WILL MASON is a drummer and composer from Maine, now living in New York City.
His main project is the Will Mason Ensemble, a chamber ensemble of voice, oboe, alto sax, two guitars, bass, and drums. He wrote most of the music in a cabin in the woods of northern Maine, away from electricity, the internet, running water, and phone service. Mason is fascinated by how it feels to be isolated in nature — how everything feels simultaneously beautiful and threatening, and how the elemental and oppressive hugeness of nature can inspire awe or unease. The ensemble’s debut album, Beams of the Huge Night, will be released on New Amsterdam Records on August 28, 2015.
In addition to writing new music for the ensemble, Mason’s other main project is “Happy Place,” a noise-rock band of two guitars and two drummers inspired by ethnomusicological work on the physical extremes that induce trancing. He also is working on a suite of electroacoustic works for small ensemble, and he has worked as a sideman with a number of musicians in New York City and elsewhere.
Mason is currently pursuing a PhD in music theory at Columbia University, with primary research in electroacoustic music and music cognition. Prior to attending Columbia, he received a BMus in music performance and a BA in political science, both from Oberlin.