In my previous post I alluded to some very big projects on the horizon for me as a musician. I thought I'd take a moment to share some more details about what I'm working on, and especially to invite you to follow along as I make progress. This kind of work is a lot more interesting if there are people watching and listening, after all.

First off: after I finished up my graduate arranging recital, I found myself in need of another enormous, multi-year project. To that end, I've begun to plan, dream, and scheme about recording my first album. My goal is to write and record a collection of original works for jazz big band within the next 3-5 years. That's a long timetable for two reasons: first, because it takes me awhile to write these kinds of charts, and second, because it's going to cost a boatload of money. But I think that given my experience as both a composer and performer, it's really the best way to create something interesting and meaningful to share with the world. Watch for more details soon!

I'm also working on quite a few smaller-scale projects that will help me reach that longer-term goal. For starters, I recently launched my online store, through which you can purchase copies of some of my better arrangements for use with your own ensembles. Right now it's a bit of a hodge-podge, since I'm writing lots of different kinds of things —in addition to jazz big band works, I've also posted a few sacred arrangements for use in church worship services. For now, everything I earn from chart sales will go into my recording fund, which will get me that much closer to recording that album.

As far as specific writing projects go, I've got a few things in the pipeline:

  • Frost Point, an original work for big band inspired by the first chill of winter. Just last week I handed this one in to the UNT One O'Clock Lab Band, in hopes that it'll end up on their album this year (I have received no promises to that effect, but I can dream!).
  • Something Speaks, another original big band chart. This one is a bit more abstract, representative of some epistemological concepts surrounding our knowledge of God. I'll tell you more about it later.
  • Near the Cross, an arrangement of the classic hymn for contemporary praise team with orchestral accompaniment.
  • For the Beauty of the Earth, an orchestral prelude arrangement of another of my favorite old hymns.
  • I'm also planning to pick another hymn and arrange it for big band, in hopes of using it at my church as well as sharing it with a couple of other ensembles I have in mind —again, I'll tell you more about this one later.
  • Last but not least: I'm still taking classes! This semester it's Composition for the Media, in which I'm learning how to write music to go with ads, audio books, films, and so forth. While I don't know where this fits in with my overall album project, it's made for some interesting work —if I can, I'll try to share some of that here later as well.

The unfortunate thing about having that many projects going at once is that I'm having trouble building up momentum on any of them —so it may be awhile before you get to hear them, but hopefully not too long. In the meantime, I'll try to keep this blog updated with my progress.