If you’ve been wondering what’s kept me quiet here at the blog for the past couple of months, it has been the extremely stressful and nerve-wracking process that is graduate school admissions. US News’ Education page and Online Graduate Programs both have more information on what goes into the strenuous application process.

After I was mercilessly rejected by five schools, UCLA, Wesleyan and Brown University all came through with excellent offers to attend their programs in the fall. In the end, I decided to return to California to study at UCLA — where I will begin coursework in September.

It’s a huge relief to be done with all this, and I can’t even begin to express how exciting the prospect of studying ethnomusicology at one of the most happening programs in the country actually is! I plan to do my dissertation research on the jazz scene in Chile and Argentina, working with ethnomusicologist and latin music scholar Steven Loza.

In a very fortuitous coincidence, I also learned that the Thelonious Monk Institute will be moving its headquarters to UCLA next year, so I look forward to getting to know some of the talented young jazz musicians with whom I will be sharing the campus. UCLA has an excellent undergraduate jazz studies program — with faculty like Kenny Burrell and James Newton, you really can’t go wrong. Have a listen to their big band to see what I mean.

And in terms of my ancillary interest in basketball, UCLA is the obvious pick (although I’ll admit, I am more into the NBA than college hoops. Maybe the Bruins can change that, with or without Malcolm Lee). Just don’t expect me to be caught dead in a Kobe jersey.

In other exciting news, I have just submitted my MA thesis on Jack Teagarden for final evaluation by the faculty at Rutgers. Once it’s finished, I plan to publish it here in small parts over the summer.

To everyone who has read this blog, submitted comments, linked to it, e-mailed me privately, and encouraged me to write and think critically about jazz: I am infinitely grateful. Without your support and engagement, I would not be celebrating this week’s excellent news.

I do hope to get back into a regular blogging routine soon, so don’t take Lubricity off your bookmarks! In the meantime, I highly recommend the series that I am producing for the WBGO Blog, You Don’t Know Jazz! w/ Dr. Lewis Porter. The latest installment, The Origins of the Word Jazz, is well worth a read.

Thanks again to all who have read and supported my work over the past two years. Go Bruins!

UPDATE: The two links to US News and Online Graduate Programs were added, sponsored by their respective site owners.