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Monthly Archives: April 2005

Old Home, Pt. 1


The weirdness level on this one is off the charts … How about this for going back to your roots: I’ll be guest conducting the band at my alma mater, Wyoming Valley West High School, in Plymouth PA. Thaaat’s right. On Friday I’ll be workshopping with the students, visiting with old friends and faculty, and [...]

Pulp Non-fiction


As one of the last 3 remaining (and unapologetically pretentious) non-online-version readers of the physicalized newpaper, complete with oils and ink, my complaints likely bear little weight. In the past I’ve been supportive (up to a point) about recent section re-designs, but fooling with my Circuits section—People, the Troublemaker Estate has gone too far. Geeks [...]



What’s that? You say you live in the NYC-area and you want to buy a digital piano? That’s so funny. It just so happens that I put one up for sale just now. And via a fun (read “multi-million-dollar juggernaut corporation”) auction, to boot… Alas, it’s time to move her into better hands. Succeeded (but [...]



Yesterday I heard the preliminary mixes of the two Aphex Twin (aka Richard D. James, freaky prince of electronica) arrangements I did for Alarm Will Sound, NY’s own fab chamber orchestra, conducted by the indefatigable Alan Pierson, and WOW do they sound terrific. I was always pretty jazzed about this project, which took up a [...]



A freshly-tuned piano has my attention at the moment, so I’ve been playing this and that, but very shortly I will be returning to the most pressing of April’s Gigs. The other one will hopefully continue practicing patience while I minister to “hyper-pianos” and such, ostensibly due tomorrow. And as MEW and MJS and I [...]



The marimba is probably my favorite percussion instrument, no doubt due to the special quality of its lower octaves. Low marimba is a color that cannot be replicated in any other way (unlike the upper octaves, which sound basically just like a xylophone, or at least serve the same purpose orchestrationally), and that very uniqueness [...]



Yesterday’s gift to myself after the Mets’ fifth crushing loss in a row was a trip up to midtown’s famous Colony Music, where I blitzed through the madhouse, quickly and single-mindedly buying the songbooks for Jason Robert Brown‘s The Last 5 Years, and Songs for a new world. I’ve been a fan of Brown’s for [...]

it doesn’t suck


Better late and good, than on-time and sucky, I think I’ve heard. AVENUE X, the much-discussed concept, and now my most recent (yet embarrassingly overdue) effort for winds, is finally in rehearsals. It was a squeaker, definitely, as when all was said and done, it was basically a month late. I’ve been 3 weeks late [...]


Information and scores for two new works, Avenue X and The Rivers of Bowery are now online. Bill Berz and The Rutgers Wind Ensemble recorded Bowery beautifully in the session last weekend. The CD, tentatively titled “Raritonality”, will be released at some future date by Mark Custom Records.