Daniel Adams, Composer


Last updated 06/16/2016


Three compositions by Daniel Adams received their world premieres during the first half of 2016:

Vertices for clarinet ensemble (with saxophone and bassoon) received its premiere on January 10 as the featured commissioned work on the Effortless Clarinet/Saxophone Ensemble Recital hosted by Richard Nunemaker Studios at the University of St. Thomas Cullen Hall. Reynaldo Ochoa conducted the performance.

Refractive Variants for alto flute and guitar received its premiere performance on the March 13 concert of the Guitar and its Friends Music Festival at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio. Refractive Variants was performed by the EOS DUO (Kimberlee Goodman, flute and Karl Wohlwend, guitar) for whom it was composed. Adams gave a brief lecture about the piece to the Otterbein composition students immediately prior to the concert.

Tim Justus performed the premiere of Coalescence Two for trumpet solo on the March 17 concert of the College Music Society South Central Chapter Conference held at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas. Gordon Hicken performed Adams’s Pentagonal Waves for timpani solo on the March 18 concert of the conference.

Two other performances of Adams’s music took place during the first half of 2016.

Cryptic Antiphon for trombone choir and two percussionists was performed r at the Society of Composers, Inc. Region III conference at Marshall University in Huntington West Virginia on February 25. Dr. Michael Stroeher conducted the performance.

Recombinant for thirteen percussionists was performed at the University of South Florida (Tampa) New Music Festival on March 5 by the USF Percussion Ensemble under the direction of Robert McCormick. Adams gave a presentation entitled  The Hamiruge Ion Project and the Origin of Recombinant  as part of the festival on March 4.

Adams’s composition Reflecting Pool for clarinet and bass clarinet was released by Alea Publishing in April.

Adams delivered presentation entitled “Motherless Child-From Negro Spiritual to Anthem of a New Generation” on April 28th. as part of the College of Liberal Arts and Behavioral Sciences program “From the Middle Passage to Black Lives Matter” at Texas Southern University. He also served as facilitator for a “Big Ideas at a Fast Tempo” session on June 3 as part of the College Music Society21st. Century Music School Design Summit held at the University of South Carolina (Columbia, SC).
Fall 2015

Daniel Adams received world premieres of two pieces during the fall of 2015. On October 10 Oboist Ian Davidson presented the premiere performance of Adams’s Congruent Verses for English Horn solo on a concert presented at Texas State University (San Marcos) as part of the joint meeting of the Texas Chapter of the National Association of Composers, USA and the Southwest Chapter of the American Musicological Society.

Clarinetists LeTriel White and Richard Nunemaker presented three Houston performances of Reflecting Pool, a clarinet/bass clarinet duet by Daniel Adams, which he composed especially for the two performers. The pre-premiere performance took place on November 10 recital sponsored by the Tuesday Morning Music Club at Emerson Unitarian Church. The official world premiere was performed on a clarinet concert at Rhinehart Music Auditorium (Texas Southern University) on November 15, followed on the Fall Concert presented by the Houston Composers Salon in Cullen Recital Hall on the campus of the University of St. Thomas.

Two other works received multiple performances during the fall include Double Helix for two pianos which was included three recitals presented as part of Khasma Piano Duo (Ashlee Mack and Katherine Palumbo, pianists) fall tour recital of Contemporary Works for Two Pianos at Bucknell University (Lewisburg, PA) on August 30, at Illinois College (Jacksonville, IL) on October 17, and at Knox College (Galesburg, Illinois) on October 18.

Recombinant, for 13 percussionists, was performed on two Fall Percussion Ensemble concerts, first by the University of South Florida Percussion Ensemble (Tampa, FL) November 1 under the direction of Robert McCormick and then by the University of Texas at Arlington on November 9, conducted by Michael Varner.

Adams’s Concerto for Marimba and Percussion Ensemble was recently released by Keyboard Percussion Publications.


Flautist Kimberlee Goodman performed Adams’s Serpentine Glow for bass flute solo at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland on June 22, as part of the Performance of New Music by CMS Composers concert held in conjunction with the CMS International Conference.

Daniel Adams presented a paper entitled “Provincial begets Cosmopolitan: The Kommunala Musikskolan and the Swedish Pop Music Explosion” on June 18 at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm Sweden as part of the College Music Society (CMS) International Conference.

