Working with Blue Man Group has been one of the greatest and most rewarding experiences of my professional career. As Music Director, I have had to draw on every skill that I have acquired over my years in the music industry.
I have functioned as a Performer, Director, Composer, Arranger, Engineer, Teacher, Manager, and Technician… all in the same day!
One of the most exciting projects that I got to work on with Blue Man Group was our “Blue Man Meets…” television specials for Japan’s WOWOW network.
We collaborated with the world-renowned KODO drummers for one program, and with one of Japan’s most famous Kabuki actors, Ichikawa Kamejiro, for the other.
Creating new material and performing with these amazing artists was such a fabulous experience, but I’m also very proud to say that our work was nominated for an International Emmy Award in Arts Programming.
These collaborations allowed me the opportunity to arrange the music, direct, perform in the live shoot, and mix the post-production audio.
This was truly a once in a lifetime adventure!
To view a montage from these programs, please follow the link: Blue Man Meets…
Stringed Instruments of Blue Man Group
The instruments that I play and teach for Blue Man Group definitely fall into the non-traditional category.
The Electric Zither is an enormous instrument with 86 strings. The bottom half is similar to a lap steel guitar, except that there are 6 of them! Each is tuned to a different chord and voicing. The top half looks like the inside of a piano, with each note comprised of 3 strings very close together, but it is played with finger picks.
The whole instrument is fed through guitar effects pedals and amplifiers to create a huge sound. It’s range of textures is enormous and allows for guitar-like tones to be played in a more pianistic way.
Another unique instrument in the Blue Man Group arsenal is the Chapman Stick. Invented in the ’70’s, the Stick was designed to allow guitar players the chance to play their instrument with both hands on the fretboard, allowing for bass lines, chords, and/or melody to be created simultaneously.
Of course, Blue Man Group is never “normal”, and has invented entirely unique ways to achieve sounds from this instrument… despite the fact that the Stick is already an oddity on its own!