In 1958 Joe finished ten years of study with Joseph Schmid, a student of Alban Berg, completing Schoenberg's harmony, counterpoint and composition courses. Joe went on to teach harmony, 16th century counterpoint and composition at the Brooklyn Conservatory while continuing to compose and in 1963 was commissioned by Erich Leinsdorf of the Boston Symphony Orchestra to write a piano concerto. It was premiered in 1985 by the American Composers Orchestra at Alice Tully Hall. As a soloist in the 50's and early 60's he performed Greek, Syrian, Jewish and Turkish music on clarinet and saxophone as well as pop music of the day. In 1965, his reputation as a diverse performer led to an invitation to be the saxophone soloist in the premiere of a composition by David Reck dedicated to Ornette Coleman. Joe premiered the piece as part of the 20th Century Innovation Series conducted by Gunther Schuller at Carnegie Hall.
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