Winter and Spring 2015

Adams presented a paper entitled “Ritual, Chaos, and Proportion in Rolf Wallin’s Stonewave for Percussion Ensemble” on March 14at the South Central Chapter College Music Society Conference, held at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma.

Two of Adams’s compositions received world premiers in February and March, The premiere of Interior Junctions, for viola and cello was performed by Yan Mao, viola and Richard Thomas, cello February 20 atthe Mississippi University for Women. Columbus, Mississippi The concert, part of the College Music Society Southern Chapter Conference. Dr. Joseph Moore III, the Director of Percussion Studies at the University of Texas, Brownsville (UTB) performed the premier of Pentagonal Waves for timpani solo (five drums) as part of his Faculty Recital of on March 5 in the Texas Southmost College Arts Center. Prior to the concert, Adams gave a lecture/presentation to the UTB Percussion Club.

Daniel Adams performed the Percussion II part of the Bartok Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion on April 19 as part of the Texas Southern University Department of Music Faculty Recital.

Adams’s Dissolve was performed by the University of Texas Brownsville Percussion Ensemble on April 13 at the Texas Southmost College Arts Center in Brownsville, Texas.

Of a Just Content has been released on a CD by percussionist Lee Hinkle entitled Theatrical Music for Solo Percussion. Of a Just Content was commissioned and premiered in 2010 by Lee Hinkle who also acts, sings and recites spoken text. The spoken and sung texts for Of a Just Content are based on excerpts of Thoreau s Flute, a poem written in memory of Henry David Thoreau by Louisa May Alcott and published in Atlantic magazine during the summer of 1863 and a notable quote from Thoreau’s Walden, published in 1854. The CD is available through Albany Records.

Camaraderie for solo timpanist and percussion ensemble was released by Keyboard Percussion Publications, a division of Marimba Productions, Inc.


Concerto for Euphonium and Percussion Quintet has been released on a CD entitled Praxis, featuring works for percussion solo and ensemble performed by Brian Meixner, euphonium Nathan Daughtrey andGate City Percussion, conducted by Stephen Barr. T Praxis is available through Potenza Music.

Adams is a co-author of the Miami entry appearing in the Grove Dictionary of American Music , second edition and on Grove Music Online. He is also the author of an article entitled SCI Members Works Featured at the 41st Annual Convention of the National Flute Association published in the September-October 2013 edition of the Society of Composers, Inc. Newsletter.

Summer and Spring 2013

Daniel Adams is the author of two entries published in the Oxford University Press Encyclopedia of African-American History 1896 to the Present. The titles of the articles are Composers and Miami.

The entry on composers begins with the early contributions of Harry T. Burleigh and other early twentieth century African-American composers who wrote music based on Negro spirituals. The article traces the development of African-American music through the twentieth century and addresses the unique challenges and obstacles that Black composers faced in presenting their music to the general public. The contributions of William Grant Still, Scott Joplin, Ulysses Kay, Hale Smith, and others are discussed and a section on African-American women composers includes mention of Florence Price and Margaret Bonds. The article concludes by acknowledging the diverse influences on modern African-American classical music.

The entry on Miami discusses the social, political and cultural aspects of life in the city since its incorporation in 1896. There is discussion of educational desegregation, Jim Crow laws in Miami Beach, and the historic entertainment venues in Miami's "Colored Town" where musicians such as Billie Holiday, Duke Ellington, and Josephine Baker performed. The tense relations between law enforcement and Miami's black community is discussed with a particular emphasis on the 1980 riots that followed the acquittal of four police officers accused of beating black motorcyclist Arthur McDuffie to death. The article concludes with a discussion of African-Americans' co-existence with Miami's diverse immigrant population.

The Solo Snare Drum: A Critical Analysis of Contemporary Compositional Techniques, originally published by HoneyRock, has been republished by Daniel Adams,the author. It is available from Steve Weiss Music.

The library of the Percussive Arts Society,located in Indianapolis, Indiana, has established the Daniel Adams Collection. The collection is an archive consisting of the composer's sketches, notes, and several original manuscripts. Additional information is available at the PAS website Percussive Arts Society


Published Articles