The music of Michael Daugherty (b. 1954) music borrows from all forms of American popular culture, from Barbie to Liberace.  He is widely acclaimed as a gifted composer with a truly original voice.  He is currently a Professor of composition of the University of Michigan, for whose excellent bands he has produced much original music.

Daugherty wrote Alligator Alley in 2003 on a commission from the American Composers Forum for their educational BandQuest series.  He wrote it as a bassoon feature for his daughter, who was then in middle school.  It has quickly gained popularity as both a bassoon feature and Daugherty’s only work accessible to younger bands.

Program note at

Michael Daugherty’s website.

Daugherty bio on wikipedia.


The North Texas Wind Symphony plays Alligator Alley:

BONUS: an interview with Michael Daugherty about all aspects of music.  This is just part one – if you like it, check out the rest!

This was a Senior Choice picked by bassoonist Eric Hirsch ’09.