Arranging “Dig In Buddy”

the original music for "Dig In Buddy," a song by Tyler Hornby

Tyler Hornby, a drummer based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, hired me to write a big band arrangement of his composition, “Dig In Buddy.” When it was completed, I decided to adapt it to perform and record with my own 10-piece band. Here is the final version, as it was recorded on…

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Mirror of the Mind

Although recorded previously with my Creative Opportunity Workshop quartet, the 10tet version of this piece came first. It was composed in 2012, as part of a collaborative venture with visual artists Deborah Dancy and Ted Efremoff. I wanted to write something suggestive of Aaron Copeland – big and open sounding,…

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Sordid Sort of Fellow

Winnipeg-based trumpeter, Frank Burke

Sordid Sort of Fellow is the second track on Earl MacDonald’s “Open Borders” album. The song includes solos by Josh Evans (trumpet), Sara Jacovino (trombone), Henry Lugo (string bass) and Earl (piano). Here is a live version to whet your whistle: When commissioned to write a piece for the 2009 Central…

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Big Band Arranging for Jerrold Dubyk

Augmented Blues Example

Having just completed a big band commission, I thought I’d take a minute to reflect and outline my process and the arranging methods employed, before my recollections are gone forever. With some previous charts, I tried blogging about my compositional process as I worked (a play-by-play account of sorts), but…

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Lead Lines

My weekly schedule is structured so that Fridays are dedicated solely to “creative activity.” I have no Friday classes, and do my best not to accept other appointments. I lock myself up in my office or home studio, roll up my sleeves, and work without distractions. This Friday I wrote…

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