W. A. Mathieu

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William Allaudin Mathieu (born 1937) is a composer, pianist, choir director, music teacher, and author. He began recording his music and compositions in the 1970s on his record label, Cold Mountain Music. Mathieu has composed and recorded a large variety of solo piano works, chamber pieces, choral music, and song cycles, and he has written four books on music, music theory, and how to live a musical life.

Career[edit]

Allaudin was a disciple of North Indian vocalist Pandit Pran Nath for 25 years. He studied with William Russo and Easley Blackwood, and collaborated with Nubian master musician Hamza El Din.

In the 1960s (as Bill Mathieu), he spent several years as an arranger and composer for Stan Kenton and Duke Ellington orchestras. Kenton's album Standards In Silhouette consists entirely of Mathieu's arrangements and revealed the young Mathieu (then 22 years of age) to be an incredibly adept manipulator of compositional materials.

He was one of the founders and the musical director for The Second City in Chicago,[1] the first ongoing improvisational theater troupe in the United States, and was later the musical director for The Committee, an improv theater in San Francisco that was an offshoot of The Second City. In the 1970s, he was on the faculties of San Francisco Conservatory of Music and Mills College. In 1969, Allaudin founded the Sufi Choir in San Francisco among followers of Samuel L. Lewis, and he directed the choir until 1982.

Allaudin now devotes himself to practice, performance, recording, composition, teaching, and writing from his home near Sebastopol, California.

Books[edit]

Harmonic Experience (561 pages) offers a view of music theory that harmonizes Western and Eastern perspectives. Understanding can be actively enhanced by utilizing its autodidactic ear-training and sight-singing exercises, especially using singing sargam syllables over a drone such as a tamboura or possibly a Western fifth played in just intonation.

An audio edition of The Listening Book was issued in 1991 by Shambhala Lion Editions. That audio material was remastered and issued along with new audio material read from The Musical Life in 2008 as a 2-CD set (W. A. Mathieu reads from The Listening Book and The Musical Life) on the Manifest Spirit Records label.

Discography[edit]

Solo Piano[edit]

  • Songs of Samsara (Cold Mountain Music, 2009)
  • Three Compositions for Piano (Cold Mountain Music, 2002)
  • Narratives (Cold Mountain Music, 2002)
  • Available Light (Windham HIll, 1987)
  • Listening to Evening (Sona Gaia, 1985)

Multitrack Compositions[edit]

  • Streaming Wisdom/In the Wind (Cold Mountain Music, compilation; remastered 2004)
  • Second Nature (Cold Mountain Music, 1983; remastered 2004)
  • In the WInd (Cold Mountain Music, 1983)
  • Streaming Wisdom (Cold Mountain Music, 1981)

Song Cycles, Instrumental Compositions, and Improvisations[edit]

  • First String Quartet, with The Galax Quartet (Cold Mountain Music, 2016)
  • Magic Clavier Book I – Twelve Etudes in Extended Modality (Noam Lemish, piano) and Seven Solo and Duo Improvisations (Noam Lemish and W. A. Mathieu, piano) (Cold Mountain Music, 2016)
  • 5:4 – Compositions for Piano, ("The Poet Variations" on a theme by Robert Schumann, Marilyn Morales, piano solo; "Five Poems / Four Hands," Kirk Whipple & Marilyn Morales, piano duo; "Four Improvisations / Twenty Fingers," W. A. Mathieu & Kirk Whipple, piano duo) (Cold Mountain Music, 2015)
  • Café Hafiz – Twenty-One Songs for Your Serious Entertainment, with Devi Mathieu, soprano (Cold Mountain Music, 2014)
  • Antiphons Across Time / Flower of the Maiden – The Music of Hildegard von Bingen, with Trio Ephemeros (Devi Mathieu, W. A. Mathieu, Shira Kammen) (Cold Mountain Music, 2013)
  • The Indian Parrot (Mutable Music, 2006)
  • Rumi and Strings (Cold Mountain Music, 2005)
  • Say I Am You - Four Song Cycles from the Poetry of Jelaluddin Rumi (Cold Mountain Music, 2003)

Duets and Trios[edit]

Ensemble Improvisation[edit]

Big Band Jazz (arrangements)[edit]

Audio Books[edit]

The Sufi Choir (director and primary composer)[edit]

  • Remembrance (Cold Mountain Music, 1983; remastered, 2008; reissued on CD, 2011)
  • The Sufi Choir sings Robert Bly's versions of Kabir (Cold Mountain Music, 1980; remastered, 2008; reissued on CD, 2011)
  • Stone in the Sky (Cold Mountain Music, 1976; remastered, 2008; reissued on CD, 2011)
  • The Sufi Dance & Song Record (Cold Mountain Music, 1975; remastered, 2008; reissued on CD, 2011)
  • Cryin’ for Joy (Cold Mountain Music, 1974; remastered, 2008; reissued on CD, 2011)
  • The Sufi Choir aka The Blue Album (Cold Mountain Music, 1973; remastered, 2008; reissued on CD, 2011)

Collaborative recordings[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Coda Magazine: Issue 319–330

External links[edit]