Composers' Forum

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I'm John Carey. I've mostly self-taught as a composer but am currently in my second year studying composition at the Hartt School of Music.


I was born in Redlands, California, but spent the majority of my life in New England. Fortunately for me, my family has always been rather artistically oriented. My mother was a successful operatic and choral singer who performed extensively in Germany and the United States for a period of about twenty years, and my father was her final vocal teacher before she decided to settle down and focus on starting a family. My sister June is an absolutely incredible artist who specializes in painting landscapes and Tuscan vineyards (


I developed an interest in piano when I was about 11-years-old, which skyrocketed dramatically when I discovered the sonatas of Beethoven. Shortly after, I fell in love with the concept of composing my own works, and (through lots of studying, practicing, and sheer luck) I managed to compose a variety of piano, orchestral, and chamber works. Though I've lost interest in most of these works composed during my early to mid teen years, several of them are available to listen to on my website as a demonstration of how my music progressed.


Lately, I would say that I've begun to find a style that is identifiable as my own. Drawing from the works of numerous composers (Sorabji, Ravel, Rachmaninoff, and Mahler, to name a few) and fusing such influences with harmonies inspired from my experience as a jazz pianist, I've attempted in all of my works to create an atmosphere that can be described as "dreamlike," or "surreal." I am greatly inspired by dreams and other forms of altered states of consciousness, which I hope to communicate effectively through my music.


When I'm not engrossed in composing/practicing, I generally spend my time playing chess and hiking. Surprisingly, I also seem to manage a social life, though finding a balance between all of these different factors tends to leave me quite sleep-deprived. I'll attempt to post on this blog and the forum as often as possible, but it'll most likely only be in sporadic bursts. I hope to learn a lot from the other members here and perhaps even pass on a word or two of advice that others can benefit from.


Thanks for reading. Please visit my website ( if you are interested in learning more about me or my music.

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