Posts tagged ‘Composer’

April 8, 2014

Max Richter


Max Richter [rik-ter] (b. 1966) is a British composer. He studied composition and piano at the University of Edinburgh, the Royal Academy of Music, and with Italian composer Luciano Berio in Florence. After finishing his studies, Richter co-founded the contemporary classical ensemble Piano Circus. He stayed with the group for ten years, commissioning and performing works by Arvo Pärt, Brian Eno, Philip Glass, Julia Wolfe, and Steve Reich. The ensemble was signed to Decca/Argo, producing five albums.

In 1996, Richter collaborated with Future Sound of London on their album ‘Dead Cities,’ beginning as a pianist, but ultimately working on several tracks, as well as co-writing one track (titled ‘Max’). He subsequently worked with the band over a period of two years, also contributing to the albums ‘The Isness’ and ‘The Peppermint Tree and Seeds of Superconsciousness.’ In 2000, he worked with Mercury Prize winner Roni Size on the Reprazent album ‘In the Møde.’ Richter produced English singer-songwriter Vashti Bunyan’s 2005 album ‘Lookaftering’ and Sneaker Pimps lead singer Kelli Ali’s 2008 album ‘Rocking Horse.’

read more »

August 31, 2012

Ron Geesin

Atom Heart Mother

Ron Geesin (b. 1943) is a British musician and composer, noted for his quirky creations and novel applications of sound. He is probably best known as the orchestrator and organizer of Pink Floyd’s ‘Atom Heart Mother’ in 1970, after the band found themselves hopelessly deadlocked over how to complete it.

Geesin first collaborated with the band’s Roger Waters (the two shared a love of golf) on 1970’s unconventional film soundtrack ‘Music from ‘The Body,” sampling sounds made by the human body. Ron Geesin played piano with The Original Downtown Syncopators, a Dixieland band emulating the Original Dixieland Band during the 1960s. The band was based in Sussex, UK.

read more »

April 26, 2012

Suzanne Ciani

Suzanne Ciani by Caroline Andrieu

Suzanne Ciani [cha-nee] (b. 1946) is an Italian American pianist and music composer who found early success with innovative electronic music. She received classical music training at Wellesley College and obtained her M.A. in music composition in 1970 at University of California, Berkeley where she met and was influenced by the synthesizer designer, Don Buchla. She studied computer generated music with John Chowning and Max Mathews at Stanford’s Artificial Intelligence Labs in the early 1970s.

In 1974 she formed her own company, Ciani/Musica, and, using a Buchla Analog Modular Synthesizer, composed scores for television commercials for corporations such as Coca-Cola, Merrill Lynch, AT&T, and General Electric. Besides music, her specialty was reproducing sound effects on the synthesizer that recording engineers had found difficult to record properly; the sound of a bottle of Coca-Cola being opened and poured was one of Ciani’s most widely recognized works, and was used in a series of radio and television commercials in the late 1970s.

read more »

April 4, 2012

Gil Evans

Gil Evans by Davide Baroni

Gil Evans (1912 – 1988) was a jazz pianist, arranger, composer and bandleader, active in the United States. He played an important role in the development of cool jazz, modal jazz, free jazz and jazz fusion, and collaborated extensively with Miles Davis.

Between 1941 and 1948, he worked as an arranger for the Claude Thornhill Orchestra. Evans’ modest basement apartment behind a New York City Chinese laundry soon became a meeting place for musicians looking to develop new musical styles outside of the dominant bebop of the day. Those present included the leading bebop performer Charlie Parker himself, as well as Gerry Mulligan and John Carisi.

read more »

August 18, 2011

Michael Nyman

Michael Nyman by Nicola Jennings

Michael Nyman (b. 1944) is an English composer of minimalist music, pianist, and musicologist, known for the many film scores he wrote during his lengthy collaboration with the filmmaker Peter Greenaway, and his soundtrack album to Jane Campion’s ‘The Piano.’ He has composed operas, concertos, string quartets, and many other chamber works, many for his Michael Nyman Band, with and without whom he tours as a performing pianist. Nyman has stated his preference for writing opera to other sorts of music.

In 1969, he provided the libretto for Harrison Birtwistle’s opera, ‘Down by the Greenwood Side’ and directed the short film ‘Love Love Love’ (based on, and identical length to, The Beatles’ ‘All You Need Is Love’) before settling into music criticism, where he is generally acknowledged to have been the first to apply the term ‘minimalism’ to music (in a 1968 article in The Spectator magazine about the English composer Cornelius Cardew).

read more »

March 9, 2011

Wendy Carlos

wendy carlos by cryssy cheung

bob moog

Wendy Carlos (b. 1939) is an American composer and electronic musician. Carlos first came to notice in the late 1960s with recordings made on the Moog synthesizer, then a relatively new and unknown instrument; most notable were LPs of synthesized Bach and the soundtrack for Stanley Kubrick’s film ‘A Clockwork Orange.’ Although the first Carlos Moog albums were interpretations of the works of classical composers, she later resumed releasing original compositions.

read more »

January 31, 2011

Ennio Morricone

ennio morricone

Ennio [en-yoMorricone [mor-ee-cone-ay] (b. 1928) is an Italian composer and conductor, considered one of the most prolific and influential film composers of his era. He is well-known for his long-term collaborations with international acclaimed directors such as Sergio Leone, Brian De Palma, Barry Levinson, and Giuseppe Tornatore.

He wrote the characteristic film scores of Leone’s Spaghetti Westerns A Fistful of Dollars (1964), For a Few Dollars More (1965), The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) and Once Upon a Time in the West (1968). In the 80s, Morricone composed the scores for John Carpenter’s horror movie The Thing (1982), Leone’s Once Upon a Time in America (1984), Roland Joffé’s The Mission (1986), Brian De Palma’s The Untouchables (1987) and Giuseppe Tornatore’s Cinema Paradiso (1988).

December 10, 2010

Ferruccio Busoni

ferruccio busoni

Ferruccio [fer-root-chawBusoni [byoo-soh-nee] (1866 – 1924) was an Italian composer. His philosophy that ‘Music was born free; and to win freedom is its destiny,’ greatly influenced his students Percy Grainger and Edgard Varèse, both of whom played significant roles in the 20th century opening of music to all sound. In 1907 he published Sketch of a New Esthetic of Music, which discussed the use of electrical and other new sound sources in future music.

He deplored that his own keyboard instrument had conditioned our ears to accept only an infinitesimal part of the infinite gradations of sounds in nature. He wrote of the future of microtonal scales in music, made possible by Cahill’s Dynamophone: ‘Only a long and careful series of experiments, and a continued training of the ear, can render this unfamiliar material approachable and plastic for the coming generation, and for Art.’