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In Print

Among the clatter of pre-approved credit and all other assorted tree-killers in yesterday’s mail was my very first issue of Sounding Board, the American Composers Forum newsletter. There on the front page was an article about a composer’s first meanderings in the world of wind music, with my name on the byline. Needless to say, I wasn’t exactly expecting that. The freakiness continued in that sounding board is actually quite a beautiful little publication. Nice paper, lovely design, well laid out …. there’s even a cool graphic attached to the article—an artsy shot of a man’s ear and closed eye, the man obviously caught in the throes of ecstatic listening, and a (french) horn, floating Magritte-style in space to his right. Nice.

To be completely honest, this wasn’t a surprise, exactly. A few months ago the ACF contacted me about re-printing an article I wrote for the National Band Association, an enormous collection of wind directors, of which I am a fan … a collection of extremely dedicated people, but alas, an organization saddled with an acronym more recognizable as something completely different. David Gregory, then president of the NBA (no, not that one, the band one) at the time I won their Merrill Jones Composition Award, had asked me to write something about Me, and the winning piece itself, for their member journal, and I was happy to oblige. How exactly the ACF came across the article to begin with is still a mystery, actually, and I prefer to keep it that way. Makes me seem ubiquitous and unavoidable in people’s lives. Yes, let’s say that.

After contacting the NBA powers-that-be (right, again, not Kobe Bryant) to make sure it was kosher, John Michel, Sounding Board‘s editor, went ahead and very kindly offered me an ACF membership (and thus, a SB subscription) as compensation of sorts—something I’ve been meaning to do anyway ever since it was called the Minnesota Composers Forum. The Northern-Midwest has not completely the ACF zeitgeist, however … it’s the only organization I can think of for whom browsing through their publications for available opportunities, grants, and fellowships makes me wish I lived in St. Paul.

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