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Article

Harald Kisiedu

[Abrams, Richard Louis]

(b Chicago, IL, Sept 19, 1930; d New York, Oct 29, 2017). American pianist, composer, and administrator. After receiving private piano lessons, he studied at the Chicago Musical College and taught himself the system of composition devised by Joseph Schillinger. He began to work professionally in 1948 and performed regularly at the Cotton Club in Chicago during the 1950s, accompanying visiting musicians such as Dexter Gordon, Sonny Stitt, and Max Roach. After composing and arranging for the Walter “King” Fleming band in the mid-1950s, Abrams joined the hard bop ensemble MJT+3 and made his recording debut on the group’s album DADDY-O PRESENTS MJT+3 (1957, VJ 1013). Beginning in 1961 Abrams led the Experimental Band, a composer-centered rehearsal ensemble whose members included the double bass player Donald Rafael Garrett, Jack DeJohnette, Roscoe Mitchell, and the reed player Joseph Jarman. He subsequently co-founded the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians...

Article

Dimitri Conomos

revised by George Leotsakos

(b Piraeus, May 19, 1929). Greek composer and musicologist. He graduated in theology from Athens University (1954), in neo-Byzantine music (1955) and harmony (1956) from the Piraeus League Conservatory, and in counterpoint, fugue and composition (1959) from the Hellenic Conservatory, where he studied with Yannis A. Papaïannou. At Brandeis University (1962–5) he studied composition (with Arthur Berger), Byzantine music palaeography and electronic music. In 1950 he revived the boys' choir of the Greek Royal Palace, which he directed until 1967. He also established and conducted the Athens Chamber Chorus (1958–61). Between 1961 and 1963 he taught Byzantine music at the Holy Cross Theological Academy, Boston, Massachusetts. In 1965 he established the first electronic music studio in Athens. He was a founder-member (1965) and later president (1975–85) of both the Hellenic Association for Contemporary Music and the Greek section of the ISCM. In ...

Article

Ilkka Oramo

(b Forssa, March 9, 1949). Finnish composer. He studied composition with Einojuhani Rautavaara at the Sibelius Academy (diploma, 1971) and in Berlin with Boris Blacher (1971–2). From 1974 to 1988 he taught music theory at the Helsinki University and, as acting professor, composition at the Sibelius Academy (1988–93). Since 1993 he has worked as a freelance composer supported by a state scholarship. His many activities include membership of the board of the Society of Finnish Composers (1974–8, 1982–9 and 1997–2005) and the Finnish Cultural Foundation (1996–2005). He also in 1975 co-founded the Society for the Publication of Finnish Music (Edition Pan), later taken over by Edition Fazer. Since 1992 he has been composer-in-residence of the Lahti SO, which has recorded many of his orchestral works under Osmo Vänskä. As a member of the Programme Committees of the Helsinki PO (...

Article

Bruce Mather

(Morris)

(b Kentville, NS, Aug 28, 1939). Canadian flautist, conductor and composer. He studied with Nicholas Fiore (in Toronto) and Marcel Moyse; later with Rampal and Gazzelloni. He was principal flautist of the Vancouver SO (1958–9) and of the Toronto SO (1965–70). In 1971 he was a prizewinner of the Concours International de Flûte de Paris. In 1964 he formed the Lyric Arts Trio with his wife, the pianist Marion Ross, and the soprano Mary Morrison. He is musical director of New Music Concerts (Toronto) and Music Today (Shaw Festival, Ontario), as well as a soloist whose engagements take him to Europe, North America, Japan and Iceland. In 1977 he was one of 12 instrumentalists invited by Boulez to give a solo recital at IRCAM in Paris. Some 50 works have been wrtten for him by composers including Carter, Crumb, R. Murray Schafer and Takemitsu. Technically adept, he has a pure, intense tone and a finished sense of phrasing. In ...

