RIP Prince

The first Prince album I ever bought was Diamonds and Pearls (on cassette). I'd heard some of his music prior to that, but I never really listened to music before that time. Yeah I listened to what was on the car stereo while riding around with family, which with my parents meant Conway Twitty if my dad was in control of the stereo and golden oldies if my mom was driving.

I turned 12 in 1989. I bought a little portable radio with dual cassette decks (try your best to hide your envy) for two dollars at a yard sale in Pensacola. Then I started buying cassettes. The first ones I bought were Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 and the cassette single of Opposites Attract by Paula Abdul. From that moment on I was hooked and spent all my money on cassettes. 

A couple years later, (I think Diamonds and Pearls came out in '91) Cream came on the radio and I loved it. I remember hearing Thieves in the Temple prior to this and really disliked it. D&P hit all the buttons for me. I talked to my Uncle Mark about the album. He had been a Prince fan since the beginning. He introduced me to the earlier albums. Within a couple years I had every Prince album on cassette or in my brand new CD collection. 25+ years later I still have ALL OF THE PRINCE. 

There is no musician of popular music or classical whose work I have listened to as much as Prince. All of my friends know I am the biggest Prince fan. 

I've cried a bit today. This is a sad day, but let's remember all the times where the musicians we love have colored and enhanced different experiences in our lives. Remember the joy their work has brought. 

Now go listen to the Purple Rain soundtrack or one of his live albums. 




Insecurities and the day my give-a-damn broke

My degree is in music history. I’ve never studied music composition with anyone, but I’ve been fortunate enough to participate in a few masterclasses with composers whose music I admire: Ken Ueno, Judith Lang Zaimont, and David Maslanka. I do a shit ton of score study and listening. It’s the way I’ve taught myself to compose. I wrote my first piece of music in March of 2000. I was 23. Three years prior, I decided I wanted to be a composer upon hearing the Rascher Saxophone Quartet recording of Xas by Iannis Xenakis. I didn’t know that sounds like that existed. Or could exist. It still took me a couple years before I really began putting thoughts and ideas down on paper.

I’ve always had my insecurities. We all have our shit. Some hide it better than others, but we all have it. Never having a comp teacher made me feel insecure every time I finished a piece and every time I had a work performed. I feel like I’ve missed out on something, like I’m behind and playing catch-up. Even if it was a work that had been performed multiple times. I always felt there was something that other composers ‘got’ that I didn’t about music.

Fast forward more than a decade to 2012.

Beginning around New Year’s Day 2012, I started feeling ill. It felt like my usual: sinus infection and/or bronchitis. My doctors began treating me for those issues. By April, I’d had 9 different antibiotics and was not improving. My doctors said I was fine.

I spent most of May in bed, unable to get out of bed most days, much less go to work. I began to get angry. I started calling new doctors just trying to find someone who could find out what the hell was going on. In June, I was not as exhausted, but still more tired than I had ever been. I began having chest pains. The new doctor tested me for many things. We tried a few things with varying results, but something was still ‘off’.

On June 17, 2012, I had a CT scan of my chest. They injected the dye and it made me feel funny and I couldn’t leave afterward for 20 minutes because of the fear of an allergic reaction.

The nurse called my name and told me that I couldn’t leave. No explanation was given. I thought I must have squirmed or something and they had to re do it. Crap ass. I heard the nurse talking on the phone and my name was mentioned a few times. She eventually called me over and handed me the phone. She’d been talking to my doctor.

He told me I had multiple pulmonary embolli (blood clots) in both lungs. Not just one or two clots. Multiple. In each lung. Thankfully, at the time I was clueless at how serious pulmonary embolli were. Over the next 5 days, my symptoms subsided thanks to being injected with my weight in blood thinners and other meds. It began to sink in just how serious my condition really was. It began to sink in how lucky I was to still be breathing and that one of the clots didn’t work its way to my brain. How lucky I was to be able to return home to my wife and son after five days. In the two adjacent hospital rooms there were two people much worse off than me.

I was fortunate.

In the following weeks, my health didn’t improve. The chest pains reduced but the fatigue and joint pain never went away, but I started composing again. I began new pieces as always with my normal insecurities and trepidation. I would always worry if the music I was trying to write was ‘too weird’ sometimes I would pull back the reins. I would censure myself as I would compose. Then the thought occurred to me, “I’m currently unable to work, and no one is listening to my music anyway, and I nearly died”.

