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Matthew Welch

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The music of Matthew Tobin Welch (b.1976), Composer/Multi-instrumentalist, stems from a multi-faceted foundation. As a virtuoso of the Highland Bagpipe, he studied traditional music with Gold Medalist masters such as Colin MacLellan, Jack Lee, Angus MacLellan and Andrew Wright. Matthew also was a member of the four - time World Champion Simon Fraser University Pipe Band, winning with them in 1999 and 2001.

Regarded as "a composer possessed of both rich imagination and the skill to bring his fancies to life" by Time Out New York, composer and bagpipe virtuoso Matthew Welch (b.1976) holds two degrees in Music Composition, a BFA from Simon Fraser University (1999), and an MA from Wesleyan University (2001), having studied with noted composers such as Barry Truax, Rodney Sharman, Alvin Lucier and Anthony Braxton. After locating to New York City in 2001, he has worked with a host of other artists such as John Zorn, Julia Wolfe, Zeena Parkins, and Ikue Mori. The eclectic breadth of his interests in Scottish bagpipe music, Balinese gamelan, minimalism, improvisation and rock converge in compositional amalgams ranging from traditional-like bagpipe tunes to electronic pieces, improvisation strategies and fully notated works for solo instruments, chamber ensembles, orchestra and non-western instruments. Since 2002, Mr. Welch has been running and composing for his own eclectic ensemble, Blarvuster, whose repertoire the New York Times has claimed as "border-busting music; original and catchy." Mr. Welch has recorded for the Tzadik, Mode, Cantaloupe, Leo, Porter, Muud, Avian, Newsonic and Parallactic record labels.


Sound Cloud page

Compositions by Matthew Welch

highland bagpipe soloist, percussion(6), cl, vln, vcl, pf
a double concerto for bagpipes, piano, and 8 percussionists
highland bagpipes solo; orchestra
variable instruments, or: flute, saxophone, violin, piano/accordion, percussion, and vocalist


Symphony of Drones No. 1 with the Wet Ink Ensemble, 2010
Soprano, Baritone, flute, clarinet, electric guitar, vibrophone (w/motor), piano


excerpt: Jeffrey Gavett, baritone; Anne Rhodes, soprano;