About Us

Music Industry Advisory Board

Tim Brimmer

Dr. Tim Brimmer is Associate Professor of Music Education, Technology and Vocal Jazz in Butler University's Jordan College of Fine Arts.

Tim the Founder and Director of the Butler University Music Leadership Institute (MLI), a research-driven project for designing and testing innovative, interdisciplinary, technology-rich, asynchronous curriculum where the Arts serve as core curriculum in a liberal arts, college-credit, cohort of college-bound high school musicians. In the summer of 2005 he joined Susan Kuyper, at the Hong Kong International School, Dr. Tom Stanley and Dr. Mora Manolette from Hong Kong University and others in an extensive exchange program with musicians from Asia and the USA. In previous years, MLI has conducted similar interdisciplinary studies in Hong Kong, Taiwan, South America and the West Indies. In 2007, he engaged Asian and USA students in Japan in an interdisciplinary comparison of East/West arts and culture.

Dr. Brimmer is Founder and Director of the Jordan College of Fine Arts' Multisensory Learning Facility, using technologies as a vehicle for advancing innovative teaching, learning and interdisciplinary curriculum. He designs technology solutions for arts education curriculum and teaches technology integration across the Arts, including the JCFA core course Exploring the Digital Arts.

As Director of Jordan Jazz, the Butler Jazz Institute and the Butler Vocal Jazz Fest, Tim has hosted workshops and/or concerts with Rockapella, New York Voices, The Manhattan Transfer, Take 6, The Real Group, The Four Freshmen, Cleo Lane, Jonny Dankworth, Dr. Russ Robinson, Dr. Steve Zegree, Marvin Hamlisch, Elvis Costello and others. Recently, He worked collaboratively with Clowes Memorial Hall in mini-faculty in residency with Bobby McFerrin, along with the Butler Symphony Orchestra, Percussion Ensemble, Butler Ballet, Jazz Band, and the Butler Vocal Jazz Festival Chorus. His vocal jazz ensemble, Jordan Jazz, performed with McFerrin. Dr. Brimmer is a frequent guest conductor for collegiate, high school and middle school festivals. His choirs have performed throughout the United States, Europe, Asia and South America.

Frank Clark

Frank Clark, Director and Professor of Music at the Georgia Institute of Technology, teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in multimedia performance, the integration of audio into multimedia, and streaming media. Previously, he was Chair of the Department of Music and Coordinator of Music Theory at the University of South Alabama, Coordinator of Music at Lewis Clark State College, and an Assistant Professor at Pacific University and the University of Northern Iowa.

His performance interests are primarily focused in the development of tools and techniques for the real-time musical control of video, animation, graphics, sound, text, and lighting systems. His primary performance instruments are the Yamaha Mark IV Disklavier and the Steiner EVI. Clark's research interests revolve around Internet2 music teaching and performance as well as audio for standard Internet. Clark is a published multimediaist and composer. He has received numerous awards and honors and presents regularly at the Technology Institute for Music Educators (TI:ME), the Association for Technology in Music Instruction (ATMI), and the College Music Society (CMS).

Clark received his Bachelor of Music Education at the Conservatory of Music, University of the Pacific. He was awarded a Masters in Horn Performance from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in Music Theory/Composition from the University of Arizona, Tucson.

William Erlandson

Bill Erlandson, manager of educational products and services for Roland Corporation – US, has extensive experience in the music industry and with music technology products. His background includes selling retail pianos and keyboards, founding and co-owning a retail music store, consulting for the music industry on applications for schools and colleges, and developing marketing plans for new and emerging products.

Mr. Erlandson served IUPUI as an outside consultant and evaluator of its music program and Masters degree in music technology. He is a well-respected member of the National Association of Music Merchants and developed a leadership role in defining music curricula for using electronic keyboards and synthesizers in educational settings.

Paul Jacobs

Paul Jacobs, President and COO for Klipsch Group, Inc. and Managing Director for Klipsch Group Europe, has served as a director of the Company since 2005. In addition, he served on the Board for the American Pianist Association. Mr. Jacobs holds a B.S. degree in Business from Indiana University. Mr. Paul Jacobs is also an avid musician whose hobbies include scuba diving, sky diving, mountain biking, and wine collecting. Mr. Jacobs has continually participated in Industry Associations such as the Advisory Board for Professional Audio Retailers Association, and the Audio Board for the Consumer Electronics Association.