So I said fuck it.
Fuck it. My give-a-damn was officially broken.

I was going to start writing my music as weird as I wanted. I was going to write whatever I wanted. It was freeing.

But my new mantra (not that I had an old mantra) became:
‘There are billions of people on this planet not listening to my music and not performing my music every damn day. One more person not playing or listening to my music doesn’t really hurt my feelings.’

Every time a performance falls through or a commission falls through I just think of that and compose something else. I still have some of the same insecurities but they’ve lessened. I still get nervous as I finish a piece and at performances.

I consider myself in a very unique position. I’m still sickly. Chronically ill. My diagnoses are Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Depression, Atrial Fibrillation, and several others. I’m unable to work. I’ve unsuccessfully tried part time work since this has happened. Most days I’m too tired to cook dinner for my family, which I did daily before this illness. Running errands such as quick trips to the pharmacy or grocery store take longer and are incredibly exhausting. I can’t usually cook dinner on a day where I’ve also run errands. I’m currently waiting on a hearing for Social Security Disability.

It’s a real pisser, yet I consider myself in a unique but fortunate position. I can write music however I want. If anyone dislikes it, oh well, I move on. Not my problem. My composing pace is slow and there are long stretches where I can’t compose.

I’ve written my best music since my give-a-damn broke. My artistic process has changed out of necessity. The way I handle and develop musical material has changed.

So I feel I’m fortunate,
and I get to see my son when he gets off the bus everyday.


10916307_10153522290363835_4993792346268274994_o Earlier this month, at the urging of a couple friends I started a fundraising campaign in hopes of flying to NYC for a weekend to attend a performance of my third saxophone quartet, Constructions for Julie Mehretu. I feel extremely fortunate to have such wonderful friends because I reached my goal in under twelve hours.

I was really eager to go on this trip for multiple reasons:

1. I'd never been to NYC.

2. I wanted to hear another performance of my piece by Mana Quartet.

3. The artist, Julie Mehretu, whose work and painting process inspired the piece would be in attendance.

The performance was January 17th at Spectrum. The quartet sounded fantastic. It was the best performance of Constructions so far.

At the top of this post is a pic of me with Julie Mehretu. She was wonderful and extremely nice. I was giddy to meet her and tried hard to not become a total fanboy.

I will post more about the performance and my trip later.

Go hear the performance here

Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

Chicken and sausage Gumbo* Stock ingredients:

1 whole chicken (I usually get a 3 -4 lbs chicken)

1 yellow onion sliced in half

2 or 3 stalks of celery (I just break them in half and throw them in)

2 or 3 bay leaves

Salt and pepper to taste

Gumbo ingredients:

Trinity: (plus garlic)

1 medium bell pepper diced

1 medium onion diced

3 stalks of celery diced

2 or 3 cloves of garlic minced

1lb okra sliced  (I usually use frozen okra which comes pre-sliced. If you are using fresh okra slice it into ½ inch pieces

1lb sausage or andouille Cut into ½ inch pieces (I’m partial to the Conecuh brand of smoked sausage. It is a spicy smoked sausage. Use a sausage that has some spice to it. Not Italian sausage.)

1 can whole kernel corn drained

Roux ingredients:

1/2c AP flour (do not use self rising flour. A roux will not thicken with self rising flour.)

1/2c vegetable oil

Herbs und spices:

1t thyme

1t coriander

1 – 2t Cajun seasoning (I’m partial to Tony Chacheres’ brand Cajun seasoning)

Salt and pepper


I do not use a specific amount of water. I have a large stock pot that I put enough water in to cover the chicken and seasonings. I boil the stock until the chicken is completely cooked. I think the pot holds about 8 quarts but I only fill it about 2/3s full.

Remove the chicken from the stock and allow to cool. De-bone and shred the chicken and set aside. Remove the onions, celery, and bay leaves from the stock.

Set stock to the side.

While the stock is cooking dice up all the seasonings.

Once the seasonings are diced stock is finished begin the roux.

Making the roux:

A roux is nothing more than fat and flour, but a roux for gumbo is something special. Purists believe a gumbo roux must be made in a cast iron skillet. I do not have a preference for cast iron versus a different pot/pan to create a roux.

