IT@UofT People — Blake Markle
Published on: October 26, 2020
The backbone of any successful team is its hard-working people. The University of Toronto’s Information Technology Services (ITS) division is privileged to employ outstanding individuals with diverse talents that extend beyond work-related education and skills.
In this segment, entitled IT@UofT People, we will get to know our IT@UofT team across the tri-campus community and find out more about their hidden or not-so-hidden talents and/or pursuits outside of work.
Name: Blake Markle
Department: Information & Instructional Technology Services (IITS) at the University of Toronto Scarborough campus (UTSC)
Title: Manager, Events, Filming and Classroom Experience
How long have you worked at U of T?
Nine joyous years.
What is your secret or not-so-secret talent(s) and hobbies outside of work?
I try to make music at home when I’m not working or performing familial duties. My most recent project is an album of original Tiki-lounge Exotica tunes and is available upon request.
How and why did you get involved in these hobbies?
When I picked up a bass guitar at 14 and started playing along with songs I liked, then started picking up other instruments, I soon knew that I wanted to put it all together some day; basically composing, arranging and producing the music from top to bottom. This has been accomplished with varying degrees of success over the years. I played in a band who went on a cross-country Canadian tour culminating in a 10-week artist residency at the Banff Centre, I produced a jingle for a nation-wide TV commercial for the Ministry of Health (during H1N1), I’ve played DJ sets in Europe, just did a front porch concert for a COVID-era street party (with proper distancing) and there have been plenty of other efforts that weren’t so glamourous.
When/how did your interest in this area(s) begin?
- Got goosebumps listening to a Beatles record of my dad’s (Abbey Road) when I was 10 and realized that music had powers beyond my comprehension.
- Was made to take keyboard lessons not long thereafter and I didn’t like it, but I’m now glad I did it.
- Played bass in the high school jazz band.
- Started messing around with music software on a primitive PC in university.
In that order.
Do you have any professional training in this field?
I have a Masters in Music Technology from McGill, and recently gave a guest lecture for a Music Tech course at UTSC, which was a great opportunity and privilege.
Who/what are your inspirations?
Chick Corea, John McLaughlin, Squarepusher, Soundgarden, Yes, and the aforementioned Beatles are my musical idols (in no particular order).
Anything else you would like to add?
Babies are natural drummers.