GREG MCLEAN, Part 1

May 26, 2010 at 10:30am
Q) Name, year and place of birth ?

A) Greg McLean, b. 1956, Shreveport, Louisiana

Q) Why did you write this work?

A)Christmas Holiday Quartet Collection-When I was growing up in Chamblee, GA I had a reel to reel tape deck to play with and during holiday breaks from grad school (ca. 1980-81) I started overdubbing duos, trios, etc. I got the idea to start arranging Christmas tunes and playing all the parts myself. I had so much fun doing this that I kept arranging until I had a collection of tunes. I didn’t do much with it until I made it back to Atlanta in the late 1980’s. In the early 1990’s I was getting calls to provide Christmas music for office parks, etc. so I finally wrote out hand copied scores and parts for the first set of the Christmas Holiday Quartet Collection. In 1994 Rob expressed interest in the quartets and began to publish them. Eventually we published the same arrangements for four horns, then four and five trombones.

Q) How long did it take?

A) Writing the arrangements took maybe a couple of months total.

Q) Was it written for anyone (s) in particular?

A) No, just me having fun.

Q) are you a performer as well as a composer/arranger?

A) Yes, I am a trumpet player as well.

Q) what is unique about this (these) work (s) ?

A) These arrangements cover the gamut from very traditional “legit” style to the sound of a big band trumpet section. Some are slightly modern. I’ve tried to make them interesting and challenging, but playable.

Q) are you working on anything new?

A) I am re-orchestrating my concerto “The Twain Have Met” for wind
ensemble (see below).

Q) what other works have you done (by other publishers) that you'd like people to know about?

A) “The Twain Have Met,” a concerto for two trumpets and orchestra, published by Editions-BIM. This was commissioned by Marvin Stamm, one solo part is “classical” the other “jazz,” and both players have to switch styles throughout. It is a single-movement work, lasting about 20-25 minutes. There is a lot of room for improvisation in the jazz solo, and some improve opportunity for the “classical”
soloist as well (but there is a written jazz solo available).

Q) Do you have any performance suggestions or warnings?

A) Pay attention to styles: “swing” when it says swing, play the articulations as
written. Trumpet 1, “Carol of the Bells” can be played on Eb trumpet or Bb
piccolo.