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About Matt Holsen

I grew up on a pretty wild assortment of music. Count Basie, Verdi, Leadbelly, Lerner and Loewe, Chopin, folk music from Portugal, Spain and Chile (where I was living) Theodore Bikel, Woody Guthrie, Sam Cooke, Palestrina, the Beatles. I still play and sing most of them, and I still love them all

About the only things I remember clearly from my high school days are the school choir, the DC Youth Orchestra (3rd chair cello), singing Dylan in church basements and jamming on Hendrix and Steppenwolf in a friend's basement.

When I was 18 I wandered into a choral audition by accident and ended up performing and recording under Leonard Bernstein. I decided to attempt to make a living at music. I studied composition and orchestration for three years with W.S. Huffman and then set out on a peculiar musical career.

Erratic might be a better word. I did more choral work, sang in dinner theaters, played bar gigs, entertained in the lounge car of the Autotrain, wrote music for live theater and for choirs, played more bar gigs, wrote vocal, horn and string arrangements for people making pop records, recorded my own songs and sold them off the stage at coffeehouses, sang in a jazz vocal quartet, played yet more bar gigs, toured with some giant dinosaur puppets, built a succession of recording studios and recorded and produced CD's for singer/songwriters and sang for a couple of years with the Washington Bach Consort.

Since the late 90's I've made my living more and more in web development, and these days that's my main gig. I'm still busy with music, though. I'm working on some long-term projects (all choral works). I still do orchestration and arranging for singer/songwriters. I perform with the Robyn Helzner Trio ("World Jewish Music" in Hebrew, Yiddish and Ladino) and occasionally get together with the dinosaurs.

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