ArtPrize 2012: the math behind the music

September 17, 2012

ArtPrize 2012 is upon us and I am very proud of my submission, "Grand: A Musical Celebration of a City". It is an orchestral composition that tells the history of Grand Rapids through music (watch the video here).

Last spring, as I considered composing a new musical piece to enter in ArtPrize 2012, I decided on something ambitious, mathematical, and significant to the city of Grand Rapids in a way that was integral to the composition.

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Yes, music is art

September 27, 2011

"Yes, music is art," writes Grand Rapids Press critic John Sinkevics (read full article). "But are songs really ArtPrize fodder?" Like Fox Mulder from the "X-Files," Sinkevics pursues the case for music's inclusion in the 3rd annual ArtPrize—the largest open art competition in the world with enormous cash awards—by documenting the performances and interviewing musicians and audience members with undeniable enthusiasm even as he seems to wonder whether anyone will really believe it. This is my response: Yes, music is art. It belongs at ArtPrize. And here is why I think so.

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Tips for making a movie from your photos: a composer's perspective

May 25, 2011

Drawing from over 15 years of experience working with combining images and music, I greatly enjoy making movie slideshows from my favorite personal photos. Combining these priceless images with a great music track (more on that soon!) can be an emotionally compelling experience. I have used different versions of iMovie as well as Premiere Elements and have found certain concepts that, if kept in mind, will make for a more effective video no matter what movie making software you use.

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Four essential playlists for a Grand Canyon road trip

September 6, 2010

I had a lot of fun making music playlists for my family’s epic road trip from Chicago to the Grand Canyon this summer. We survived the trip in our rented minivan and racked up 4,200 miles and over 80 hours of driving time. If you are planning a similar trip across the country, I really recommend planning ahead and creating playlists for specific moments and experiences on your journey instead of a giant playlist that is difficult to manage.

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Twas the night before the CD release

April 19, 2010

Here I sit, the night before my brand new Brunch CD hits the streets. I feel an enormous sense of accomplishment at having created an album that I am immensely proud of and the anticipation and wonder of how my new music will be received by listeners.

The idea for this album was hatched about a year ago. I decided to create an album full of music that would be great for weekend mornings. It would set the perfect tone for the casual, feel-good vibes of having freedom and space from the work week — perfect music for brunch. And who doesn’t love brunch?

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