|Degrees:||B.Mus. (Composition, Toronto), M.Mus. (Composition, Toronto), M.M. (Music Theory, North Texas), Ph.D. (Theory, Eastman), A.R.C.T. (Piano Performance)|
|Phone:||613-520-2600 x 3735|
|Office:||A929 Loeb Building|
James McGowan is a music theorist, pianist, and composer. His primary research interests involve the theory, and analysis of tonal jazz and popular music, as well as 18th- and 19th-century art music. His work has been published in Jazz Perspectives, Journal of Jazz Studies, Intégral, Discourses in Music, Proceedings of The Phenomenon of Singing International Symposium V and CAML Review, with other research forthcoming. He was accepted as a Fellow of the prestigious Mannes Institute for the Advanced Study of Music Theory (2008). He is the incoming editor of the Jazz Theory Bibliography, searchable online database (SMT-Jazz and UNC Greensboro).
Dr. McGowan teaches music theory, musicianship, and composition. He was the recipient of a Carleton New Faculty Teaching Award (2013), a Carleton Teaching Achievement Award (2013), a Carleton University Student Association Teaching Excellence Award (2012), and MSU Teaching Award for Humanities (2007, McMaster University).
As a pianist, he specializes in improvised musics, and has performed in Canada, the United States, and Europe. He has recently performed and recorded with Modasaurus (a jazz-fusion quartet including Carleton alumni, the HML Trio), jazz-gospel quintet EvensongEnsemble, percussionist Dong-Won Kim, saxophonist Peter Woods, jazz vocalist Michael C. Hanna, percussionist Jesse Stewart, and many others.
As a choral conductor, Dr. McGowan has directed several choirs including the Carleton University Choir, Carleton Advanced Choral Ensemble, Trinity United Choir (Ottawa), Laurentian University Choir, and McMaster Vocal Ensemble. He is an award-winning composer and songwriter for voice, choir, chamber ensemble, orchestra, electronic music, and jazz combos. He has also collaborated as a choral arranger for many artists including Ian Tamblyn, Allister MacGillivray, Jeff Wiseman, and Kalle Mattson.
Selected video links:
- Modasaurus: “Funky Pterodactyl” (McGowan 2016). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GT5Od0-SKkc
- Jeff Wiseman with the Carleton University Choir, directed by James McGowan: “Silver Eyes,” “Wading Through the Snow” (arr. McGowan 2015). www.youtube.com/watch?v=IEQAZkxE_J8
- James McGowan: “The Climb” Prelude and Fugue (McGowan 2012, based on melodies recorded by Miley Cyrus). www.youtube.com/watch?v=G5V5iG83iLU