In this episode of the After Hours Director Spotlight, Nick Averwater talks with Grant Harbison at the Arkansas Bandmasters Association Convention in Little Rock. Grant is the Director of Bands for Jonesboro, Arkansas Public Schools. In this conversation, Grant talks about how his band program is moving forward as the pandemic affects a second marching band season, the importance of gratitude and positivity, and how therapy has helped him to become a more effective band director. This conversation was recorded on July 29, 2021.
Grant Harbison is the Director of Bands for Jonesboro Public Schools. His duties include directing the JHS Symphonic Winds, Jonesboro Jazz, and team teaching the JHS Marching Band and the morning classes at Annie Camp and MacArthur Junior High. He began his career as the Assistant Band Director at West Memphis High School under Cathy Williams from 2010-2014. Grant is an alumnus of Jonesboro High School, graduating in 2003. His post-secondary work includes a Bachelor of Music Education from Arkansas State University and a Master of Music in Trumpet Performance from the University of North Texas.
Mr. Harbison has had the wonderful opportunity to play under the direction of Eugene Corporon, David Itkin, Graham Jenkins, Leonard Slatkin, and Steve Warner and with musicians such as Dave Brubeck, Jon Faddis, and The Temptations. He has also recorded with the University of North Texas Symphony Orchestra and the University of North Texas Wind Symphony on the GIA label.
His professional memberships include Phi Beta Mu, Arkansas Bandmaster’s Association, and Arkansas School Band and Orchestra Association. He is also on the Arkansas All-State Jazz Committee and the Secretary of Arkansas Jazz Educators. In 2010 Grant was awarded the Raymond and Ruth Brandon Memorial Scholarship by ASBOA and in 2014 Phi Beta Mu named him the Arkansas Young Band Director of the Year.
He and his wife Leah are the proud parents of three four-legged children, Elvis, Ringo, and Tonks.
Bio and photo credits: The Jonesboro Band Website
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