Jim Scott – Composer and Musical Activist
For more than three decades, Jim Scott has made it his business to create and perform music that celebrates the earth. His songs and poetry have inspired and educated audiences around the world. He has developed presentations for every age group and crafted songs that sensitize his listeners to the beauty of the earth, teaching principles of ecology in memorable verses.
“The Earth and Spirit Songbook” is an anthology of 110 songs of earth and peace, arranged and edited by Jim, including songs by many contemporary songwriters with some of his own. From his work with the Paul Winter Consort where he co-wrote the celebrated Missa Gaia – Earth Mass and many other pieces, including his “A Song for the Earth,” recorded live at the United Nations on the album Concert for the Earth, Jim has gone on to create an extensive body of work. His recordings “Earth, Sky, Love and Dreams” and “Sailing with the Moon” include many of his eco-anthems.
In songs, choral music, instrumental soundtracks for several documentaries and the PBS series “Body and Soul”, Jim continues to make music with a depth of artistry and craft that separates his music from that of many other singer songwriters. Jim has also ventured into musical theater. His musical “The Tree and Me” has been given full cast productions in Jamestown, New York, and Albion, Michigan, and its songs have become anthems for activists and educators. “The Rainforest Song”, written in a workshop with elementary students, has been published by Hal Leonard Publishers. “Plant More Than You Harvest” was included in a Sony Kids CD “Put On Your Green Shoes”.
As Co-Chair of the Unitarian Universalist Seventh Principle Project, Jim helped to create the “Green Sanctuary” program and accompanying handbook for building an ecological/spiritual awareness in church congregations. He performs many benefit concerts and often appears at events, supporting environmental causes with his music.
An informal resume
1963-8 B Mus – Eastman School of Music
1969-72 Classical Guitar study with John Marlow American University
1971-2 Graduate Assistant at Univ. of MD. Led Jazz Ensemble, taught Guitar classes,
1974-75 Classical Guitar study with Aaron Shearer Peabody Conservatory
1976, ‘79, ‘81 (Summer) Eastman School – Arrangers Workshop and graduate courses.
1977-9 Berklee College – Earned enough credits for (second) Bachelors Degree
Professional Experience, and Highlights
1969-71 U.S, Army Band, Jazz Ambassadors (jazz big band) Washington DC Guitarist/Arranger – (wrote 12 big band arangements and one concert band)
1976 Composed orchestral soundtrack for The Arts in AmericaUSIA multi-media show shown at World Trade Fair in Romania.
1978-84 Full time member of the Paul Winter Consort – touring nationally – Composed and co-composed many pieces on Consort recordings; Composed soundtracks for Mc Dowel’s Ride a PBS feature film, NOVA programs, and other PBS projects at WGBH Boston.
1980 Composed and arranged an entire concert for the Paul Winter Consort with the Indianapolis Symphony (and subsequently with several others)
1981 Co-composer of the Missa Gaia – Earth Mass with Winter Consort
1987 Artist in Residence at Denison University, Greenville OH.
1988 Taught the first of six Winter Terms (month of Jan.) at Oberlin College in Improvisation, for all instruments and taught Guitar class. Taught Winter Term courses every other year through 2002.
1991 Premier of The Tree and Me original musical, Jamestown Comm. Col.
1993 Artist in Residence at Albion College (Kellogg Foundation grant) including second production of The Tree and Me
1993 Songs included in Unitarian Universalist Hymnbook
1998 Soundtrack music for Body and Soul documentary series on PBS
1999 Premier of Vessels of the Sun oratorio, First Parish Ch. Worcester MA
2003 Release of the Earth and Spirit Songbook
2005 (Spring) Taught Elementary Music at Charles River School, Dover MA
2005 (Fall semester) taught Elementary Music at Derby Academy, Hingham MA.
2006 Music workshops for spring semester in several Worcester Schools for Very Special Arts.
2007 Mother Spider choral piece commissioned by Sequoyah High School Atlanta GA
2007 Go Your Way in Peace, Winner of Sablieski Award for Choral Composition.
2009 I Am Waiting, Winner of Silliman Anthem Competition
Recordings and Publications
1977 Composed, arranged and performed music on Common Ground album with the Paul Winter Consort.
1980 Composed,arranged, performed on Callings album – Winter Consort.
1981-3 Recorded JimScott Alone – solo guitar, A Song for the Earth, Lake Unto The Clouds and Inverness albums by the group Radiance, all original compositions.
1981 Co-composer of Missa Gaia – Earth Mass recorded with Winter Consort
1984 Composed and recorded music for A Concert for the Earth live at the United Nations with Winter Consort and the Back Bay Chorale.
1986 Recorded Big and Little Stuff – songs for kids.
1994 The Jim Scott Song Notebook – updated several times since
1994 Three pieces included in the new Unitarian Universalist Hymnbook
1995 Earth Sky Love and Dreams album released.
1996 For A Time album released.
1997 Sailing with the Moon album released..
1998 Just the Words book of poetry, song lyrics and short stories.
2000 All Scales in all Positions for Guitar published by Hal Leonard
2000 Big and Little Stuff– concert video for kids, released by Sidewalk Songs
2000 The Rainforest Song choral piece, published by Henry Leck Choral Series
2001 Instruments of Peace album released
2002 Three Choral pieces published by The Roger Wagner Choral Series
2003 The Earth and Spirit Songbook –published
2004 Vessels of the Sun – Choral Song Cycle, Recorded with Orange Coast UU Church Choir, Costa Mesa CA
2006 Missa Gaia/Earth Mass score published by Hal Leonard
2006 Choral pieces published by Boosey and Hawkes
2007 Mystery from the Missa Gaia published by Hal Leonard
2007 Choral pieces published by Roger Wagner Choral series
2009 Gather the Spirit – CD of choral music released
2012 For This We Stand – Choral song cycle celebrating the UU 7 Principles