The Music
Artist's Note

Although I’ve performed music throughout my life and studied composition when I was younger, I have found that composing music is now essential for my creative fulfillment. The following CDs consist of my compositions which I’ve recorded to date. Mojito and Jazmin, which include compositions that reflect people, places and experiences in my life, were both recorded with my jazz ensemble live in a studio.

It’s Just Me is a solo piano recording project, showcasing my compositions best suited for piano alone. Morning Light was recorded in our church with a live audience, and the compositions represented my reconnection with jazz after many years of working in another world.

Discover 2017

The inspiration for DISCOVER comes directly from life — connection to the people I love and my love of the environment.

A Moment Alone
:25
Pensive moments alone can bring wonder and joy.
Cool Strut
:31
This is a funky tune with a lot of attitude.
La Corriente De Agua
:30
Floating down a beautiful stream in a rainforest in Guatemala resulted in this very pleasant song – a favorite of mine.
Sir Oliver
:33
This is a swing tune written in honor of the composer Oliver Nelson.
Super Agent Super Spy
:33
Inspired by my grandsons, this is a smooth tune with a bit of an edge.
South Beach
:30
This salsa tune reflects the night life that you may find in South Beach, a hip part of Miami.
Mr Potato Head
:30
This fun playful tune was dubbed “Mr. Potato Head” by my grandsons.
Bahia
:45
On a trip to Brazil with Conservation International, my wife and I fell in love with Bahia and the vastness and romance of Brazil.
Capri
:39
The romance and mysticism of the island of Capri off the coast of Italy is captured in this tune.
Take Me Home
:33
This jazz waltz was written to capture the emotions one has about returning to a place once called home.
Discover
:31
This Latin tune holds the energy and emotion of discovering something new.
Her Eyes
:36
An unforgettable image can be obtained from one look in her eyes.
Cinq Pour Michel
:44
This 5/4 tune celebrates the French composer Michel Legrand.
Lacandona
:37
The Lacandon Jungle is an area of rainforest stretching from Chiapas, Mexico into Guatemala.
Song For Chapin
:30
My granddaughter’s wonderful attitude and excitement to be in this world led to this expression of joy.
Mojito 2013

Life's rhythm is all about love and joy, pain and heartache. Always aim for the high notes.

Mojito
:33
A favorite drink that makes me think of crystal waters in the Caribbean and my affinity for the rhythms of the island is a mojito.
Boogie-Woogie Hippo
:51
In a demonstration of boogie woogie to my grandsons, Jack and JJ, out popped this tune, which they aptly named.
Caribbean Splash
1:00
Boating through the Bahamas and playing in its beautiful waters over so many years inspired this piece.
Cool Strut
Watch Clip
1:15
This was a funky lick that turned into a “strut”; I’m not sure what that means, but it’s fun to play.
Broken Promises
:30
Promises made and broken in life are not easy to forget.
La Corriente De Agua
:33
Floating down a beautiful stream in a rainforest in Guatemala resulted in the pleasant song. This seemingly simple current (corriente) of water was a current of life for many Guatemalans.
Sample This
:35
This is a tribute to the pianist Joe Sample whose funky and block chordal style I admire greatly.
She's Thinking About Me
:42
I had the love and care of my wife Joyce to get me through three rounds of cancer and a stem cell transplant. I always know she’s thinking about me!
Here We Go Again
:30
I love funky jazz tunes. “Here we go again!”
Full Nelson
:42
I grew up playing many Oliver Nelson tunes, and found his orchestration compelling. This tune was written as swing but turned into Latin jazz in the studio.
One Step At A Time
:38
This is a reminder that although life’s opportunities and challenges can seem overwhelming, you just need to take “one step at a time.”
Keep On Runnin'
:34
As a 28-year veteran of corporate life at a relentless pace, I realize that you often have to keep on running and accept whatever consequences follow. This song reflects the intensity with which so many of us approach our careers.
Playground
1:07
Vivid memories of the playground and the joy of recesses at my elementary school (Madison School) resulted in this fun tune.
Jazmin 2013

Fantasy and reality often converge in our lives... melodies and harmonies unfold... that’s the fun of it!

