Sounds Heard: Azure Carter & Alan Sondheim—Avatar Woman

Avatar Woman

In the alternate universe I often wish I lived in, Azure Carter and Alan Sondheim’s “Making Boys” (from their new album Avatar Woman) would be a Top 40 hit. In the real one I do live in, it sounds like what might have happened if Jacqueline Humbert sang Robert Ashley’s songs with Eugene Chadbourne.

Composing on the Pacific Crest Trail

Pacific Crest Trail: Wind

Beyond exploring our ever-evolving relationship to the natural world over tens of thousands of years, deep ecology, and humorous battle stories, 314 miles into my walk there have been a number of practical concerns and adjustments to make in my remote, mobile residency.

Classical Music in the Era of ESPN

What if there was a ESPN's Scorecenter that showcased music scores.

Would a “classical music ESPN” work in bridging the gap between our great musical institutions and every cable-subscribing home in America? By leveling the media playing field, could classical music once again compete for the attention of American households?

Miya Masaoka: Social and Sonic Relationships

masaoka-boxslide

Whether she’s using a koto as an expressive vehicle for anything from jazz standards to electronic experimentation, writing idiosyncratic music for chorus and now orchestra, or creating music with plants and even insects crawling over her body, Miya Masaoka has been making us look and listen to the world around us in totally new ways for decades.

Chicago: The ancient future-music of Sam Scranton

scranton_detrivitore3

Sam Scranton’s Detritivore is an evening-length ensemble work that is both theatrical and restrained, simultaneously epic and intimate, and was so absorbing that I could not write about it without participating in the reverberations of the piece itself.

What’s In a Festival? NY Phil Biennial Pre-Game

nyphil-biennial

This week marks the start of something big, busy, and possibly brilliant in New York: the first edition of the NY Phil Biennial. Beyond what look like some exciting programs, I’m waiting to make any grand assessments on something so damn grand.

Making the Numbers Work

A scene from Potential Energies.

One of the toughest parts of being a musician in new music is finding the balance between making a living and performing the music and concerts you are passionate about. This is a puzzle that I constantly struggle with.

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