"...sophisticated, gripping, abstract yet engaging, sometimes hauntingly beautiful, and filled with virtuosity.
This is American music at its best - imaginative, challenging, powerful, and direct.
"
                                                         Eric Hewitt (Chair of Woodwinds at The Boston Conservatory; Director, TBC Wind Ensemble)


Lansing D. McLoskey: What We Do Is Secret (2011)
[concerto for brass quintet and wind ensemble]
Barlow Endowment commission for Triton Brass and the wind ensembles of The Boston Conservatory, MIT, and the University of Miami.
Winner, The International Music Prize for Excellence in Composition 2011.
Honorable Mention, the 2012 Red Note Festival Competition for Wind Ensemble Music.
Third Prize, The American Prize, 2013
Winner of a 2014 Global Music Award
Nominated for a 2014 Grammy for Best Contemporary Classical Composition by Albany Records.
Released on The Unheard Music: New American Music for Wind Ensemble and Brass CD, Albany Records (2013).

   I.  Strange Notes
   II.  The Unheard Music
   III. New York's Alright (If You Like Saxophones...)
   IV. Rise Above


Duration: 22 minutes
Score(pdf for perusal)

Listen(Recording with Triton Brass and The Boston Conservatory Wind Ensemble, Eric Hewitt, Director, from The Unheard Music CD, Albany Records, 2013)
Note: Volume must be set to 11 to experience it correctly!



Purchase score
 
(Contact for information about the rental of performance parts.)
QUOTES
"[McLoskey] produced what I believe to be the only truly significant and meaningful work for solo Brass Quintet and Wind Ensemble composed to date. ... What We Do Is Secret is sophisticated, gripping, abstract yet engaging, sometimes hauntingly beautiful, and filled with virtuosity.
This is American music at its best - imaginative, challenging, powerful, and direct
.
"

        Eric Hewitt (Chair of Woodwinds at The Boston Conservatory; Director, TBC Wind Ensemble, Sinfonietta, & New Music Festival)

"[What We Do Is Secret] is a very intriguing and unique work, both in terms of inspiration and execution. Thanks so much for avoiding the clichés and formulas we hear in so much band/wind ensemble writing these days....very original and highly imaginative!
― Col. Michael J. Colburn, Director, United States Marine Band

"WOWWOWWOWWOW!!!!!!!  I was paralyzed with fascination! … Amazing playing, fantastic piece.  Loved it from the first note! ...it's the most exciting work for brass I've heard in long time!""
        John Manning (founding member of Atlantic Brass Quintet, Professor of tuba at The University of Iowa, former faculty at Tanglewood)

"Amazing colors, like no wind ensemble piece I've ever heard or played, and I’ve played a TON of wind ensemble pieces. …every wind ensemble conductor in America should hear this amazing addition to the rep!"
        Jobey Wilson (tubist, Triton Brass)

"I've just listened to What We Do Is Secret -- The soundscape you have established is amazing, intriguing and fresh. Congratulations!"
        Ron Bishop (tubist in The Cleveland Orchestra for 38 years)

"[What We Do Is Secret] is a marvelous vehicle for brass quintet and a needed and wonderful addition to the wind ensemble repertoire. It represents an imaginative, fresh, and visceral approach to the combination of brass quintet and wind ensemble." 
        Frederick Harris, Jr., Director of Wind & Jazz Ensembles, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

"That was the loudest piece of classical music I've ever heard in my life!"
        anonymous audience member at the premiere performance

NOTES
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 at writing music were not exercises in counterpoint, but as the guitarist and songwriter for punk rock bands in San Francisco 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).

What We Do Is Secret draws its title from the seminal, influential 1978 album by the early punk band The Germs. Likewise, each movement is titled after the name of a song from an early Los Angeles punk band; respectively, “Strange Notes” by The Germs, “The Unheard Music” by X, “New York’s Alright (If You Like Saxophones…)” by Fear, and “Rise Above” by Black Flag. The concerto is a sort of homage to these groundbreaking and influential bands and countless others like them, who despite being lost in oblivion to the mainstream and having never achieved any semblance of commercial success, nevertheless gave voice to the frustrations of a generation and ultimately changed the face of popular music. Rising from the ashes of the decadent, self-indulgent ‘70’s, this was “alternative rock” before the term was co-opted by corporate record labels, MTV, Hot Topics and Abercrombie & Fitch.

It’s important to note, however, that the piece is in no way an attempt at a “punk concerto” and does not quote any of the punk music in a cheap, postmodern pastiche, but rather uses the song titles solely as touchstones and points of inspiration and departure.

What We Do Is Secret was commissioned for Triton Brass and the wind ensembles of Boston Conservatory, M.I.T., and the University of Miami Frost School of Music by the Barlow Endowment for Music Composition at Brigham Young University.

About:
Composer
Triton Brass
BOCO/Eric Hewitt

More from Eric Hewitt on his experience conducting the world premiere:

“This project was many years in the making, and yielded some incredible musical and educational fruit for our students, community, and audience. As I worked with the like-minded aesthetics and highest-level musical artistry of Lansing and Triton Brass, we produced what I believe to be the only truly significant and meaningful work for solo Brass Quintet and Wind Ensemble composed to date.

What We Do Is Secret is sophisticated, gripping, abstract yet engaging, sometimes hauntingly beautiful, and filled with virtuosity. This is American music at its best - imaginative, challenging, powerful, and direct. Triton Brass is simply one of the best brass quintets in America today, and performed the work at the highest level. Apart from my relationship with these colleagues as artists, I hold them in the highest possible regard as musical professionals, educators, and creative people.

For our students here at Boston Conservatory the rehearsal process and performance experience proved to be of invaluable pedagogical importance. By offering our students a chance to make music with artists of Triton Brass’s level, we instantly increased their capacity as musical artists and technicians. The live premiere performance speaks for itself.
We also had the most amazing FUN producing and performing Lansing’s unique new work – and the listener can hear that in our performance. I can’t imagine a better environment for teaching and creating important new music.”