About Tony SingingEagle

As a composer, my strongest desire is for people to hear my music. For only when it is heard for the first time, does it begin to breathe and become alive. But I also recognize the need to say a little bit about myself. So just who is Tony SingingEagle?

At the time of writing these words, I have walked this earth for 70 winters. I count winters, as my Native ancestors did (not years). My grandfather was full blood Oglala Lakota, born around 1900 near Pine Ridge, South Dakota. My halfbreed father did not know much of the ways of our people, but he made sure I knew where I came from. However, it was not until my 33rd winter that I began to fully understand–and embrace–the fact that I was Native. In 1996, I made a personal commitment to learn (and live) the ways of my people, particularly the Lakota spirituality, culture and language. My name in Lakota is Waŋblí Wálowaŋ (SingingEagle) and references the story of a golden eagle who watched over a Lakota camp and cried out when danger was near, in order to protect the people. It was gifted me in a sacred naming ceremony by a Quahadi Comanche elder/medicine man in 1997.

I share all of this because it is who I am. However, what I do–at least, as a musician–is quite different. You see, the music this Lakota boy grew up listening to in 1950's and 60's Memphis, TN was Jazz–not Rock & Roll, not Country & Western, not Pop–but Big Band Jazz. Both of my parents were professional musicians in that style, so naturally, I became interested in learning it. So much so, I wound up getting a Bachelor of Music (in Composition) from Memphis State University while simultaneously attending the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY during the summers. It was there that I studied studio arranging and film scoring under Rayburn Wright and Manny Albam; it was there that I really learned to write music. Mind you, I was never as successful or as well known as those I went to school with (and later worked with). However, I did manage to get quite a few writing gigs, which helped me hone my craft.

As I mentioned earlier, things changed in 1996. I was not concentrating so much on what I did, but rather on who I was. Jazz (and most other non-Native music) took a back seat and eventually ended up on the shelf. I became heavily influenced by Native flute, Powwow and hand-drum music; after picking up the Native flute for the first time, I fell in love with my people's music. Then, in September of 2020, things came full circle: I knew it was time to allow both sides to come together and co-exist, because it was time I stopped being fragmented. My musical talent, abilities, and skills were a gift from Wakȟáŋ Tȟáŋka, the Great Spirit. To not use them as my own personal medicine–and to be shared with others–was an insult to Creator. This realization became the beginning of my first album, which I am in the process of releasing in a few months.

About My Music

When I began getting back into the "swing" of things (musical pun intended), I realized the only way I could get the music off the score paper and into the studio was to record it myself. With no 17-piece Jazz Ensembles at my disposal, let alone a 70-piece Studio Orchestra (my favorite groups to write for), I decided to create virtual ensembles to perform my music by using what I call Virtual Orchestration, i.e., recording midi tracks using VST's (recorded, sampled instrumentation such as contained in the Miroslav Philharmonik 2 and JABB3 libraries). I then custom built an extremely fast and powerful PC to handle the load, and then set out recording the instrument tracks–one player at a time for my first 7 compositions and one arrangement (Chick Corea's "Tones for Joan's Bones"). You can probably imagine how long that process took to record eight pieces, including a sixteen and a half minute long concerto for 70-piece orchestra.

Some of the tracks on this upcoming album do have live musicians (myself on piano, bass, and percussion, John Pierce on guitar, Rhonda L Thomas on vocals), but all other instrumentation is being recorded via midi keyboard. Unfortunately, at least at this point in my musical journey, I can only get just so much "human feeling" out of those virtual players. The recorded instruments sound real because they ARE real–but the expressiveness of the performers is lacking much of the time. For this reason, I jokingly refer to them as the "Gibbs Street Non-Carbon-Based All Droid Orchestra." Hopefully, the feeling still comes through my writing. At least now there is a chance people finally can hear my music..

You can check out a sample from each of the 8 pieces on my upcoming album, "What Was Can Still Be," via the Music page link in the menu above. Hopefully, you will want to hear the whole album when it comes out on all major streaming and digital download services. Enjoy!

My Musical Influences

Rayburn Wright, Manny Albam (teachers, mentors, and friends from the Eastman School of Music)
Henry Mancini, John Williams, John Barry, Jerry Goldsmith (composers of film music)
Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, James Williams, Chuck Mangione (composers and/or keyboardists)
Mark Blumberg (my "older brother" who unknowingly got me first interested in writing music while I was in high school)

 

Copyright © 2022 Tony SingingEagle. All rights reserved.

