Concert Honesty Podcast with Josh Quillen

Josh Quillen of So Percussion asked me to be on his excellent Concert Honesty podcast recently. Not only did my group NEXUS Percussion recently record with So Percussion, but Josh’s other group, NYU Steel, is a longtime performer at my biennial Drum Boogie Festival in Woodstock, NY. I had a blast talking with Josh about … Continue reading Concert Honesty Podcast with Josh Quillen

Concerts, Sessions and Grandchildren

It’s been a busy month in Lake Wobegon – I mean Woodstock. Our group NEXUS performed several times and recorded three pieces of Steve Reich’s music with the members of So Percussion and other amazing musicians. One of the sessions was a four-camera video recording at Princeton University of Reich’s Drumming, which is over an … Continue reading Concerts, Sessions and Grandchildren

Peanut Butterfly Interlochen Boom

  Those were the words given to us by our “high school” orchestra conductor, Thor Johnson, when we were playing a difficult new work by a Japanese composer in the mid-1960s. If you say each word on four beats, fitting the syllables equally in each beat, it helps create a rhythm of 2 + 3 + … Continue reading Peanut Butterfly Interlochen Boom

BREAKING NEWS:

Music Is Healing Of course, many of us have known this for a long time, but research is coming out more frequently to tell us how and why it is true. Certain sounds can lower your stress level, increase your creative focus and make you more productive! I’m often told that the music of Woodstock … Continue reading BREAKING NEWS:

A Very Special Christmas Concert

My day job is making Woodstock Chimes but at night I come out to play. I recently had the privilege once again to play timpani with the Northern Dutchess Symphony Orchestra and the local Mendelssohn Club Men’s Chorus. We were joined by student guest performers from the Anderson Center for Autism. The Anderson Center students … Continue reading A Very Special Christmas Concert

Unusual Instruments Part 4 – The Tiki Brothers Performing “Tiki Time” à la Steve Reich

I joined Steve Reich and Musicians in 1979, touring and recording with them for nearly 40 years. Steve’s music transcends all boundaries. One unique technique Steve developed is called “phasing,” where two players begin in unison (playing the same material in the same time) and one speeds up slightly until a “canon” is formed. This … Continue reading Unusual Instruments Part 4 – The Tiki Brothers Performing “Tiki Time” à la Steve Reich

Roll (on the timpani) Over Beethoven

The Northern Dutchess Symphony Orchestra recently performed Beethoven’s 5th Piano Concerto (“The Emperor”) and his 6th Symphony (“The Pastoral”). I feel very fortunate to play timpani with this orchestra in that, unless you hold one of the few timpani positions with a full-time symphony orchestra, there are not a lot of opportunities to play timpani. … Continue reading Roll (on the timpani) Over Beethoven

Drum Boogie Festival® was a Booming Success!

A Production of the Woodstock Chimes Fund Since 2009, I’ve been the Executive Producer and driving force behind the Drum Boogie Festival, a free, fun, daylong music festival. The fifth biennial Drum Boogie Festival was held in Woodstock, NY on Saturday, Sept. 9th, 2017. Several thousand people enjoyed a great day of music as eleven … Continue reading Drum Boogie Festival® was a Booming Success!

By the time we got to Woodstock…

Diane and I were putting up posters in Woodstock last night for the 2017 Drum Boogie Festival and ran into Juma Sultan on the street. Juma played conga drums with Jimi Hendrix at the famous ’69 Woodstock festival and has lived in the area since 1968. A little while later we ran into Joey Alexander, … Continue reading By the time we got to Woodstock…