John Cantrell Music


Available Works  >  Listen  >



One of my professors at Yale once said that unless you compose, you are not a full musician. At first, this came across as a little thorny, if not slightly aloof, but the more I’ve lived with this statement, the more I get it. To really live and breathe music as a musician to its fullest, you have to experience it from the vantage point of the critical listener, the communicating performer, and finally as a creator. From each point, there is a spiritual vulnerability that takes place - an opening of one’s self to emotional possibility. That’s the rush of it all, Right? So, I listen constantly to anything and everything which in turn plays a role in how I channel the spirit of a composer /composition in performance, but it is in composing that I feel the most “laid bare,” as an artist. It is perhaps the most

revealing yet intimate extension of my own spirit. My compositional output tends to be as varied as the music I listen too. It ranges from film & documentary music, to sacred choral works, to secular instrumental pieces. I studied film scoring with John LaBarbara > and had private composition instruction while at Yale with Joan Panetti. My ears will never be the same thanks to her! Below you’ll find some links to some of my scores that are available for purchase.


Works Available for Purchase

PDF score examples are available upon request

In Flanders Fields (In commemoration of the 100th Anniversary of the poem In Flanders Fields)
SATB (with some divisi) (2015),
A haunting arrangement of haunting texts. This work was premiered on July 4th, 2015, at the Norman American Cemetery at Omaha Beach, in Normandy, France.
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Adam Lay Y Bounden
SSAATTBB (2015),
This difficult work takes the naturally rhythmic nature of the 15th century English poem to an riveting new pace! Combined with Cantrell’s jazz-influenced musical language, this is a concert crowd pleaser!
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Ave Verum Corpus

SSAATTBB (2008), This difficult 8-part setting of the classic “Ave Verum Corpus” texts were described by John Scott of St. Thomas 5th Avenue as ”a floor to ceiling feast!”

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This work is available through See-a-dot music publishing, Inc.  

O Nata Lux

SSATB (2004)

Choir of St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, New York, NY

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All You Who Pass By
Soprano Solo, SATB, Piano (2003) 


When Jesus Wept

Soprano Solo, SATB, Piano; project with Joan Panetti, Yale University (2001)


Anglican Chant Psalter

An ever growing collection of Anglican Chant tunes


Psalm 130, parts 1 & 2
Austin Echols, Bass Soloist, Raphael Starr, Clarinet (sub for the English Horn Part),
Choir of Christ Church Cathedral, Louisville, KY.  

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Psalm 136
Choir of Christ Church Cathedral, Louisville, KY.

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Psalm 22

Choir of Christ Church Cathedral, Louisville, KY

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Documentary Soundtrack
Example Ambient textures with piano, processed percussion, harmonics (bass guitar)

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