Greg Simon (b. 1985) is a composer and jazz trumpeter hailing from California, by way of Oregon and Colorado. Greg’s music has been called “winning, at times bombastic” (KBIA) and “an eye-opener… an angry celebration of life” (Repeat Performances). His work draws its inspiration from jazz, funk, Balinese Gamelan, abstract expressionism, Chilean folk song, and a thousand ever-changing fascinations.
Greg’s works have been performed by ensembles and performers around the country, including Alarm Will Sound, the Fifth House Ensemble, the Playground Ensemble of Denver, and the California All-State Symphonic Band. He has presented work at conferences for the American Band College, the College Band Directors’ National Association, the World Saxophone Congress, and the North American Saxophone Alliance, as well as being featured in radio and digital broadcasts from Pendulum New Music and WFMT. Greg has won the Brehm Prize in Choral Composition from the University of Michigan, the POLYPHONOS competition from the Esoterics, and was the winner of the TorQ Percussion Quartet’s first annual Composition Competition. He has also received recognition for his work from the Pacific Chorale, the Fifth House Ensemble, and CBDNA, among others. Greg was a featured composer at the 2013 Mizzou International Composers’ Festival and was the 2013-14 young composer-in-residence for the Detroit Chamber Winds and Strings. Greg’s music is published by Hal Leonard, and recorded on the Fifth House, SMS Classical, and Terpsichore Labels.
As a jazz musician, Greg has studied with Bill Lucas, Ellen Rowe, and Brad Goode. He’s performed with the Jodi-Renee Band, the Park Hill Brass, and ensembles at the University of Michigan and the University of Colorado. Greg arranged music and performed for Bill Lucas’s recent album, “On the Fringe of Fire”. He is active as a proponent of new music for improvising musicians; among his credits as featured soloist are appearances in world premieres from composers Michael Theodore, Hunter Ewen, Liz Comninellis, and Kari Kraakevik.
Greg is a fluent performer in the Balinese gamelan tradition, having spent five years with Denver’s Gamelan Tunas Mekar. He is also an avid music writer, with pieces published in New Music Box and the Oxford University Press.
Greg has studied composition with Evan Chambers, Michael Daugherty, Kristin Kuster, Carter Pann, Daniel Kellogg, and Robert Hutchinson. He holds a B.A. from the University of Puget Sound and an M.M. from the University of Colorado at Boulder, and is currently pursuing a doctorate at the University of Michigan. Before coming to Michigan, Greg served on the faculty at the Metropolitan State University of Denver. In the summer of 2015 he will join the composition faculty at the Brevard Music Center. He currently lives outside Ann Arbor, MI with his wife, his stepson, and his Boston terrier. When he’s not composing, Greg enjoys hockey, microbrews and short stories.