I am 67 years old. I have been playing piano for 60 years, and do so now for my own enjoyment. I became a musician when I began piano lessons at age seven, composition at age 13.
What was the first concert you ever went to?
Aside from my own junior high school band, I heard the Northwestern University Wind Ensemble at my school when I was a freshman. And then there was the WGN Sunday night broadcasts of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra during the mid-fifties. Those were incredible influences on me and my musicianship.
What gear do you use?
I play the Yamaha Conservatory Grand, C-3. I also use the Sibelius notation and playback software extensively. Favorite piece? Hard choice, there are too many. How about Mahler's Ninth Symphony!
Who was your biggest musical influence growing up?
Sheet music of the Forties' standards. My older sister was a collector of those songs. The guitar chord symbols became my first introduction to music theory and harmony.
Are you in a band? Have you been in bands?
I was Principal Trombone with the Cedar Rapids Symphony Orchestra from 1970 to 1976, and Principal Trombone of the Cedar Rapids Municipal Band from 1970 to 1980. I have played most of the recital literature for the trombone in concert.
If you could jam with anyone, who would it be?
J. S. Bach had the greatest ear of all time (Mozart was second!).
What's the biggest audience you ever performed to? What's the smallest?
1,975. A full house at the Paramount Theater for the Performing Arts in Cedar Rapids, IA. The smallest was probably an audience for a recital of avant garde music at Coe College.
You're stuck on a desert island and only get to bring one album with you. What do you pick?
Soundscapes of the Heartland. It's an album of my own music. My pieces are like children and I want to have them with me!
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