All Works

Featured
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2016

A Hopeless Romantic

Film

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2017
SATB Chorus and Piano

A LIGHT

Choral

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2018
Medium voice and Piano

A PRAYER

Solo Voice

text by Langston Hughes

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2020
soprano and string quartet

A Wonderful Hearing

Choral

A song cycle for voices and strings.

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2019
Orchestra

AMEN! (2017 rev. 2019)

Orchestral

This piece pays homage to my family's four generational affiliation with the Pentecostal church. My intent is to re-create the musical experience of an African American Pentecostal church service that I enjoyed being apart of while growing up in this denomination.

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2017
Symphony Band

AMEN! (2017)

Large Ensemble

My intent is to re-create the musical experience of an African American Pentecostal church service that I enjoyed being apart of while growing up in this denomination.

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2015
Voice

AS FREE

Electronic

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2019

ASCAP presents Songwriters: The Next Generation - Millennium Stage (April 10, 2019)

Film

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Amazing Grace

Film Cues

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2023
Baritone and Piano

American Sonnets

Solo Voice

In 2020, I was asked to compose a piece using the provocative poetry of Terrance Hayes. I chose the following three poems from Hayes’ collection American Sonnets For My Past and Future Assassin because I felt they represented my personal state of mind and view points as a Black American man (especially Inside Me) at that time. This piece was commissioned by the Brooklyn Art Song Society.

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2019

And They Lynched Him on a Tree

Film

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2019
Solo Violin, Solo Cello, or Solo Double Bass

Between Worlds

Solo Works

Bill Traylor was born a slave in Alabama in 1853 and died in 1949. He lived long enough to see the United States of America go through many social and political changes. He was an eyewitness to the Civil War, Emancipation, Reconstruction, Jim Crow segregation and the Great Migration.

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Born For This

Film Cues

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Born For This Conducting

Film

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2021
for orchestra

Breathe

Orchestral

"Drop Thy still dews of quietness // Till all our striving cease” Deeply inspired by Howard Thurman, I wanted to write a piece that encourages others to simply reflect and breathe.

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Bruce Almighty

Film

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Bruce Almighty Film Demo

Film

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2019
Baritone and Piano

CARO MIO BEN

Solo Voice

An arrangement of this classic aria from the 24 Italian Art songs collection.

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Saxophone Quartet (sop sax/a sax/ten sax/bar sax)

Catch on Fire

Chamber Music

As the son of a Pentecostal preacher, no other memory stands out more than being a part of a “tarrying service”. The “tarry service”, usually on Friday nights, was for those members (mostly teenagers) who had not received the gift of the Holy Spirit.

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Celestial Heavens

Film

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2019
Medium voice and Piano

DEAD FIRES

Solo Voice

“If this is peace, this dead and leaden thing, Then better far the hateful fret, the sting.”

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2020
string quartet

Dark Washington

Film

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2016

ELEMENTS

Electronic

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2013

Eastern Moaning

Electronic

Film Cue with Middle Eastern influence.

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2015
String Quartet or String Orchestra or Saxophone Quartet

Elegy: A Cry from the Grave

Chamber Music

This piece is an artistic reflection dedicated to those who have been murdered wrongfully by an oppressive power; namely Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner and Michael Brown.

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2016

Emma's Dreams

Film

Score for the First Runner Up for the Marvin Hamlisch Film Scoring Contest

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Emmas Dreams - Marvin Hamlisch Film Scoring Contest

Film

Marvin Hamlisch Film Scoring Contest WINNER

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2020
Orchestra

FATE NOW CONQUERS

Orchestral

This piece was inspired by a journal entry from Ludvig van Beethoven’s notebook written in 1815: “Iliad. The Twenty-Second Book But Fate now conquers; I am hers; and yet not she shall share In my renown; that life is left to every noble spirit And that some great deed shall beget that all lives shall inherit.”

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2015
Piano

Feelings About Baltimore

Chamber Music

These are my feelings on the crimes of BOTH the oppressor and the oppressed in Baltimore and throughout the country.