Article

Terence J. O’Grady

revised by Bryan Proksch

(b Los Angeles, CA, March 31, 1935). American trumpeter, composer, bandleader, and record company executive. He studied trumpet as a child and left college to play in the army for a two-year period. After three years of producing records on his own, he launched A&M Records with Jerry Moss in 1962. A&M’s first issue was also Alpert’s first recording as a trumpeter and bandleader, The Lonely Bull (A&M, 1962). The title track included sounds from the bullring in Tijuana, Mexico, so Alpert dubbed his band the Tijuana Brass. His music exploited a distinctive combination of Mexican mariachi-style brass with jazz rhythms, which was dubbed Ameriachi. A string of hits including “Mexican Shuffle” (A&M, 1964) and “Tijuana Taxi” (A&M, 1965) followed. In 1966 Alpert had five recordings simultaneously listed on the Billboard Top 20. His cover of “This guy’s in love with you” reached no.1 in ...

Article

Robert Paul Kolt

(b Santiago, Chile, Jan 2, 1963). American composer, guitarist, ethnomusicologist, educator, and producer of Chilean birth. He immigrated to the United States as a child and studied guitar with Joseph Torello, Vincent Bredice, Lou Mowad, and George Aguiar. Amigo enrolled at Florida State University (1980) where he studied classical guitar with Bruce Holzman and William Carter and was active as a performer of popular music. In 1986, he moved to Los Angeles, earning a degree in political science from California State University, Northridge (BA 1995) and degrees in ethnomusicology (MA 1988, PhD 2003) from the University of Calfornia, Los Angeles. He studied in Los Angeles with Kenny Burrell, Gary Pratt, Harihar Rao, and wadada leo Smith. Amigo also performed with African, Arabic, funk, hard rock, free jazz, jazz, and reggae groups, and worked as a session guitarist for Hans Zimmer, Mark Mancina, Jay Rifkin, and Les Hooper, among others....

Article

Paul Attinello

(Benjamin)

(b Fresno, CA, Jan 19, 1945). American composer and administrator of Armenian descent. He studied at Fresno State University (BA in English 1967), San Francisco State University (MA in interdisciplinary creative arts 1969) and Mills College (MFA in electronic music and recording media 1980), where his teachers included David Behrman, Robert Ashley and Paul de Marinis. He has served as music director for KPFA Radio (Berkeley, California, 1969–92), executive director of the Djerassi Artists Program (1993–7), and both artistic (from 1993) and executive director (from 1998) of the Other Minds Festival (San Francisco). His honours include ASCAP's Deems Taylor Award for innovative musical programming (1989) and residencies at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre, Ireland (1997), and the Bellagio Study and Conference Centre, Italy (1997).

Amirkhanian's experiences as a percussionist and radio presenter have informed all of his works. Between ...

Article

Kenneth Winters

(b Toronto, April 3, 1918, d Toronto, April 20, 2000). Canadian composer and arts administrator. He studied the piano with Boris Berlin, and theory and composition with Healey Willan, Ernest MacMillan and Leo Smith, before continuing composition studies with Roy Harris and Bernard Wagenaar in New York (1940–41). For the next eight years, Applebaum worked for the National Film Board of Canada, producing some 250 film scores. During this period he became increasingly concerned with improving the position of professional musicians in Canada. His combined interests in creative and socio-economic development led to a career that influenced every aspect of Canadian music. During the 1960s he served as consultant for CBC television and chair of the planning committee for the National Arts Centre, Ottawa. His 1965 Proposal for the Musical Development of the Capital Region led to the formation of the National Arts Centre Orchestra and the University of Ottawa music department. Throughout the 1970s he served as executive director of the Ontario Arts Council and in ...

