Director, Walford Studio; Composition
What I Do at SSU
I am Director of the Walford Recording Studio and Assistant Professor of Music at Sonoma State University. I will be teaching Music Technology: Tools & Applications; Audio and Recording Production I & II; Theory IV/ 20th Century; Survey of World Music; Composer's Forum; and Studio Composition.
I am a composer, percussionist, music technologist, and audio engineer with research interests in temporality, the intersections of technology and performance, non-western and popular music aesthetics, and acoustic ecology — concerns which continually inform my creative work. As a nature lover, my music often incorporates or is inspired by natural soundscapes.
My music has been commissioned and/or performed across North America and abroad by orchestras, choirs, theater companies, and professional ensembles such as So Percussion, Alarm Will Sound, Rhymes With Opera, as well as Sarah Gaston and the Polish Radio Amadeus Chamber Orchestra. Studio 4 Music, Keyboard Percussion Publications, and FuguFish publishing (ASCAP) have published my works. I am an active percussionist and electronic musician, performing with new music chamber groups and orchestras.
I am currently working with renowned ethnomusicologist, Paul Berliner, to record, edit and mix the audio to be included in Berliner's comprehensive publication on the Mbira Dzavadzimu music of Zimbabwe to be published by University of Chicago Press. Recently, I composed, recorded, edited, and mixed the music for the award-winning documentary film, Road to Hope, which explores the unique challenges of orphaned children after caring for their dying parents in poverty-stricken areas of Sub-Saharan Africa.
As a member of Pulsoptional, I am part of a composers collective and new music ensemble originally based in Durham, NC. Our music straddles the boundaries between chamber music, rock, improvisation, and electronica. In addition to playing percussion and composing for the group, I engineered the self-titled debut CD as well as the title track of composer Christopher Adler's CD, Ecstatic Volutions in a Neon Haze, performed by Pulsoptional and released on Innova Records in 2008.
My musical life began as a rock and jazz drummer and I started experimenting with composition and electronics at an early age. Before pursuing my doctorate in music composition at Duke University, I served on the percussion faculty of my alma mater, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (BA in music and philosophy, recipient of the Thelma Thompson composition award). My audio engineer experience spanned several years producing both pop and classical music in professional and project studios. My principal teachers have included Allen Anderson, Lynn Glassock, Scott Lindroth, Anthony Kelley, and Stephen Jaffe. I have previously taught at Duke University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Furman University, Montgomery College, and Indiana University South Bend.