Few people know that my professional music career began as a 14-year-old tuba player in a Dixieland band at Cedar Point, an amusement park in my hometown of Sandusky, Ohio.
I was fortunate to attend Mount Union College where a fantastic educator, Carl H. Kandel, had developed a unique brass ensemble environment. The Mount Union Brass Choir played every weekend at a church service or a symposium somewhere in Ohio or eastward. In four years that Mount Union, I had the opportunity to play, arrange music for, and conduct music at Central Moravian Church in Bethlehem, PA; Riverside Church in NYC; Carnegie Hall in NYC; Yale Brass Symposium in New Haven, CT; and a myriad of other venues.
Carl Kandel encouraged my interest in arranging music for brass ensemble and it never left me. I began brass ensembles wherever I taught and these arrangements are the result. Thanks go also to three great educators with whom I worked: Dave Mitchell, Dave Martinson, and Fred Ellwein; who were all-in on my brass music interest.
Consequently, my life as a choral director brought me into contact with a great deal of music that would translate to brass ensemble. The similarity between vocal production and brass production are a close connection. I have consequently arranged much choral/vocal music for brass ensemble.