Shaken Not Stirred
:42

In explaining my affinity for James Bond movies to my grandsons, a friend, Chris, appropriately named this song. For me this song captures the qualities of Agent 007, as adventurous and mythical as he is.

Blues Berry Jam
1:41
The name of this tune is borrowed from a blues band I listened to growing up in Quincy, Illinois on the Mississippi River. It’s an expression of early jazz fusion.
A Brazilian Sky
:34
Many years of supporting Conservation International and their great work in hot spots around the world inspired this tune. This reflects my passion for the environment, specifically the wildlife and the wild places that we need to protect.
Jazmin
1:14
I love jazz waltzes, and this one came from a walk with my wife through some aromatic jasmine in our neighborhood.
Grusinesque
:41
Dave Grusin is one of my favorite pianists who smartly crafts and clearly communicates his musical ideas.
After the Sunset
:31
I was inspired by the night life at South Beach. This is a musical interpretation of what really begins “after the sunset.”
Onyva
:34
After several years of living and working in France, we got used to saying “on y va” – Let’s Go!
Inner Sanctum
1:08
This was written to reflect my efforts to think creatively and intensely about music and its role in life.
Cypress Majesty
Watch Clip
:32
When I compose, my piano overlooks beautiful and stately cypress trees, which line the shores of our Florida lakes and give me great joy and solace.
The Club
:32
When I was young, I remember seeking out jazz on TV and sometimes finding it on “Playboy After Dark” – this song is an impression of that club. Ironically, we live in a building that once contained a Playboy Club!
It’s Mr. Hancock
Watch Clip
:27
This is in tribute to the one and only Herbie Hancock, a master of the keyboards and jazz composition.
Just Another Fine Day
1:10
I wrote this tune to remind me to appreciate and cherish each and every day!
It's Just Me 2011

Indulging and pursuing one’s dreams is singularly fulfilling...and oh so “sweet!”

Serendipity
:36
Windermere, Florida in the ’80s was a great place for our family to grow up. Joyce and I met many wonderful people there, and it led to great Serendipity.
Bahia
:37
On a trip to Brazil with Conservation International, we fell in love with the rainforest, and I wanted to capture the vastness and the romance of that place in music.
Morning Light
:48
It’s simple, and it makes me smile…the Morning Light. I thoroughly enjoy playing this song because it reminds me that each day is a new opportunity to enjoy life and all those around me. The light of each morning is a call to action that life should be lived…to the fullest.
Take Me Home
Watch Clip
:39
This jazz waltz was written when I moved my mother back to her home town of Quincy, Illinois, after my father died, to live out her remaining years. It was also written with thoughts of our moving back to Illinois after so many years.
I’ll Miss You
:42
This was written during college when I courted Joyce. I’ll Miss You has always been fun to play because of the images it conjures up of some very carefree days spent in college.
Two Small Children
:43
This song was written for our twins, Jamie and Julie, and laments the fact that they grew up way too fast.
The Old Covered Bridge
:42
The countryside of Indiana around DePauw University is very beautiful, and it is famous for its covered bridges.
JJ’s in Town
Watch Clip
:34
Our second grandson, Jacob, finds unique ways to express his personality. When JJ’s in the room, you know it.
Jane’s Song
:36
This tune is dedicated to my mother, Jane, who so patiently nurtured my love for the piano.
Bibbidi Bobbidi Bebop
:34
Jamie was in a high school jazz band and one day asked about bebop, which got me thinking about it. I wrote this tune to be played extremely fast, but found it works just as well with a more relaxed tempo.
Jackson’s Debut
Watch Clip
:38
In honor of our first grandson, Jackson, this song was written to convey my feelings of becoming “Opa.” He’s changed our lives forever.
Live in Us Love in Us
:41
When Joyce’s father passed away, I wrote this tune for her parents to give recognition to their lives together and in hopes that they would live and love in us.
The Goodbye Song
:39
When our children were young, Joyce created a great music fundamentals program called "Music for Kids". I wrote this tune which they used to close out each lesson but which has taken on a life of its own.
Boppa’s Blues
1:01
My father, known as Boppa to our kids, loved to play or sing a few jazz riffs. This tune celebrates his love of Dixieland.
The Promise Of
1:08
Written for Julie’s wedding, this tune captures all of the hopes and dreams promised in a new chapter of life.
L.A. Dreams
:52

