This is volume 12 of the ongoing series Paul Freeman Introduces?where one of today?s most innovative conductors presents exciting and fascinating new music for orchestra. Throughout this series he has presented several works by the outstanding African-American composer David Nathaniel Baker (a previous all-Baker disc is on TROY377). A native of Indianapolis, Baker holds the position of Distinguished Professor of Music and Chairman of the Jazz Department at the Indiana University School of Music. Among his teachers have been J.J. Johnson, Bobby Brookmeyer, Janos Starker, William Russo, Bernard Heiden and Gunther Schuller. Not surprising, Baker is equally at home in both classical and jazz performing and composing. He is highly prolific, with more than 2000 works to his credits and over 500 commissions from renowned individuals and ensembles. Kosbro (an acronym for ?Keep on Steppin,? Brothers?) is a perfect example of his style: propulsive, jazzy, rich in harmony and hard-hitting. His music can also be highly lyrical and memorably melodic, as in the ?third-stream? Alto Saxophone Concerto. This is truly dynamic American music.