Out of Ashes… Again?

Since I last posted on here, so much has happened that I can’t possibly put it one post, so I’ll just keep it short.

To start out, my first serious orchestral piece, “Out of Ashes” had a fantastic premiere by the Nashville Philharmonic Orchestra in May. Huge thanks to all of the musicians for their hard work in making it a success! There are no words to describe that night, so I’m just going to post the recording here for you:

 

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“Out of Ashes” Premieres Next Week!

Since I last wrote, I’ve received some big news: I won the Nashville Philharmonic Orchestra’s Composition Competition with my new work, “Out of Ashes.”  The premiere is one week from today, and to say I’m thrilled and excited and honored doesn’t even begin to express how I feel about this!

The premiere will take place at 7:30 PM on May 3rd, at Brentwood United Methodist Church in Brentwood, TN.  Also, there will be a second performance on May 10th at 7:30 PM at the Gordon Jewish Community Center.  All of you are invited, and admission is free.

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My 2nd Piano Album: Details Announced!

It’s official…  I’m releasing a second piano album this summer.  As promised last week, I’m revealing the title: Out of Ashes.

When I first discussed my intentions for a second album in June, I didn’t know how I could ever again make another album as good as Airborne was.   I had no title, theme, or storyline for this next album, and I was at a loss as to how to move forward without a plan.

So many artists struggle with the so-called “sophomore album.”  You have your whole life to make the first album, but for the second, you maybe have two years—plus, you’re burned out from making the first album.  Could I ever throw myself into a second album the way I did for my first one?

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New Music, New Season

I just released some new music! I’ve recorded a solo piano song called “To the Sky” written by an artist named Dirk Maassen. It’s a lovely piece, and if you enjoy my own piano compositions, then you’ll love Dirk’s music, too. Check out more of his work here. This is my recording:

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A Month of Firsts

I realize I haven’t written in awhile, but this last month has been an incredible month of first times…

1)  The first time I performed one of my own compositions in a concert hall.

I performed my piano piece “Equinox” in the McAfee Concert Hall as part of the Student Composers Recital.  As far as I know, I was the only freshman composer who participated.  It was wonderful to hear the sound of my piece performed in such a wonderful venue.  And it was such an thrill to be featured among so many other talented artists at this school! Continue reading “A Month of Firsts”

Have you ever really practiced enough?

Does Practice Make Perfect? Why Methods Matter

Musicians always seem to wonder how much practice is “enough.”  An hour a day?  Two?  Three?  As many as you can physically tolerate?

Well, there’s no simple answer.  I’ve heard some experts say no more than two, and others have said four is just right.  And then there’s the 10,000-hour rule that says it takes 10,000 hours to master a skill.  Break that down, and it comes out to be about three hours a day for ten years.  (Check out Malcolm Gladwell’s book, Outliers for more on the 10,000-hour rule.)

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My Heart Beats: The Final Chapter?

Wow.  Just, wow.  I know I haven’t posted anything in a couple weeks, but I’ve been insanely busy mixing and mastering My Heart Beats and rehearsing for the release party.  So now, the album is finally out, and Lily and I performed to a packed house last night at the launch party.  It was incredible.  It was one of the best nights of my life.

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Pseudo Tour 2012 Is Over

I know–It’s been awhile since the last post.  But I was away on “Pseudo Tour” for over a month this summer.  I’ve literally gone from coast to coast and to the North and to the South.  I spent some time in Nashville, and then for eighteen days, I was at GRAMMY Camp–first in Los Angeles, then in New York.  It couldn’t have been a better summer.  I feel so blessed and so grateful to have had these opportunites.

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Finishing a Project: The “Now What?” Question

After several months of work, I have finally finished a song I wrote called “I Am Free.”  It’s by far the best pop or rock song I’ve ever written, and it’s definitely the best mix I’ve ever made, too.  (I’m still waiting for a few things before I can upload it, but in my next post, I’ll probably have it uploaded and I can talk about it more.)  Emotionally, “I Am Free” took a lot out of me to write.  I’ve put so much into this one song, but now I’m done.  So I ask myself: “Now what?”

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So Glad That It’s Summer

To be honest, I don’t have much I am able to talk about this week.  This was finals week, so I’ve had almost no time to do anything except study and try to get some sleep when I can.  I’m just glad it’s summer now–this school year has been so intense.  But now, I’m going to be able to get back to the studio.  I’ll keep you posted on what’s happening and my upcoming releases.

In the meantime, check out a song I produced for Lily Garay called “Change.”  And if you like it, you can download it on iTunes, AmazonMP3, or you can listen to it on Spotify.