When we lived in Los Angeles, California, we got a taste of Hollywood and the dreams it inspires.

To Thine Own Self Be True
:48
This was one of Julie’s favorite Shakespeare quotes, tacked up on her bulletin board, which inspired a hymn.
And Then Tomorrow
:30
Written for Julie’s wedding, this tune captures all of the hopes and dreams promised in a new chapter of life.
Waltz for Bill
Watch Clip
:37
This is a tribute to Bill Evans, one of my favorite jazz pianists. He has always amazed me with his ability to combine unique chords, melodies and rhythms and have it all sound so natural.
Morning Light 1996

Moments captured in song indelibly mark our lives... discovering and illuminating, each time anew.

Lingering Childhood
:34
I frequently think of children when I’m composing and, when I do, I think of discovery and surprise and happiness. This piece reflects all those feelings.
Walking the Dogs
Watch Clip
1:09
Sometimes I sit down at the piano at home and deliberately set out to play something that’s as upbeat and cheerful as I can make it. More often than not, I'm rewarded with a couple of kisses from our Dalmatians. I initially thought they were enjoying my music, but I soon realized that they simply wanted to take a walk outside. Walking the Dogs captures the moment and is therefore dedicated to our beloved Delila and Dollar.
Two Small Children
1:37
When our twins Jamie and Julie graduated from high school, my wife Joyce wrote a poem entitled “Two Small Children” which served as the inspiration for this simple melody.
Bibbidi Bobbidi Be-Bop
1:29
I was helping my some Jamie prepare for a high school jazz concert, specifically a be-bop number that he had to play on the saxophone. Unless a jazz musician can successfully play be-bop, he or she is missing a large part of the history and its foundation.
Song For Jesse
3:30
This song is in memory of a young boy who tragically took his own life for reasons we will never know. He had befriended Jamie and Julie and was drawn to them in part because he himself was a twin. Song For Jesse reflected the intensity and dissonance with which he lived.
I’ll Miss You
:39
This was written during college when I courted Joyce. I’ll Miss You has always been fun to play because of the images it conjures up of some very carefree days spent in the countryside of Indiana. It must have come from the heart!
An Argentinian Princess
:50
On a recent trip to Argentina, I met an absolutely charming and captivating young woman with a smile that wouldn’t quit. Thinking about the rhythms and sounds of Buenos Aires, the flight home resulted in An Argentinian Princess.
Make Believe
:35
This was originally called Untitled Movie Theme in A. Realizing that wasn’t the most original title, I named it Make Believe. Michelle Amato and her husband, Harry Hann changed the key and found the right words.
Cabo San Lucas
:33
Cabo San Lucas is a very romantic place with so much mystique. My wife Joyce and I found it to be like no other getaway – filled with romanticism and solitude and primitive qualities. From such a place, impressions and haunting melodies come.
Tempestad
:33
Although I’ve spent much time trying to learn French (to no avail), I’ve lived most of my life in Southern California and Florida. Had I known earlier in life, I would have tried Spanish instead! For me, this song reflects the emotions and vibrancy of Hispanic communities.
Morning Light
:40
It’s simple, and it makes me smile... the Morning Light. I thoroughly enjoy playing this song because it reminds me that each day is a new opportunity to enjoy life and all those around me. Each morning light is a call to action that life should be lived to the fullest.