Put flour and oil into your pan. Make sure the pan is dry. There shouldn’t be any water or condensation in the pan. Turn the burner to medium/low heat. Start combining the flour and oil.

You cannot ignore a roux. You must stand over it and keep stirring it. The roux will begin to dark. Do not let it stick and do not let it burn. If it burns you must start over.

Keep stirring. It will continue to dark. The rule of thumb is the roux must reach the color of a new penny. That is the rule my grandmother told me. Many people do darken the roux a bit more. That is totally acceptable, but be careful not to burn it.

Once the roux has reached the ideal color add the onion, bell pepper and celery. Let those cook down a bit. Keep stirring. Do not add the garlic yet. It could burn and you don’t want that burnt garlic flavor.

In Cajun/creole cooking, the trinity (onion, bell pepper, celery) is treated as seasoning. They are cooked down to nothing pretty much. You should not see chunks of trinity in the finished product.

I cook my roux in my large “gumbo pot” so I can combine everything into one pot and not have to transfer ingredients much or dirty too many dishes.

When the seasonings begin to break down add the garlic.

Begin adding in the chicken stock.  This will cause it to produce lots of steam so be careful. It will be very hot.

Keep stirring and adding stock so it will not clump up. Once all the stock has been added into the roux add in the chicken and sausage.

Add the herbs and spices

Allow the gumbo to come to a boil then turn down to low heat.

Add the can of corn (drained)

Add okra. The okra acts as a thickener. It should be added toward the end or else it will completely fall apart and the gumbo will look less than desirable. Trust me on that.

(When it is done you may want to skim some of the oil off of the top.  You really need the oil for the roux but at the end it may be necessary to remove as much of the oil that has collected on the top as possible.)

Serve over rice.

Some people add gumbo file into each serving of gumbo has been served. Feel free to do so. Do not add the file to the pot of gumbo.

*I think a gumbo can easily be made vegan. A veggie stock can replace the chicken stock. Quorn chicken cutlets can be diced and brown in a pan before adding to the gumbo. There are also good vegan sausage replacements. Brown those as well and remove from pan. Add the vegan chicken and sausage toward the end so it will not totally break down during the cooking process.

Also there are some wonderful recipes online of Green Gumbo (gumbo z’herbes) which incorporates collard greens, turnip greens, kale etc.

Caro Emerald

Y'all I'm not getting anything done today. I was piddling around on the intarwebs as one does when one should be finishing a solo trombone work.

I came across the singer Caro Emerald as I was searching for something else. I enjoy her voice. I've now downloaded both of her albums and am listening now. She's my latest singer crush. She hasn't totally replaced my current/previous singer crushes of Janelle Monae and Imelda May but she's fantastic.

She has a great band backing her up. (A great baritone saxophonist which is always a plus.) Her voice is reminiscent of jazz singers of the 40s and 50s.

Give her a chance. Take a listen to her song Tangled Up.


My Earle Brown Story

In the summer of 1999 I was finishing up planning the material for my senior recital in the spring of 2000. I was flipping through Jean-Marie Londiex’s 150 Years of Saxophone which is a catalogue of the vast majority of music for saxophone.

The book has a listing for a saxophone sonata by Earle Brown. I got excited. I was really getting into modern music at the time and my idea of modern music was very narrow and didn’t really include any music of the previous 20 years. Cage, Brown, and Boulez (not even late Boulez, pre-Sur Incise stuff) were my idea of modern music. I had no clue about later and crazier stuff. No clue at all.

So I began making lots of calls trying to track down a score for this alleged Earle Brown Sax Sonata.

After three weeks, I ended up leaving a message with a guy at a music store in (I think) Tampa. I don’t remember how this guy became the one on my list of people to call but he did.

A week later he returned my message and gave me a phone number to call Earle Brown.

So I mustered up the courage to call Earle Brown, but didn’t have enough damned sense to think of what I’d say if he answered.

A man answered the phone.

I told him who I was and the reason for my call. He confirmed that he was in fact Earle Brown.

I froze.

I couldn’t figure out what to say. I suddenly became star struck over the phone.

Here’s what I was finally able to blurt out:  "THE EARLE BROWN?! The composer Earle brown?! The really cool Earle Brown that hung out with John Cage, Merce Cunningham and Robert Rauschenberg?!"

