Jocelyn C Chambers
Jocelyn C Chambers is a Composer-creative passionate about using her gifts to diversify musical arts.
Born and raised in Austin, Texas, Chambers profoundly resonated with music and film as early as 7 years old. She began studying piano at age 7, but discovered the magic of composition at 13. She honed her writing skills by reworking existing film scores and arranging popular songs by ear.
Soon after, she began studying composition with Dr. Rachel McInturff at the Armstrong Community Music School. Within one year, Chambers entered the Texas Young Composers Competition with her first orchestral piece “My Heart.” She won along with 9 other composers, receiving the honor of having her work performed by the Austin Symphony Orchestra. Chambers was the first woman and Black composer to win. She won once more with her piece “Paradise (So This is Love, My Dear).”
At 17, she entered the Butler School of Music’s composition program at the University of Texas at Austin. Seeing the lack of representation for female composers of color, Chambers created her own platform. For her senior recital, Chambers produced The Gospel According to Jocelyn, a threefold work with original music, poetry, and film to document her experiences as an American black woman. In 2017, at age 20, Chambers graduated with her bachelor’s degree.
In 2018, at 21, Chambers moved to Los Angeles to earn a graduate certificate in film scoring from UCLA. Before beginning coursework in January 2019, Chambers worked as a post-production assistant on Netflix’s Designated Survivor. She continued working full-time during her studies, eventually working on Netflix’s Grand Army. Despite her full schedule, Chambers sought opportunities to compose. She practiced her new skills by scoring temporary music for both Netflix programs, and even took on her first feature documentary, Mama Gloria. The award-winning documentary highlights the life of Black trans elder Gloria Allen.
In January 2020, Chambers made the courageous decision to commit to full-time composition. Despite the industry-wide shutdown that accompanied COVID-19, Chambers continued to receive opportunities. In June, she completed the short documentary In Favor of Fetus, sharing the experiences of women affected by the Wisconsin’s Cocaine Mom law. In summer 2020, she began scoring ad music for industry-leading production agencies including Found Objects, Barking Owl Sound, and The Teenage Diplomat. She has pitched work for Nike, the NBA, Ubisoft, Peloton, and more. In the summer of 2021, she accepted a position as an in-house ad composer for the critically-acclaimed music house Butter International Music and Sound. She also composed music for James Beard award-winning chef Mashama Bailey’s MasterClass course exploring the art of Southern cuisine.
Chambers’ concert work has been programmed and commissioned by numerous ensembles nationwide. Her latest commissions include Splinter Tongue Clarinet Quartet, Arizona State University Phiharmonia, and the Orange County Women’s Chorus. She recently completed a harp piece in collaboration with world-renowned harpist Yolanda Kondonassis for her project FIVE MINUTES for Earth. When not composing, Chambers runs her home bakery Sweets by Jocelyn. She specializes in gourmet cakes and pies inspired by her family traditions. Chambers is a featured contestant on Hulu’s newest baking competition “Baker’s Dozen,” where 13 self-taught and professional bakers compete for a delicious grand prize.
Chambers continues to advocate for diversity in musical arts. She is a recipient of the NBC Universal Composer Initiative mentorship where she and 7 other diverse composers are actively highlighting diversity in film scoring. In December 2020, she contributed to the Society of Composers and Lyricists’ Score Magazine with her article “#ScoringSoWhite: Examining Genre Bias and Representation as Composers Compassionately Advocate for Colleagues of Color.” She was featured in composer, author, and educator Nate Holder’s book “Where Are All the Black Female Composers?” and on his podcast “The Why Music Podcast” in February 2021. Chambers is determined to ensure Hollywood it reflects real world diversity, so she and other creatives of color do not feel alone.
In Favor of Fetus (Short)
Director: Ashley Omoma
Producers: Ashley Omoma
What You Made Me Do: Walking to the Next State of Healing Trauma
Starring: Caren Bright
Director: Luchina Fisher
Producers: Luchina Fisher, Zainab Ali
Starring: Gloria Allen
Things My Father Never Taught Me (Short)
Director: Eboni Ellinger
Producers: Eboni Ellinger, Jordan Auzenne
Starring: Soleil Patterson, George Brown, Joquian Auzenne
MasterClass: Mashama Bailey Teaches Southern Cooking
Producer: Candela Ancewicz
MasterClass: Michael Twitty
Producer: Sinosa Micik, Candela Ancewicz