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Fighting Kahl

Film

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Film Demo

Film

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2021
Tenor, Cello, Piano

First Bluebird in the Morning

Solo Voice

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2023
for Orchestra

Four Black American Dances

Orchestral

Dance has always been a part of any culture. Particularly in Black American communities, dance is and has been the fabric of social gatherings. There have been hundreds, perhaps thousands of dances created over the span of American history that have originated from the social climate of American slavery, Reconstruction and Jim Crow. This piece is an orchestral study of the music that is associated with the Ring Shout, the Waltz, Tap Dance and the Holy Dance. All of these dances are but a mere representation of the wide range of cultural and social differences within the Black American communities.

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Fun at the Carnival

Film

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2016

Funky Money

Film

Feeling 70's Funky...

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2015
computer generated sounds

GENERATIONS

Electronic

My patriarchal heritage shows three generations of preachers. My great grand father, Bishop Henry C. Brooks, who began preaching in 1925, my grandfather, Bishop Charles W. Hairston in 1947 and my father Bishop Carlos O. Simon, Sr. in 1994. I chose to use audio clips from past sermons after discovering old LP and several old cassette tapes of sermons from my great grandfather and grandfather.

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2023
Woodwind Quintet

Giants

Chamber Music

This piece is inspired by five Black Americans who have influenced me and my identity as a composer-Bessie smith, Maya Angelou, Ronald E. McNair, Cornel west and Herbie Hancock. Each movement is meant to embody the work and personality (as best as I can gather) through music. I want to not only pay homage to these giants, but offer a character study through music of their works.

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2023
Wind Band

Go Down Moses: Let My People Go

Large Ensemble

Go Down Moses arrangement for University of Michigan Symphony Band

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2021
for orchestra

Graffiti

Orchestral

This work is inspired by the countless artists around the world whose self-expression allows their audiences to redefine and reexamine art. Is it art or vandalism? Co-commissioned by the Arizona State University Symphony Orchestra, Oberlin College and Conservatory, and the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music made possible by the Frank Ticheli Guest Artist Endowed Fund.

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Great Is Thy Faithfulness

Film Cues

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Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah

Film Cues

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2016
SATB Chorus

HE IS

Choral

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Irreplaceables (documentary)

Film

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2020
String Orchestra or String Quintet

Journey

Chamber Music

Journey is inspired by a poem by Narendra Kuppan. Composed with support from the National Orchestral Institute + Festival

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2019

Leah's Fugue

Film

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2019
Quartet

Let America Be America Again- Tony Arnold and Third Angle Quartet

Choral

Let America be America again.

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2015
Cello and Piano

Lickety Split

Chamber Music

As young boy, I worked with my grandfather during the summers paving driveways in Rocky Mount, Virginia. He was a task master. Things had to be done the right way and with haste when he asked for it in his own playful way. This piece, in its whimsical character, draws on inspiration from the colloquial phrase, Lickety Split, coined in the 1860s, meaning to do something quickly or in a hurry.

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2016

Memories Of Summer

Film

A mellow jazz composition...

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2021
for orchestra

Motherboxx Connection

Orchestral

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2022
for solo flute and orchestra

Movements: Flute Concerto

Orchestral

This work, premiered in 2022, is the second American solo flute concerto by a Black composer. In a time of cultural and civil change, this piece helps in creating a more diverse and inclusive environment for BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) musicians, and a richer repertoire for the orchestral community.

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2016

Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood (Cover)- Paula Champion

Solo Works

"The second is equally important: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' No other commandment is greater than these." Mark 12:31 NLT

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2015
SATB chorus and piano

My Everything

Choral

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2020
chamber opera

NIGHT TRIP

Opera

The uncles arrive in Chicago after dark at their sister’s apartment to pick up their niece Conchetta. Big city music. Conchetta is thrilled to go “home” to see her relatives—her grandmother, her aunts, her “play aunts.” She sings about the rough world of the big city and longs for the small town life in Tennessee.

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2014
Medium voice and Piano

NIGHTFALL (…while you were dreaming..)

Solo Voice

Art songs have long been an interest of mine. The vocal works of Maurice Ravel, Richard Strauss and Arnold Schoenberg have always seem to ignite my passion for composing music

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2014
Piano and String Orchestra

Out Of Love

Film

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2017
Orchestra and Black Female Narrator

PORTRAIT OF A QUEEN

Orchestral

This piece traces the evolution of black people in America through the lens of the black woman.

