WASHINGTON, PA (Oct. 5, 2016) - Washington & Jefferson College (W&J) Assistant Professor of Music Kyle Simpson is the artist behind “Something In Between,” a jazz album released this month by the Kyle Simpson Jazz Collective.
This is Simpson’s first professional studio album. It features his original compositions, written in a ten-year period from 2005-2015, as well as his arrangement of Robert Schumann’s art-song, "Lovely Month of May."
Simpson said several artists influenced his personal style over the years, including Steve Reich, Maria Schneider, Igor Stravinsky, and Pat Metheny, and that listeners can find traces of their influence in his music.
“I wanted the album to express my musical language, which I feel is something in between jazz and contemporary classical music," he said. “Some might think it a bit of a stretch to find those artists' influence on the album, but I believe its there, in different ways throughout the album."
“Something In Between” features some of the most celebrated artists in Pittsburgh, including W&J adjunct music faculty George Heid III on drums and Tim Brutscher on trumpet. Other Pittsburgh-area artists on the album are Paul Thompson (bass), Tony DePaolis (bass), Reggie Watkins (trombone), Emmett Goods (Trombone), John Petrucelli (saxophones), JD Chaisson (trumpet), and Joe Badaczewski (trumpet), as well as New York-based saxophonist Jacob Teichroew.
Simpson received assistance from the 1970 Fund for Faculty Research and the Mason Summer Grant, both offered by W&J, to produce the album.
“I am entirely grateful to W&J for supporting me to make this project come to fruition,” Simpson said. “It represents a decade of my original compositions. Something in Between is both sides of my musical career, the jazz and the classical music.”
About the Artist
Kyle Simpson, composer, trumpet player, and bandleader, is a graduate of Lawrence Conservatory of Music in Appleton, Wis. and The University of Montana in Missoula, Mont. Simpson has written for large jazz groups, chamber jazz groups, solo trumpet, electronic music, orchestra, and wind ensemble. His compositions have been featured at the Buddy DeFranco Jazz Festival in Missoula, where he also performed with Lew Soloff and Paquito D'Rivera. Other compositions have been featured at The Henry Mancini Institute--Los Angeles (2006), Fête de la Musique Ile d'Yeu--France(2011), Uzmah Upbeat---Croatia (2014), Charlotte New Music Festival—Charlotte, NC (2013), and Ostrava Days--Czech Republic (2011). In 2007, Simpson went on tour with the Glenn Miller Orchestra playing section and solo trumpet. He also received ASCAP’s “Composer to Watch” award in 2011 for his work at the NYU/ASCAP Film Scoring Workshop. He is currently in the DMA program in composition at West Virginia University.
About Washington & Jefferson College
Washington & Jefferson College, located in Washington, Pa., is a selective liberal arts college founded in 1781. Committed to providing each of its students with the highest-quality undergraduate education available, W&J offers a traditional arts and sciences curriculum emphasizing interdisciplinary study and independent study work. For more information about W&J, visit www.washjeff.edu, or call 888-W-AND-JAY.