I really did blurt it out. More like half-yelled, half-I don’t know what, but suddenly I realized I just accosted an old man over the phone.

I was such a dumbass.

He began laughing.  Pretty much laughing his ass off.  “Yes, thats me.” He said.

It still took me a moment to calm down.  He was familiar with the Londiex “150 Years” book.

He told me that there were two composers with his name. Earle Brown and Earl Browne. Earl Browne (not the cool one) had written a sax sonata.  He told me Earl Brown was a "Hollywood composer".

We talked for about 10 minutes and he was really kind and very patient with me.

He talked about how he had tried to write a sax quartet in the sixties or seventies and it didn’t work out.

That’s my Earle Brown story.

I was incredibly naïve. He got a great laugh out of it and I got a great story.

Now his music has become such an influence on my own work. At that time I’d yet to begin composing.

Try and try again.

About 4 years ago i started a couple pieces. One for piano and another for flute and saxophone which i'm still fiddling around with. At the time, I was working a couple different jobs. Outside of one job I walked past a wall of wisteria and another job seemed to exist inside an area encased in the aroma of honeysuckle. My two favorite thHoneysuckle motiveings about spring are honeysuckle and wisteria. I find the smell of those flowers completely intoxicating. Which is kind of funny because i'm allergic to every other grass, tree, and plant that grows here in Mississippi. Damn plants and their pollen.

The flute and saxophone was named Wisteria Blooms and the piano work was Honeysuckle Variations. Perhaps I was listening to too much Takemitsu and was in a pastoral mood. (There's no such thing as too much Takemitsu.)

I finished the piano work. At least at the time I felt i had finished the piano work. It was a set of variations. The Honeysuckle Variations. I remember the night that i wrote it i felt it was some of the prettiest music I ever composed. And a week later I felt some parts of it were the most beautiful thing I've ever composed. A few months later I really loved a few of the variations.
I decided it needed something. That the piece felt incomplete.

So I added a string quartet because I love piano quintets and have always wanted to write one. The Quintet for piano and strings by Elliott Carter and Akea by Xenakis are to of my favorite works of all time.
I added the strings and worked out some things and felt the piece was complete. (This was about 2 1/2 years ago.)
A few months ago, I started looking at the versions I had of the piece. Also in between those two versions I tried working out some of the ideas for two pianos with no luck. The material didn't seem to shine in those earlier versions. They still needed something.

[Side note: I only feel like I've figured out how to properly develop musical material last year. It was while I was composing Constructions for saxophone quartet that it seemed to click. Hopefully it continues to "click" and I can keep making piles of stuff out of the material at hand.]

So nowHoneysuckle Nocturne pic I've started on the latest version of the piece. It is for piano and twelve winds (fl,ob, bsn, cl, Bcl, asx, bsx, 2tpts, hn, tbn, tuba). I've been able to elaborate on some of the ideas and realize others in new voices which changes the character. The piece seems to be flexing its muscles. growing wings, or whatever metaphor is most appropriate for such occasions. I have about 2'30" composed. The beginning and ending sections. I have a clear path in my head about the inner sections which i do not always have when composing. The title is no longer Honeysuckle Variations since the material is blending together  and expanding and the formal structure has changed. Honeysuckle Nocturne for piano and twelve winds is the current title.

This ensemble is the largest group I've ever composed for. I'm composing this work for the desire i have to see this musical material stretched to its limits.

I hope it turns out well. I've never had a piece go through this many interpretations. I want to finish the work by the holidays and hopefully I didn't jinx it by talking about it.

30 seconds of music

Over a decade ago, I began a work for alto saxophone and cello which never totally came to fruition. One small movement was completed. It was only 30 seconds of music. I've always had a soft spot for this small piece, so I finally made a PDF file of the work and now I'm offering the work to whoever wants it. If you are interested in the piece feel free to download the score from the link provided below.

 Download Allegro Scorrevole for alto saxophone and cello

Open Piece No. 5 for organ

Open Piece No. 5 for organ

My latest work is part of my ongoing series of Open Pieces. Carson Cooman is performing on this recording. He is a wonderful, sensitive musician. This work was composed for the very talented organist and composer Carson Cooman. Please take a moment to listen to his fine performance. 

