Composer

Ray has composed music throughout his life. He made up his first song, with words and melody, at age 4. In middle school, he often imagined writing music for a band of his friends, and in high school he  started composing songs and small instrumental works. He wrote his first serious works as an undergraduate and was first published in FEAST, Occidental College’s annual Arts and Literary Review. 

Excerpt from Ray's "Quintet for Brass"

The mid-1980s were a big time for trumpets and fanfares in Los Angeles, because of the 1984 Olympic Games held there and the Olympic Fanfare Trumpeters, which were featured during opening and closing ceremonies. As one of these 112 trumpeters, Ray soon found himself booking corporate fanfare trumpet gigs, and it seemed natural to offer to write original fanfares for these clients.

1984 Olympic Trumpeters, Los Angeles Coliseum

In 1986, when asked to provide ten minutes of continuous trumpet fanfares for the Los Angeles appearance of the Choir of St. George’s Chapel, Windsor in their first-ever US tour, Ray offered to compose a new work for three trumpets and organ, thus saving three trumpeters from an early audience with Gabriel. FANFARE PROCESSIONAL was the result and immediately became popular in Southern California for big events, concerts, weddings, and recitals. It has been performed in many states and countries, as far away as Russia.

First page of Ray's "Fanfare Processional for the Choir of St. George's, Windsor"

With the 1990 premiere of his DOUBLE CONCERTO FOR FLUTIST, TRUMPETER, AND ORCHESTRA, Ray started Premiere Press to publish his music. His publications now number in the hundreds. He has fulfilled many commissions for orchestra, band, choir, and chamber music, but he might be best known for his brass chamber music. You can read HERE about commissioning new music.

Page from Ray's Double Concerto

Ray has received 20 ASCAP awards and is a two-time First Prize winner of the Humboldt State University Brass Chamber Music Workshop Composition Contest: LOVE LETTERS (2004) for Seven Brass and BOUQUET DE BRASS (2005) for Six Brass.

Premiere Press also publishes Ray’s book,  BRASS CHAMBER MUSIC IN LYCEUM AND CHAUTAUQUA, his COMPLETE BRASS QUINTETS, and his CD, WATERCOLOR MENAGERIE, which features 14 of his works recorded by the Premiere Brass Quintet.

Use these links to purchase Sheet Music, Recordings, and Books, or use the “Shop Premiere Press” menu.

American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP)

  • Writer Member
  • Publisher Member (Premiere Press)
  • First Prize, 2005 Humboldt State University Chamber Music Workshop Composition Contest: BOUQUET DE BRASS, brass sextet
  • First Prize, 2004 Humboldt State University Chamber Music Workshop Composition Contest: LOVE LETTERSbrass septet
  • Over 20 ASCAP awards
  • First Prize, 1983 Elinor Remick Warren Composition Contest: SPEED, for soprano, oboe, trumpet, and strings
SELECTED COMMISSIONS
  • SOPHIE’S WALTZ, commissioned by the Newton Knights Middle School Advanced Band, Richard Tyree, Director
  • REJOICE!, commissioned by the Otterbein College Band, Gary Tirey, Director
  • CALTECH MEDLEY, commissioned by the Caltech Concert Band, William Bing, Director
  • THROOP INSTITUTE MARCH, by E. C. Kammermeyer, arrangement commissioned by the Caltech Concert Band, William Bing, Director
  • EXORDIUM, commissioned by the Caltech Concert Band, William Bing, Director
  • OZARK POINT, commissioned for the Natural State Brass Band (Little Rock, AR), Russell Morris, Director
  • COME UNTO ME. SATB choir and trumpet. Commissioned by Jannette Carothers for the Glendale Presbyterian Church Cathedral Choir.
  • THE LITTLE CHILD. SATB, eight brass, percussion, organ, narrator. A Christmas cantata commissioned by Claremont Presbyterian Church and Glendale Presbyterian Church.
  • AULD LANG SYNE. SATB choir. Commissioned by The Cathedral Choir of First Congregational Church, Los Angeles.

  • RICORDI D’ITALIA, brass quintet, commissioned by Dr. Mark Lindenbaum and Margaret Jahn and John and Meg Monroe
  • SUITE ARCATA, mixed wind quintet, commissioned by Chamber Players of the Redwoods
  • FIVE SEA SHANTIES, brass quintet, commissioned by Althea King Kifer

  • ITALIAN POSTCARDS, brass septet, commissioned by the Humboldt State University Brass Chamber Music Workshop
  • THE SEVEN ANGELS, trumpet and narrator, commissioned by Glendale Presbyterian Church
  • CEREMONIALE, brass and percussion, commissioned by the Tehachapi Community Orchestra
  • ORATION, brass quintet, commissioned by Brassininity
  • SIERRA SUITE, brass quintet and organ, commissioned by the Fine Arts Brass Quintet
  • A SUMMER REMEMBRANCE, trumpet quartet or ensemble, commissioned by the International Trumpet Guild
  • FANFARE PROCESSIONAL, three trumpets and organ, commissioned by First Congregational Church of Los Angeles
  • HAIL OLYMPUS, nine or ten brass, commissioned by the Bill Bing Brass Ensemble