Posts By: Garry Kvistad

Joyous Noise

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Have you seen the Spielberg movie Lincoln? It brought to light all the backroom deals that were cut to free the slaves and establish the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863. While our country is still divided in many ways today, we all experience moments of liberation and unity. One such experience was shared by the 175… Read more »

POPS

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That’s what our 2-year-old grandson, Lucca, calls me. Lucca now has a baby sister, our second grandchild, Siena, who just came into the world. When our daughters were born back in the 1980s, everyone said, “Enjoy it while you can because they grow up so fast.” It is so true and I understand this fully… Read more »

Peanut Butterfly Interlochen Boom

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Those were the words given to us by our “high school” orchestra conductor, Thor Johnson, when we were playing a difficult new work by a Japanese composer in the mid-1960s. If you say each word on four beats, fitting the syllables equally in each beat, it helps create a rhythm of 2 + 3 +… Read more »

BREAKING NEWS:

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Music Is Healing Of course, many of us have known this for a long time, but research is coming out more frequently to tell us how and why it is true. Certain sounds can lower your stress level, increase your creative focus and make you more productive! I’m often told that the music of Woodstock… Read more »

A Very Special Christmas Concert

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Soloists in Haydn's Toy Symphony (Garry is the “Little” Drummer Boy) with Maestra Kathleen Beckmann - Photo by Guy Peifer

My day job is making Woodstock Chimes but at night I come out to play. I recently had the privilege once again to play timpani with the Northern Dutchess Symphony Orchestra and the local Mendelssohn Club Men’s Chorus. We were joined by student guest performers from the Anderson Center for Autism. The Anderson Center students… Read more »

An 8-Year-Old with Good Taste!

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I must brag a little and say we get a lot of fan mail from people who love Woodstock Chimes. I cherish every letter but recently got one that made all the blood, sweat and tears through the years worthwhile. It was beautifully handwritten by an 8-year-old boy living on the West Coast. Here is… Read more »

Future Leaders are Facilitators

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For the past several years, I have given presentations to classes of future leaders here in the Hudson Valley at the invitation of the Ulster Leadership Development Institute. This twenty-five-year-old program is sponsored by the Ulster County Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Chamber Foundation. It is coordinated by the foundation’s Executive Director, Ingrid Kulick. Through the nine months of the program,… Read more »

Colleague Russell Hartenberger wins big time!

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I have been working with Russell since 1979 as a member of Steve Reich and Musicians and since 2002 as a member of NEXUS. Anyone who has had the honor of working with Russell knows the joy of music making with someone with such insight and musicality. I doubt the music of Steve Reich would… Read more »

NEXUS in Potsdam

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In 1974, I performed with the Blackearth Percussion Group at the State University of New York at Potsdam. The young percussion teacher at that time was Jim Petercsak. Last week, 43 years later, history repeated itself, but this time it was with the percussion group NEXUS. The instructor in charge was, yes, Jim Petercsak. Professor… Read more »

Unusual Instruments – Log Drum

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Wooden boxes with carved tongues are musical instruments found all over the world. They go by lots of names such as Log Drums, Slit Drums, Kulkul and Teponaztli, to name a few. In this video, I demonstrate some of these instruments from my collection which have a range of sizes and styles. They are universally… Read more »

Broadway, CIA and Timpani

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  Every so often I have the pleasure of playing timpani with a full orchestra. This was the case recently when I played with the Northern Dutchess Symphony Orchestra led by Kathleen Beckmann. This concert featured the Broadway star Craig Schulman. The program included big hits from many different Broadway shows, including Les Misérables and The Phantom of the… Read more »

Woodstock, the Most Famous Small Town in the World

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On Friday night Jack DeJohnette played a spectacular piano concert at the Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild to an overflowing audience. He called it the Concert for Inner Peace. Jack is known as one of the very finest jazz drummers on the scene today, but his first instrument was piano and his range of styles and his… Read more »

Mohonk Concerts

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Brubeck Brothers Band

Diane and I attended a day of jazz at the Mohonk Mountain House yesterday with friends. We saw two absolutely amazing concerts and had a wonderful dinner at this historic resort right here in the Catskill Mountains. One concert was a trio led by the fabulous Janice Siegel of the Manhattan Transfer with pianist John… Read more »

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