Open means the pieces have an indeterminate duration and can be performed by any group or instruments. 

If you want to learn more about Carson please go over to his website:



1lb sausage* (I prefer Conecuh Brand sausage. It has a good bit of spice to it.)

1lb boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs*

2c white long grain rice



1 medium onion

1 medium bell pepper

3 stalks celery

3 or 4 cloves of garlic


1tsp thyme

½tsp coriander

2 bay leaves

1tsp Tony Chachere’s Cajun seasoning or whatever Cajun seasoning you prefer

Salt and pepper to taste



Cut chicken into small cubes and sausage into short segments. Dice onion, bell pepper, celery into small pieces. Mince the garlic (please don’t use the nasty jarred garlic). Veggies should be diced into small pieces so that they cook down in the pan. Onion, bell pepper and celery are referred to as The Trinity. Garlic is pretty much considered part of the The Trinity as well.

Put olive oil in pot and put on medium heat. Put sausage and chicken in and cook until browned. Stir regularly. Make sure the meats are well browned before adding veggies.  Add veggies. Keep stirring. Add spices. Veggies should cook down for a while. The final product should not have large chunks of veggies. Trinity is viewed as a ‘seasoning’ so it should be cooked until it breaks down into smaller bits.  This will take a while. Trust me it’s worth it. If you rush this, you may end up with a dish you enjoy but the depth of flavors may not be there.

Rinse the rice well. Rinse until the water becomes clear. Drain well.

Add rice to the pot and stir well.

Add 3 ¾ cups water. (Play around with this. There are usually already liquid from the veggies so adding the normal 2:1 ratio of water:rice can be excessive)

Stir to make sure the ingredients are covered by the water. You don’t want any clumps of rice lingering above the water line.

Bring to a boil. Cover and turn down to a simmer.


This part doesn’t take that long. The rice will absorb the water. Check it after about 8 or 9 minutes. Nobody likes overcooked rice.


*You can make a vegetarian version. Quorn makes wonderful faux chicken breasts that can be used in place of chicken. Also there are faux sausages. Pick one that has a bit of spice to it.

When I’ve cooked veggie sausage in the past it can fall apart if it is cooked in a dish (especially if it’s in a liquid: soup, beans etc), so brown it and remove it from the pan then place it in the pot when you bring it to a simmer.  You could also try browning mushrooms and adding those back in later.

Conecuh Sausage is a brand of sausage from Alabama primarily sold in the South, but I just checked out their website and it is now available in the Midwest.

Mason Modern Music Ensemble at George Mason University

Saturday May 3rd the Mason Modern Music Ensemble (M3E) is performing my Open Piece No. 1. According to the School of music Calendar it will be in the Choral Hall at 5pm. So if you are in the area feel free to go to the performance. I am sure it will be wonderful.

If you want to take a peak at the score click here

If you'd like to hear a previous performance of the work click here


Best of luck to the performers of M3E. I can't wait to hear the recording.

Constructions for Julie Mehretu

On March 16 at the Sound Wired Concerts in Chicago, Mana Quartet performed my Constructions for Julie Mehretu for a second time. The performance was wonderful. Check out the video. They are fantastic.

St. Paul & the Broken Bones

St. Paul & the Broken Bones singing "Call Me".

They are a fantastic band out of Birmingham, AL.

Pierre Boulez on composition. Inspiring talk from Pierre Boulez where he gives insight into his compositional process. He discusses his piano work Incises and how he expands different elements to create his magnificent Sur Incises.

Some of you have probably seen this before but i happened to stumble across it this morning and wanted to share it.

Keep it real.

Social Networking FTW

This weekend I get to meet my friend, Wendy Richman, in person. Not just twitter, email, Facebook and over the phone. I'm excited. Here's why:

In the spring of 2009 (i think), I joined twitter.  I had lots of friends joining it so i decided if everyone else was doing it I didn't want to miss out on anything. I began following my fellow musicians from college and the random other ones that i knew. discussions with one friend would bring other people into the conversation and before I knew it i had twitter musician friends around the globe. One evening I was having a conversation with two other composers. I don't even remember what we were discussing but i remember being in awe that the three of us were able to connect and discuss in real-time scattered across the globe. One was in Ireland, one in Australia and I was here in Mississippi. I thought that was a wonderful.

