Rusty Banks is a composer/guitarist/teacher originally from Jasper, AL, now living in Pennsylvania.

His compositions benefit from themes relating to regions or environments. For example, his composition commissioned by the Alabama Music Teacher Association's 2004 convention featured audio samples from the Cahaba River, Alabama's last free-flowing river. Another work, "Long Pine Creek: New Year's Day," uses sounds from Long Pine Creek in Nebraska. His compositions range from traditional concert music to sonic installations where boom boxes are scattered throughout a room. His music is described as thoroughly modern, yet accessible, a description he shudders at, but reluctantly accepts. His compositions may be heard on Living Artist Recordings, as well as his web site,

Thursday, February 12, 2009
A Gig's a Gig, Life Is Art, Art Is Life...

Occasionally, Sequenza21 contributors have a discussion about what constitutes a "professional" composer. I always chuckle. Saying you are a "composer" is like a janitor calling himself a "mopper":

"My mopping talents aren't as appreciated as they should be, so I sweep and deodorize on the side."

This week I'll research extended tuba techniques for a commission I'm
working on, discuss libretti with a couple of sopranos, coordinate
outreach for a residency I'm doing in Wyoming, remix one of my
installation works for stereo/live performance, jury some pop music
recordings, teach a few guitar lessons, gather programs for royalties,
and try to hustle even more work of this nature. None of these distract from the others.

They all feed each other.

Most composers aren't composers. They're…


Or am I the only one?