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Faculty Rock

Master Class with UM professor: Brian Russell, guitar, UM faculty, Bruce Hornsby Creative American Music Program

Aaron Lebos, guitar

Brev Sullivan, guitar

Martin Quinn, bass

Alexander Ambrose, drumset



A multifaceted musician, researcher, educator, and lecturer, Brian E. Russell, Ph. D. serves as Director of Contemporary Guitar studies, Director of Assessment and Lecturer at the FROST SCHOOL OF MUSIC. A second generation Miamian, he has devoted his career to playing and teaching the guitar. His musical background in a variety of contemporary genres, from rock, pop and heavy metal to jazz, country and bluegrass, has made him a valuable and versatile musical contributor on both the stage and in the studio. Apart from recording with the legendary Julio Iglesias and adding his accompaniment to such popular modern musicals as "Rock of Ages," "Wicked," "The Last Five Years," and "Tommy," he also writes and produces original music with his group, the Brian Russell Alliance.

Dr. Russell's dedicated approach to mentoring musicians and motivating them to pursue success careers has been a hallmark of his teaching style. The Grammy Foundation recognized him as a Quarterfinalist for the prestigious Grammy Music Educator Award.

He continues to pursue research involving performance measurement paradigms, jazz theory knowledge acquisition, creativity in jazz improvisation, and measurement development. He has published his research in several national and international music education journals and has shared his findings in several worldwide forums. He currently serves on the editorial committees for the International Journal of Music Education and for the Journal for Popular Music Education and serves as an invited reviewer for the Psychology of Music journal.

Dr. Russell earned his Ph. D. in Music Education with a cognate in jazz performance from the FROST SCHOOL OF MUSIC. His experience teaching guitar, piano, orchestra and choral music at the college, high school, and middle school levels has provided Dr. Russell with unique insights into guiding and inspiring aspiring student musicians on their journey from studies at the university to satisfying musical careers beyond the campus.


Aaron Lebos is a well-known, versatile guitarist born and raised in the South Florida area. He received his Bachelors from the University of Miami and a Masters at Florida International University, both in Jazz Performance. Aaron developed much of his versatility playing gigs, touring and recording in the diverse South Florida music scene. He currently also plays with some of the biggest names in South Florida such as Nicole Henry, Nu Deco Ensemble, The Spam All-stars as well as doing many other gigs and sessions. In 2010 he recorded an album of jazz standards and his first all original album called Jazzilla. In 2012 he formed Aaron Lebos Reality and has since recored 3 original albums and the next one is due mid 2018 making it his 6th album. During this time the group has been touring, playing festivals and growing in popularity locally and nationally.


Brev Sullivan is a Miami based guitarist and tours with several rock groups and plays jazz as well with grammy nominated jazz legend Ira Sullivan. He is currently the guitarist of the rock musical M3tal. Brev will be appearing with the Miami Symphony Orchestra for the 2016 season in a series called Symphony Rocks. He was also the guitarist in the band Arsenal for Tom Cruise who played Stacee Jaxx in the 2012 film Rock of Ages and was featured in the Jan 2012 issue of Guitar Player Magazine. Brev's recent tours include KISS KRUISE IV, and performances with 80's icons Lita Ford, and Kip Winger. He is currently endorsed by Floyd Rose, Seymore Duncan pickups, DV mark Amps, Spectraflex cables, SIT Strings, Xotic Pedals and Revolt Amps and pedals.


Marty Quinn is a bassist who actively tours and performs locally across multiple genres. Originally from Chicago, Marty completed his master's in Jazz Pedagogy from the Frost School of Music. He teaches and works equally on upright bass as well as electric. Marty has had the pleasure of performing with artists such as Arturo Sandoval, Adam Rogers, Shelly Berg, Nicole Yarling, and more.


Alexander, "Zander" Ambrose is currently a student of Professor Steve Rucker at the Univeristy of Miami Frost School of Music in the Studio Music and Jazz Performance Department. He received his Bachelors of Music in 2018 and is currently a Masters Teaching Asssistant in the drum set studio. He is the recipient of "Most Valuable Player Award" in 2017 for the prestigious University of Miami Frost Brand of The Hour.