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2006
Baritone and Piano

Prayer and Solitude

Choral

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2022
for Orchestra

Profiles

Orchestral

Profiles is a short orchestral study in three separate movements based on the late visual art of Romare Bearden. Most of Bearden’s work reflects African American culture in urban cities as well as the rural American south. Although Bearden was born in Charlotte, NC, he spent his most of his life in Harlem, New York. With its vibrant artistic community, this piece aims to highlight the rich energy and joyous sceneries that Harlem expressed as it was the hotbed for African American culture.

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2013
TTBB chorus

Psalm 15

Choral

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2013

Purpose

Electronic

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2014
computer generated sounds

Rainy Season

Electronic

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2021
For Violin, Cello, Flute/Piccolo/Alto Flute, Clarinet/Bass Clarinet in Bb, Trumpet, Piano Spoken Word Artist

Requiem for the Enslaved

Chamber Music

Requiem for the Enslaved explores the sacred and historical, and honors the lives of those bought and sold. Original text by Marco Pavé.

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Riding the Danube

Film

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2008
SATB Chorus and Piano

SANCTUS

Choral

An original composition using the Sanctus from the Latin Mass.

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2019

Sailing Through Space

Film

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Selflection

Film

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Solo Cello

Silence

Solo Works

This work is one of three works from Songs of Isolation, a project for solo cello aimed at illuminating important voices in this immensely challenging time across the globe.

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2018
Piano

Sleep Well

Solo Works

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2023
mezzo-soprano and orchestra

Songs of Separation

Orchestral

We all, as humans, experience separation in a variety of forms. Whether it be through the death of a loved one, a break-up, a divorce or a permanent relocation from family and friends, a parting of ways is a part of life for us all. To illustrate this musically, I chose to use the timeless words of the 13th century Persian poet, Jalāl al-Dīn Muḥammad Rūmī to convey this inevitable human experience. Each of the four movements depict moments of grief, sorrow as well hope and encouragement. Rūmī reminds us through his words that “What hurts you, also blesses you”

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2019

Space and Time

Film

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2019
Wind Ensemble

Sweet Chariot

Large Ensemble

Swing Low, Sweet Chariot is perhaps one of the most well known African American spirituals. As beautiful and rapturing as its melody is, it should be.

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2014
Wind Ensemble

Sweet Hour of Prayer

Film Cues

Hymn Arrangement of Sweet Hour of Prayer

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2018
Orchestra

THE BLOCK

Orchestral

“The Block” is a short orchestral study based on the late visual art of Romare Bearden. Most of Bearden’s work reflects African-American culture in urban cities as well as the rural American south.

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2019
Orchestra

THIS LAND

Orchestral

This piece is inspired by Emma Lazarus’ gentle, welcoming words in her poem, “New Colossus”. Lush, bright harmonies in the strings are used to represent hope and unity.

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2008
TTBB Chorus

TRAIN'S A'COMIN

Choral

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2021
for orchestra

Tales: A Folklore Symphony

Orchestral

This piece explores African American folklore as well as Afrofuturists stories. This work is commissioned by the Sphinx Organization for its 25th Anniversary and the University of Michigan Symphony Orchestra.

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2022
Piano, Violin, Cello and Baritone

The Best Cuisine

Chamber Music

One of the hobbies that I (and a lot of other people) have developed during the lockdown of the COVID-19 pandemic was cooking. I decided to set to music some of the recipes (created by my friend and colleague Carl Dupont) that I tried and mastered during this difficult time.

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2023
for trombone and orchestra

Troubled Water - Trombone Concerto

Orchestral

In January 2020, Kenneth Thompkins of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra asked me to write a concerto for him as the principal trombonist of the orchestra. He suggested a piece about the Underground Railroad since Michigan was one of the last states for enslaved persons to reach before getting to freedom in Canada. The Underground Railroad was a network of clandestine routes and safe houses established in the United States during the early- to mid-19th century. It was used by enslaved African Americans primarily to escape into free states and Canada. The piece is inspired by the many stories, accounts and experiences told by many enslaved people and abolitionists.

