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Music, Introduction to Commercial Jazz Music

Ministry Title: Introduction to Commercial/Jazz Music

Credential: Ontario College CertificateProgram Code: JM1Length: 2 semestersProgram Starting Between:  

Humber’s Introduction to Commercial Jazz Music certificate is a performance-based program designed to help you assess and strengthen your skills. It solidifies your knowledge of the fundamentals of western music and develops your current performance skills through the jazz-specific areas of improvisation, repertoire development and small group ensemble performance. You will emerge from the program with a clearer understanding of the field and your own career potential within it, and as a stronger candidate for entry into postsecondary music degree and diploma programs. All courses have a particular focus on the commercial jazz field.

Learning Outcomes

No courses available


Upon successful completion of the program, a graduate will:

  • Recognize & identify common styles of music.

  • Describe the commercial/jazz field in terms of tradition, artists, & styles.

  • Explain the contribution of various artists to the development of particular styles & idioms.

  • Analyze the components & performance differences of recorded selections.

  • Play a repertoire of memorized materials that are considered standards in the commercial/jazz field & reflect the various styles inherent in this music.

  • Write diatonic melodies in various styles demonstrating knowledge of relevant harmonic & melodic concepts & structures of form.

  • Perform in an ensemble demonstrating basic ensemble skills such as intonation, tuning, time, feel, balance & dynamics.

  • Identify their own musical strengths & weaknesses in terms of a performance career in the commercial/jazz field.

  • Implement strategies & plans for on-going personal & professional growth & development.

  • Establish a practice of critical self-assessment & professional goal setting.


Select an instrument below to show specific program details including availability, admission requirements and how to apply.

The Humber Advantage

Expert Faculty

Professors are active and accomplished members of the GTA music community, with many cross-appointed to the Bachelor of Music program.

Your Career

As a student in our program, you will study with many of Canada’s finest jazz musicians, thereby learning the craft directly from the pros. The program will help you develop the ability to accurately and confidently assess your skills in relation to existing vocational opportunities and future career directions.

Program Availability

September 2020 Lakeshore Open Open


Bachelor of Music Fall Performance Week

Bachelor of Music Fall Performance Week


Tue, December 03, 2019 | TBD to Fri, December 06, 2019 | TBD

Hear what our Bachelor of Music student ensembles have been working on this term.

Click here to view the full performance schedule!

  • When: December 3-6, 2019
  • Where: Lakeshore Auditorium - Lakeshore Campus, A128 (3199 Lakeshore Blvd. West, Toronto, ON M8V 1K8)
  • Cost: Free
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Success Story: Dan McCarthy

Success Story: Dan McCarthy

Tue, November 26, 2019

Dan McCarthy graduated from Humber's Community Music program in 2001. He recently moved back to Toronto from New York City and

his first project after arrival involved making a recording with his former Humber instructors.

Dan told us more about the CD and what he learned at Humber.



I recently released a new CD called City Abstract, featuring teachers from my Humber days: Ted Quinlan, Pat Collins, and Ted Warren. I had been living in NYC for the last 15 years and just moved back this spring, and this was the first project that I wanted to do. All three musicians had a huge impact on me when I was studying at Humber in the late 90’s, and it was an honour to be able to do a record with them.


I released a record in March of 2019 that features Steve Swallow on bass, Ben Monder on guitar, and Mark Feldman on violin. It was an absolute thrill to get to record with these legends, especially Steve Swallow, who played bass on all of my favourite Gary Burton records from the 1970s. So incredible!

I also did a trio recording with Thomas Morgan on bass and Rudy Royston on drums; that should be released in 2020. I'm very excited about this record too.


For me, it was huge to get to study with people that were actually out there playing on a regular basis. It really has a huge impact on young players, getting to learn from masters already out on the scene playing and doing their own thing.


Follow Dan on social media at @DanMcCarthy on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. (Photo credit: John Rogers)

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Humber Lakeshore Wins at Adobe Creative Jam

Humber Lakeshore Wins at Adobe Creative Jam

Tue, November 26, 2019

Four students in Humber’s Advertising & Graphic Design program won first place in the 2019 Adobe Creative Jam.

Competing in a field of 72 teams from six college, Team “A-Block” -- comprised of Nicolas Diaz, Emily Little, Julia Laing, and Chelsea Speck – created an app to address academic integrity. Check out some images of the app here.

The Adobe Creative Jam is a design challenge that asks students to create a visual or motion design concept based on a theme revealed at the event. After three hours and no rules, the teams present their work to the jury in front of a rapt audience. The 2019 Jam drew over 300 students from Sheridan, George Brown, Seneca, OCADU, Algonquin College, and Humber.

Congratulations to all the students who competed, and especially to Team “A-Block”!

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No news at this time.

Faculty of Media & Creative Arts Events

Information Sessions

Information Sessions


Tue, January 14, 2020 to Wed, January 15, 2020
Lakeshore, North

Join us on January 14th or 15th and speak with our professors and students. Find out which of these Humber programs is right for you.

Read More About the Event

Faculty of Media & Creative Arts News

Radio Humber and BRTV Collaborate to showcase Indie Canadian Artists

Radio Humber and BRTV Collaborate to showcase Indie Canadian Artists

Thu, June 13, 2019

96.9 Radio Humber teamed up with the Broadcast Television/Videography Program to bring Canadian artists on campus for an interview and performance.

Read the Full Article
Faculty of Media and Creative Arts Students Win Big at this Year's Skills Ontario Competition

Faculty of Media and Creative Arts Students Win Big at this Year's Skills Ontario Competition

Mon, May 27, 2019

The Faculty of Media and Creative Arts would like to congratulate four of our students who won at Skills Ontario this spring.

Read the Full Story

No news at this time.

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On June 29, 2018, the Provincial Government of Ontario announced the renaming of the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD) to the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU). Both names may appear on this website.