It is incredibly easy to see that music has always been a huge part of Walt Ribeiro, the man behind For Orchestra and his own original orchestral arrangements.
“The second I picked up the guitar I knew this is what I wanted to do.”
Playing guitar got him through High School, and after just a semester of mechanical engineering in college, Walt changed his major to jazz guitar performance. He then changed his major again, this time to music composition, after he injured his hand.
Walt strives to share the impact music has on him. In 2008, he and his community raised money to get music supplies for over 900 students. In the following year he worked with MC Lars on the album This Gigantic Robot Kills, an album artists Jonathan Coulton and Weird Al also contributed to. About the experience, Walt says, “Lars is great, and the CD turned out fantastic. I’m all for adding violins to rap tracks.” It was also in that year that Walt started For Orchestra, which combines his two favorite genres, orchestra and pop music.
What Makes Him Nerdy?
Back in 2007, Walt participated in a remix contest that Jonathan Coulton was putting on. Walt’s orchestral arrangement of Code Monkey got a great response from the JoCo fan community, which kicked off what eventually became For Orchestra.
Each week, Walt creates an orchestral arrangement of a popular song to be posted every Friday. All of his covers can be found here, among which are other JoCo songs, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Theme, the Pokémon Theme, and many more.
Where Should I Start?
Browse the collection of For Orchestra covers on Walt’s website. Listen to the tracks that catch your eye; there are so many popular songs to choose from that you’re guaranteed to find some favorites. If you’re a Spotify user, you can find all of these tracks here, as well.
Where Can I Get His Music?
Walt’s orchestral covers and the original album which was released in 2007 (and left Walt $15,000 in debt) can be found on iTunes, Amazon, and Bandcamp. To stay up to date on the latest For Orchestra covers, check out the website, ForOrchestra.com, like the Facebook page, and follow Walt on and Twitter, @WaltRibeiro.