Loyola University Chicago


Department of Fine and Performing Arts


Q&A with Wendel Patrick

Q&A with Wendel Patrick

The Department of Fine and Performing Arts is excited to welcome award-winning musician, producer and composer Wendel Patrick as our 2019 Artist-in-Residence this January.

Patrick majored in both music and political science at Emory University and earned his M.M. in Piano Performance as a scholarship student at the Northwestern University School of Music in Evanston, Illinois. Mr. Patrick is a winner of the 2015 Baker Artist Awards’ Mary Sawyers Baker grand prize, and was a full time faculty member at Loyola University in Baltimore, Maryland from 2001 to 2013 teaching piano, introduction to music theory, music history and electronic music production. He has also taught at the Maryland Institute College of Art and currently teaches Hip Hop Music Production: History and Practice at The Peabody Music Conservatory, the first course of its kind to be taught at a major traditional music conservatory anywhere in the United States.

Wendel Patrick will be teaching MUSC 389 - Hip Hop Music Production: History and Practice in Spring 2019. The course is currently available for registration in LOCUS, with two available class sections.

Music Marketing Communications associate Kate Hahn recently spoke with Wendel regarding his time at Loyola as well as his career as a whole.  Check out the Q&A below:


Tell us about what you do for a living.

I am a musician and artist.  My career is constantly changing, but I am first and foremost a musician.  I am a photographer, I compose music, I’m a professor of hip hop and electronic music production and I perform over a wide range of genres.


You have experience as a classical pianist, but are a sound engineer.  Can you tell us about the connection between your formal studies and your work now?

I studied piano performance at Emory University and Northwestern University.  It really wasn’t until after music school until I started electronic music. However, everything I do uses keyboard, so piano has always been my main instrument.


What do you enjoy most about being a musician?

Being able to express yourself through a medium so close to heart, and being able to do so in different ways depending on the kind of music.


You have taught at the Peabody Conservatory.  What are you doing there now and what do you most enjoy teaching?

I currently teach at Peabody and Johns Hopkins.  I teach Hip Hop Music Production at Peabody, which is a history course as seen through the lens of the hip hop producer.

Typically when we look at music from a historical perspective, the attention is put on vocalist, so we look historically at how hip hop has evolved.

I most enjoy the connection of knowledge and exchange of ideas between me and my students.  I may plan a class, but we will have discussions I didn’t anticipate and these are the classes where the most learning happens.


You will be teaching Hip Hop Music Production: History and Practice (MUSC 389) in spring 2019 as a music elective.  Can you tell us more about this class and why our students should consider taking it?

The class is a history of hip hop music course through the lens of the producer.  We will analyze it from a creative standpoint, create music ourselves in the lab component.  Many people don’t have an understanding of where current hip hop in pop music came from, so we will look at the techniques of past and present.


Is there anything else you will be doing here at Loyola this spring that you would like to tell us about?

I will be commissioning a piece for University Chorale, and would love to collaborate with the journalism department...I’m looking forward to a full plate during my time at Loyola.


Can you tell us about your podcast, Out of the Blocks?

The premise is to travel to a city block, meet and interview everyone living on that block.  We’ve done these in Detroit, Atlanta, Saint Louis...and one in Chicago while I am there. I’d love to have an open discussion where we talk about that.  I also do all the photography for this project and will have a photo exhibit in the Ralph Arnold Gallery.

For more information on Wendel Patrick, please visit www.wendelpatrick.com and stay tuned for more updates on his work at Loyola.