Ray Seol

Assistant Professor
Affiliated Departments
jazz music
Faculty Bio E-Mail

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Ray Seol, Ed.D., is a professional jazz bassist and producer who spent more than two decades immersed in the New York City jazz scene. While studying with legendary bassists Reggie Workman and Buster Williams, he began a quest to find his voice and develop his own concept of jazz. Seol’s ability to connect sound and color via synesthesia provided the foundation for his new approach to improvising and imagining jazz as a visual art form using interactive technologies. His show Interactive Jazz: Jazz as a New Visual Art has been presented at art galleries in New York City and Seoul, South Korea. His latest interactive jazz project, Seu Aprendiz, combines his interactive jazz concept with a newly introduced linguistic interpretation process.

Because of his wide range of career experiences across various industries—including the performing arts, music technology, Hollywood film production and finance, augmented reality/virtual reality, arts marketing, and academic research—Seol is a firm believer in and beneficiary of interdisciplinary business approaches. He actively maintains strong relationships with influential industry professionals and constantly provides students with high-level career resources and opportunities. Before joining Berklee, Seol worked at Brown University, where he assisted with graduate student activities and developed and taught student leadership development programs. His student leadership development program SWITCH Leadership Initiative was selected to be presented at the 2023 National Association of Student Personnel Administrators conference.

Career Highlights
  • Freelance jazz bassist, composer, and producer
  • Founder of Interactive Jazz: Jazz as a New Visual Art, a sonic visualization project
  • Interactive jazz project Seu Aprendiz was ranked No. 1 on the Roots Music Report’s Top 50 World Song Chart and No. 2 on the North American College and Community Radio Chart (2021)
  • Performances with prominent jazz musicians including Marta Gomez, Art Hirahara, Takuya Kuroda, Jason Moran, and Scott Robinson
  • Professional experiences in the entertainment and music technology industries
  • Leadership and career development program expert
  • Recipient of the Excellent Community Jazz Education Service Award from Tumen City, China
  • Contributed to Latin Grammy–nominated album (Yeahwon) as project manager
  • Arts Administration Scholarship Recipient, Columbia University
  • Jazz Fellowship Recipient, School of Jazz and Contemporary Music, The New School
  • Ed.D., Northeastern University, higher education administration (specialized in student affairs and acculturation)
  • M.A., Columbia University, arts administration
  • M.M., New York University, music technology
  • B.F.A., The New School, School of Jazz and Contemporary Music, jazz studies
In Their Own Words

"Throughout my education, I have met multiple mentors who demonstrated their expertise both inside and outside of their classrooms. They were truly inspirational figures who altered my understanding of the relationship between the self and the world. One of the most important things I learned from them was how teachers lead students to cocreate knowledge and help them internalize and practice it in the real world. They were humble facilitators of learning who admitted that they were also learners. This experience has certainly formulated my teaching philosophy. I want students to learn how to cocreate knowledge and help one another practice it in real-world situations. I do not simply want to pass the information to them. I encourage them to find their own ways to learn, and I will be happy if they can find the true meaning of life throughout this academic journey."

"I am fascinated by the interdisciplinary approach to understanding phenomena. My extensive professional experiences across industries and interdisciplinary research background help me create right questions and answer them practically and philosophically. For example, I started playing the double bass at the age of 27, which was quite an old age to master an instrument. I started it by compiling all the relevant information from various disciplines, ranging from neuroscience to adult learning theory, to contextualize my learning processes, and then applied them to answer very specific questions about the mastery of the instrument. My music is also the best example of an interdisciplinary approach, as I use different foreign languages to disseminate musicians’ unique interpretations of stories. This interdisciplinary approach will automatically manifest itself in my teaching style, and I am very excited to create the best learning experience for students in my classes."