Below you will find all the information that you need regarding my published works. If you wish to purchase scores, there are links to my publishers where you can do so. If you would like a complimentary copy, please go to the CONTACT INFO page and send me a request. I will be happy to mail you a copy or email a PDF file to you.
African Processional: "Jambo rafiki yangu" SATB
SATB choir, unison choir, tenor solo and percussion Time: 3:30 Level: Easy Pavane Publishing, Ron Kean Multicultural Choral Series, Hal Leonard #8301618. Available from www.pavanepublishing.com
"Jambo" was written after I had been listening to the music of the exceptional Nubian singer and oud player, Hamza El Din. I began to try capturing some of the rhythms that I heard in his music. With a tune and a few ideas for lyrics, I collaborated with Ms. Carah Reed, who knew Swahili, to create the text. What came about was a joyful tune of welcome that has been a favorite of singers and audiences every time it has been performed. This piece is very accessible to any high school choir and it even has an optional ending that includes audience participation. It is also a great piece to combine a beginning level choir (unison) with an advance level choir (SATB).
African Processional: "Jambo rafiki yangu" TTBB
TTBB choir, unison choir, tenor solo and percussion Time: 3:30 Level: Easy Pavane Publishing, Ron Kean Multicultural Choral Series, Hal Leonard #8301688. Available from www.pavanepublishing.com
In December of 2002, this arrangement of "Jambo" was commissioned by Charles Bruffy, the Phoenix Bach Choir’s artistic director and conductor, for their educational outreach program. It was debuted at the "Boys to Men II" Men's Choir Festival in Phoenix, AZ on Mother's Day, May 11, 2003. This arrangement works with all adults or in combination with treble voices.
African Processional: "Jambo rafiki yangu" SSA
SSA choir, unison choir, soprano solo and percussion Time: 3:30 Level: Easy Pavane Publishing, Ron Kean Multicultural Choral Series, Hal Leonard #8301854. Available from www.pavanepublishing.com
The third installment in the series of "Jambo" arrangements. This is a version with 3-part choir instead of the usual four, with some new changes to the lowest part. It is still in the key of D and will work in conjunction with the SATB and TTBB arrangements.
SSAA quartet or choir a cappella Time: 3:30 Level: Advanced No longer available Santa Barbara Music Publishing, Available from the composer.
This is a very advanced work for women. It would be very well suited to a quartet, but a choir will sound wonderful with it too. The harmonies are very challenging and the rhythm takes a few strange turns, but the piece is very cohesive and beautiful. This is a great piece for your top notch women singers. They will love it! Here is the easy part . . the text is sung in English.
Bless the Lord, Oh My Soul
SATB a cappella Time: 4:30
Level: Intermediate to advanced Colla Voce #36-20149. Available from www.collavoce.com
Bless the Lord, Oh My Soul was written in response to the events of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. I saw on the evening news that a man posted a sign claiming that God had destroyed New Orleans due to it's sinfulness. My response comes from Psalm 103: "He has not dealt with us according to our iniquities." This is a lovely and very accessible piece. Royalties from the sale of this octavo are donated to the Red Cross for the life of the piece.
Dicen que me case yo (They tell me to get married)
SSA choir, finger cymbals and optional guitar accompaniment Time: 2:30 Level: Intermediate No longer available from Santa Barbara Music Publishing. Available from the composer.
This intermediate piece for women answers the question, ”Why SHOULD I get married?” There are much better things in life, according to the text from a 16th century play by Gil Vicente. Dicen que me case yois an exciting piece for girls or women’s voices, accessible in range and harmony, very tuneful and very declamatory. The finger cymbals accent the text in a gypsy-esque way, while the optional guitar part adds just the right touch of Spanish flavoring.
El Abuelo y el Arcoiris (The Grandfather and the Rainbow)
SATB choir, 2-part children’s choir, tenor and baritone solos, guitar, bass and percussion Time: 8:30 Level: Intermediate to advanced Gentry Publications - JG2344 Available from www.halleonard.com
El Abuelo y el Arcoiris is a musical setting of the poem “Cuando el Abuelo le dijo como era el arcoiris” (When the grandfather told him what the rainbow was) by one of Costa Rica’s most beloved poets Jorge Charpentier (1933-2004). This piece was commissioned by William Wells Belan (Cal. State U. Los Angeles) as a gift for David Ramirez and the Costa Rican based choir El Café Chorale, on the occasion of their 10th anniversary year. The piece takes on the quality of a Hispanic folk song with guitar, bass and percussion accompaniment. It uses the children’s choir to ask the questions that only el abuelo (SATB choir) can answer.
Go, Lovely Rose
SATB with piano accompaniment Time: 3:30 Level: Intermediate No longer available from Santa Barbara Music Publishing. Available from the composer.
This SATB arrangement is adapted from my solo tenor and piano arrangement. Gentle piano ostinatos give support to the warm harmonies of the voices. This piece is very accessible to high school chamber groups, but it would be equally effective in a larger ensemble. You will find the solo tenor original composition in the NON-CHORAL WORKS as a free download.