Article

Louis Niebur

(b Luton, 23 Jan 1962). British film, television, video game, and popular music composer and producer. Best known for his scores for James Bond films of the late 1990s and the 2000s, Arnold began his career scoring the student films of the director Danny Cannon, leading to their professional collaboration on The Young Americans (1993). For this film, Arnold co-wrote the song Play Dead with the Icelandic singer Björk. This project brought Arnold to the attention of the producer Roland Emmerich, who hired him to compose the music for Stargate (1994). He worked with Emmerich again on two more films (Independence Day (1996) and Godzilla (1998)), composing large, brass-heavy orchestral scores that matched the over-the-top quality of these blockbusters. During the 2000s, Arnold also developed a professional relationship with the director John Singleton, scoring four of his films, beginning with ...

Article

Jeannie Gayle Pool

(b Guelph, ON, 23 June 1968). Canadian film and television composer, orchestrator, conductor, pianist, and producer. Barber began composing at the age of ten and was an award winner in Canada’s SOCAN National Competition for Young Composers. She studied music at the University of Western Ontario (BM 1985) and composition at the University of Toronto (MA 1988), where she worked with the composers Gustav Ciamaga and Lothar Klein. She has composed music for various CBC radio dramas, made her film début with her score for Patricia Rozema’s award-winning film When Night is Falling (1995), and has written scores for Miramax, New Line, Focus Features, Nickelodeon, Warner Brothers, and Home Box Office.

Barber has also composed music for the more than 20 theatre productions of Canadian plays, including Unidentified Human Remains and The True Nature of Love (Brad Fraser), Love and Anger (George F. Walker), ...

Article

Randolph Love

(b Edgard, LA, Dec 24, 1920; d New Orleans, June 23, 2019). American trumpeter, arranger, producer, songwriter, bandleader, and singer. He started his career as a trumpeter playing with established bands led by, among others, Papa Celestin, Joe Robichaux, and Claiborne Williams before joining Fats Pichon’s ensemble, considered one of the top groups in New Orleans, in 1939. During World War II he played in the 196th AGF (Army Ground Forces) Band, where he met Abraham Malone, who taught him how to write and arrange. After the war, he formed his own band in New Orleans, which made its début at the Dew Drop Inn and later performed at Sam Simoneaux’s club Graystone where many of the city’s top instrumental players, including the drummer Earl Palmer and the saxophonists Lee Allen and Red Tyler, were showcased.

Bartholomew is best known for his talents as an arranger and songwriter. In the 1950s and 60s he worked with many of the biggest stars of the day, including Smiley Lewis, Lloyd Price, Shirley and Lee, and Joe Turner. By the 1970s he had associations with some of rock and roll’s most established talents, including Paul McCartney, Elton John, and the Rolling Stones. His most productive association was with Fats Domino, whom he met through Lew Chudd, the owner of Imperial Records, where he worked as a house arranger, an A&R man, and an in-house bandleader. From ...

Article

John Bass

[Joseph Arnold]

(b Philadelphia, PA, July 29, 1945; d Woodbury, CT, July 22, 2008). American guitarist, composer, and producer. After graduating from high school, he moved to New York and played with a jazz trio in the club Chuck’s Compository. He also worked as a studio musician and jingle writer, which eventually led to collaborations with Gil Evans. Beck was among the first jazz guitarists to incorporate rock guitar techniques, including the use of a distorted tone, into his playing. He was also a key figure in the fusion movement of the 1970s, along with the Brecker Brothers and David Sanborn. In 1967 he participated in recording sessions with Miles Davis’s second quintet (alongside Ron Carter, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, and Tony Williams). Although the music from this session was not immediately released, it influenced Davis’s later fusion of jazz and rock on such albums as Bitches Brew. From the 1970s through the 2000s, Beck recorded and performed with many notable jazz musicians, including Woody Herman, Larry Coryell, Kai Winding, Don Grolnick, Sanborn, Atilla Zoeller, Red Mitchell, and John Abercrombie. He also invented and performed on an instrument he called the alto guitar. Beck remained an in-demand session guitarist throughout his life, performing on albums by popular musicians including James Brown and Paul Simon. He also founded and ran the company Code Works, which specialized in creating jingles and songs for television and radio commercials....

