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Meet Alumni – Andrew Pridmore

Andrew Pridmore is a UIC alumni with a BA in Music Business. Since graduating, Andrew has been busy teaching and making music. One of the many bands Andrew is in is called The Hustle, an indie rock band made up of high school friends. Pridmore is also in The Trenchies, a modern-day 60s rock band with heavy influences from The Beatles and The Talking Heads. In these groups, Pridmore plays guitar but mainly specializes in keyboard. 

Andrew was inspired seeing his older brother take piano lessons when he was six years old. From there, Andrew would teach himself how to play piano and learn what it was like to be in a band by making music with friends. His passion for music led him to UIC’s School of Theatre and Music.

After talking with Music Business Coordinator Professor DiFazio about the music industry during his Freshman orientation, Pridmore realized that a BA in Music Business is something he would love to pursue. The many courses Andrew took were private lessons, music business courses, ensembles, and internships, which helped him with his career after graduating.

When reminiscing about his private lessons at UIC, Pridmore said, “Private lessons were the best education I’ve gotten in my instrument. I didn’t do music in school growing up; I did some piano lessons but I am mostly self-taught and learned through performance being in bands and such. My private lessons at UIC taught me–or at least showed me the path to discipline and the tools to work on difficult techniques and get better. I use what I learned in my private lessons (and ensembles) every day as a teacher.” 

When playing piano, Andrew would wonder, “How do I express myself on my instrument?” This is a question that would be answered during Andrew’s time doing UIC’s Jazz Combos and UIC’s Pop Rock Ensemble. Andrew, at first, would feel stressed when playing solos during practice but would later feel comfortable with each practice getting into “The Zone”- a fully concentrated moment where the musicians aren’t in control of their music. After experiencing this moment in his ensembles, Pridmore felt more confident in playing his instrument and doing solos saying, “When feeling uncomfortable playing live and knowing you’re going to make mistakes, you should know that no one’s going to care if you do mess up. If you’re fine with yourself, you’re fine with your mistakes, which is something I learned doing the ensembles at UIC. I learned to give the ‘juice from accepting myself.’” 

The main takeaway from being a music business student at UIC would be taking music business courses with Professor DiFazio and internships. These courses helped Andrew in his career today as a musician saying, “While being in a self-managed band, I use things I learned in music business courses pretty much every day. Copyright and contract law knowledge has helped me a ton. Difazio/Alex White taught me how to write good emails— that might be literally the most important thing. With a music business degree, the class is really what you’re talking about when you meet people, so you understand what you can and/or want to do as a job. So the courses are pretty invaluable— it’s kind of on you to go out and do the leg work, which is why the internships are so important.”

Future events Andrew will be doing are:
– Performing with Jared Jones at SubT with Ur Mom- February 29th
March 6th Schubas opening for The Vices
– April 5th Burlington Bar in Logan Square
– April 30th Schubas

Follow the many bands Andrew is in on social media:
The Hustle
The Trenchies

Article by
Daniel Hernandez
BA Music Business 2025