One of the musicians i feel incredibly fortunate to have formed a friendship with is Wendy Richman. We met on twitter via a mutual friend, Ken Ueno. Wendy and I had quite a few chats and one day she told me about her commissioning project for new works for singing violist. i was excited and intrigued. We chatted some more and I began writing in mid 2010. the result was Gakka for singing violist. She was able to premiere it the following year. It was wonderful.

So this weekend Wendy is in Biloxi performing in the Gulf Coast Symphony Orchestra. I feel like we already know each other quite a bit even though we've never met face to face.

So here is the audio of Wendy performing Gakka for singing violist:

Gakka for singing violist

Alabama Shakes Live concerts on Internet Archive - FTW

I've been doing a bit of driving lately so I've been listening to a lot of podcasts and concerts from  I may be the last person to discover the live concerts and other recordings available on the Internet Archive. So I downloaded a couple of concerts by one of my new favorite bands, Alabama Shakes. Not only do I want to support fellow Alabamians but i feel they are one of the latest bands continuing the long line of the Southern Rock tradition.

If you don't have their album Boys and Girls get it. If you have the time check out their live concerts at the link below. I highly recommend the one at the Capitol Theater

Leif Segerstam Part 2

Leif Segerstam writes lots of symphonies. Not as in Mozart wrote a lot of symphonies, not even in the category of Haydn and Hovhaness wrote a lot of symphonies, Segerstam is in a different category. Right now he is somewhere in the 270s for his symphonies.  Most of them are intended to be performed without a conductor.  Each part has timings and when they should play in time with other musicians. Each section even has directions on who should begin and end it.  His symphonies have inspired me to start sketching out one of my own for winds, piano and tympani.  We'll see if anything comes of it.

As I said in my first post his music is very free. If you click the link below and look through his catalogue you will find  bunch of PDF files of some of his works.

Here is a link to Leif Segerstam's profile and list of works at the FMIC.

Below I've included video of his Symphony No. 212 which was written for Gustavo Dudamel. The work was divided into two sections i'm assuming to meet the file size requirements of YT. Go listen to it. Enjoy it.

Leif Segerstam Part 1

I only discovered the music of the Finnish composer and conductor Leif Segerstam a few months ago. His handwritten scores can be quite a mess, but his music is always interesting and engaging.  His music is usually very free. The individual parts do not always line up together, in fact they very rarely do.  Perhaps the freedom allowed to the performers is what draws me to his music since I've been working on that same issue in my recent music. Anyway here is a video of Pia Segerstam (cello) and Christophe Sirodeau (piano) performing Leif segerstam's Noem No. 8 for cello and piano. Pia Segerstam is the daughter of Leif Segerstam and if I remember correctly Christophe Sirodeau is her husband.

Red Beans and Rice

I decided that I need to make regular posts on my blog. I don't always have the most interesting things to say about music or many other things but I decided I would start sharing things that I enjoy.  Today i'm sharing my red beans and rice recipe. Red Beans

Soak red beans overnight.  (I prefer the Camellia brand of red beans, it's probably a regional brand, not sure.)
Drain and rinse the beans.
Trinity (celery, bell pepper, onion and Trinity almost always includes garlic even though that makes it four ingredients instead of three. but oh well, its good.)
2 or 3 stalks of celery chopped
1 medium bell pepper diced
1 medium onioin diced
about 3 cloves of garlic
{sometimes I add a ham hock or sausage. If you are in the south get Conecuh hickory smoked sausage. It's the absolute best. Add the ham hock or sausage at the beginning when you add everything else.}
Herbs und spices:
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp thyme
2 or 3 bay leaves
salt and pepper to taste
I also use a cajun seasoning called Tony Chachere's (pronounced sash-er-ees). It's the best. a teaspoon at least.
If you dont have a cajun seasoning substitute a little red pepper to add heat.
once the beans are rinsed i throw them in the pot. everything can go in at the begining.
put in enough water to cover the beans by about an inch.
add all of your herbs and spices.
bring it to a boil
then turn it down to a low heat and let it simmer for a about an hour or half or so
be sure to stir it regularly so it doesnt stick and burn
cajun red beans should start to loose their shape and it should have an almost creamy consistency when they are done.
add fresh chopped parsley at the end of cooking.
serve over rice.

and you gotta have cornbread to go with red beans and rice.