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Aaron West - Bio

Aaron West is a versatile musician with a variety of performance experiences, an education in audio recording and production, and a passion for teaching. Aaron was born in Greensboro, NC, in 1998 into a very musical family. Choosing to play the saxophone in his middle school band program, he quickly developed an interest in jazz music. Throughout middle and high school, he attended the John Coltrane Jazz Workshop in High Point, NC, every summer he was able and returned to work as a counselor. Aaron graduated from Grimsley High School in 2016 and then immediately enrolled in Appalachian State University in Boone, NC, for his undergraduate studies in music.

During his time at App State, Aaron co-founded the funk band Electric Jelly Funk and became the musical director of the group. Electric Jelly Funk has released two studio recordings, the album "Room 300" in 2017, and the EP "Get It Right" in 2019. Another successful band Aaron played in was Terrabang, also based out of Boone. Terrabang has released one studio recording, the album "Seed" in 2018. Aaron also performed around the community countless times in various jazz groups.

Contributing to his studies, Aaron worked as an intern under Benjy Johnson at the Earthtones Recording Studio in Greensboro, NC, in the summer of 2017. Fulfilling his degree requirements and personal interests, Aaron also worked as an intern at SE Systems in Greensboro, NC, a production company which puts on Merlefest, one of the country's premier music festivals. In the spring of 2020, Aaron graduated from Appalachian State University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Music Industry Studies with a concentration in Recording and Production, as well as a minor in General Business.

Following his graduation, Aaron moved to Tampa, FL, in 2020 to begin pursuing his Master of Music Degree in Jazz Performance at the University of South Florida, studying with Jack Wilkins. As a Graduate Assistant, some of his duties at school included working as the student audio engineer for the jazz department of USF, recording and mixing performances by the school jazz ensembles. Aaron graduated with his Master's Degree in the spring of 2022. Currently, Aaron performs often with the band Hot Tonic, voted "Best Jazz Ensemble" in the Best of the Bay awards. Beginning in the fall semester of 2022, Aaron has accepted an adjunct professor position at the University of South Florida teaching three classes. He looks forward to continuing his education outside of school, performing often, and continuing to teach.