About Tony SingingEagle

As a composer, my strongest desire is for people to hear my music. For only when it is heard for the first time, does it begin to breathe and become alive. But I also recognize the need to say a little bit about myself. So just who is Tony SingingEagle?

At the time of writing these words, I have walked this earth for 70 winters. I count winters, as my Native ancestors did (not years). My grandfather was full blood Oglala Lakota, born around 1900 near Pine Ridge, South Dakota. My halfbreed father did not know much of the ways of our people, but he made sure I knew where I came from. However, it was not until my 33rd winter that I began to fully understand–and embrace–the fact that I was Native. In 1996, I made a personal commitment to learn (and live) the ways of my people, particularly the Lakota spirituality, culture and language. My name in Lakota is Waŋblí Wálowaŋ (SingingEagle) and references the story of a golden eagle who watched over a Lakota camp and cried out when danger was near, in order to protect the people. It was gifted me in a sacred naming ceremony by a Quahadi Comanche elder/medicine man in 1997.

I share all of this because it is who I am. However, what I do–at least, as a musician–is quite different. You see, the music this Lakota boy grew up listening to in 1950's and 60's Memphis, TN was Jazz–not Rock & Roll, not Country & Western, not Pop–but Big Band Jazz. Both of my parents were professional musicians in that style, so naturally, I became interested in learning it. So much so, I wound up getting a Bachelor of Music (in Composition) from Memphis State University while simultaneously attending the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY during the summers. It was there that I studied studio arranging and film scoring under Rayburn Wright and Manny Albam; it was there that I really learned to write music. Mind you, I was never as successful or as well known as those I went to school with (and later worked with). However, I did manage to get quite a few writing gigs, which helped me hone my craft.

As I mentioned earlier, things changed in 1996. I was not concentrating so much on what I did, but rather on who I was. Jazz (and most other non-Native music) took a back seat and eventually ended up on the shelf. I became heavily influenced by Native flute, Powwow and hand-drum music; after picking up the Native flute for the first time, I fell in love with my people's music. Then, in September of 2020, things came full circle: I knew it was time to allow both sides to come together and co-exist, because it was time I stopped being fragmented. My musical talent, abilities, and skills were a gift from Wakȟáŋ Tȟáŋka, the Great Spirit. To not use them as my own personal medicine–and to be shared with others–was an insult to Creator. This realization became the beginning of my first album, which I am in the process of releasing in a few months.

About My Music

When I began getting back into the "swing" of things (musical pun intended), I realized the only way I could get the music off the score paper and into the studio was to record it myself. With no 17-piece Jazz Ensembles at my disposal, let alone a 70-piece Studio Orchestra (my favorite groups to write for), I decided to create virtual ensembles to perform my music by using what I call Virtual Orchestration, i.e., recording midi tracks using VST's (recorded, sampled instrumentation such as contained in the Miroslav Philharmonik 2 and JABB3 libraries). I then custom built an extremely fast and powerful PC to handle the load, and then set out recording the instrument tracks–one player at a time for my first 7 compositions and one arrangement (Chick Corea's "Tones for Joan's Bones"). You can probably imagine how long that process took to record eight pieces, including a sixteen and a half minute long concerto for 70-piece orchestra.

Some of the tracks on this upcoming album do have live musicians (myself on piano, bass, and percussion, John Pierce on guitar, Rhonda L Thomas on vocals), but all other instrumentation is being recorded via midi keyboard. Unfortunately, at least at this point in my musical journey, I can only get just so much "human feeling" out of those virtual players. The recorded instruments sound real because they ARE real–but the expressiveness of the performers is lacking much of the time. For this reason, I jokingly refer to them as the "Gibbs Street Non-Carbon-Based All Droid Orchestra." Hopefully, the feeling still comes through my writing. At least now there is a chance people finally can hear my music.

You can check out a sample from each of the 8 pieces on my upcoming album, "What Was Can Still Be," via the Music page link in the menu above. Hopefully, you will want to hear the whole album when it comes out on all major streaming and digital download services. Enjoy!

My Musical Influences

Rayburn Wright, Manny Albam (teachers, mentors, and friends from the Eastman School of Music)
Henry Mancini, John Williams, John Barry, Jerry Goldsmith (composers of film music)
Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, James Williams, Chuck Mangione (composers and/or keyboardists)
Mark Blumberg (my "older brother" who unknowingly got me first interested in writing music while I was in high school)

 

Copyright © 2022 Tony SingingEagle. All rights reserved.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About Tony SingingEagle

As a composer, my strongest desire is for people to hear my music. For only when it is heard for the first time, does it begin to breathe and become alive. But I also recognize the need to say a little bit about myself. So just who is Tony SingingEagle?

