Who plays (insert instrument here) on the album?

That would be me. I play every instrument and sing every part on the record with one exception. On "Last Man Standing" and "You Can't Take Back" there is a vocal chorus that is sung by a group of high school students from Salem HS in Salem, Indiana. They are all members of their marching band, a group I have worked with for ten years and counting. During one class period, I came in, taught them line by line, and recorded the whole thing in about... 20 minutes. It was crazy fast, but they were great sports about it and really turned something decent into something special. I'm very thankful for their help. They were all given a copy of the album for their efforts, and their names are listed on the inside of the CD.

While we're at it, I also did all the photography, graphic design, and layout for the album. Even this site! Nothing is more glamorous or rock 'n roll than HTML and Photoshop, am I right?


Did you seriously put a picture of your cat on the CD?

Yes. Yes I did. And if you know me, you are not at all surprised by this. I also put my cats on the inside of the CD wallet as well as on the center labels of the vinyl. If you were wondering, the black one is Oreck, the tiger striped one is Dyson. Since before I was born, our family has named all of our cats after vacuum cleaners. 50 years and counting!


Where can I order vinyl?

Vinyl orders will be coming soon. First edition albums will be clear vinyl, every pressing after that will be on black vinyl. Since the demand for vinyl is decidedly lower, they will be manufactured as people order them. Right now, each record looks like it will cost about $40 plus shipping. If we can get enough interest, we could make a run of 100 and sell them for half the cost, but that requires significant interest. More info will be coming as soon as we have worked out the details.


What exactly is the cover of the album supposed to be?

One cold, winter night up in Northern Michigan, the sky was slightly cloudy under an abnormally bright full moon. It was captivating. Through a long exposure picture, it almost made it look like daytime, but it still had this etherial quality to it, almost like something wasn't quite right. I loved it. It's a good thing I got the picture when I did because no less than 30 seconds later, clouds moved in and all was dark again.


What does "Burning Valhalla" mean?

Norse mythology describes Valhalla as the place warriors go in the afterlife, an unending battle and feast. For people all about conquest, an unending battle might seem like a great place to spend eternity, but what if you don't like fighting? To me, it's about dismantling a system that somebody else thinks is perfect when, for you, it's nothing of the sort. Burn it down. Make your own paradise.


How do you pronounce your last name?

Think of it like the word "temp" but with an R shoved in there. The E at the end is silent.


I think I heard your name at a marching band show...?

Yeah, that was probably me. In the "real world" I write music for band and orchestra. Most of what I do involves writing music and drill for marching bands. In the fall, I often work as a judge for competitive marching bands. I'm incredibly lucky to be able to work and write for so many amazing students. I originally got my degrees in music education, so being able to continue to "teach" and work with students let's me stay connected to that world. If you would like to see more about that part of my work, head over here...




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