Mike’s work as a composer (as distinct from songwriting involving lyrics) is something that has always been a characteristic of his solo albums, in which songs were/are interspersed with instrumental/orchestral tracks in his own very distinctive style usually but not always combining a rhythm section with a symphony orchestra. For examples of this, see “SCHIZOPHONIA” “TAROT SUITE”, WAVES, “SIX DAYS IN BERLIN”, “ZERO ZERO, “ARABESQUE” and “SONGS OF LOVE AND WAR” (example links below are inevitably duplicated elsewhere on this site in “artist” and other sections). Mike also writes in a more traditional “classic” orchestral style, often when working to commission. Examples of this work can be heard on his album “A Classical Tale” and on various film soundtracks (see links to “A Classical Tale” below). He has written a number of symphonic suites and overtures based on his film and TV music.
Self-taught in all his musical functions from piano playing to composing, orchestration and conducting, Batt orchestrates all his own compositions, without exception. He is known for his ability and preference to work very quickly, and often creates false deadlines in order to drive the pace of composition. Until 1989 he used manuscript paper and pencil for all his orchestrations, but in that year he adopted the (then new) software system of FINALE which, like later software packages including the widely used SIBELIUS software) – allow the composer to write onto “virtual” manuscript on a computer screen. This does not reduce the workload or creative complexity of orchestration, but it minimises the possibility of errors in the process formerly performed by a copyist, who, instead of laboriously copying out parts from the score by hand, now performs an equally important task, that of extracting the parts electronically from the score and printing them for each individual musician. The copyist then takes Mike’s conductor score and prints it out a neatly in time for the session or concert.
The links to compositional work are divided into sections, - firstly tracks from solo and personally generated projects and solo albums, and secondly, purely orchestral pieces.
SOLO ALBUM INSTRUMENTAL COMPOSITONS
(spool down to lower list for compositions not from solo albums)
SELECTION OF “Classical style” COMPOSITIONS (THE ALBUM “A CLASSICAL TALE”)
(see further list below for various other links to compositions)