The Short Story:
Adam Hill is a composer and bassist originally from Cleveland, Ohio now living in a decommissioned ranger station on the shores of Harrison Lake, British Columbia. A recipient of awards and grants from the Canada Council for the Arts, Prairie Wind and Silver Sage/Grasslands National Park, the Foundation for Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings, SCI/ASCAP, the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts, and the Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts, he holds degrees from the University of British Columbia, Western Washington University and Whitman College and has taught at Western Washington University and Quest University.
The Long Story:
Adam Hill is a musician who dislikes boundaries, qualifiers, limitations, or absolutes. He has performed at various festivals, been commissioned by symphony orchestras, contributed music to film soundtracks, produced and engineered recording projects, and educated both children and adults.
Adam has recieved grants and awards from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Foundation for Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings, Prairie Wind and Silver Sage/Grasslands National Park, SCI/ASCAP, the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation of New Mexico, and the Wildacres Retreat. Additionally, he has been commissioned by the Whatcom Symphony Orchestra, the Singers Club of Cleveland, the Central Oregon Symphony, the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts, Erato Ensemble, the University of British Columbia, and the Vancouver Chinese Music Ensemble. He has released four albums of folk and ‘new-timey’ music that have received airplay and accolades across the world, and he has performed as a bassist in many venues, including the Great American Music Hall, the Experience Music Project, the Rivercity Bluegrass Festival, the South by Southwest Music Festival, and the San Luis Obispo Mozart Festival. As an educator, he has served on the faculties of Western Washington University, the Cascade School of Music, and the Sarah McLachlan School of Music.
Born and raised in northern Ohio, Adam received his earliest musical training on the recorder, which was followed by a spell in the trumpet section of his middle school band. He was fortunate enough to study with the venerable Harry Herforth, who encouraged him not only to learn music, but to feel a sensation within it. He has never stopped feeling that sensation.
Around the same time he discovered the blues, which opened a path to both jazz and bluegrass music. The chain reaction that followed led to him the guitar, the electric bass, the piano, the mandolin, and the upright bass – which he continues to be smitten with to this day.
He pursued jazz with David Glenn and Dan Schulte at Whitman College and on a whim decided to direct his studies towards composition – assuming that improvisation was simply composition in real time. Eventually he learned what was what, and he went on to seriously study music composition with John David Earnest and Tania Cronin, as well as Roger Briggs, Chuck Israels, Lesley Sommer, and Bruce Hamilton at Western Washington University, and Stephen Chatman at the University of British Columbia.
Adam refuses to refer to musical influences from genres that he used to participate in. And so, he continues to embrace his roots in classical, rock and roll, jazz, blues, and folk music, while seeking new directions through contemporary compositional techniques and technological resources. He plans to never stop feeling that sensation.
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