Michael Klinger

Mike Klinger is owner and founder of Synthesis MIDI Workshop, originally established in 1988 in Portland, Oregon as a resource for music educators and theological institutions for training and sales in music technology. In 2001 he built the Mike Klinger Music Technology Retreat Center located in the town of Carson, WA. To date over 5000 students (mostly teachers) have participated in his workshops.

Mike Klinger has over 43 years of experience in working with synthesizers, computers, and midi technology. He holds B.M and M.M. degrees in Music Composition and Theory from the University of North Texas. From 1976-1980 he was on the teaching faculty of Mt. Hood Community College in Gresham, Oregon. Recently, he has spent his time teaching private and group classes in music technology. He actively presents workshops and seminars for MENC and other state music educator conventions. He is a prolific author, writing articles in state music educator magazines on various topics relating to music technology. He is an active member of MENC, WMEA, NAMM, and ATMI organizations. He also has four jazz albums to his credit as he is a very proficient jazz pianist and keyboardist.

Scott McCormick

Scott McCormick, President and CEO of Music for All, Inc., and his organization have been recognized as the premier presenter of quality educational events for America's high school instrumental music ensembles.

Mr. McCormick attended Northern Illinois University and Elmhurst College in Illinois. While at Elmhurst, he performed with the famed Elmhurst College Jazz Band, touring the United States and Europe, including the Montreux Jazz Festival and North Sea Jazz Festival. He has also served as an adjunct faculty member at Elmhurst College.

In 2003, he was appointed to the Indianapolis Consortium of Arts Administrators and served on a committee for the Indianapolis Cultural Districts Tourism Initiative. He has previously served on the coordinating committee of the Illinois Coalition for Music Education and the Northshore Concert Band Advisory Council, as well as the President's Council of the International Festival and Events Association. His professional affiliations include the Music Educators National Conference, Percussive Arts Society, International Association of Jazz Educators, and Kappa Kappa Psi.

David G. Peters

G. David Peters is a recognized leader in the field of computer-based education and music technology. Peters holds an MS and EdD from the University of Illinois (UIUC) and was the first to receive a doctoral degree from UIUC that specialized in computer-based music instruction. Peters was a founding member and past President of the National Consortium for Compute-based Instruction Systems (NCCBMI) later named the Association for the Development of Computer-Based Instruction (ADCIS).

Dr. Peters served as professor and head of music education at the University of Illinois for 17 years. As an administrator at UIUC, he served as Assistant Dean for seven years, then Associate Dean for three years of the College of Fine and Applied Arts. During his tenure at Illinois, Peters was an author and software designer for the prestigious Computer-Based Education Systems named, PLATO. He also was Director of the Plato Music Project research project. Learn More →

Ronald B. Raup

Mr. Ronald B. Raup is Chief Executive Officer of MakeMusic Inc. in Minneapolis, MN. He previously served as co-chief executive officer since December 10, 2007. Mr. Raup has been a member of the Board of Directors of MakeMusic since September 2004. He was named President and Chief Operating Officer in October of 2006. During this time, he has been a key influence, demonstrating his knowledge and depth of experience gained over 30 years in leadership roles within the music products industry. Raup previously served as Vice President of Brook Mays Music Company (Dallas, TX) and Senior Vice President of marketing and sales at Yamaha Corporation of America (Los Angeles, CA). Raup has also served on various industry boards including the International Association of Music Merchants (NAMM).

Fred J. Rees (Advisory Board Chair)

Dr. Fred J. Rees is Professor of Music and Chair of the Department of Music and Arts Technology at IUPUI. He came to Indianapolis in 1999 from the University of Northern Iowa, where he developed the first graduate music education degree program in the country to be broadcast at a distance over the state`s interactive television network. He has contributed to adapting the Master of Science in Music Technology as a live, videostreamed degree program with worldwide student enrollments. He has also designed the Bachelor of Science in Music Technology degree program, that integrates music technology throughout the curriculum. Prior academic appointments included New York University and the University of Queensland (Australia). His career interests have included distance learning, string education, double bass and piano performance, and music technology. Learn More →

