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News and Updates

Life’s a Bitch

People often ask me about breaking into arranging and what I suggest. I always say just do it, find a song or an acapela and add your own shit to it and put it out there, so here is my shit! I originally did this arrangement for Nas and the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center as part of the 20th Anniversary of Illmatic. I will tell the story of how I came up with it all in upcoming blog post. In the meantime…
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Comic-con 2020

On July 23rd at 2pm EST I will be on a panel talking about writing music for animation. I talk about working with Guillermo del Toro on Trollhunters and my new show Maya and the Three with Jorge Guitierrez.
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Podcast Interview

I recently sat down with my friend Nomad and chatted about life as a professional crotchet wrangler. I met Nomad when I arranged and conducted the show for Babyface at the Kennedy Center. Nomad was his music director and we spent a lot of time putting the show together and tweaking the setlist. Be sure to check out Nomad's awesome site. Here is our interview: Nomad and I with Babyface at the Kennedy Center
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Oscars, Kennedy Center Honors and BBC Symphony

2020 started off with some cool arranging projects. Rickey Minor and Chris Walden had me on the arranging team for the Kennedy Centers Honors and the Academy Awards. I also wrote a few arrangements for Lianne La Havas and the BBC Symphony. Here is a review of the concert.
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Ratatouille in Taiwan

In February, I made my fourth conducting trip to Taiwan. This time it was to conduct Michael Giacchino's score for Pixar's Ratatouille. I really love Taiwan: the food, the people, it's such an awesome place to go and hang out. The Philharmonia Moments Musicaux were fantastic. I really enjoy doing these shows. They are a lot of work to study and prepare but I always learn a lot from really getting inside the score. This trip also coincided with the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak.…
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Singapore Symphony Orchestration Workshop

Last year I received an email out of the blue asking if I would like to lead an orchestration workshop for the Singapore Symphony Orchestra. The plan was that we would pick eight participants and they would orchestrate Le Gibet from Ravel's Gaspard de la nuit. I thought it would also be cool for them to orchestrate some film music, so I picked a few cues from my Trollhunters score. The participants were Khachatur Khachatur, Joseph Lim, Dax Wilson, Alicia Chandra, Rachel Wong, Jessica Tam, Sulwyn Lok and Yong Ping. The workshop…
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2019 Arranging Update

2019 was a busier than usual year for me as arranger. There was my show with Maxwell and the NSO, but also many arrangements for the Metropole Orkest from the Netherlands. Highlights included charts for Donny McCaslin, Ibeyi, Ledisi, Lisa Fischer, and Roberto Fonseca. Four Women, LIsa Fischer and Ledisi Donny McCaslin and the Metropole Orkest
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A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

I helped out composer Nate Heller on his score to the Tom Hanks film A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. The score featured a mix of music from the Mr Rodgers show and new music by Nate. Was fun trying to make Tom Hanks look like he could play piano! Fred at the End, arranged, orchestrated and conducted my me! With Nate and Vanessa With composer Nate Heller
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Frozen 2

When we did the first Frozen we had no idea what it would become. Coming back for Frozen 2 was a different experience as we knew how special it was going to be. It was an honor to be part of Christophe Beck's music team again and lead orchestrator and conductor. Thanks to Jeremy Levy, Dave Metzger, and Ryan Humphrey for the help orchestrating. And thanks also to the amazing musicians in LA who brought it all to life; I wish everyone could have the…
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Maxwell Success

I just got back from Washington, DC. Maxwell sold out four shows at the Kennedy Center with the National Symphony Orchestra. This was my seventh collaboration with the NSO. Each time we learn how to do these things better and this time we really nailed it. It is tough to balance an artist, a band, and an orchestra. Maxwell was a pleasure to work with and he shared our vision of creating a truly unique experience. I had a great time arranging his music. All…
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