Currently, I am the Director of the Commercial Music Program at Los Angeles Valley College, where I developed and teach a 30-week Recording Engineering Course, developed a six-semester program in which the Audio Engineering Program works in conjunction with the Commercial Music Arranging Program to reap the best of both their learning by interacting together (I started with 6 students, and now average 75 a semester), and where I developed and implemented a Commercial Music Associates Degree involving Music Composition and Arranging, Recording Engineering, Digital Audio and MIDI Editing, and Computer Music Notation. Many of the graduates are presently working successfully in the music industry.
I became associated with The Dick Grove School of Music in 1981, where I spent 14 years working hard and loving every minute of it. As Director of Public Affairs, it was my job to develop and nourish relationships with major manufacturers and entertainment companies to procure instruments and audio equipment for the benefit of the school and students. As Director of Engineering, I created and taught a 40-week program, designed and installed several recording studios, recorded and mixed all writing and vocal projects (from small groups up to 50-piece orchestras), and oversaw and coordinated the Recording Engineering Program with the other music educational programs. As a Guidance Counselor, I developed procedures and staff to counsel students and professionals on their educational needs and goals while in school, and then, once graduated, with their packages and marketing as they sought work in the Entertainment Industry. And, very cutting edge for the time, I was the Director of the Grove Mac User Group, which I created to assist students and working professionals in the pursuits of computer-aided music creation, a new and little understood field at the time. Using a newsletter I developed and edited, I was able to keep current students and alumni in touch with current Mac-music issues, as well as each other. Members of ASMAC, American Society of Arrangers and Composers, attended the meetings on a regular basis. The interaction between the young writers and the pro's was one of the most rewarding aspects of the User Group, along with exchanging new ideas and techniques on how to use the "new" technology, the Macintosh computer, in the very demanding, "we need it yesterday", music business in Los Angeles, California.
Beyond the Educational Field, I've worked in the Music Industry in three general areas: as a performer, a music director, and a recording engineer. I began my career as a performer, playing in and arranging music for groups that toured throughout the United States, performing in major nightclubs in New York, Atlantic City, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, as well as San Juan, Puerto Rico and more. When not top billing, these groups opened for acts such as Ray Anthony, Theresa Brewer, George Carlin, Pat Cooper, Jimmie Dean, The Four Freshman, Jackie Leonard, Chuck Mangione, B.J. Thomas, Frankie Valli, and The Young Rascals. One group, The Brass Buttons, was signed with Sid Bernstein Management and Atlantic Records, working with Tommy Dowd and Arif Mardin. A popular band outright, they backed Liza Minnelli on the Ed Sullivan Show, released a single produced by Gene Cornish, and are currently developing a comeback tour.
As a music director, I recently managed, produced and recorded both a 17-piece Big Band and a Ten-tet, which I then took on a tour of Southern France. I arranged, directed and produced music for singer Jan Chamberlin (Mrs. Mickey Rooney), worked with various artists to produce publishing demos, including the Frank Stewart Orchestra, composed and arranged music for independent video productions in the education, corporate and music fields, and provided Santa Monica College with half-time shows for sporting events. I was also executive producer, director and technical director for a series of four Video Rock Operas (video was very new at the time, and music videos were practically unheard of).
In my role as a recording engineer I have worked for such major firms as Warner Bros. (tape mastering technician), Marantz Co. (tape mastering technician and computer piano music editor), Pablo Records (asst. to Director of Engineering) and Group IV Studios (engineering staff). It was at Group IV where I worked on the pre-records for the Super Bowl XXXII Half-Time Show, "A Tribute to Motown's 40th Anniversary," as well as several motion picture and television recording dates, ultimately becoming a Vice-President there. For the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association TIOJ Productions of "A Cole Porter Tribute," and "A Tribute to Duke Ellington," I was Mix Engineer in Charge of Audio, serving in that role as well as for a Christmas Concert by the Valley Master Chorale (with 100 voices and a 50-piece orchestra). As a recording engineering consultant, I have designed and installed several small studios for composers, performers and other engineers.
My own music education includes being graduated by the Dick Grove School of Music Film Scoring Program, under the direction of Mundell Lowe, and the Composing and Arranging Program, where I studied with such luminaries as Allyn Ferguson, Jack Feierman, Dick Grove, Dr. Albert Harris, Henry Mancini, Sammy Nestico, Lalo Schifrin and Jack Smalley. I've also studied Film Scoring at UCLA, spent some time at the Eastman Conservatory, studied Telecommunications and Video Studio Techniques at Moorpark College, and have pursued music theory and arranging studies privately.
I like to stay in touch with my field by attending national conventions and seminars like AES (Audio Engineering Society), NAB (National Association of Broadcasters), NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants), and NAJE (National Association of Jazz Educators). At NAJE '86, I was honored to present a Music Video Seminar, attended by hundreds of music teachers from all over the United States. I also keep track of local professional seminars in Los Angeles, CA, concerning such topics as SMPTE, Video Studio Facilities Installation, Macintosh in Multimedia/Interactive, and Writers Guild/Interactive.