I am currently finishing a Ph.D. in k-12 Educational Leadership at TUI University. Prior to this, I was an Urban Education Fellow in the Urban Education Policy Program at the Graduate School at Brown University. Additionally, I have an M.A.Ed in Teaching and Instruction from TUI University and a Bachelor’s of Music degree in Jazz Composition from Berklee College of Music.
Billy Buchanan (1983 – ) was born in Providence, RI. He attended several schools in the Providence Public School District and graduated from the Hope Essential School in 2001. Having developed a deep interest in music, he applied for admission to the Berklee College of Music where he began his undergraduate studies. After completing his Baccalaureate degree in May of 2006 he joined the US Army to serve as a bandsman. He completed basic combat training at Fort Jackson, SC in September 2006 and was an accelerated graduate of the Armed Forces School of Music at Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek. After completing his training, Billy was stationed with the 1st Armored Division Band in Wiesbaden, Germany.
During this time, Billy performed at the MusikMesse twice (2007 and 2009) as a Trace Elliot/DR strings artist. He was also deployed to Iraq from September 2007 thru November 2008. During the deployment he completed his first Master’s Degree and began working on his Ph.D. He also had the opportunity to perform for many of the newly formed government’s top officials and dignitaries, including the First Lady of Iraq, President Al-Maliki, and several regional Governors. While touring in Iraq with the 1st Armored Division Band, he had the opportunity to compose a piece that would be premiered in Iraq (Bienvenue en Arrière). The piece was written for Nonet (ala Miles Davis and Gil Evans – The Birth of the Cool) and incorporated elements of traditional Iraqi music, blues, and jazz. After completing his enlistment in the Army, Billy moved back to Rhode Island to begin work on a second Master’s Degree in Urban Education Policy from Brown University.
Since he completed the program at Brown University, Billy has been actively consulting with local school districts (providing quantitative/qualitative analysis), non-profit organizations, and higher education institutions. Additionally, he has continued to remain active as a private teacher (working with students of all ages and skills), a clinician (focusing on rhythm-section skills development and improvisation), and providing professional development to music teachers throughout Rhode Island.