Described as "A major talent and a deep thinker with a great ear" by the American Composers Orchestra and "an engaging, gifted composer writing smart, compelling and fascinating music with a bluesy edge and infectious punch" by Gramophone Magazine, Lansing McLoskey came to the world of composition via a somewhat unorthodox route. The proverbial "Three B's" for him were not Bach, Beethoven and Brahms, but rather The Beatles, Bauhaus and Black Flag.
His first experiences in composition were not exercises in counterpoint, but rather as the guitarist and songwriter for punk rock bands in the San Francisco Bay Area in the early 1980's. It was actually through these years in the visceral world of punk that he first developed a love for classical music (but that's another story).
McLoskey’s music has been performed across the U.S. and in twelve other countries on six continents, and has received more than two dozen national and international awards. In 2009 he became the first composer in the 43 year history of the ISU Contemporary Music Festival to win both the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra Composition Competition and the “Music Now” Competition, both blind-juried.
Other awards include the 2009 newEar Composition Competition, the 2009 American Composers Forum-LA National Composition Competition, the Omaha Symphony International New Music Competition, the Kenneth Davenport National Competition for Orchestral Works, Charles Ives Center Orchestral Composition Competition, the Paris New Music Review International Composition Competition, the Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts & Letters, and an Astral Career Grant from The National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts.
He has received dozens of commissions and grants, including from Meet The Composer, the Fromm Foundation, the Pew Charitable Trust, the N.E.A., the Barlow Endowment, ASCAP, and Music At The Anthology, and has written for such renowned ensembles as The Hilliard Ensemble, Speculum Musicæ, and Dinosaur Annex Ensemble. He has been a Guest Composer at the Tanglewood Institute and the Aspen Music Festival, where his music was performed and he gave masterclasses. Recent performances include concerts in Rome, León (Mexico), and Lima (Peru), and premieres in Melbourne, New York, Chicago, Boston, and Miami.
McLoskey completed his Ph.D. at Harvard, with additional studies at USC and The Royal Danish Academy of Music.
He was Co-President of Composers in Red Sneakers from 2006-09, and served on the Board of Advisors of the Barlow Endowment for Music Composition from 2004-09. Currently he is on the faculty of the University of Miami Frost School of Music. McLoskey’s music is released on Albany, Wergo Schallplatten, Capstone, Tantara, and Beauport Classics. A monograph CD of his music - Sixth Species - was released to critical praise in 2008.