Dr. Epstein is a historical musicologist whose research ranges from early twentieth-century French music to digital mapping to the science of teaching and learning. His book, The Creative Labor of Music Patronage in Interwar France, reveals how collaborations between a variety of patrons and composers informed the distinctive sounds of French classical music between the world wars. Dr. Epstein has received fellowships and researching funding from the Fulbright Program, the French Embassy, the Georges Lurcy Foundation, the Whiting Foundation, the Associated Colleges of the Midwest, and the Arts and Humanities Research Council.
He has presented at national meetings of the American Musicological Society and the Society for American Music, as well as at conferences in England. His articles appear in Music & Politics, the Revue de musicologie, the Journal of Music History Pedagogy, and the Journal of Musicology. A double book review published in Notes: The Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association received the 2016 Eva Judd O'Meara Award for best review. He has also pursued research in the new field of digital, spatial history, working with St. Olaf undergraduates to produce a collection of interactive maps that bring music history to life: The Musical Geography Project, accessible at www.musicalgeography.org. His work on this project was recognized with the 2016 Teaching Award from the American Musicological Society.
An experienced teacher, from 2021-23 Dr. Epstein served as Co-Director of St. Olaf's Center for Innovation in the Liberal Arts. He is a co-founder and co-editor emeritus of Open Access Musicology, a collection of freely available scholarly essays intended for use in undergraduate classrooms that is published in a dynamic, digital format by Lever Press. Before coming to St. Olaf, Dr. Epstein taught at Harvard University and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.
He lives in Northfield with his wife, two children, and a mini American Shepherd named Barley. When not teaching or writing, he can be found baking, biking, and playing eight-ish instruments in a family music duo, Louis and Dan and the Invisible Band.