Howard J. Buss, @2000
Musician, composer, and educator Howard J. Buss has lived in Lakeland for more than thirty years. He is an accomplished trombonist who has played with orchestras and ensembles throughout the country; an internationally recognized and honored composer who works have been published and performed throughout the world; and a dedicated and skilled teacher in the classroom and studio.
Buss's professional music career dates to 1964 when he joined the American Federation of Musicians Union in Allentown, PA. In 1968, at the age of 17, he joined recording artists, The Tijuana Brats as a trombonist and arranger. Over the next few years the group enjoyed moderate success and performed on such national television programs as the Tonight Show and the Mike Douglas Show, among others. The members of the group separated in order to attend different colleges and agreed to disband in 1971.
At that point, Buss decided that a career change was in order for him and went on to graduate school. He earned two Master of Music degrees, in brass performance and music composition and theory from Michigan State University and a doctorate in music composition and brass from the University of Illinois. He met and married his wife Judy, a woodwind specialist and ethnomusicologist in East Lansing in 1974. The two moved to Lakeland in 1978 and established teaching studios. Buss also taught a variety of courses in music and music appreciation at Florida Southern College until 1985.
It was in Lakeland that Buss's reputation as a composer began to blossom. In 1982 the administration of President Ronald Reagan included one of his compositions, "Fanfares," in the Presidential Collection. His work was recognized on several occasions by the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP); he was named Composer of the Year by the Florida State Music Teacher Association; and his work has been commissioned and played by a number orchestras throughout the country. He has published more than 130 pieces, including instrument solos, chamber music, symphonic, choral, and band works.
Buss continues to live, teach, and compose in Lakeland. He founded and continues to serve as editor for two music publishing companies, Brixton Publishing and Howard J. Buss Publications, that publish American contemporary music of composers from all over the country.
See Dr. Buss' website: http:/www.brixtonpublications.com/howard_j_buss~2.html for additional information.