Ebonie Smith

Music Technology

At the age of seventeen, Ebonie left her hometown of Memphis, Tennessee to pursue her musical aspirations in the entertainment capital of New York City. In 2004 Ebonie discovered her love for music production and began using her baby-sitting money to finance her own project recording studio. While an undergraduate student at Barnard College of Columbia University, she began making beats for aspiring artists and establishing herself as an up-and-coming producer/engineer. This initial interest in recording and music technology set Ebonie on a path to discover new and interesting ways of merging her love for music production with a sincere desire to impact social consciousness through musical exploration and education.

Ebonie has worked on a number of music projects in the United States and abroad. In 2004, Ebonie worked with the world-renowned theater company The Classical Theatre of Harlem. The following year she interned with Damon Dash and helped oversee musical operations at Damon Dash Music Group, Rocawear, and on the production set of BET’s The Ultimate Hustler. That same year Ebonie spearheaded and organized Columbia University’s first annual Black History Month musical showcase that featured world-renowned Brooklyn Steppers Marching Band, the Bonga and The Vodou Drums of Haiti, and other distinguished acts. Due to her efforts, Ebonie was invited to participate in a Black History Month promo that aired on MTV Network's The N television channel to discuss media entertainment’s influence on black culture and perceptions of "blackness" in society. In 2006, her interests led her to the West African country of Cameroon where she recorded and toured with internationally acclaimed recording artists such as Jean Marie Ahanda of Les Têtes Brulées and Jean Marcel Ngou's Le Black Roots. Upon returning to the United States in 2007, Ebonie organized the Gender Amplified: Women & Technological Innovation in Hip Hop academic conference in collaboration with the Barnard Center for Research on Women, Barnard’s Africana Studies Program, and Femmixx.com. This day-long conference brought together hip hop producers, scholars, artists, activists and music enthusiasts to assess the impact that gender identities have on the field of music technology and women's participation in hip hop production culture. Special guests included Tricia Rose and DJ Spinderella.

In 2008, Ebonie began working as a production assistant at the Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. In this capacity, she was able to impact the lives of undergraduate students and inspire them through the employment of music production. In 2009, Ebonie helped co-organized Say My Name, a special screening and panel discussion on women emcees and their careers, in collaboration with Tisch's 7th Annual Fusion Film Festival. Shortly after, she began working closely with renowned computer music composer Morton Subotnick as an instructor in music technology and research assistant on the Creating Music Research Project. This same year Ebonie completed her master's studies in music technology at New York University under the supervision of professor and computer musician Robert Rowe.

For nearly two years, Ebonie served as an arts program coordinator for Harlem Children's Zone. As an executive manager for Harlem Children's Zone's Employment and Technology Center, Ebonie managed a staff of 14 teaching artists in the areas of graphic design, film, music production, theatre and culinary arts. She worked collaboratively with her staff to develop arts-based, after school programming for high school students residing in the neighborhood of Harlem, New York. By utilizing her administrative skill set and diverse background in the arts to service youth, Ebonie was afforded the opportunity to create unique and innovative programs such as Lyrics Lounge, a music business and performance club for at-risk teens.


View our Group Instruction and Private Music Instruction Faculty