At the time of writing these words, I have walked this earth for 70 winters. I count winters, as my Native ancestors did (not years). My grandfather was full blood Oglala Lakota, born around 1900 near Pine Ridge, South Dakota. My halfbreed father did not know much of the ways of our people, but he made sure I knew where I came from. However, it was not until my 33rd winter that I began to fully understand–and embrace–the fact that I was Native. In 1996, I made a personal commitment to learn (and live) the ways of my people, particularly the Lakota spirituality, culture and language. My name in Lakota is Waŋblí Wálowaŋ (SingingEagle) and references the story of a golden eagle who watched over a Lakota camp and cried out when danger was near, in order to protect the people. It was gifted me in a sacred naming ceremony by a Quahadi Comanche elder/medicine man in 1997.

I share all of this because it is who I am. However, what I do–at least, as a musician–is quite different. You see, the music this Lakota boy grew up listening to in 1950's and 60's Memphis, TN was Jazz–not Rock & Roll, not Country & Western, not Pop–but Big Band Jazz. Both of my parents were professional musicians in that style, so naturally, I became interested in learning it. So much so, I wound up getting a Bachelor of Music (in Composition) from Memphis State University while simultaneously attending the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY during the summers. It was there that I studied studio arranging and film scoring under Rayburn Wright and Manny Albam; it was there that I really learned to write music. Mind you, I was never as successful or as well known as those I went to school with (and later worked with). However, I did manage to get quite a few writing gigs, which helped me hone my craft.

As I mentioned earlier, things changed in 1996. I was not concentrating so much on what I did, but rather on who I was. Jazz (and most other non-Native music) took a back seat and eventually ended up on the shelf. I became heavily influenced by Native flute, Powwow and hand-drum music; after picking up the Native flute for the first time, I fell in love with my people's music. Then, in September of 2020, things came full circle: I knew it was time to allow both sides to come together and co-exist, because it was time I stopped being fragmented. My musical talent, abilities, and skills were a gift from Wakȟáŋ Tȟáŋka, the Great Spirit. To not use them as my own personal medicine–and to be shared with others–was an insult to Creator. This realization became the beginning of my first album, which I am in the process of releasing in a few months.

About My Music

When I began getting back into the "swing" of things (musical pun intended), I realized the only way I could get the music off the score paper and into the studio was to record it myself. With no 17-piece Jazz Ensembles at my disposal, let alone a 70-piece Studio Orchestra (my favorite groups to write for), I decided to create virtual ensembles to perform my music by using what I call Virtual Orchestration, i.e., recording midi tracks using VST's (recorded, sampled instrumentation such as contained in the Miroslav Philharmonik 2 and JABB3 libraries). I then custom built an extremely fast and powerful PC to handle the load, and then set out recording the instrument tracks–one player at a time for my first 7 compositions and one arrangement (Chick Corea's "Tones for Joan's Bones"). You can probably imagine how long that process took to record eight pieces, including a sixteen and a half minute long concerto for 70-piece orchestra.

Some of the tracks on this upcoming album do have live musicians (myself on piano, bass, and percussion, John Pierce on guitar, Rhonda L Thomas on vocals), but all other instrumentation is being recorded via midi keyboard. Unfortunately, at least at this point in my musical journey, I can only get just so much "human feeling" out of those virtual players. The recorded instruments sound real because they ARE real–but the expressiveness of the performers is lacking much of the time. For this reason, I jokingly refer to them as the "Gibbs Street Non-Carbon-Based All Droid Orchestra." Hopefully, the feeling still comes through my writing. At least now there is a chance people finally can hear my music.

You can check out a sample from each of the 8 pieces on my upcoming album, "What Was Can Still Be," via the Hear My Music page link in the menu above. Hopefully, you will want to hear the whole album when it comes out on all major streaming and digital download services. Enjoy!

My Musical Influences

Rayburn Wright, Manny Albam (teachers, mentors, and friends from the Eastman School of Music)
Henry Mancini, John Williams, John Barry, Jerry Goldsmith (composers of film music)
Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, James Williams, Chuck Mangione (composers and/or keyboardists)
Mark Blumberg (my "older brother" who unknowingly got me first interested in writing music while I was in high school)

Copyright © 2022 Tony SingingEagle. All rights reserved.