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Press Release: New Instrumental Album April Release

Legend Seekers, featuring the concerto for 6-string electric violin, “Leviathan of the Ancient Deep,” is planned to be released April 5!

Enjoy this official Press Release with info about “Leviathan…” and the rest of this adventurous album! Please share this pdf with anyone else you think might be interested in learning about Legend Seekers!

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Now Available: Listen to “Kandy” the Earth-Child Edition Everywhere!

Created more in the spirit of the forthcoming opera of which this song represents, check out the newest single — “Kandy (Your Smile, Your Eyes),” the Earth-Child Edition!

After being kidnapped, Sita sings of her longing to see her beloved Rama again…
Visit sound-deliverance.blog to listen to my music on your favorite platform

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“Christmas Wayfarer” Featured on MusicaNeo.com!

Check it out! I was so excited to get the news! 🙂

Listen to “Christmas Wayfarer” your favorite way – find it on the ESOTERICA album

Listen to “Christmas Wayfarer” on the ESOTERICA album

Visit my sheet music store to purchase the sheet music

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Behind-the-Scenes “Legend Seekers” Media

These past few months have been indescribably fulfilling, yet chaotic, as these things usually go, lol. 😉 I’m nearly through my first semester as a music professor for Cal Poly Pomona; I’ve spent nearly every waking moment setting up and teaching my new classes! I’ve really been enjoying this adventure, and I look forward to each following experience with this wonderful school.

Naturally, as the semester draws toward a close, I’ve been itching to get back to composing and completing my upcoming album, “Legend Seekers” – I’ll be able to start getting back to these projects in just another few weeks, yay! In the meantime, I’ve been meaning to set up this blog post to showcase some of the photos and videos documenting our recording sessions for “Intrepid” and some of the other works that will appear on this upcoming album… Enjoy the gallery and impromptu videos below!

Don’t forget… if you’d like to be a Backstage Supporter of this and other future projects, visit the Backstage Community to see what perks are available–like autographed copies of scores and albums as well as your name listed on the albums you support!

A very special thanks to everybody who has patiently worked with me to make this become a reality!! <3

Strings recording Intrepid
Strings recording Intrepid
Winds and brass recording Intrepid
Strings recording Intrepid
Tina recording “DodecaFunky”
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“Shady Oaks Takedown” Now Released!

Shady Oaks Takedown, the film created in 48 hours, is now available to stream and share on Vimeo.

The year old film, was produced for the LA 48 Hour Film Project to write, produce and finish a film in only 48 hours. In addition, several parameters were given: A character named Austin or Ashley Cheevers who is a winemaker, a wallet for a prop, and the line of dialog “We only have a few minutes” must be included. The genres were drawn at random from a hat, the team drew “Martial Arts/Buddy Film” and we could combine them or use one or the other. (Source)

This adorable short film, a frequent Audience Favorite at screenings, was a crazy, fun project I was brought in to create the music for… in only 6 or so hours…!!! Read more about the experience here.

You can also check out my interview with Bella Composers here

While the full soundtrack is currently available on my store and everywhere else you stream music, you can now watch it in context of the entire film!

Enjoy below, and share it around if you like! 🙂

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#NewTuneThursday: “The Elusive Everyman and Her Majesty” from Music for The Book of I

Welcome to #NewTuneThursday!

“The Elusive Everyman and Her Majesty” represents our main character, forced to live everyday with his mental illness, unsure who is real and who is not… Though that’s not entirely true– all the characters are very real to him.

Here’s how I put the work together; it’s really my most formulaic of the whole suite, which I think suits the mental state of our character…

This track represents one part of the two-fold heart of the main character’s ultimate saga, in my musical interpretation of it. Essentially, this track is comprised of an increasing hodge-podge of melodic fragments — ripped violently from the original works in which they are first found (from “I Know What Death Sounds Like,” “Faces in Foam,” and The Everyman and Her Majesty themes at the beginning of this present track) — that swirl into an angry and frustrating mass of sound and angular textures, up until the very end, when they merge together into The Whiteness of Teaston’s mind. My next track will strive to illuminate musically the flip-side of Teaston’s disjointed thoughts, and the ways in which he attempts to come to terms with his schizophrenia….

Technique-wise, I assembled these fragments by first labeling them both alphabetically and numerically, then, taking seven of Teaston’s own chaotic fragments of thought from random places in the book (“Ever will I?”; “Can I?”; “Consumption”; “Hello Blood”; “The Cliff, Thanks”; “And the Water”; “Even My Face”), I used the letters and syllables of these phrase-lets to “spell” out and overlay the musical phrases.

How many of the phrases from these earlier tracks can you recognize, rushing and overtaking Teaston’s poor troubled mind?

I am fascinated with this work but I have yet to be happy with a performance of it… it’s just such a wickedly tricky work!

There are two versions you can listen to at this point: a live version that’s not entirely accurate but has a lot of heart, and a digital rendition that is spot on as far as accuracy goes but is missing a little bit of the humanness to it… See what you think! 😉

Listen on Amazon Music
Listen on YouTube Music

Listen on Amazon Music (Live Version)
Listen on YouTube Music (Live version)

“The Elusive Everyman and Her Majesty” can be performed by an advanced ensemble. Get the sheet music here! And stay tuned for our new work…

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A Note About Cognitive (Musical) Bias

Disclaimer: Please note, I’m not in any way knocking the budding talent of young Alma. This particular instance only serves as an interesting example of the cognitive bias we all encounter at various points in our lives…

Also note– the mistake elaborated on below could be as simple as her mind seeing B as B-flat– in old-school German notation B is B-flat, and B-flat is H

So here’s an interesting discussion– at the very beginning of the video, the first random note given is a B, not a B-flat. And she does call the B, “si” which is the accurate term for Fixed Do Solfege. Even so, she plays and sings a B-flat.

It’s very natural for musicians and composers to fall into this kind of “cognitive bias“, hearing/seeing the note you really want to, instead of what’s actually there. How many times have we as students and performers done this? ;-P

One time I wasted an entire part of a recording session because I was playing an original folk melody all in a minor tonality, even though it was written in major!!! Luckily I realized my mistake in time to re-record everything–I would have hated to have the composer hear the recording of their work done in an entirely “opposite” mode from what they had intended!

The human brain is powerful but subject to limitations. Cognitive biases are often a result of your brain’s attempt to simplify information processing. They are rules of thumb that help you make sense of the world and reach decisions with relative speed. (source)

Initially in the video, Alma mistakes the B for a B-flat, then, I think seeing the E-flat later reinforced that notion for her.

Theory-wise, she probably “hears” a B-flat, because it will go so much more easily (tonally) with the E-flat two notes later. That interval is a Perfect 4th. The B-natural to an E-flat is a Diminished 4th — much more challenging to work with, especially with an A in the mix, creating sort of a lowered 7th scenario if we were in B Major. In fact the A to the Eb is a Tritone that, again, is easier to “explain” in traditional theory if the B is flatted. (For more on intervals, visit my Music Nerds video on the topic.)

Personally I love the idea of using the Eb as, say, a lowered third in the realm of C Major or A minor (thereby keeping the B natural) and would have loved to see how she might have handled it. But kudos to her for playing with notes and music patterns as she does!