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The Moon Takes A Solo: Total Eclipse of the Sun 

Many people who were able to see the total eclipse reported being moved by the visual and the experience. I felt the same way and have been trying to figure out why. I think it's similar to what makes us respond to art, music and comedy. The broadly accepted standards in the arts set up expectations for the audience. The degree to which we evaluate something as being outstanding is directly related to its simultaneous adherence and deviation from that expectation. This eclipse did the same. We take for…

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Thoughts on Music Education 

The American Federation of Musicians, Local 802, NYC (aka "The Musicians' Union") has asked me to write an essay about Music Education for publication in their monthly magazine called Allegro.  Specifically, they have asked me 


    • to discuss what I'm offering in my curricula,
    • how I think I'm making a difference, and 
    • to address the importance of teaching the next generation of musicians.


I look forward to writing this and would love to hear from some of my former students here on this interactive…

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New Composition Underway 

Sketches for a new piece are currently underway. It is a suite and deals with a very specific subject matter. It's baffling me right now. The third movement's melody, changes and groove are solid. The first movement has inspired material that relates to four specific text phrases and therefore, melodic phrases and is harmonically odd. I'm trying to put on my "logical thinking cap" but so far, no luck. The second movement...I think will fall into place. In the oscillating inner dialogue that usually…

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Born Identity: Co-Commissioning Contributors 

Deepest Gratitude to the Contributors of the Born Identity Campaign



(P) Private Contributor

(IGG) Indie-Go-Go Contributor


Gary DiMauro (IGG)

Seth Kaplan (IGG)

Nancy Barker (P)

Pete McGuinness, trombonist/arranger (P)

Sumi Tonooka, pianist/composer (P)

Don Messina, bassist (Ted Brown Quartet) (P)

Ted Nash, arranger & alto saxophonist with Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra (P)

Joop van der Leij, Tristano & Ted Brown fan (P)

Dick Lieb, arranger (P)

David Frank, pianist & Tristano alum (P)

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BORN IDENTITY Co-Commissioning Campaign goes LIVE with Indie-Go-Go! 

Please share this info on facebook, twitter and other outlets.  You can help make this co-commissioning campaign happen!  Click here:

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Born Identity: An Arranging Project's Pseudo-Crowdfunding Kick-Off 

Born Identity

Tristano-Inspired Music Meets Anita Brown Jazz Orchestra


This project delves into the music that I was literally born into.  As the newborn daughter of Ted and Phyllis Brown, who met while studying with Lennie Tristano in the original wave of students, I’m told I attended regular sessions in a basket.  At the time of my organizing this endeavor, my parents are both 86 years old, with birthdays before year’s end.  Of the musicians who forged a playing career from that group of students, the…

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An Army Chief Warrant Officer (CWO-5) Responds to Disarming The Tempest 

I am grateful for CWO-5 DeGuisto's willingness to listen to Disarming The Tempest with me and to share some very personal thoughts about his reaction.  As we listened on my stereo I was both nervous and excited, as I always am when I put new works forth.  I prefaced the listening session with only the information regarding the four spoken phrases that were used both as speech in orchestral players' parts and to generate melodic material based on the pitch contour of each:

1) SO good to see you!

2) We're…

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Fourteen Years Ago Today 

Originally posted September 24, 2009
Ten years ago today, at this hour (2:06 am, EDT), I was enjoying time on a gorgeous 70 foot sportfish yacht, docked at Trump Marina in Atlantic City, NJ. After we arrived from Montauk, NY in pretty turbulent seas (9 foot swells as we left Montauk Harbour) the captain and first mate decided that winning several thousand dollars at Black Jack on AC's main strip was simply not enough. While they ventured into Trump Tower to play with their winnings, I remained on the… Read more

Disarming The Tempest, for Symphony Orchestra 

As a selected composer, among thirty-six others nationwide, of the 2012 Jazz Composers Orchestra Institute's "Intensive" workshop at UCLA this past August, I had the option to begin composing a piece for symphony orchestra through a secondary submission. The deadline for the "Readings" segment of this institute is Friday, October 12, 2012. It called for a sketch score for one minute's worth of newly composed music. Eighteen composers will be selected from the pool of applicants. They will have the…

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Introducing Operation Dovetail 

I am proud to introduce "Operation Dovetail," a program designed to assist returning combat veterans and others suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) through learning about what the creative process offers the non-artist. Information is available under EDUCATIONAL SERVICES on the PRODUCTS page of this website. To help support this program and other artistic pursuits, please visit the PRODUCTS page.

As a result of my research while composing Stand: A Symphony for Jazz Orchestra, which…

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