Composer Garth Baxter is known for his unique modern traditionalist approach to writing music. His style combines the traditional forms and clear melodic writing with contemporary approaches to harmonies and other musical elements. Recognized for its lyrical quality and tonality, Baxter’s music makes him one of the foremost composers of art songs.
Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1946, Baxter moved to California at the age of nine. He pursued his music education and obtained music degrees from Pepperdine University and California State University at Northridge, studying under the guidance of renowned composers such as Robert Hall Lewis, Joseph Wagner, and William Thornton. In addition to his prolific work as a composer, Baxter also currently teaches and mentors upcoming composers.
Baxter’s impressive repertoire includes works for chorus, orchestra, symphonic band, piano, organ, flute, voice, and guitar, as well as other instrumental combinations. His compositions have been performed worldwide and have been featured on radio and online programs. He has received numerous awards, commissions, and honors, with his song cycle, “From the Heart: Three American Women” (Columbia Music Company), even serving as the topic of a doctoral dissertation. Most recently, Baxter completed the opera, Lily, with librettist Lisa VanAuken.
His recordings, ASK THE MOON: Works for Voice and Piano, released in January of 2018 by PARMA Records (Navona), and Katherine Keem Sings Songs and Arias by Garth Baxter, released in the fall of 2014 by Centaur Records, have been widely acclaimed for their significant contribution to the voice and guitar repertoire. His latest album, Resistance, was released by PARMA Records (Navona) in February 2019 and has received rave reviews and multiple airplays.
Baxter’s works are published by renowned music publishing companies including Columbia Music Company, ALRY Publications, Les Productions D’OZ, Doberman-YPPan, Guitar Chamber Music Press, Mel Bay Publications, and Theodore Presser.