Sam has been a composer since the age of 12, when he began to write rock songs and jazz music. After graduating high school, he attended Berklee College of Music, where they earned their degree in Jazz Composition, studying with Ayn Inserto, Bob Pilkington and Dick Lowell. Sam then attended graduate school at the Hartt School of Music, where they studied composition with David Macbride, Robert Carl, and Adam Lenz. He spent his graduate school years composing in the disciplines of classical and electronic music, earning their first master's degree in 2018; their thesis was a 30-minute composition for large jazz ensemble and fixed media. As a result of their diverse musical interests, Sam's compositions integrate many different styles in tandem. Sam currently composes post-bop music for their jazz quartet. His jazz compositions have been featured by jazz ensembles at the Copenhagen Jazz Festival, as well as the Malmo Jazz Festival.
Sam has been arranging as long as he has been composing. In middle school, Sam began arranging music for saxophone quartet and choir. Their first performed arrangement was a low-voices choral rendition of Billy Joel's "The Longest Time," in eighth grade. In high school, Sam began arranging for a cappella vocal groups, small jazz ensemble, and string quartet. Most notably, they won the award for Best Student Arrangement at the WYVERN Invitational A Cappella Festival in West Hartford, Connecticut, in 2011 and 2012. Towards the end of their senior year, Sam began to arrange for large jazz ensemble.
When they were at Berklee, Sam had the opportunity to arrange music for the award-winning collegiate a Cappella group The CharlieChords, which they also sang in during their sophomore and junior years, and directed their senior year. Sam also got to arrange Lizz Wright's song "Speak Your Heart" for large jazz ensemble; the arrangement was subsequently performed by Lizz Wright herself, guest-performing with Berklee's Rainbow Big Band, led by Tia Fuller.
Sam continues to arrange for ensembles of various styles and sizes. He currently actively arranges music for piano, organ, and choir for services at the Unitarian Soceity of Hartford.
To hear a piece, click on it!
"luh-mow" (SATB + Bb Clarinet)
"Ambient Suite" (SATB + optional found objects)