Article

Andra McCartney

(Marian )

(b Oshawa, ON, April 11, 1934). Canadian composer and radio producer. She studied composition with Weinzweig in Toronto, Foss and Copland at Tanglewood, and Maderna and Petrassi in Europe. Her early compositions tend towards neo-classicism, but, a pioneer in Canadian electro-acoustic music, she went on to compose post-serial, improvisational and collage works. Both her attention to timbre and her formal structures demonstrate the influence of Debussy and Xenakis.

Beecroft’s broadcasting career began in television (1954–9). She became a radio producer in 1963, originating numerous CBC-FM music series. In 1969 she began to produce freelance documentaries on Canadian composers and music technologies. Her programme The Computer in Music won the Major Armstrong Award for excellence in FM broadcasting (1976). From 1984 to 1987 she taught electronic music and composition at York University (Toronto), which awarded her an honorary Doctor of Letters in 1996. She has served as the president of Canadian Music Associates and Ten Centuries Concerts, and co-founded, with Robert Aiken, the New Music Concerts. Her numerous composition prizes include two Lynch-Staunton Awards from the Canada Council....

Article

Karen Monson

revised by Vincent J. Novara

(b Tbilisi, Georgia, Dec 1, 1927; d White Plains, NY, July 5, 2002). American music administrator and composer of Georgian descent. After immigrating to the United States in 1947, he studied composition with Ross Lee Finney at the University of Michigan (BM 1950, MM 1951, DMA 1958). He then studied with Aaron Copland at the Berkshire Music Center (1959–60), during which time he won the George Gershwin Memorial Award. In the course of his expansive career he was an editor at Prentice-Hall (1960–61), director of the Contemporary Music Project (1961–9), dean of the School of Performing Arts at the University of Southern California (1969–82), and president of the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts (1982–91). An effective administrator, he explained that he “designed activities to demonstrate that the artist shapes cultural and social institutions.” His compositional style reflects the influence of his principal teachers, Finney and Copland....

Article

Stephen Holden

(b Kingston, Jamaica, Jan 27, 1943). American record producer, arranger, and songwriter of Jamaican birth. After spending his youth in Philadelphia he worked in the 1960s as a pianist for Cameo Records in Philadelphia and was a member of the group Kenny Gamble and the Romeos; Gamble later became Leon Huff’s production partner, and Bell collaborated with them on a number of projects. Bell had his first success as an independent record producer with the Delfonics’ “(La-La) means I love you” (Philly Groove, 1968) and two years later was responsible for another of their hits, “Didn’t I blow your mind this time” (Bell, 1970). He went on to create the refined, silky pop-soul sound of the Stylistics, who like the Delfonics made prominent use of falsetto in crooning ballads such as “You are everything” (Avco, 1971) and “Betcha by golly, wow” (Avco, 1972). Bell’s melodic style was heavily indebted to Burt Bacharach, and his sparkling orchestrations, using strings, woodwind, horns, and delicately scored percussion, were among the most ingenious quasi-symphonic, pop-soul arrangements of the 1970s. His equally fine work with the Spinners—including “I’ll be around” (Atlantic, ...

Article

Jeffrey Holmes

(Bryan)

(b Bakersfield, CA, Aug 18, 1953). American jazz pianist, composer, arranger, and producer. He studied piano and theory at El Camino College (1972), arranging and orchestration at Valley College (1973), and film scoring at UCLA (1981). His teachers included Abraham Fraser (piano), Donald Neligan, Heichiro Ohyama, Donald Ray, and Jan Robertson. In 1976 he became music director and conductor for the singer Lainie Kazan, followed by similar work for the singers Ann Margaret and Connie Stevens. From 1977 he has recorded his own smooth jazz albums; those from the 1980s, including This Side Up and Every Step of the Way (one of his many Grammy nominated recordings), helped to define the genre. He has been involved in a wide range of projects, including working for ten years as a composer for “Peanuts” TV specials, with the GRP All-Star Big Band, and with such musicians as Kenny Loggins, Patti Austin, Kenny Rankin, and Faith Hill. He is also a film score composer and conductor; in the latter role he has worked with the Asia America Symphony Orchestra, which gave the first performance of his piano concerto ...

