, orchestra managers, school teachers, arts organisation leaders, funders etc. - but, still, the diversity of inspirations that people cited was incredibly broad. Plus it was notable that people in classical careers were just as likely to single out jazz musicians, Indian musicians just as likely to point to classical violinists, etc. About a quarter of people said that friends and families had been the ones who inspired and guided them most; about a third named their teachers.
Here's the list...
Antonio Abreu (Venezuelan conductor and founder of El Sistema), Anyone who can play piano/guitar to entertain off the hoof, Billie Holliday (jazz singer), BIMM (British and Irish Modern Music Institute), Brother , Buddy Rich (jazz drummer), Burial (electronic recording artist), Callum Chambers (footballer), Community musicians who engage children in singing, Dad, David Byrne (singer-songwriter), Dom Major (singer-songwriter), Esbjörn Svensson Trio (jazz piano trio), Family and friends, Famularo (drummer and speaker), Frank Zappa (jazz/funk musician), Friends, Itzak Perlman (classical violinist), John Whitehead (first violin teacher), Johnny Marr (singer-songwriter), Jon Hopkins (producer and musician), Katy Perry (pop musician), Keith Jarett (jazz pianist), Kenny Wheeler (jazz trumpeter), Marin Alsop (woman conductor), Mount Kimbie (electronic music duo), Music teacher, Nigel Kennedy (classical violinist), Nitin Sawhney (British Indian musician, producer, composer), Oscar Peterson (jazz pianist) , Peter Edge (brass band leader when 16), Red Hot Chilli Peppers (funk rock band), Rob Thomas (singer-songwriter), Robert Wyatt (musician), Roots Manuva (rapper), Snarky Puppy (instrumental fusion band), Stephen Hough (classical pianist), Terry Bozzid (jazz/funk drummer), Tom Hardy (Bassoon teacher), Witold Malcuzynski (classical pianist), Wynton Marsalis (jazz trumpeter), Young severely disabled musician who could suddenly compose like Puccini with an ipad, Young musicians in the National Youth Orchestra of GB