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2017
TTBB chorus, piano and organ (optional)

UNITY

Choral

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2017
Men’s chorus (TTBB), 2 trumpets in Bb, piano, organ

Unity

Choral

Work for men’s chorus (TTBB), 2 trumpets in Bb, piano, organ, written for the 150th anniversary of Morehouse College.

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2023
for Orchestra

Wake Up! Concerto for Orchestra

Orchestral

This concerto for orchestra is inspired by the poem, Awake, Asleep, written by the Nepali poet, Rajendra Bhandari, and was commissioned by the San Diego Symphony Orchestra and the National Symphony Orchestra, Washington.

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2020
String Quartet

Warmth from Other Suns

Chamber Music

Between 1916 and 1970, the mass exodus of African-Americans leaving the rural South, seeking homes in the urban West, Midwest, and Northeast became known as the Great Migration. Inspired by Isabel Wilkerson’s book The Warmth of Other Suns, I chose to bring these stories to life through the voice of a string quartet.

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2017
for tenor saxophone, trumpet, drum set, bass, piano

White Only, Colored Only

Chamber Music

A work for tenor saxophone, trumpet, drum set, bass, and piano.

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2016

Who Among Us?

Film

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Wish I Didn't Miss You - Angie Stone Live In Warsaw

Film

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Written in Stone

Orchestral

The theme that he and his librettist have chosen — acceptance of same-sex marriage within the black church — is a challenging one.

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2015
Piano Trio (violin, cello and piano)

be still and know

Chamber Music

This piece was inspired by an interview with Oprah Winfrey

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2023
for spoken word, orchestra, and chorus

brea(d)th

Orchestral

Brea(d)th is a classical work, inspired by the enduring presence of George Floyd the Ancestor, asking America to consider an equitable future. We come to the resilient and root-rich Twin Cities as outsiders, but we composed this work from within the walls of Black emotion, curiosity, and dignity. The piece explores a historical timeline that stretches from the pre-colonial to the present condition, and perhaps further, into a post-pandemic America. Who would we be if we used covid-19 as an opportunity to focus on both public health, *and* public healing? Our entire country has endured a trauma… how do we publicly heal?...

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2020
for baritone saxophone and piano

hear them

Chamber Music

I have been constantly aware of the presence of my ancestors in my life. The benevolent forefathers and foremothers are there to help, guide and assist. This piece is inspired by a poem by nayyirah waheed, which simply asks the ancestors to speak louder if you can not 'hear them'.

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2020
Percussion Trio

hymns

Chamber Music

This piece was commissioned by Lineage Percussion for Shadows of Lakeland

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2020
String Trio (violin, viola and cello)

loop

Chamber Music

The pandemic of COVID-19 has continued to influence my social, professional and personal life in ways that I never imagined. Day to day life has been like a continuous “loop”; a never-ending quarantine loop. This piece reflects my feelings about the mandated stay-at-home order during this crisis.

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2020
Solo Flute or Alto flute

move it

Solo Works

This piece represents the desire to get out and MOVE - an imaginary syncopated joyride that moves with enery and forward motion.

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for wind ensemble

reflections

Large Ensemble

reflections was commissioned by current and former members of the Georgia State University Graduate Wind Conducting Studio and Symphonic Wind Ensemble for Dr. Robert J. Ambrose in celebration of his 20 years as Director of Bands at Georgia State University. The commission was organized by Associate Director of Bands Dr. Chester Phillips and graduate conducting student Ellie Anderson.

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2020
Flute and Violin

stir crazy

Chamber Music

Commissioned by the Gabriela Lena Frank Music Academy in response to the COVID 19 pandemic.

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2016

the rain that falls

Electronic

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2016

the wind that blows

Electronic

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2017
Violin and Cello

where two or three are gathered

Chamber Music

I often heard the bible scripture, “Where two or three are gathered in my name I will be in the midst,” (Matthew 18:20) in my family’s small church where the attendance often was just my parents and my siblings. Hearing that scripture meant that there was a much larger purpose to being present in the small gathering

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Carlos Simon