curriculum vitae


Ph.D. (2019) Music
University of California, San Diego | San Diego, CA     
Emphases: Music Theory / Integrative Studies. Advisor: David Borgo, Ph.D.  
Dissertation: Student-as-Theorist: Embodiment as a Paradigm for Music Theory Pedagogy    

M.M. (2009) Music Composition
B.A. (2006) in Music Theory
Azusa Pacific University | Azusa, CA

Peer-Reviewed Research

Gutierrez. J. (2019) “An Enactive Approach to Learning Music Theory? Obstacles and Openings.” Front. Educ. 4:133. doi: 10.3389/feduc.2019.00133

Gutierrez. J. (2018) “Students Evaluate Music Theory Courses: A Reddit Community Survey.” College Music Symposium. Vol. 58, No. 2. 

Under Review / In Preparation 

Gutierrez. J. “Through-lines and Inclusivity: Case Studies in Innovative Music Theory Curricula” Journal of Music Theory Pedagogy     

 Published Conference Proceedings         

Gutierrez. J. “Enactive Cognition in Music Theory: Conduction in the Classroom.” Proceedings of the 15th International Conference on Music Perception and Cognition. ICMPC15 (2018)

Gutierrez. J. “Framing Creative Intentionality: Toward Heuristic Technology in Music Theory Pedagogy.” The proceedings of the International Conference on New Music Concepts. Treviso. Accademia Musicale. p. 103–8. (2015)                      

Selected Invited Talks 

2021 | Harvard University. Society for Mind, Brain, Behavior. Speaker: “Music intersections with Social Responsibility and Invisibility” Remote. March 11.

2020 | Harvard University. Society for Mind, Brain, Behavior. Speaker: “Musical Growth: Prodigy, Presence, Play.” Remote. October 17. 

2019 | Harvard University. Mind, Brain, Behavior Interfaculty Initiative. Speaker: “Paradoxes in Harmony: Toward a Pedagogy of Mutual Transformation” Cambridge, MA. October 17. 

2019 | Musical interventions in cognitive ability. Indian Hill Music Center. Littleton, MA. October 15.

2018 | Providing Resources and Opportunities for Future Standouts (PROFS). Keynote Speaker. Kutztown, PA. November 19. 

2018 | Harvard University. Mind, Brain, Behavior Interfaculty Initiative. Speaker: “Play and Prodigy: Embodied Cognition in Music Learning.” Cambridge, MA. October 4. 

2018 | Kutztown University. Frederick Douglass Institute Discussion Series. Keynote speaker: “Paradoxes in Harmony: Music in the Recovery of Self and Community.” September 11.

2017 | San Diego Refugee Forum. Presenter: “Songs and Stories,” the Center for World Music’s refugee artist initiative. El Cajon, CA. November 21. 

2017 | Butch Morris’ Conduction®, Guest lecturer. UC San Diego. November 14.

2017 | “Varèse, Zappa, and the Corporeal in Sound.” Guest lecturer. UC San Diego. February 2.

2017 | Society for Music Perception and Cognition. Panelist: “Pursuing Graduate School”. UC San Diego, CA. July 31.  

2016 | Session chair, College Music Society Summit on 21st Century Music School Design. University of South Carolina, SC. June 4.

2015 | UC San Diego. Springfest Music Symposium. Presenter and panelist: “ Music in Cognitive Decline.” San Diego, CA. April 10.

2015 | Chapman University. “The Cutting Edge in Music Cognition.” Guest lecturer. Orange CA. December 3.

Selected Conference Presentations  

2019 “Transformations in Music Theory Pedagogy: Four Case Studies.” Conference on Interdisciplinary Musicology. University of Graz. Austria. (flash talk). September.

2019 “Expanding the Repertoire: Hip Hop in the Academy.” National Association for Multicultural Education. Pennsylvania Chapter. March. 

2019 “Students Evaluate Music Theory Courses: A Reddit Community Survey.” College Music Society. Northeast Chapter | Millersville, PA. March. 

2018 “Enactive Cognition in Music Theory.” International Conference on Music Perception and Cognition | Graz, Austria. July. Large travel award recipient

2017 “Music Theory Through Conduction.” International Conference for the Society for Education, Music and Psychology Research | University of Hull, UK. April. Dean’s Travel Award recipient

2017 “Students Evaluate Music Theory Courses: A Reddit Community Survey.” Society for Music Perception and Cognition | UC San Diego, CA. July. (Poster)

2015 “Cognitive Framing in Music Theory Curriculum.” Society for Music Perception and Cognition. Vanderbilt University. July.

