Associate Professor
Phone number
Room number
325.14 HH
 2006 PhD  The Graduate Center, City University of New York
 2002 M.Mus  Brooklyn College, City University of New York
 1987 BA  Empire State College, State University of New York



Benjamin Bierman is Associate Professor of Music at John Jay College, City University of New York. His primary area of scholarly interest is contemporary American music, including jazz, blues, R&B, pop, and concert music, while currently focusing on scholarship surrounding jazz composition. He is the author of Listening to Jazz, published by Oxford University Press, and has essays in the books The Routledge Companion to Jazz, The Cambridge Companion to Duke Ellington, Pop-Culture Pedagogy in the Music Classroom, and The Routledge History of Social Protest in Popular Music, as well as the journals Jazz Perspectives, Journal of Jazz Studies, and American Music Review. In his compositions, Bierman incorporates elements of jazz, blues, Latin music, and the Western art music tradition, and his music can be heard on his recent CD, Some Takes On the Blues, and on Beyond Romance. As a trumpet player, he has performed with such diverse artists as B.B. King, Archie Shepp, Johnny Pacheco, Johnny Copeland, and Stevie Ray Vaughan.

JJC Affiliations
Music Minor Coordinator, Faculty Advisor: Artists United, JJ Productions.
Courses Taught

MUS 236, Music Technology

MUS 336, Composition through Technology

MUS 103, American Popular Music

MUS 102, Language of Music

MUS 101, Introduction to Music

Professional Memberships
Member, Society for Music Theory, American Musicological Society, Society for American Music, AFM, Local 802, Associated Musicians of Greater New York, Artists Rights Caucus Steering Committee, Local 802. Peer reviewer, Jazz Perspectives, peer review journal (2014-present) Peer reviewer, Oxford University Press (2013-present) Peer reviewer, Music Spectrum, peer review journal of the Society for Music Theory (2012-present) Chair, Awards Committee, Jazz Interest Group, Society for Music Theory (2011-2012) Contributing Editor, American Music Review (2006-2014)
Scholarly Work

Some Takes On the Blues: More Songs by Ben Bierman. CD of original compositions (Plaza Street Music, PSM101, 2019).

Beyond Romance: Songs by Ben Bierman. CD of original compositions (New Focus Recordings, New Focus141, 2013).

Listening to Jazz 2e (Oxford University Press, 2019).

“Jazz and the Recording Process.” The Routledge Companion to Jazz (Routledge Press, 2018)

“Pharoah Sanders, Straight-Ahead and Avant-Garde.” Jazz Perspectives (January 2016). Peer-review journal.

“Duke Ellington’s Legacy and Influence.” Cambridge Companion to Duke Ellington (Cambridge University Press, 2014).

“Solidarity Forever: Music and the Labor Movement in the United States.” The Routledge History of Social Protest in Popular Music (Routledge Press, 2013).

Research Summary

Benjamin Bierman considers his musical life to be holistic. His trumpet playing (he is also a multi-instrumentalist), composition, scholarship, and teaching all work together and add up to a full and diverse musical life. His two CDs of original compositions, Some Takes On the Blues and Beyond Romance display very different parts of his broad musical aesthetic. While his scholarship is primarily in the area of jazz and jazz composition, and his current interests in jazz and technology and artists' rights, he has also written on a variety of topics, including music technology pedagogy and music as social protest. Bierman's performing life has also been quite varied, as he has played in situations as diverse as territory dance bands, circus bands, salsa orquestas, blues bands, jazz bands, orchestras and chamber ensembles, and the list could continue. Again, all of these have contributed to who he is as a musician, scholar, and teacher.