Places and Times

Places and Times

Mapping the interior terrain
Baljinder Sekhon
Dave Gerhart
Los Angeles Percussion Quartet
Dieter Hennings
McCormick Percussion Group
Robert McCormick
Eunmi Ko
Line Upon Line Percussion
Catalog Number: 
new classical

Tampa, FL

Release Date: 
Apr 27, 2018
Liner Notes: 
1 CD
One Sheet: 

Places & Times is a collection of sonorous landmarks and magical moments; percussion ensemble works that are as compelling as they are mysterious. It is also a record of some of the ways in which life and art might share a journey. Composer and percussionist Baljinder Sekhon, with a doctorate from Eastman and currently teaching at the University of South Florida, has brought together three fine percussion ensembles to present his exhilarating vision: Los Angeles Percussion Quartet, McCormick Percussion Group, and Line Upon Line Percussion.

Three of the works on the album feature solo instruments with ensemble: steel pan (Dave Gerhart), guitar (Dieter Hennings), and piano (Eunmi Ko). The combinations afford a wide range of possibilities, from the aggressive noise of a cymbal on piano strings, and peaceful meditations created by finger cymbals gently buzzing on a vibraphone, to the curious thump of a person falling onto a bass drum.

Death Is an Adviser is one of a series of works modeled after the shamanistic philosophies described by anthropologist Carlos Castaneda in his writings about being an apprentice to the sorcerer Don Juan Matus in the 1960s.

Sekhon writes: “I have been heavily influenced by the teachings of Don Juan, specifically those found in the book Journey to Ixtlan. “Death Is an Adviser” is a chapter from the book that deals with the awareness of death and how such awareness advises our decision-making in life. The movement titles each have double meanings, which reflect both the philosophy that inspired the piece and the compositional process. I am interested in finding ways for my creative work as a composer and other life activities to intersect and become the same. For this piece, in an effort to work and spend time with my family at once, my daughters and wife drew numbers from a hat to determine pitch orderings, durations, and contour. After selecting numbers for pitch and duration, and combining them, we’d run to the piano to play it and hear how it turned out – we made a game out of it.” 



Places and Times is a complete artwork, thoughtfully constructed to create an enlightening and engaging experience for the audience from start to finish. [FULL ARTICLE] - Matt Younglove


"guitar holding its own against a battery of percussion instruments, through delicate passages and thunderous sections, is particularly captivating...the combinations provide a very broad spectrum of sound and range.” [FULL ARTICLE] - David Olds


"There are many takeaways from Places and Times, but perhaps the biggest one is how much it brings into sharp relief exactly how much sonic plenitude percussion ensembles like the ones featured are capable of generating." [FULL ARTICLE] - Ron Schepper


"Bajinder Sekhon is clearly a skilled craftsman when it comes to the complex world of percussion, and the music here is never less than intriguing." [FULL ARTICLE] - Dominy Clements


"Sekhon proves to be very skilled in incorporating rhythmic crescendo into rigorous formal grids, subjecting thematic-rhythmic materials to complex games of combination, permutation, and dynamic variations. There is no shortage of episodes of contemplative, mysterious beauty, also by virtue of timbric explorations of great charm and ingenuity. A very interesting addition to the increasingly rich contemporary repertoire for percussion." [FULL ARTICLE] - Filippo Focosi


"This is very ambitious, clever and accessible." [FULL ARTICLE]


"Highly evocative and atmospheric, Sekhon makes a compelling case for putting percussion in the spotlight." [FULL ARTICLE