Daniel Brummel, M.M. / Dean & Chief Academic Officer
Daniel Brummel is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, composer-producer, and music educator native to Pasadena, CA. Daniel graduated from the L.A. County High School for the Arts as a voice and guitar major before earning his Bachelor of Arts degree in music composition from the University of California, Los Angeles. At UCLA, Daniel’s mentors included Paul Chihara (composition), Dr. David S. Lefkowitz (theory), Don Neuen (voice), and Kenny Burrell (guitar). Daniel also holds the Master of Music degree in commercial music composition from the California State University, Los Angeles, where his mentors included Steve Wight (arranging) and Ross Levinson (film scoring).
At 18, Daniel began an international performance career as lead vocalist and bassist for the powerpop band Ozma, whose touring partners have included Weezer, Nada Surf, Rilo Kiley, Shiny Toy Guns, The Rentals, Nerf Herder, Rooney, Piebald, and more. More recently, Daniel joined the popular alternative rock band Weezer as music director and fifth band member on the album release tour for Everything Will Be Alright In The End, which was voted 2014’s Album of the Year by NPR. In 2016, Daniel joined Nada Surf as bassist for the You Know Who You Are album release tour. His credits as a recording artist and producer include Spain, The Elected, Scott & Rivers, Sanglorians, and Ozma’s “Pasadena,” which All Music Guide rated 4.5 out of 5 stars. As a session musician on bass, drums, guitar, keys, and voice, Daniel has worked closely with Grammy-winning producers including Neal Pogue (Outkast, TLC) and Shawn Everett (Alabama Shakes, Julian Casablancas). He has been featured in Bass Player Magazine and has releases on many indie and major labels including Universal, Sony, Sub Pop, Kung Fu, Atmospheriques, and Republic. Daniel has also composed film music for Paramount Pictures and led community music events at the Hammer Museum, the Norton Simon Museum, the Los Angeles Central Library, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
Daniel’s teaching philosophy stresses student-centered learning, concrete student learning outcomes, and deep listening. His approach to music pedagogy emphasizes harmonic understanding, rhythmic specificity, and ear training using the movable do solfège system, and he strives to address individual student needs through addressing different modes of perception. Daniel’s innovative method book, Popular Music Theory, is the standard text for theory courses at California College of Music, where he currently serves as Dean and Chief Academic Officer.
M.M. in Commercial Music Composition, California State University, Los Angeles
B.A. in Music Composition, University of California, Los Angeles
Daniel Brummel performing “Say It Ain’t So” on drums with Weezer: