Posted on Leave a comment

New EP, “SONATA MODERNA,” Now Available!

It’s officially available now! Go check out my new EP, “SONATA MODERNA“!

Album Notes
This EP features all new Classical music, as well as the return of a recent favorite, composed and performed by Sarah Wallin Huff. SONATA MODERNA is a sonic journey of movement — of nostalgia and anticipation.

The title track, “Sonata Moderna,” is based on an ancient piece from the 17th century (“Sonata sopra la Monica” by Biagio Marini). Featuring two violins and cello with rock rhythm and chords, the past is united with the present in this driving work. Featuring: Sarah Wallin Huff (violins), Anne Sherrill (cello), Paul Hoover (electric guitar), Emily Gibb (electric bass), and Dave Gruchacz (drum set).

“Sweet Camila” returns (re-recorded) from its debut in the soundtrack album, “Music for The Book of I.” Based on Camila, a feature character in Jorge Armenteros’ novel, “The Book of I,” this work for string quartet looks back at good times with nostalgia while encouraging our main character to move forward with hope. Featuring: Brett Bird and Lainey White (violins), Sarah Wallin Huff (viola), and Anne Sherrill (cello).

“Organic Circuitry” is a unique string quartet, pitting the acoustic violin and cello against electric 5- and 6- string violins with effects. It evokes a futuristic state of being, merging ancient instruments with new technology. Featuring: Sarah Wallin Huff (acoustic and electric violins) and Anne Sherrill (cello).

As a bonus, the newest composition from Wallin Huff, “Intrepid: A Fantasy for Oboe/English Horn Soloist and Chamber Ensemble,” has been included in this release. “Intrepid” is a dramatic expression of Life’s Journey, of migration and personal metamorphosis. Featuring: Allison McKay (solo Oboe/English Horn), Asuncion Ojeda and Tiffany Gibb (flutes/piccolo), Russell Vittrup (clarinet), Clayton Slusser (bassoon), Jeff Boultinghouse (horns), Daniel Chandler and Phil Alimoren (trombones), Lyle Michaud (piano), Sarah Wallin Huff (percussion), and the strings — Violins: Mel Bolosan, Josh LeMaster, Corinne Olsen, Abby Olson, Lainey White (concertmaster), Tim Yao; Viola: Sean Lyons; Cello: Emily Rader; Bass: John Hester. Conducted by Sarah Wallin Huff.

All tracks recorded, produced, and mastered by Tyler Bailey at The Master’s College, Santa Clarita (CA), except for “Sweet Camila,” which was recorded, produced, and mastered by Mauricio Gasca at Scott Frankfurt Studio, Los Angeles (CA).

And many thanks to those who graciously gave their amazing talents to make this happen: Tyler J Bailey​, Mauricio Gasca Music​, Scott Frankfurt Studio​, TMC Music​, Anne Tribble Sherrill​, Brett Bird​, Lainey Elizabeth White​, Emily Gibb​, Paul Hoover, Dave Gruchacz, Allison McKay​, Asuncion Ojeda​, Tiffany Gibb​, Russell Vittrup​, Clayton Slusser​, Jeff Boultinghouse, Daniel Chandler​, Philip Alimoren​, Lyle Michaud​, Mel Bolosan​, Joshua LeMaster​, Corinne Olsen​, Abby Olson​, Tim Yao​, Sean Lyons​, Emily Rader​, John Hester​.

Oh! And THANK YOU to José Marques​ for the way-excellent album artwork!

It’ll show up on iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, etc.. in just a few more days…
Enjoy! ^_^

fb_cover@2x

Posted on Leave a comment

Music TBT: “Gypsy Wanderer”

It’s time for my Music TBT, where I randomly choose a work from my repertoire and reminisce about its beginnings!

Today’s TBT Selection is…

Gypsy Wanderer

(Purchase the sheet music and official recording)

An original Sonata for Violin and Piano. Completed in April of 2013, the originating sketches for this four-movement work existed as early as 2008, and were a part of Wallin Huff’s first graduate lessons in composition, while studying under Dr. Mark Carlson. “Gypsy Wanderer” is a unique addition to Wallin Huff’s repertoire in that it is an early exploration of patterns, color, and formula. The nature of the four movements can be described in affect as follows: I. dance-like and fluid; II. surreal and sublime; III. diligent and determined; IV. passionate yet controlled. The work is riveting and soulful in its earthy and irreverent, rhythmic and harmonic wanderings.

I originally began work on this piece during my first semester of graduate studies, under the instruction of Dr. Mark Carlson. He taught me so many valuable techniques to open up my creativity! So, by the end of 2006, I had movement 2 of this sonata completed and movement 3 almost finished. For movement 1, I had several of the phrases sketched out, and movement 4 had only rough ideas of incomplete motives scrawled out on a page.

It sat that way for years as I finished my degree under another teacher. It wasn’t until I began teaching at The Master’s College in 2012 that I finally began looking again at this unfinished sonata of mine. I told myself, I have to finish this! It would be a crime not to! The problem was, I had written so many diverse other works in the meantime, of differing influences and sounds. I didn’t want this sonata to feel as though it was written 6 years apart, as if it was two different pieces entirely. So I spent a lot of time trying to understand my old sketches from my earlier frame of mind. I was able to merge these with all the newfound knowledge I had gained in the past 6 years to create something really colorful and unique.

Finally, in 2013 this four movement sonata was born! It holds a special place in my heart. I’ve had the opportunity to perform this (in completion and in parts) twice now. It is such a kick to play! It really keeps me on my toes, and every time I attempt it, it gets better and better…

I hope you enjoy this trippy, irreverent, angular, and passionate work, “Gypsy Wanderer”! 😀

Posted on Leave a comment

Music TBT: “In the Forest”

It’s time for my Music TBT, where I randomly choose a work from my repertoire and reminisce about its beginnings!

Today’s TBT Selection is…

In the Forest (Amazing Grace)

(Purchase the sheet music and official recording)

This original work by Sarah Wallin Huff creatively weaves the beloved Amazing Grace melody in and out of a second original tune titled “In the Forest,” evoking a meditative and melancholy sense of wandering and reflection, as if hidden from the outside world.

This composition for string quartet was composed in 2011 at the request of Danielle Rosaria Cummins and the organization Alternate Avenues. The piece existed originally as only an unfinished sketch for solo piano, started some years prior. When Wallin Huff was requested to compose a quick-and-dirty string quartet arrangement of the traditional tune Amazing Grace for a formal fundraising banquet being held in two days, Wallin Huff was inspired to take her old sketch of “In the Forest” and turn it into this present string quartet that was instantly well-received and continues to be sought after in performance.

Not much else I can say about this lovely tune. I’m just super-duper happy I could use that old piano sketch and turn it into this beautiful string quartet! I never get tired of listening to it or playing it… See if you can hear the “Amazing Grace” theme sneaking its way into the latter part of the “In the Forest” half, in the viola part!

Posted on Leave a comment

Music TBT: “Personal Echo”

It’s time for my Music TBT, where I randomly choose a work from my repertoire and reminisce about its beginnings!

Today’s TBT Selection is…

Personal Echo

(Purchase the sheet music and official recording)

 

With the instrument’s sound run through a timed digital delay effect, the soloist is able to create a “canon with herself.” Combining a haunting folk-style melody with virtuosic effects, this work is a flourish of stirring harmony and dogged rhythmic control.

I have a lot of fond memories with this piece. This little gem was written way back in 2003, during my first year at Cal Poly Pomona, after transferring from a life of scattered community colleges and performance touring.

The music department was starting up the MIDI Ensemble that year. The company they had ordered all their equipment from had thrown in a free Fender electric violin as part of the bulk purchase, and one of the teachers asked me if I’d like to play it with the group. How could I turn that down?! And so my relationship with the electric violin (and increasing its strings/range) began that year.

For our first concert, the instructor wanted each of us to show off what our instruments could do alone, to showcase the capabilities we had with the electronics. Because mine was the only non-MIDI instrument, I decided to show off what I could do in conjunction with digital delay. And, honestly, I didn’t want to just improvise something out of the blue on stage, so I took time to organize my thoughts and composed this work. I debuted it at that first MIDI Ensemble concert, and “Personal Echo” has been performed numerous times ever since, by both myself and others! Every time, it is a favorite of the listeners and performers – I love how it tends to entrance those in attendance, every time…

I even added a cool vibraphone part once to accompany this piece for the String Theory Quartet album release, “abstract,” which you can check out here on Spotify. And, of course, the original version can be heard here on Spotify, too, or purchased at various retailers found on my Discography page. 🙂

Posted on Leave a comment

New Sheet Music Added: INTREPID

At last, the sheet music – both the Score alone, and the Score & Parts – for “INTREPID: A Fantasy for Oboe/English Horn Soloist and Chamber Ensemble” is available!

Check out my Sheet Music Store for this and other available works for a large variety of instrumental and vocal combinations!

https://soundcloud.com/sarah-wallin-huff/intrepid-fantasy-for-oboeenglish-horn-soloist-live-demo-version

Posted on Leave a comment

Music TBT: “Butterfly Lullaby”

Welcome to my first ever Music TBT, where I randomly choose a work from my repertoire and reminisce about its beginnings!

Today’s TBT Selection is…

Butterfly Lullaby

(Purchase the sheet music and official recording)

 

The story behind “Butterfly Lullaby” is an interesting one! While I completed it in its present state in 2012, it actually existed long before that as a simple violin and piano duet called, “A Lyrical Interlude,” originally composed in 1998…. Wow! It is truly a blast-from-my-past – I was only 18 years old! 😀

Late in 2012 – before I had any real discography – I had decided that, with some of my more current works slated to come out on the Navona Recordings label soon, I wanted to self-produce a very simple, eclectic album of all my older and perhaps more naive compositions – because I still enjoy them and didn’t want them to be forgotten, even though they were early works from a much younger composer. 🙂 As I was compiling all the pieces I wanted to record and include on this album, I came across my old little violin/piano duet, which I had performed several times years prior with friends in private concerts and events. It lacked the intro and “bridge” section of the current Lullaby, and it didn’t modulate keys as it does now, so it was very short and simple. But I loved it dearly and really wanted to include it.

I considered to myself how, in 2012, I rarely played the violin part any more, but I did find myself singing it regularly! So, I said to myself, why not 1) turn the violin part into a vocal solo and add lyrics, 2) keep and embellish the piano part, and 3) add another melodic line to harmonize with the vocal part?

I went to work on it with excitement and finished “Butterfly Lullaby” in only a matter of days! With such a charming and unpretentious melody I knew it had to be a lullaby of some sort, and, after some light research, I had decided that the topic would be loosely based on Native American mythology – that of the tale of the Butterfly as the bringer and keeper of dreams. And, from that moment on, this piece was given a grand rebirth!

I just love this beautiful little song, and I hope you do, too!

Lyrics:

Take this Butterfly,
Bye-Bye, Sweet Child;
Embrace her comfort as her wings brush against your skin.
And with your breath whisper a wish
Into her ear;
She’ll make no sound but trust it only to Heav’n.
Dance beneath the Moon,
Bye-Bye, Sweet Child.
His guardian light embraces all of the earth and sky.
And as you lay your heavy head
Upon your bed,
The Butterfly will bring your dreams while you sleep.
Though sorrow looms, be not afraid;
Time wil prove true.
Shake the dust from your wings;
Give thanks for life’s renewal!
Behold the Morning Star breaks forth.
Fare thee well, Sweet Child.
And with the dawn, ancestral spirits smile down on you.
Sleep well and dream the Dream of Hope,
Bye-Bye, Sweet Child.
Butterflies will greet you when you awake.