Eric Smith

Eric Smith is the founder & president of Auralex Acoustics, a worldwide provider of sound-control materials and acoustical analysis. Eric grew up in Zionsville, then attended Butler University, where he majored in radio/television and minored in journalism. An accomplished drummer from an early age, Eric turned his love of music into a career in broadcasting, primarily as a radio personality, talkshow host, production director and producer at top stations in Indianapolis and Ft. Myers, FL. Eric is founder & president of Four On The Floor Pet Products and has operated four pizza businesses, a graphics firm, a computer store, a recording-media supplier and more. Eric has extensive A/V experience producing documentaries for various animal charities and Habitat for Humanity, plus engineering a song featured on Dr. Demento. Eric has appeared in print and video for top local and national clients, and will soon expand his voiceover work. Eric has lectured at the high school and college levels on animal welfare, business and acoustics, and holds patents on various acoustical products. Eric and his wife are strong supporters of animal welfare, having founded two federally-licensed animal charities, a nonprofit, low-cost spay/neuter clinic and a Central Indiana coalition. Eric has served as a board member of the P.H. Sullivan Museum (Zionsville) and the Humane Society of Indianapolis, as well as on the Humane Society's Executive Search Committee. Eric and his wife have worked closely with city and state government on a variety of issues to benefit animals and humans. Eric is a strong proponent of the power of the human mind and always tries to do his best, no matter how large or small the task, while maintaining a healthy sense of humor. Eric believes strongly in the Golden Rule and strives to adhere to it in his personal and professional endeavors.

Walt Straiton

Walt Straiton is National Manager of Educational Resources within the Academic and Institutional Relations division of Yamaha Corporation of America. He manages product development and marketing of the Music in Education keyboard program and institutional sales of Yamaha music technology for education.

Mr. Straiton is an active conductor and clinician and serves as artistic director of the Corona Symphony Orchestra, providing artistic guidance for the CSO, as well as serving as principal conductor of CSO Pops and Education programming.

A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, Mr. Straiton pursued advanced graduate study at the Pennsylvania State University, during which time he served as assistant conductor of the University Philharmonic and Chamber Orchestras, and was subsequently invited to appear as a guest conductor of the Music at Penn's Woods Summer Festival Orchestra. A recipient of a coveted John F. Kennedy Center Fellowship for Teachers in the Arts (conducting the United States Air Force Orchestra in concert in the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC), Mr. Straiton appeared as a finalist for “Teacher of the Year” in the nationally-televised Walt Disney Corporation's “American Teacher Awards”.

Mr. Straiton has published articles on comprehensive orchestral program development, conducting, and music technology have appeared in the Jazz Education Journal, American String Teachers Journal, and at the Technology Institute for Music Education. Walt has produced and conducted numerous multi-genre outdoor concert events featuring such jazz/pop guest artists as Maynard Ferguson, Chuck Mangione, Buddy Rich, Lionel Hampton, Phil Woods, The Captain and Tennille, The Spinners, Patti Austin, Neil Sedaka, Franki Valli and the Four Seasons, and Bobby Rydell.

Andrew Surmani

Andrew Surmani is a native of Oakland, California who now resides in Los Angeles. An accomplished musician, Andrew played trumpet in the California All-State Honor Band, the McDonald's All-American Marching Band and Jazz Band, and the Walt Disney World All-American College Jazz Band. He attended California State University, Northridge (CSUN) where he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Music degree in Trumpet Performance. While at Northridge he played with the CSUN Wind Ensemble, Orchestra and Jazz "A" Band. He has toured throughout the USA, Europe and Japan, and performed at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in New York. After a stint playing lead trumpet in shows at Walt Disney World, Andrew returned to southern California where he got his MBA degree from CSUN while working full time for Alfred Music Publishing. Andrew is currently Senior Vice President of Marketing and Managing Director, School and Church Publishing for Alfred. Andrew is co-author of Alfred's Essentials of Music Theory, along with his wife Karen Farnum Surmani, a former LA Unified School District music educator, and Morton Manus, President of Alfred Music Publishing. Andrew also serves on the Executive Committee as Treasurer for the Jazz Education Network, is on the advisory board for the CSUN Masters in Music Industry Studies degree program, and is Founder and President of the MATES Foundation, a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation formed to support a new arts and technology charter school in Thousand Oaks, California.