Meet Brett Carson: A musician who hears in color

By Michael Ruther

Music major Brett Carson has always been drawn to sound and music in particular. He remembers hearing the sound of the television playing throughout his youth, and while he cannot remember specific words, he can vividly recall the pitch and tone of the actors’ speech. Though he now enjoys performing, his primary interests involve the studying and composition of music. In his free time, Brett enjoys improvising his own music, which is inspired by surrealist art and poetry. As a self-described “synesthete,” he believes that the colors of the paintings inspire “colorful music.”

Brett currently lives in Canton, but he comes from the mountains of north Georgia where he attended a much smaller university before transferring to Kennesaw State University. He came to KSU because he wanted to be in a larger school with more varied and diverse areas of study. Brett also met Sam Skelton, Director of KSU’s Jazz Ensemble, who suggested that he apply. Brett received the Cobb County Music Teachers’ Association Scholarship, which was another stepping stone in his decision to transfer and pursue his love of music.

One of the most inspiring aspects of the KSU music culture to Brett is the surrounding supportive community. Brett has many positive relationships with the faculty of the School of Music. One of the instructors who has influenced him greatly is Director of Keyboard Studies David Watkins, who, according to Brett, “has a great knowledge of the subject and a lot of passion for the piano. He has made me a better pianist.” Watkins returns the sentiment, considering Brett to be “a brilliant mind and a talented musician. He is going to do great things.”

Another of Brett’s piano professors, Laurence Sherr, describes him as “extremely inquisitive and highly self-motivated—more so than most students I have known.”

In addition to his classes, Brett is also a member of the KSU Jazz Ensemble and has played with the Wind Ensemble and the KSU Orchestra. He is also in two rock bands and frequently records with other musicians. Brett plans to spend his senior year writing music and building his portfolio, utilizing the resources that KSU provides to its music majors.

After graduation, Brett wants to attend graduate school out of the state. While his specific direction is still uncertain, he is currently weighing his options and considering a number of schools.



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