Christmastime is here! (Almost?)

Here’s a quick promo video for the upcoming Christmas release from #1 Billboard Pianist Paul Cardall.
Produced by Jim Daneker.


It’s that time of year again! Nope, I’m not talking about spring or summer. The end of school, you ask? Nope. Here’s a hint – Teddy Roosevelt, Sherriff Bear, horses, and of course…elk.  That’s right – Medora! For the last 7 years, I’ve teamed up with Sandy Tipping to create orchestrated tracks for portions of Medora, North Dakota’s premiere outdoor entertainment show. As has been our procedure for the last few years, Sandy and I talk off and on about the show for weeks, even months. But, he waits as long as he can to actually send me charts and tracks, and then I write like mad for two days prior to the session. Okay, it may not sound all that appealing, but it seems to work for us. It’s usually not really all that stressful, unless of course your printer goes berserk the night before the session and you almost run out of paper too. Yes, that happened.

But you know what’s not stressful? Our tracking date at Westpark Studios in Franklin, TN.  Tom Reeves welcomes us in and we use just about every inch of space for a day.  Let me set the stage for you: Strings are in the main room/various Woodwinds are someplace else/the Woodwind players leave as soon as Piccolo overdubs are mentioned/all types of Brass players show up, sometimes different players for different styles!/Sandy and I chit-chat thru the entire tracking process/a lot of Animal Crackers are eaten.  But, at the end of the day, Tom has a smile on his face and says, “thanks for the call, see you next year.”  Next time you need a studio with a relaxed vibe, great work environment, and plenty of animal crackers, give them a call!

So, next time you’re up in North Dakota, stop by Medora and check out the show. And please remember, it wasn’t my idea to call the song “Sherriff Bear, Shake it for Me.”


All around, it was a pretty good day

I recently was provided a great opportunity to work with one of LA’s rising composers of tv, film and videogame music – Trevor Morris.  Trevor came to town to record the trailer and main theme music for BioWare’s Dragon Age 3 Inquisition videogame. We recorded at Ocean Way Studios with musicians provided by Nashville Music Scoring.  As always, it was a bit of a quick turn-around – I had 2 days to complete the orchestrated scores for Trevor’s approval, followed by an afternoon of part prep for the actual session.  Honestly, this being my first foray into the world of videogames and my first opportunity to work with Trevor, I was a bit nervous. But, the sessions went well, everything sounded amazing, and Trevor was very pleased.  Of course, this being Trevor’s first time to visit Nashville, we had to celebrate after a great session – so I took him to see Tim Akers and the Smoking Section at 3rd and Lindsley.  Yep, they killed it, and again, Trevor was impressed.  All around, it was a pretty good day.

It was truly a wonderful evening

Sometimes you have to work hard to create opportunities, and sometimes they just seem to fall into your lap.  This past March, it was the latter. I stumbled into a situation where I was able to put together a 32 piece orchestra for a 2-hour session in one of the most historic and beautiful studios in Nashville – Ocean Way.  With yours truly on the podium, Ocean Way Studios was part of an event in which attendees at the G.A.N.G. (Game Audio Network Guild) Game Developer’s Conference in San Francisco watched (and listened) from a local studio as we recorded music that I had composed – a selection of film cues, orchestral works, etc… (that I had frantically prepared in the 4-5 days prior!)  It was truly a wonderful evening. The musicians (provided by Nashville Music Scoring) played beautifully and really did go above and beyond normal expectations for those 2 hours. Not only did I walk away with some wonderfully recorded material, but I also made some new friends that evening. And in this business, you never know what doors might open because of a new relationship!

Here’s a link to a news article that tells more about the technology side of what was happening that night.