- Liefde Rechthoek (Woodwind Quartet: Flute, Oboe, Clarinet in Bb, Bassoon)
- Bossa Nova MAD (Saxophone Quintet: Soprano, Alto, Tenor 1-2, Baritone)
Written for a sax quintet from Rowan University (led by Ron Chattopadhyay), this short little piece is both a straightforward bossa nova and an exercise in the harmonic layering of a sax section.
- Tublues (Tuba-Euphonium Quartet)
The companion piece to Euphonisum!, Tublues focuses on the tubas, and is inspired by Miles Davis' classic album Kind of Blue, particularly the bass work of Paul Chambers. It's in B-flat Mixolydian, and follows the standard 12-bar blues structure. Perfect for your C or BBb player to work their bass-style tonguing and your Eb or F player to learn and understand solo improvisation. Published (along with Euphonisum!) by Cimarron Music, under the title Two Jazz Quartets.
- Ceremonies for Christmas (SATB choir, unaccompanied; piano for rehearsal purposes only)
Written for the Hazel Renshaw Carol Composition Prize, sponsored by the Melody Makers of London; I set out to write a carol in the English tradition, with a few of my own touches. The text is taken from the 1648 poem of the same name, by Robert Herrick. I still don't think there are enough Christmas drinking songs...
- Cello Form (Solo Violoncello)
Composed as a free-form solo for cellist Fabienne Fanord, this is a lyrical etude in its first part, morphing into a jazz showcase with a few percussive knocks on wood. I performed this on tuba, with the help of a very useful and acoustically deep tuba mute!
- Murder Ballads: Little Sir Hugh (Brass Quintet: Trumpet in Bb 1-2, Horn in F, Trombone, Tuba)
First in a series of murder ballads, this is my interpretation of Britain's "Little Sir Hugh" (Child Ballad #155), revised from an earlier setting of mine, premiered in May of 2011. The piece is given a medieval feel by its use of the five instruments in certain doublings or consorts and its shifting meter, but is given a more modern rhythmic sensibility.
- Psalm 149 (SATB choir and piano)
A setting of the familiar Psalm, taken from the King James Bible. This particular setting is based on the mystic chord, a six-note pitch class collection consisting of alternating quartal intervals (augmented, diminished, augmented, perfect, perfect). Psalm 149 was written in memory of James Dearing, Director of Choral Activities at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
- Agnus Dei (for SATB choir, unaccompanied)
My first original choral work, this is a part of the ordinary mass, loosely connected to my earlier Sanctus (I'll finish the whole thing eventually, I swear!) It's in B Locrian mode, and the text alternates between the layered liturgical Latin and the English translation, presented as section soli. In other news, this is a piece that is looking for a premiere...
- Euphonisum! (for tuba-euphonium quartet) To be premiered in late 2012, this is an exercise in jazz counterpoint for tuba-euphonium quartet. Or maybe it's just an outlet for random musical motives. Either way, I'm contributing original material to the tuba-euphonium quartet repertoire. More young music students are picking up these instruments; they NEED new literature...which is what I tell myself to justify this piece being written. ;) Published (along with Tublues) by Cimarron Music, under the title Two Jazz Quartets.
- The Dr. Jongo Theme Song ("It's Always Raining In Indiana") (for tuba-euphonium quartet; also available for string quartet)
I love production music, I really do...and the 50's were full of it. From background music like this, to the large stock music production libraries of APM, and the myriad TV themes, it all just fit the era perfectly. So, when IUP's Tubaphonium studio needed an incidental tune for their production of "Frankentuba" (really), I listened to more 50s production music than anyone should be allowed to take, and then came up with this one. It sounds like something you'd hear on "Ren & Stimpy" or "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia"; an earworm that will never die.
- A Composer's Tale (for flute, English horn, and tuba)
This trio is a tribute to one of my favorite composers, Igor Stravinsky. It highlights the three major periods of his life: the form and voicing echo his second period (the Neo-Classical years of A Soldier's Tale), while the opening motive is set in permutations of a six-tone row (his third period, where he broke the rules of Serialism), and the highlighted rhythm and chord structure evoke his first, Post-Romantic period (and The Rite of Spring). Written for a Theory workshop, but premiered in performance at the 2011 Senior Composer's Forum.
- Bassoon Phase (for four bassoons, or bassoon and tape)
Originally written in the style of Steve Reich's Phases, this was an attempt to combine Minimalist style with set theory. Bassoons were chosen to mimic the effects of a sequencer, a little like the one that runs through The Who's "Baba O'Riley." This was premiered at the 2010 IUP Composer's Forum by bassoonists Scott Ziegler, Andrew Payne, Kathryn Deason, and Jason Maholic; it was later dedicated to composer, bassoonist, and friend Reed Hanna, who directed rehearsals of the piece. I'm thinking about possibly following up with a few more phases...
- The Twelve Tones of Indiana (for two tenor trombones and bass trombone)
Two (to this day, only two) serial miniatures for trombone trio, depicting daily life in Indiana, PA. Really.
II. Song of the Train
- Mettre d'aplomb les profondeurs (French: "Plumbing the depths") (for solo piano)
A solo piano meditation in the style of Claude Debussy, evoking the descent through a cave. It's recommended that a second person stands by the piano with a guitar pick, ready to pluck a few strings...that should be all you need to know about this one.
- Sanctus (Seurat Sanctus Lydian) (for mezzo-soprano, contralto, and two French horns)
And thus began my work on parts of a mass! The conceit of this Sanctus is the pointillistic nature of the notes in all four parts coming together to form a coherent whole, as in the work of French Post-Impressionist painter Georges Seurat. Premiered at the 2010 IUP Composer's Forum under some strange circumstances: Due to a change in personnel, I had to put on my "countertenor pants" and sing alongside contralto Gina Szepesi. Now, I just leave this stuff to the professionals...