Gabriela Ortiz Aroma Foliado CD

Gabriela Ortiz Aroma Foliado CD

Gabriela Ortiz is a significant composer from Mexico. A couple of years ago, I was fortunate to play on Gabriela Ortiz’s CD called Aroma Foliado. I played percussion on the first track, Elegía (1991). The CD was nominated for a Latin Grammy and featured a lot of great performances. Be sure to check out the final track which features a piece for steel pan and two harps. Below is the personnel listing and the program notes for the piece. Be sure to check out the sample tracks on the Southwest Chamber site. PERSONNEL 1. Elegía (1991) 15:38 Elissa Johnston, Sharon Harms, Laura Mercado Wright & Ayana Haviv, Sopranos Lisa Edelstein, flute/piccolo/alto David Johnson, timpani Ken McGrath & Dave Gerhart, percussion Alison Bjorkedal, harp Phillip Bush, piano/celesta Shalini Vijayan, violin Kira Blumberg, viola Peter Jacobson, cello Tom Peters, double bass Jeff von der Schmidt, conductor PROGRAM NOTES Southwest Chamber Music continues its vibrant association with the musical life of Mexico with its newest album, Aroma Foliado. A musical portrait of composer Gabriela Ortiz, five important works are represented from her colorful and diverse output ranging from 1991 to 2010. Funded by Mexico’s FONCA, Aroma Foliado is a unique and rare collaboration between a Mexican composer and an American ensemble. The disc includes vocal soloists baritone Evan Hughes singing Rio Bravo and four sopranos in Ortiz’s deeply moving Elegia: Elissa Johnston, Sharon Harms, Laura Mercado-Wright and Ayana Haviv. Inspired by a string quartet by Mozart, the title track of the album is Aroma Foliado which alternates from dream seqeunces to pounding Mexican rhythms. Two works celebrate the rivers flowing through Mexican culture. Río Bravo for baritone is accompanied by 6 carefully tuned cystal wine goblets and solo violinist Lorenz Gamma. The legendary Mexican river Papaloapan inspires the magical sonorities of two harps and steel drum in Río de las Mariposas. The disc concludes with the aerobic athleticism of Atlas Pumas, a recreation of a major soccer match for violin and marimba, excitingly performed by Shalini Vijayan and Lynn...
New Release: Tempo Distortion #4 – Single

New Release: Tempo Distortion #4 – Single...

I am proud to announce that I have a new single that was released on iTunes and CDBaby. The piece is called Tempo Distortion #4 and was written by my friend and composer Steve Kornicki. Tempo Distortion #4 is a conceptual study in simultaneously occurring patterns in different tempi for solo marimba and pre-recorded and processed marimba sounds. Check it out and let me know what you think. Thanks for your continued...
Composers Circle

Composers Circle

On Sunday, my new triangle solo Pitch Drop was featured on Composers Circle. If you are unfamiliar with this site, it features one composer a day and has been around for about a year. You can easily lose a lot of time listening to all of the music that is featured on the site. Thanks to Eric Guinivan for creating such an incredible resource for composers and performers. COMPOSERS CIRCLE one day. one composer. one...
Navigating Social Networks Article

Navigating Social Networks Article

I was interviewed for an article called “Navigating Social Networks” for Halftime Magazine. The article is now available online. Thanks to Jeremy Chen for asking me to be a part of the article. Below are some excerpts from the article. Click here to read the entire article. Navigating Social Networks By Jeremy Chen With social networking now being a significant game changer in the entire world of communication, marching arts organizations must ensure that this medium is being understood properly and being used in a manner that benefits—rather than hurts—them. Facebook. Twitter. LinkedIn. You- Tube. Pinterest. Google+. Social media has taken over the globe, revolutionizing the way people interact with each other. The world of pageantry is no exception. Whether it is a small high school band or a worldfamous marching ensemble, everyone is staying connected on the Internet. From Facebook to YouTube, the marching world is being updated in lightning speed reaching out to more people than ever before. With great power, though, comes great responsibility, as the uncle of a certain arachnid superhero would say. With countless stories of people being careless on the Internet and getting into deep trouble, there are certain rules that are to be followed if you don’t want the world to see you mess up. For marching bands, social media can be a friend and a foe. It just depends on how the beast is tamed. “You’re not just broadcasting all the great things you’re doing,” says Dave Gerhart, professor of percussion at Cal State Long Beach. “You’re also going out and following other blogs that do similar things. If you’re a drum corps, you would be posting content from perhaps a major drum corps blog in order to show that you are contributing to the online community instead of just broadcasting about yourself.” Be sure to read the entire article here. What did you think about the topics that were brought up in the article? Please leave your comments and feedback...
Technology and Its Use by Percussion Educators in the 21st Century

Technology and Its Use by Percussion Educators in the 21st Century...

Over the summer, Dr. Tracy Wiggins (UNC Pembroke) asked me to contribute to an article he was writing for The Percussive Notes journal. After waiting 6 months, it has finally been released in the January 2012 issue. The article features an interview with three other percussion professors, including Norman Weinberg (University of Arizona), John W. Parks IV (The Florida State), and Thomas Burritt (University of Texas, Austin). I was honored to be a part of the article. Thank you Tracy! Technology Article For more information about the Percussive Arts Society, please visit their website. PAS is an international society of percussionists and if you play drums, you should be a member of this great...
IronWorks CD Review in Percussive Notes

IronWorks CD Review in Percussive Notes

The Percussive Arts Society is the largest professional organization for percussionists. They society publishes 6 journals yearly and supports percussion education throughout the world. In the January 2012 issue of Percussive Notes, Darin Olson gave a great review on the new IronWorks Percussion Duo CD – I. Thanks to PAS and Darin for including our CD in the recent publication. IronWorks Percussion Duo (Self-published CD) Formed in 2006, the IronWorks Percussion Duo aims to expand the repertoire written for their medium. Attempting to explore new possibilities for the genre, the group began a composition contest in 2008. Through their debut recording, the duo brings two of the prize-winning works to life in addition to three other new pieces. The eclectic compilation makes use of unique instrument combinations. Well versed in both Western and ethnic instrument performance, the duo demonstrates creativity in combining the practices of various cultures. Encompassing a variety of styles and unique instrument combinations, listeners have several quality options to appeal to their taste. The first movement of “Uncompression” by Ming-ching Chiu is reminiscent of multiple percussion works by Dave Hollinden. The two movements of Roger Pzytulski’s “Arc & Current” provide one rhythmic and one laid-back duo for steel drums. I was most drawn to “Volume” by Missy Mazzoli. The mixture of vibraphone, steel drum, tuned wine bottles, and kick drum creates a distinct sound palette to establish a series of relaxed grooves created through irregular metric groupings. The two remaining tracks were written by the duo members themselves: “Tribute” by Dave Gerhart and “A Cosby Sweater” by Axel Clarke. Seeing what IronWorks has accomplished in five years, one can only assume this is one of several quality recordings the duo will produce in years to come. —Darin...

Published Music

I am happy to announce that four of my new percussion works have been published by Andrew Beall and Bachovich Music Publications. The four works that Bachovich published are: Steel Drum Orchestra PanSon Baila Alegre Multi-Percussion Drum Duo Tribute Marimba Quartet Quartet in F major (2nd mvt). Arrangement of Ravel’s String Quartet. These pieces will be debuted at PASIC 2010 in Indianapolis. Be sure to stop by the booth and say hi to...