La Danza (del Corazon) for SATB a cappella, bongos and maracas Time: 1:40 Level: Easy to Intermediate
La Danza (del Corazon) is a song about the passion of dance and the age-old story of love and trust between and young man and a young women. She wonders that if she gives her heart to him, will she then be "the only dancer" for him. This is a fast and fun song with lots of Spanish flavor and hand percussion to drive the music forward. The piece was originally titled "Cancioncita" and had no text but only nonsense syllables. In the summer of 2014, I sat down with a very talented young student of mine named Andrew Hernandez. We wrote the story and text for La Danza, and with a little help from our friend Ruth Gonzalez, we had a wonderful piece for a cappella choir.
TTBB div. and countertenor soloist Time: 11:30 Level: Advanced No longer available from Santa Barbara Music Publishing. Available from the composer.
The LMMV is missa brevis for advanced male voices and countertenor solo. The harmonies are lush and "modern." It is a dynamic showpiece for the advanced men's choir.
Los Animales de Mi Casa (The Animals of My House)
SAB, piano and tambourine Time: 5:45 Level: Easy Walton Music Corporation, Jo-Michael Scheibe Choral Series, Hal Leonard #08501494. Available from www.waltonmusic.com
“The Animals of My House” chronicles my life with my pets, Edward the cat, Sasha the cat, and Opus the lizard. (Eddie still lives with me, Sasha has moved, and Opus has long since passed away.) These folk-like tunes are sung in Spanish and are written from a child’s perspective. Many thanks to Francisca Ortiz-Smith who helped me to translate my textual ideas into Spanish.
I. El Nombre de Mi Gato (The Name of My Cat) II. Pobrecita Sasha (Poor Sasha) III. Mi Lagartijita Feliz (My Happy Lizard)
Lullaby from a Child
SSAA a cappella Time: 4:30 Level: Easy Walton Music Corporation, Jo-Michael Scheibe Choral Series, Hal Leonard #08501527. Available from www.waltonmusic.com
I wrote the lyrics to this simple hymn-like work that looks at a mother and child from the child’s perspective. It is not the baby that needs a lullaby. . .rather, it is the frightened young mother. The second verse demonstrates this idea as the choir sings the same tune on a “loo” syllable and on the word “lullay.” This tender little piece is very suitable for Christmas.
child and his mother; mother and her child.lullay. he, gently mothering this mother afraid and mild. lullay. as seen before, yea three times more... no diff'rent, yet diff'rent to cast mine eyes and see this vision, and the beauty of her rose, tiny rose. child and his mother; mother and her child.
Nada te turbe is very indicative of my developing harmonic style. The text is a prayer of St. Teresa of Avila. I think that I have been most successful in capturing the text with my musical setting. They seem to go hand in hand and I am very proud of this work. It is dedicated to my dear teacher and friend Allaudin Mathieu and was given to him as a Christmas gift in 2004.
Songs of Youth: An Exploration of Modes for Young Singers
Two-part treble voices with piano Time: approx. 7 minutes Level: Easy Carl Fischer Music # CM9379 Available from www.carlfischer.com
This piece is exactly what the title claims. Each of the six movements are set in a different church mode (excepting Locrian. . .send me an e-mail and I will explain why). They are easy but clever 2-part arrangements, designed for children's choir, but equally appropriate for a developing high school women's choir. All of the poetry is taken from the Random House Book of Poetry for Children, Jack Prelutsky editor, Random House, N.Y., 1983.
mixed a cappella with tenor soloist Time: 7:00 Level: Advanced Walton Music Corporation, Jo-Michael Scheibe Choral Series, Hal Leonard #8500177. Available from www.waltonmusic.com
Three Poems is a challenging work based on the poetry and prayerful experience of the 16th century Spanish mystic, St. John of the Cross. I. Del Verbo Divino (The Divine Word) uses lush harmonies and an unaccompanied dramatic tenor solo to set the mood. II. Llama de Amor Viva (The Living Flame of Love) is an oft composed text, set here in hymn form, building from unison to 2 parts, to 4-parts plus. One of my prettiest melodies. III. Suma de Perfeccion (The Sum of Perfection) uses chanted lines in an aleatoric design to create the feeling of the uneasiness that one’s soul must encounter before finally resting in the perfection of the Creator (a simple A-flat major chord).
Two Childhood Memories of Rachel McBride
SATB a cappella Time: 4:30 Level: Intermediate Colla Voce #36-20147 Available from www.collavoce.com
When I was at Cal State L.A. working on my undergrad degree, I asked my music major friends to offer me texts which I would use to write songs for them. They would get new repertoire and I would get to practice composing. Renee Sousa, now a wonderful opera singer and teacher, gave me this text:
B is for bunny who hops all around. And his poor little powder puff drags on the ground.
She had written it in the fourth grade under the pen name of Rachel McBride. I couldn't resist! The next day she had a song. Now many years after the fact, I have revised the score into a witty little piece that I dare any choir to sing straight-faced. After contacting Renee about the latest version, she offered me a companion McBride text that immediately sent my mind racing:
Can you run the 100-mile dash? Would you start off with a great big splash? Or would you start off running very, very fast, slow down in the middle and end up with a blast? How do you run the 100-mile dash?
The piece wrote itself. From the aggressive beginning lines of the tenors and basses, to the marathon repetitions of the short text, to the final bars of exhausted heavy-breathing choristers, huffing and puffing in rhythm, this piece, and this set of two, is sure to be a winner with any audience.