NASHVILLE, Tenn. (TSU News Service) – The name of TSU alum and musician Jazmin Ghent continues to resound.
The jazz phenom recently received an NAACP Image Award in the Outstanding Jazz Album category for “The Story of Jaz.” In 2017, she was voted Best New Artist by the Smooth Jazz Network.
Ghent earned a master’s degree in music from Tennessee State University in 2014. She said music has always been a part of her life.
“If I didn’t have music, I know I wouldn’t be where I am today,” she said. “Music distracted me from getting off track and being something I’m not. It really allowed me to express myself and find my way in life.”
Nicknamed “Jazzy Jaz” by her grandfather Fletcher Gaines, who also played saxophone, Ghent grew up listening to jazz standards from his music collection, as well as the music of Gerald Albright, Kirk Whalum and Brian Culbertson.
Jazmin credits TSU for playing a major role in her success.
She said Dr. Robert Elliot, head of the Department of Music at TSU, her residence life coworkers Gregory Williams and Brent Dukhie, and various members of the TSU family, provided direction and support during her time at the university.
“I found out about the program at TSU through the Bobby Jones Show,” she said. “I performed on his ‘Show Your Talent Show,’ and went to do an interview with Dr. Elliot. He didn’t have to give me a chance and an opportunity, but I am beyond thankful that he did.”
Elliot, who served as chair of Ghent’s thesis committee, said that as a musician, Jazmin brings the “total package.”
“She is very much a modern saxophonist, but she is well-grounded in the music of those greats who came before her, and she has built upon that legacy,” he said.
For more about Jazmin Ghent, visit https://www.jazminghentmusic.com.
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With more than 7,000 students, Tennessee State University is Nashville’s only public university, and is a comprehensive, urban, co-educational, land-grant university offering 38 bachelor’s degree programs, 24 master’s degree programs and seven doctoral degrees. TSU has earned a top 20 ranking for Historically Black Colleges and Universities according to U.S. News and World Report, and rated as one of the top universities in the country by Washington Monthly for social mobility, research and community service. Founded in 1912, Tennessee State University celebrated 100 years in Nashville during 2012. Visit the University online at tnstate.edu.