Saturday
May272017

Made for web video series with Dan Solin

As US Financial Expert, Daniel Solin, launches his web video series, I'm pleased to share his YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/danielsolin

The music combines strong original features of brand identity with scoring techniques, to keep each video fresh and engaging. Every video uses solo clarinet, performed by the composer, with development time spent improvising on the main themes. Occasional use of voice and live percussion are also employed.

 

Wednesday
Nov162016

From ten albums to composing for video games

After a summer of releases (10 albums and 1 single), it is pleasant to spend these colder autumn days writing new music. I have started writing the score for a 90 minute documentary on Rhuddlan Castle, so the Forgotten Cathedral documentary is waiting in the wings to be score early next year. I've written and performed jazzy clarinet for the promo of a New York Times Best-selling author, recorded the Christmas jingle for an American corporate message and thoroughly enjoyed adapting music from the Victorian era for a new video game being produced in Canada.

Thanks for all the listens. The new albums are doing well and if there is a break in the composing (perhaps next Summer) I may find time to release some more!

Wednesday
May112016

Saxon Song

It's with great pleasure I can finally share Saxon Song. The album began about 3 years ago, as a consequence of writing my first book on music Beauty and Joy: The Christian Nature of Music - in which I defined music as a proclamation of worth. But what subjects are worthy? Or rather, what subjects are worthy enough for this composer to express at this time?

There is a complexity in how we perceive life today that undermines our estimation of what is worthy. For instance, we speak of love, but old English had a word that meant blessed love, we speak of home as a stopping off point, but old English had a word that meant the joy of home.

Saxon Song is a warm album, focusing on one virtue after another. The title does not refer to the musical style but that these were elements the Saxons thought worth singing about. Available from today on Amazon, Spotify, iTunes ...

Tracks:

  1. Eadnes / gentleness (i)
  2. Andet / confession
  3. Freod / friendship
  4. Aeristhyht / hope of Resurrection
  5. Bealuleas / innocent
  6. Leodwynn / joy of home
  7. Leafa / faith
  8. Lufsumness / kindness
  9. Begnornian / mourning
  10. Eadlufu / blessed love
  11. Eadness / gentleness (ii)
Thursday
Apr212016

Conwy Castle Soundtrack on MP3

Available now from iTunes, Amazon, Spotify ... the full soundtrack of Conwy Castle:

  1. The Conquest
  2. The Queen
  3. Saint George
  4. Come the Feast
  5. By Boat
  6. Glory and Honour
  7. Bread and Wolfhounds
  8. Gatekeeper
  9. Lost in the Skies
  10. Court of the King
  11. Sleeping Giant
  12. Beneath the Arches
  13. Frozen in Time
  14. Cellar to Chimney
  15. This was Conwy
  16. Shadow of Splendour
Tuesday
Mar082016

Chester Philharmonic Orchestra at Chester Cathedral

From the back of the nave in Chester CathedralTonight, I had the pleasure of enjoying Chester Philharmonic Orchestra performing in the stunning setting of Chester Cathedral.

It was an ambitious programme of Beethoven and Brahms, playing to a large and appreciative audience in the heart of the Cathedral.

The concert began powerfully with Beethoven’s Fidelio. Conductor David Chatwin coped admirably with the large reverb of the Cathedral surroundings, allowing the drama of the piece to develop. The strings and timpani were especially dynamic. Fidelio proved to be a good choice to warm the orchestra up for Brahms’ Violin Concerto, with soloist Qian Wu. While not denying her technical facility in the rapid portions of this composition, she seemed to shine brightest in the lilting lyrical passages. The role of the orchestra in supporting a concerto soloist is never one to envy, but they gave a sensitive performance, maintained to the final bar.

After the interval, the last piece of the evening was Beethoven’s Pastoral – Symphony no. 6. This well-known composition has so much exposed writing that it is a good test of an orchestra’s ability. Coming at the end of a busy concert, they might have been tired but it didn’t show. The atmosphere of the concert was friendly and welcoming and a credit to the hard work of the dedicated musicians of Chester Philharmonic Orchestra.

The review on the Chester Culture Blog

 

Friday
Feb262016

A busy winter of composition

Finding the time to post an update at last! Since my previous blog post I've been rather busy.

  • Four original choral Psalm settings and one Christmas carol
  • Adapted The Pied Piper for double choir and instruments
  • Three promo scores for Halliday Funeral services
  • Original track for Chester Dreaming project
  • Score for No Man's Land

Here is Chester Dreaming:


Tuesday
Nov102015

Solo works for clarinet

I'm excited to be working on some new pieces for the clarinet, twinning my love of composition with all the pleasure of my own instrument. Demo tracks to follow!

Meanwhile, a long overdue "shout out" promotion for my fantastic former clarinet teacher, Andrew Roberts: http://www.theclarinet.co.uk.

Saturday
Nov072015

Voces 8 singing "Remember Now"

Here is the Voces 8 recording of the workshop performance of Remember Now at the St. Andrews Festival:

This was the second or third run-through of the work.

Saturday
Oct242015

St. Andrews Voice Festival

What a fantastic time we had in St. Andrews! In 36 hours we travelled 600 miles on 7 trains and 2 buses, toured the cathedral in sunshine and the castle under silvery skies. We even fitted in a flying visit to the Medieval Church in Leuchars before heading home. But the highlight was spending Thursday evening in the company of Voces 8, as with good humour and consummate talent, they patiently performed 4 new compositions and led critical discussion with each composer. I'm looking forward to hearing the recording. Thank you, Voces 8 and thanks also to Chris Bragg, Sonia Stevenson and Bede Williams for arranging the event.

In St. Andrews Castle

 

 

Monday
Oct192015

Heading to St. Andrews

I'm very pleased to announce that one of my compositions has been selected for the Voces 8 Workshop in the St. Andrews Voice Festival. "Remember Now" is set to a portion of Ecclesiastes 12, the famous Scripture text on old age. I'm looking forward to attending the workshop on Thursday at St. Leonard's Chapel and hearing the work performed.