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Episode 132 - William Owens

Everything Band Podcast

Release Date: 10/14/2019

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William Owens is a composer and music educator with over 200 works for band and 30 years of teaching experience.

Topics:

  • Willie’s background growing up in Gary, Indiana and the high school band teacher who changed his life.
  • The story of how Willie ended up moving from Chicago to Brownsville, Texas and how that ended up shaping his entire career.
  • How Willie got his start as a composer through arranging marching band music for a friend and how that grew into his terrific success as a composer.
  • Willie’s association with TRN Music and the difficult decision to move over to FJH Music as his primary publisher.
  • His process and procedure for writing a piece of music and what to expect if you wanted to commission Willie to write a piece of music for your band.
  • Some wonderful advice for young composers or others who might want to write music for band.

Links:

Biography:

William Owens (b. 1963) is a native of Gary, Indiana.  He is a seasoned music educator and very active as a composer, clinician and conductor throughout the United States and Canada.  His compositional style for young ensembles displays a keen, practical approach which has firmly established him as a leader in the field.

Since 1993, Mr. Owens has written over 200 commissioned and published works for concert band, string orchestra and small ensemble.  His music is performed and appears on required music lists nationally and abroad.  Principal commissions include those from the California Band Directors Association, the Iowa Bandmasters Association, the South Plains College (TX) Department of Fine Arts, the College of Charleston (SC) and Phi Beta Mu International Bandmasters Fraternity.  Several of his works including The Blue Orchid and Maesong have been recorded and analyzed in educational text by the GIA series Teaching Music Through Performance in Band.  Other works such as Carpathia, Summit Fanfare, The Tahoka Galop and Tudor Sketches have become staples of the young band repertoire. 

William is a 1985 graduate of Chicago's VanderCook College of Music and the recipient of numerous awards and grants for composition.  In 2014, he was recognized by the Texas Bandmasters Association as the Feature Composer and named Distinguished Alumnus by his Alma Mater.  Professional memberships include the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), the Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA), the Association of Texas Small School Bands (ATSSB) and Phi Beta Mu International Bandmasters Fraternity.

In January 2014, William formally retired from duty as a band director in Texas after 30 years.  His spare time interests include sightseeing and reading, particularly motivational material and Presidential biography.  A proud Chevrolet Corvette owner/enthusiast, he holds membership with Cowtown Vettes, a non-profit service organization in the Dallas/Fort area.

William resides in Fort Worth, TX with his wife and best friend, Georgia. 

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