So it looks like the last entry is from July 31, it’s Oct. 12 now.¬† Not that I havn’t had anything to say, but I just haven’t had the time.¬† This blog was set up as a test for a blog on the CMN!компютри site, which I hope will generate more (actually any) discussion.¬† I doubt I’ll have much time for it either but I am hopeful!
rent a car bulgariaOn other notes, I finished a work for Tenor Saxophone, Guitar, and Accordion.¬† I had meant to post something regarding the issue of the accordiaon and other instruments that composer have available to them but have no resources to study.¬† For my part I purchased an old accordion on ebay, do to some shipping issues I spend two days a a technician (I can now fix an accordion!!!)¬†The process also helped in figuring out what all the damn buttons did.¬† Anyway I think my understanding of the instrument may help in the future and I think I produced a pretty cool piece for the ensemble.¬† They’re a new group called RIOT with Michael Ibrahim (saxophone), Oren Fader (Guitar), & Eric Wubbels (Accordion).
¬†I’ll post the details of the premiere when they’ve been confirmed.
OK, so I have been asked to write a collection of songs for an incredible counter-tenor, Augustine Mercante.¬† After a painful search for text that suit my desires and a¬†theme of love requested by Mr. Mercante, I have come up blank.
Well, not completely…
I thought that maybe I might write the text myself.¬† Not something I’ve jumped at in the past, actually only once.¬† It worked well for the effect I was trying to create with a mixture of recorded and sung text in “A New Piece”, but that was a very different context.
So I’ve composed a set of¬†5 poems for a work for couter-tenor and piano titled “Sickly Suite (silly love songs)”.¬† I¬†am hesitant to share them as separate works from the music, though I am startled by their relatively decent quality.¬† I will leave it to the performance to decide if they work well as musical text, a realm in which so much mediocre poetry has been immortalized.
As most composers are painfully aware, the search for text is difficult and, should you need permission from the author, the prospect can be very off putting.¬†
It took far less time to write then I spent searching.¬† Is that a good sign…
I was recently interviewed for an article on “emerging” composers.¬† It was a pleasant change of pace from interviews about CMN! projects; someone who had listened to and¬†was¬†intrigued by¬†the majority of my works was asking informed questions about me as a composer.¬† Yay!
The question of what it is like to be an emerging composer came up and¬†I’ve been pondering the concept.¬† What milestones does a composer reach in order to rise from the unknown and become “emerging”?¬† For that matter, what¬†in your career crowns you¬†established?¬†
When I think of living composers there are very few “houshold” names, and even fewer under 50.¬† Maybe that’s it - if you’re stubborn¬†enough to keep doing¬†this, 50 years or so down the line people take notice.¬† I’m 31 and “emerging” - ask a random music listener if they’ve heard of me¬†¬†(Do me a favor,¬†when they say no, point them to my website and tell them something like “He’s the best kept secret on the East Coast!” or “His music makes my dog’s ear stand up!”)¬†¬†
In 19 years do the same thing; if the response has changed, let me know.¬†¬†I want to be aware of it¬†when my status is elevated!
This took way too much time out of my day, I had to share it! (www.simpsonizeme.com)
In response to the significant positive reaction I have recieved from my saxophone and tape work “Collage No. 1 (Bits of Bowie)” I have decided to persue the collage series more vigorously.¬† My good friend and incredible guitarists, Patrik Karlsson, is anxiously awaiting the work for performance during the 2007 - 08 concert season.¬† It is a pleasure to write for him once again after hearing the beutiful performance he and Anne-Mette Skovbjerg (Duo con Forza) ¬†gave of “Train of Thought”.¬† The work is for Electric Guitar and a sound collage created from the recordings of the Ramones.¬† The works in this series are a great opportunity for me to explore the individual influences various popular artists have had on me.
Currently I have the opening minute down on paper and about 40 seconds of the sound collage created for this section.¬† My current plan is to have 3 sections each growing in intensity and virtuosity followed by a short Coda to bring it all back home.¬† I figure it’ll be about a 4 - 5 minute work.
I’ve been enjoying collecting samples for the collage.¬† It’s a great time revisiting these energetic and humorous songs.¬† The collection process sparks so many of the ideas for what the piece will turn out to be.¬† The work opens with a variety of count offs which open a tremendous number of the Ramones songs.¬†¬† It’s a great way to introduce my musical material while immediately giving the listener the distictive quality of the group¬†so much of which¬†come¬†out from their vocal qualities.
Of course there is some concerns surrounding copyright issues as I pursue this collection.¬† I’ve heard about conflicts that have come up for other artists, John Oswald’s Plunderphonics being the most similar to this situation.¬† Currently there are no records out, but there has been talk of recording this work when it is complete.¬† If anyone reading this has any advice, my ears are open.
In the meantime the work is coming together well, it gave me the chance to dust off my old Gibson 330 and shred for a while.¬† I learned that one of my dogs doesn’t know what to make of the amplifier, that’s been entertaining.
I’ll keep this up to date as the work progresses…
So posting this blog assumes that you have some interest in what I have to say and¬†that I have something interesting to say to you.¬† I guess we’ll see what of that¬†may be¬†true.
This is my first entry, I didn’t expect it to be mindblowing - Success!