Category Performance

Extra-Musical Affairs

Several weeks ago I had the privilege of presenting a masterclass at Arizona State University for Deanna Swaboda and the Tuba-Euphonium Students. I had a great time and hope to get to see many of those students in the future (I know I’ll get to see a handful at ITEC this summer). The most striking […]

Art and Wallpaper, Part 3: Why Wallpaper Is Not Art

As I was saying, that beautiful wallpaper … does it evoke a heart response? By looking at our three tenets of creating art (link here), it should become obvious why wallpaper is not art. Wallpaper does not engage with any of these— it is not specific in its emotional conveyance, it is purposefully unclear in […]

Art and Wallpaper, Part 2: The Three Tenets of Creating Art

In my previous article, we addressed the notion of what art is—it is a fundamental piece of the human condition that connects two or more people in a shared emotional state. An artist is the person who creates the thing (painting, dance, musical performance, creative writing, etc.) that transports the audience member into a similar […]

Art and Wallpaper, Part 1: The Art Question

I have a hard time calling myself an artist. And I have a hard time calling what I create art. I write music. I perform music. (Sometimes, on occasion, I may paint a picture.) To me, it is not in the craftsman’s scope to decide what is or is not art. But that also leaves […]

The Difference Between Doing What You Love and Loving What You Do

Love what you do, and do what you love, so the saying goes. The two phrases are inextricably tied together, but don’t confuse one for the other. Loving what you do… …is a choice. …will make you successful. …will inspire others to do the same. …is a daily commitment to not let jealousy, greed, or […]

What We Learn from Our Instruments

As musicians we should be more like the instruments we play. I recently watched Note by Note, the documentary about the Steinway Piano  Company. It’s available on Netflix and I urge you to seek it out. The film takes you step by step through the whole process of creating these amazing pianos, works of art […]

Five Things I’ve Learned from Gordon Ramsay

I know I’m a little late to this party, but I’ve become a bit addicted to Kitchen Nightmares, the show in which famous chef Gordon Ramsay walks into failing restaurants and rips the entire staff a new one. I’ve always found a strong connection between the culinary and musical arts and what it means to […]