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“Grooves” for string quartet – Excerpts

Premiered in May 2014 on ALIAS Chamber Ensemble’s Spring Concert, this is Matt’s first string quartet.

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(Zeneba Bowers, Jeremy Williams, violins; Chris Farrell, viola; Matt Walker, cello)

Yo-Yo Joe (for two cellos) – Excerpt

This piece was written for Joe Johnson (Principal cellist of the Toronto Symphony) and Yo-Yo Ma. The two performed an encore version of the work in May 2012. (See the video) The entirety was premiered in May 2013 by ALIAS Chamber Ensemble.

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(Matt Walker and Sari Reist, cellos)


Bluescello (for solo cello)
– Excerpt

This is the first of a series of solo cello works in a distinctively jazz/blues vein. It established the pattern of a slow, bowed intro followed by extensive, up-tempo guitar-style picking.

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LockJaw (for solo cello) – Excerpt
In the “blues cello” series, this piece is so named because of the stress and tension involved in trying to apply guitar picking techniques to an instrument ill-suited for the task. The intro is vaguely Bach-based; the main section owes much to Paul Simon’s “Anji”, sharing its descending bass line.

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Cramp (for solo cello) – Excerpt
The third in the installment of blues cello tunes, and the second named after a playing-related malady (in this case, in the left hand). After a slow blues intro, the piece becomes a steady driving funk.

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Squaretet for 4 cellos – Excerpt
With an intro that parodies the William Tell Overture, this jazz set for four cellos shifts gears numerous times, demanding funk, swing, and general cool-ness from its  performers.

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()Matt Walker, Chris Stenstrom, Michael Samis, Sari Reist, cellos)
Click here for Squaretet sample page

“Sixes and Sevens” – Quartet for clarinet, marimba, cello and bass – Excerpt
Written for and premiered by members of ALIAS Chamber Ensemble, this quartet received its European premiere at England’s Swaledale Fesitival. Its mixed meters, percussive cello, and alternating light and dark moods evokes Dave Brubeck, Benny Goodman and Gene Krupa, and playful blues improvisation.

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(Lee Levine, clarinet; Chris Norton, marimba; Matt Walker, cello; Joel Reist, bass)
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