MacArthur High School Jazz Band Director José Antonio Díaz has racked up plenty of recognition over the years. Texas Monthly staff took notice and featured him in the October 2017 issue.
Díaz landed the No. 2 spot on the list that features the “30 Things You Need to Know About Texas Music Scene in 2017.” Writer John Nova Lomax cited Díaz’s passion for music education as well as his inspiring methods, which are “forming dynasties.”
Former students include Grammy-winning sidemen Joe Gonzalez, Robert Martinez and Felix DeLeon; Marcie Chapa, a percussionist who has backed stars like Beyoncé, Jay-Z, and Kanye West and now teaches the drumline at MacArthur High.
Díaz was a top 10 finalist for the Grammy Foundation’s Music Educator Award earlier this year.
He has been molding musicians at MacArthur High since 1985. Díaz also works with students in Latin jazz at the Diaz Music Institute, a nonprofit he founded in 2000.
For more than 30 years, Díaz’s ensembles have gained national and international attention. He and his students have performed many times at the Midwest Clinic and the International Association of Jazz Educators.
In 2008, Díaz received the Jefferson Award presented by KPRC-Channel 2. The award recognizes individuals for their achievements and their contributions in the community.
The Houston Arts Alliance awarded Díaz in 2011 with an Individual Artist Grant (IAG). The IAG Program supports local Houston artists. The Alliance seeks to advance Houston’s reputation as a vibrant, creative and cultural hub.
Additionally, DownBeat magazine named Díaz to its Jazz Education Hall of Fame in 2014.
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