Article

Lothar Knessl

(b Vienna, June 20, 1947). Austrian composer, aesthetician and music administrator. He studied conducting with Swarowsky at the Vienna Music Academy (1965–7), and theory and analysis privately with Apostel (1967–72). He completed the PhD in philosophy at Vienna University in 1973. He has taught philosophy and aesthetics at the Alpbach Forum (1983, 1985), philosophy at the Vienna Music Academy (from 1987) and composition at the Vienna Conservatory (1996–). He has also served as musical advisor to the Vienna Festival (1984), head of the music section of Vienna’s Department of Culture (1986–8), vice-president of the Alban Berg Foundation (1986), secretary general of the Vienna SO (1988) and president of the International Gustav Mahler Society (1991).

Bischof’s precise formalism and his consistent use of note row techniques reflects the influence of the Second Viennese School. He regards serialism as an open system capable of further development and uses it as a framework for musical expression. This is particularly evident in ...

Article

Adrienne Simpson

(Hugh )

( b Christchurch, Jan 5, 1949). New Zealand composer and administrator . After initially working as a civil engineer, he completed the BMus at Canterbury University, New Zealand, in 1973 and followed this with postgraduate composition studies at Southampton University with Eric Grabner and Jonathan Harvey. Since 1977 he has pursued twin careers in composition and performing arts administration. He was the chief executive of New Zealand's Ministry of Cultural Affairs (1991–7) and in 1997 became National Librarian and Chief Executive of the National Library of New Zealand. The practical knowledge of voices and instruments gained while managing the Canterbury Orchestra (1977–8), National Opera of New Zealand (1979–82) and Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra (1985–90) is evident in his music, which is notable for its clarity of thought and texture. Although underpinned by European organizational techniques, particularly serialism, his works project a strongly New Zealand spirit and imagery and are characterized by a finely judged instinct for theatrical gesture. Many of Blake's major scores reflect his concern for social issues, including the pacifist ...

Article

Ryan Bruce

(b Montreal, Canada, Nov 10, 1932; d Montreal, Jan 3, 2016). Canadian jazz pianist, composer, record producer, and bandleader. He was established by the age of 17, when Oscar Peterson recommended him as his replacement for the last year of an engagement at the Alberta Lounge in Montreal. After moving to New York to attend the Juilliard School (1950–54), he became part of the traditional and modern music scenes and recorded his first album as leader, with Charles Mingus and Art Blakey among his sidemen (Introducing Paul Bley, 1953, Debut). He also played with other notable musicians such as Ben Webster, Lester Young, Roy Eldridge, and Charlie Parker during the 1950s. In 1957 he moved to Los Angeles where he performed at the Hillcrest Club. His quintet, which included Charlie Haden, Billy Higgins, Don Cherry, and Ornette Coleman, became Coleman’s quartet when Bley left for New York in ...

Article

Rolf Haglund

(b Stockholm, July 15, 1935). Swedish composer and administrator. He studied composition with L. Wenström (1956–60), but he is self-taught in his principal field of electro-acoustic music, in which he is one of the most important composers, teachers and administrators in Sweden. His background as a jazz musician, pictorial artist (including computer-generated images) and biochemist has contributed to a characteristic openness and enthusiasm for the crossing of the boundaries between different artistic genres which he has passed on to a younger generation of electro-acoustic composers. Following his début in the concert organization Fylkingen in 1962, he became one of the driving forces in creating a small electronic music studio there. Together with Bengt Emil Johnson he directed the text and sound festivals initiated in Stockholm in 1967; Bodin was also Fylkingen’s chairman from 1969 to 1972. He became a pioneer of instrumental theatre, organized now legendary happenings at the Modern Museum in Stockholm and brought John Cage and other leading modernists to Sweden. In ...