Sunday, May 29, 2016

ATAW - 2016 - Week 21 - Piano Improv

Hey Everybody!

As an artist, there are some weeks when you spend a lot of time working on your art. Other times there are weeks when you spend a lot of time working on your life, and gardening, and client work, and business, and socializing, and having some fun...this week was one of the latter for me.

So, here is a little piano improv for this week's Thing!
No less love goes into this music, just a little less time ;)

Hope you all have a wonderful week full of art-making and fun-having!

See you next week,


Sunday, May 22, 2016

ATAW - 2016 - Week 20 - Bitter Plants (Video Game Music)

Hello again!

Week 20 of 2016 has arrived and with it we have some VIDEO GAME MUSIC!!

A few weeks back at GlitchCon I had the pleasure of meeting a ton of  talented game developers and artists. I highly recommend attending next year if you a developer, or gamer, or interested in video games at all.

There, I met Darrel Cousey of Lakehome Games who is currently developing a really great puzzle game for iOS and Android called Bitter Plants. Turns out he was right at the stage in development where he needed music!

Creating the music for this game has been a very interesting and innovative process (and somewhat of a puzzle itself). For hardware memory sake, we wanted to be able to make around 3 minutes of music last a whole lot longer and not be too repetitive. Without getting too technical, I wrote the music so that it can be broken down into much smaller pieces based on the phrases (usually around 4 bars). These pieces can then be randomized to be played in any order. This way the music is always slightly different each time it is played. In other words, it can be looped over and over while not always being an exact copy of the last time it was played.

I ended up making music for 3 different ensembles as well (which are not interchangeable). So the pieces of one set can randomly play for several minutes, then the pieces of the next set can randomly play for several minutes, and so on.

Click the Bitter Plants link above or go to to check out the game and try it out on Google Play (currently in beta). iOS will be out soon!


Sunday, May 15, 2016

ATAW - 2016 - Week 19 - A Guitar Quartet of Sorts: Movement II

Earlier this week I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Charlie McCarron for his Composer Quest podcast. Be sure to stay tuned to his page. The interview should be post in a couple weeks. Also, he is currently running a Kickstarter campaign for the final season of Composer Quest, so be sure to check that out as well and become a backer today!

The main point of that little intro is so that I can now let you know that as part of his podcast he does something called "The Traveling Question" where the previously interviewed composer gets to ask a question to the next composer to be interviewed. The question I received was, "If you could spent some time anywhere outside composing music, where would you go?" Considering it is just now becoming the most beautiful time to be outside in Minnesota, I chose my own back yard. Everything is green and blossoming, and there are no mosquitoes yet!

This then turned into another challenge where Charlie has each composer he interviews write their own theme music! So, combining all these things together, I spent some time outside this weekend, got inspired, and decided it was time to write the 2nd movement of A Guitar Quartet of Sorts. Be sure to check out Week 3 if you haven't yet heard Movement I.

So, without further ado, here it is!

A Guitar Quartet of Sorts: Movement II / Music inspired by Outside / My theme music for Composer Quest

See you next week!


Sunday, May 8, 2016

ATAW - 2016 - Week 18 - Mother's Day Piano Improv

Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers out there!

Also, I just did the math, and we are over 1/3 of the way through 2016! How did that happen!?

This week I'd like to share with you a simple piano improvisation. Just trying to keep it light and lovely. Special sound effects in the background by my two furry children trying desperately to get into the pantry for a little early morning cat nip...

See you next week!


Sunday, May 1, 2016

ATAW - 2016 - Week 17 - Boarderfalls

*in a game-show singing voice*
It's time for a game I like to call "RANDOM ASSOCIATION!"

Last weekend I got to spend some time up on the North Shore of Lake Superior in Grand Maris while visiting my mom. While there we visited the Cascade Falls as well as the Pigeon Falls which are way up in Grand Portage on the boarder of Canada. Everything about the weather and setting reminded me of one of my favorite TV shows, Twin Peaks; the music from which I love, which also reminds me of the music from one of my favorite video games of all times, Final Fantasy VII.

What does all this mean for A Thing A Week 17!?

Footage of awesome roaring waterfalls with music inspired by Twin Peaks and FF7 of course!

Thanks for watching! Don't forget to leave comments, like, share, and subscribe :)

See you next week!


Sunday, April 24, 2016

ATAW - 2016 - Week 16 - Whispers for Piano & Electronics

Okay, I know I said I was going to be doing more soundtracky type music for a bit, but this week's piece turned out a little more on the electroacoustic, semi-avant garde, instrumental side of things. ...Well, come to think of it, isn't that actually just what a lot of soundtrack music is...yeah...we're good ;)

Anyway, as is tradition, I began this week's thing with a piano improv. I then layered in the electronics to strengthen the desired mood and reinforce the emotional setting. This piece is basically what the inside of my head sounds like while trying to fall asleep when I know I have a lot going on the next day. The ol' thought factory seems to never stops churning out ideas sometimes. I'm sure you've all been there before as well.

In other news: I spent the weekend on the north shore with family and had the chance to see the Pigeon Falls and Cascade Falls on the boarder of Canada. I took some great video of the falls in full spring roar and plan to share it next week along with a musical soundtrack.

Don't forget to subscribe, share, and comment.

See you next week!


P.S. Let me know if you have any special requests for more future things.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

ATAW - 2016 - Week 15 - Intro to an Epic Tale

Welcome to Week 15!

Thank you so much to all those who came out to Studio Z last week hear and see Weather Patterns for Trumpet and Piano performed live. The performance went really well, and I'm looking forward to making a full recording and publishing the sheet music soon!

Two weeks ago I started playing around with making some soundtrack-esque music. I really enjoyed that piece, so I decided to do a little more for this week, and will probably continue down this path for a bit. This week's piece is a dark and broody mix of piano, strings, and orchestral percussion.

Thanks for listening. If you have a soundcloud account, please leave your comments on the track. I'd love to hear from you :)

Until next week,