Her mother’s South American vocal melodies, playing jazz guitar with award winning big bands at University of North Texas in the 70's, being a studio guitarist, studying classical flute and sitting at the feet of guitar legends Stevie Ray and Jimmy Vaughn with her brothers to listen to the blues in a tiny Texas town produced an eclectic broad-based musical palate for Elaine Gardner-Morales..
Born to two talented educators, Elaine grew up at the University of North Texas, where her father was a professor of Music Theory. Elaine earned a BM from UNT and a MM from Texas A and M at Commerce, both degrees in Music Composition /Theory. In the 80's and 90's academic life continued with a 20 year career as lead music professor at Brookhaven College School of the Arts, Dallas College..
Her award winning Vocal Jazz Ensemble produced numerous CD's and 10 musical tours in 5 foreign countries as well throughout the United States.
During her time in Dallas, her professional employment included: directing professional choruses and church choirs, teaching at the Texas Boys Choir extension in McKinney, and director/arranger for the Contemporary Chorale of Dallas. She also was a clinician/ adjudicator, including numerous presentations at Texas Music Educators Clinic Conventions, NISOD and at the National Music Teacher National Association Clinic Convention in New York. Elaine received the 2001 Brookhaven College Minnie Steven Piper Award for Excellence in Teaching, multiple nominations for Who's Who in College Teaching, and numerous awards for both teaching and musicianship..
In 1975 she composed the musical theme for the Episcopal renewal Movement, Happening " We Will Follow the Way". She is cited in "Bluebonnet Women of Texas" for her composition,
"Conversations by the Rainbow Fan," commissioned by a grant from the Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs. She has received performances of her work by the Mesquite Symphony, Dallas Symphony (Young Arts Competition), Nashotah Seminary, Olympic Theater Arts of Sequim, WA, KONP, KNTU and East Texas State University, and several college campuses around the U.S. Her composition studies were with Dr. William P Latham at UNT and Dr Ron Yates at Texas A&M at Commerce.
After a move to Washington state in 2010 she actively pursued performing on the Olympic Peninsula as a bassist. She currently performs with the Tess Teel Trio. Elaine is on the faculty at Peninsula College in Port Angeles WA where she teaches, develops and coordinates the Vocal Master's Series, an online format featuring international talent in college classroom. She is a member of ASCAP.