Music major Noah Pierre is honing his talent in the jazz/commercial performance program.
Noah Pierre ’19 was born to be a musician. He started playing guitar at the age of 3, thanks to parents who kept instruments around the house and always had music — all genres — playing.
“I never made a huge decision that I wanted to be a musician,” remembers the TU sophomore. “It was just such a part of my upbringing that it felt most natural.”
Formal guitar lessons started at 6. By the time he entered Wilde Lake High School in Howard County, Pierre was writing his own songs and dabbling in drums and vocals.
And just as playing guitar was a natural fit, so too was attending Towson University.
During his high school years, Pierre and classmates would visit the Towson University music department to “scope out the program” and meet the faculty. Faculty, such as lecturer Troy King, identified Pierre’s talent early on and wound up overseeing the young guitarist’s audition when he applied to TU’s jazz/commercial performance program.
“It was really special to have that bond already in place,” says Pierre, “before I even was thinking about where to go to school.”
Now at 20, he gets the bulk of his guitar instruction through weekly private lessons with music faculty member John Lee. “Lee is helping me to progress as a guitar player and develop my style,” says Pierre.
“I’ve had a lot of guitar instructors,” he adds. “[Former faculty member and acclaimed musician] Anthony Pirog also had a great impact on my personal style . . . As a guitar player, he really opened my eyes.”
Pierre’s eyes may be open, but all folks on campus need to do to experience his music is open their ears. Be it mellow jazz and funk in the University Union’s Potomac Lounge or contemporary covers with TU’s a cappella group Pitch Purrfect. Pierre frequently is asked to accompany fellow music majors in their junior and senior recitals, as well.
Additionally, Pierre has made a name for himself as a singer/songwriter at Baltimore’s coffee houses and larger venues, including Rams Head Live and the Ottobar. And his EP releases, “Noah Pierre” and “The Borough,” which highlight his rock influences, are available online for download.
With two years remaining at Towson University, Pierre continues to expand as a musician, now learning piano and focusing on vocal training.
Considered one of the most gifted students to come through the jazz/commercial performance program in recent history, there’s no telling how far he’ll go in his career, but one thing’s for sure. As long as he’s able, Pierre will continue to make music and share it with the world.
“Performing is so special,” says Pierre, “because you can connect with so many different people you might not know, but they know you because of your music.”
Photo by Robin Jean Baptiste.
Originally published in COFAC Today, spring 2017.