The short, simple story: I love music. I love music and I love sharing music through performance and through teaching. It’s what I love the most. Well, almost. There’s dark chocolate and cats and the beautiful woods of North Carolina and family and friends and so many other things but, music – that’s the thread that runs through it all.
I love all kinds of music. I grew up listening to classical music almost exclusively until high school when the influences of blues and rock and folk snuck in via my various friends. My bass teacher from 5th grade until I left high school, Marvin Lewis, guided me through the orchestral literature and the solo works for bass while my friends slipped me records by John Lee Hooker, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, King Crimson, Jefferson Airplane, Pentangle and others. Late in high school I discovered late night jazz on the radio and later, in college at Indiana University School of Music, I studied jazz improvisation with David Baker alongside my classical studies with Murray Grodner.
Before, during, and since college I’ve performed in symphony orchestras, chamber ensembles, big bands and small jazz ensembles, rock, latin, and folk groups both American and International. I’ve done hundreds of recording sessions, am active in the HIP (historically informed performance) movement playing viola da gamba and violone, have hosted and performed in several jazz series, accompanied singers of all kinds, and teach students of all ages.
In the academic world I taught double bass at East Carolina University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Duke University, and for 30 years taught bass and cello and coached the young ensembles at the Duke University Pre-Collegiate String School. Currently I teach bass, cello, and viola da gamba at my home studio overlooking New Hope Creek equidistant from Chapel Hill, Durham, and Hillsborough and easily accessible from Raleigh and I-40.
I have a strong interest in technology and computers – I had one of the early Commodore 64 computers when they first came out – and love the open internet and all the information available to anybody. And while I do often play in ensembles with electronic instruments and amplify my instruments when needed, my favorite sound is that of a wooden instrument with strings and bow played in a good sounding room full of attentive listeners.