New Ensembles Album

Finding names for new creative ideas can be a challenge.
Business names, software product names, books, articles, musical pieces, and video titles,
names are important, your stuck with it for a lifetime, if your not careful.
For the majority of the 2 years I was creating this music I really had no idea what to call this and even how to organize it.

As with most creative manifestations one day this title popped up, seems like last summer. I stewed on it, started checking it  online, and decided to call this album Ensembles. Now that I am writing this article, actually looked the meaning of the word up, and of course, what follows is the obligatory definition.

Animal Spirits Ensemble Jan 2016 Dubway Studios, NYC

Animal Spirits Ensemble
Jan 2016 Dubway Studios, NYC
Wendy Law, Lev ‘Ljova’ Zhurbin, Craig Pallett, Mary Rowell, Jennifer Choi.
Photo – Joe DeRenzo

en·sem·ble  /änˈsämbəl/
noun    plural noun: ensembles

  1. a group of musicians, actors, or dancers who perform together.
    “a Bulgarian folk ensemble”
    synonyms: group, band; More company, troupe, cast, chorus, corps;
  2. a group of items viewed as a whole rather than individually.
    “the buildings in the square present a charming provincial ensemble”
    synonyms: whole, entity, unit, body, set, combination, composite, package; More

Cool word. Seems to be pretty representative of this music. 3 years ago, I decided to go back to school, and get a Masters in Music composition. I participated in a program at Vermont College of Fine Arts. 30-40 students, 6-8 instructors, five weeks of residential, on campus courses, and 4 semesters of mentoring, over a 2 year period. All of this music was worked on during this time period. I made an over arching decision to learn how to write for strings.

So primary consideration for this material, is what kind of music should this be. I am now attending a school, filled with songwriters, graphical score, jazz, classical, electronic, and experimental composers, all pretty much styles I have written previously, and have varying levels of training in each. The school brings in professional musicians each residency to play student works. I take maximum advantage of this and write for a wide range of different chamber groups. Decide to focus on melodic works using harmonic structures that drive the music forward.

The Ensembles project started Sunday, Oct 5th 2014 recording the Piano Trio, Jennifer Choi – violin, Yves Dharamraj – cello and Stephen Gosling – piano at Reed Robins studio in NYC. Since that date, besides writing additional works, I have been recording various ensembles, at a variety of studios, some live recordings, others tracked or recorded by a wide variety of musicians in their own home studios. To date there are over 28 incredible musicians and engineers who have contributed to this album. You can see the current list at this link

This is the start of a series of articles I will be writing in the next few weeks as I add more content to this web site. Excepts from my thesis will be included, which describe both how the music was created, the structures used and production techniques used to create, market and distribute this music.

There will be 66 minutes of music, 12 works.
Right now in post production, mixing the audio with a wide range of co-producers/engineers. 3 are finished, only 9 more mixes to complete in the next couple of months

So a good working title, is a good start. Ensembles


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