2015 “Framing Creative Intentionality: Toward Heuristic Technology in Music Theory Pedagogy.” International Conference on New Music Concepts | Treviso, Italy. February. Large Travel Award

2015 “Crossover Evangelism: How Contemporary Christian Music Advanced Post-Christian America.” American Musicological Society; Pacific-Southwest Chapter Meeting | San Diego, CA. February.

Teaching Experience

2019-20 Harvard University, Mind-Brain-Behavior Initiative Cambridge, MA
Teaching Fellow | The Role of Music in Health and Education 

2019-20 Northeastern University, Department of Music Boston, MA
Instructor | Music Analysis Seminar, Music in Everyday Life 

2018-19 Kutztown University, Department of Music   Kutztown, PA 
Scholar-In-Residence, Full-time Instructor (18 units)

2016-17  Chapman University, Hall-Musco Conservatory of Music Orange, CA
Adjunct Professor | Psychology of Music

2015-18  University of California, San Diego, Department of Music San Diego, CA Associate
Instructor, Teaching Assistant (40 units)

2012-13 Life Pacific College, San Dimas, CA 

2011-13   Azusa Pacific University, School of Music  Azusa, CA Adjunct professor (40 units)

Courses taught as instructor of record | Over 100 units

  • Theory/Harmony
    • Fundamentals (I), diatonic and chromatic harmony (II, III), Advanced/20th century (IV)
  • Music Analysis Seminar
  • Psychology of Music (graduate and undergraduate) 
  • Music in Everyday Life
  • Intro. to Music Technology 
  • Applied Composition
  • Intro. to Music Literature 
  • Film Music
  • Hip Hop Music and Culture
  • Fundamentals of Music Business
  • Keyboard

Non-Profit Experience

Non-Profit Experience

2019-21   Managing Director, Cambridge Common Voices | Cambridge, MA

  • Cultivate community 
  • Serve as ensemble coordinator
  • Plan rehearsals, coordinate all  dimensions of concert production including teams, tech, promotion, and accessibility. 

2018-19   Frederick Douglass Institute, Scholar-In-Residence | Kutztown, PA

  • Initiated a now annual music competition aligned that furthers the diversity missions of FDI and the music department.  
  • Full-time instructor of record 

2016-18 Board of Directors, Center for World Music | San Diego, CA

  • Annual operating budget over $250,000 for cultural programing 
  • Grant-writer: Awarded competitive grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, California Humanities, California Arts Council

Musical Experience

2020-present |Music Director at St. Matthew’s United Methodist Church | Acton, MA

2006-2013 | Composer, Arranger, Orchestrator 
Selected Contracts: Multi-Grammy nominee and Dove Award winning Magination Media, Angeles National Chorale, American Film Institute, Candlelight Pavilion, Lionheart Movies Inc., Rainwater Music Co., several ‘mega churches’ (3,000+ attendees)

2009-2011 | Music Director for Christ Our Savior United Methodist Church

2005 | Music Director for Lake Beauty Bible Camp


  • Various touring rock/jazz bands, including Sempiternity and the Bethany Joy Combo | 2006-2013
  • Performed regularly with Forever Kids at underserved schools throughout L.A. as part of character development programing | 2006-2010 
  • Regular keyboardist at several ‘mega-churches’ (3,000+ attendees)
  • Produced Youtube channel MusicTheoryAdvanced | 13,000+ subscribers

Professional Activities

  • Reviewer for Psychology of Music, Memory & Cognition
  • Affiliations: Society for Music Perception and Cognition, College Music Society, New England Conference of Music Theorists
  • Academic Service: 
    Service on search committee, Frederick Douglass Institute | 2019
    Local Organizing Committee: SMPC 2017, UC San Diego, CA
    Session Chair: CMS Summit, 2017. USC, SC. 
    Academic Advisor: APU School of Music. Azusa, CA. 2010-2011


  • Piano Tuner/Technician | over 400 pianos serviced, 2006-present
  • Aspen Music Festival and School | Audio Recording, 2008 
  • N.A.S.A. Dryden Flight Research Center | SHARP Program, 2002
  • Tribal Member: Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians