Much of my career has been spent as a professor of music theory at the Crane School of Music, but I approach my work from many different angles: OER author, faculty support specialist, instructional designer, and coding enthusiast. Scroll on to see what I've been up to...


Online Faculty Fellow

In 2020, just before the COVID-19 pandemic hit North America, I was selected to serve as one of the founding members of the Online Faculty Fellows program at SUNY Potsdam. This initiative was established to support faculty with training and professional development in distance learning as well as provide peer review of online courses using the Open SUNY Course Quality Review (OSCQR) rubric. In addition to peer mentoring and acting as a liaising between teaching faculty and support staff during and after the shift to remote teaching, I co-designed and facilitated a faculty creditialing course in online pedagogy as well as numerous other professional development workshops.

Associate Professor of Music Theory

I joined the faculty of the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam in 2011, serving first as assistant professor of music theory and then as associate professor beginning in 2017. My primary duties in this role were to teach core undergraduate courses in music theory and aural skills as well as upper-division analysis seminars. Beyond this, however, I have taken on many other roles on campus. I've served on committees charged with writing open-access and intellectual property policies, mentored new additions to the faculty, and coordinated student assessment tracking.

Big Projects

Fundamentals, Function, and Form: Theory and Analysis of Tonal Western Art Music

Building on work started at the UC Santa Barbara Music Department, I published a peer-reviewed OER textbook with Milne Open Textbooks (formerly SUNY Open Textbooks) in 2020. The text provides readers with a comprehensive study of the theory and analysis of tonal Western art music. Designed with both the The book begins by building a strong foundation in the understanding of rhythm, meter, and pitch as well as the notational conventions associated with each. From there, it guides the reader through an exploration of polyphony—the simultaneous sounding of multiple independent melodies—and an increasingly rich array of different sonorites that grow out of this practice. The book culminates with a discussion of musical form, engaging with artistic works in their entirety by considering the interaction of harmonic and thematic elements, but also such other musical dimensions as rhythm, meter, texture, and expression.

The text with over eight hundred musical examples which, in the online version of the text, include embedded audio files for immediate aural reinforcement of theoretical concepts. Most of these examples are drawn from the literature, including nearly 200 excerpts by women and composers from other historically marginalized groups. Readers are also given the opportunity to check their understanding of the text with interactive exercises at every step of the way. Fundamentals, Function, and Form was written with the undergraduate music student in mind, but self-guided readers would also be rewarded with a deep understanding of this musical tradition.

In 2021, I led a small team of authors in writing an accompanying workbook amounting to over 600 pages of drills, exercises, and composition activities. Like the texbook, this resource includes hundreds of examples drawn from historical compositions (though in this case, almost all were written by composers from underrepresented groups). Slated for release in summer 2022, the two books will provide an attractive alternative to packages currently offered by for-profit textbook publishers. We hope it will encourage more instructors to make the jump to OER.

The Trained Ear

The Trained Ear is an OER resource for music students, music teachers, and anyone else looking to develop their aural musicianship skills. In many musical traditions, strengthening the connection between sound and visual notation is a fundamental aspect of becoming a better listener, singer, and instrumentalist. And while this site was developed primarily with the student of Western art music in mind, it is hoped that musicians from a wide variety of other traditions will also find it useful.

The heart of this website is a collection of brief musical passages including rhythms, melodies, and chord progressions. Each of these has been prepared for use as a dictation exercise and includes audio recordings, information about how the passage begins (clef, time signature, starting, note, etc.), and optional hints with extra information. With over 5,000 exercises, the collection is quite large. To help with navigation—and to help students and teachers match exercise difficulty to skill level—the collection is easily filtered according to a variety of different categories.





Little Projects

pc Flash Cards

A simple JavaScript flash-card tool for students learning to convert staff notation into pitch-class numbers. Users are shown a note on a treble or bass staff and are asked to identify it by pitch-class number.

pc Set-Class Calculator

Another simple JavaScript tool for set-class analysis. Users enter pitch-class number and are shown the prime form, normal order, interval-class vector, and other information about the set.

matrix generator

A JavaScript tool for generating a 12-tone matrix.

Sibelius Plug-In

photoblog / soundblog / researchblog

Documenting the things I see and hear and do.

Personal Pages

I enjoy traveling whenever possible and like to pretend I'm a photographer when I do! This page has links to a number of trip-logs and other goodies.