The Brightside: local teacher’s jazz ensemble

SALISBURY, Md. – Normally, you can find Stephen Harvey in a classroom, teaching choir at Wicomico High School.

“My love of music goes back to about the age of 4,” Harvey said.

But lately, the music lover has been working on something really special.

“Recently in the past like three years, I’ve composed a suite of nine songs for jazz ensemble,” he said.

A suite of original songs, completely written by him. While they’re not recorded yet, Harvey says he plans to do that this upcoming summer. But his inspiration behind the music may surprise you.

“This music is based off of superhero characters, other folks from comic books and media,” Harvey explained.

And while Stephen definitely has a passion for music, his passion for comic book heroes is on another level.

“Oh some of my favorite comic book characters, okay, I’m really into Black superheroes, but outside of that, just a litany of Marvel heroes,” he said.

So when it came to putting pen to paper and writing the music, he told us the top five heroes who inspired him.

“Spiderman, Batman, Static… Black panther… last one, War machine,” Harvey said.

He says writing the music, of course, wasn’t easy.

“The most challenging part of composing anything from scratch is second-guessing yourself in general, or over-writing,” Harvey explained.

But the idea of performing his music live someday soon along an ensemble of other musicians kept him writing.

“Because when you play it on the computer, yeah it sounds fun, you’re excited that the notes and the rhythms are going the way you want them to, but it does not sound anything close to when there’s 17 phenomenal musicians playing it straight at your face,” he said.

Plus, he says there’s always more room for music here on the Eastern Shore.

“I just really want to bring more jazz to the Eastern Shore,” Harvey said.

You can learn more about Stephen’s music by visiting his website.

Categories: Brightside