video and update

Rhonda and her son, Isaac, made this video of a piece I wrote last year. It’s very flatter to me that they took the time and trouble to do this.

The Lord the Almighty pdf
Life and Breath.pdf
Goodness and mercy final,pdf
Trio.pdf
05 Psaltery.pdf

I have been remiss on updating, I know. But I have been putting in hours on my composition and also have been in a weird space. Who isn’t? What an odd time in America. I’ll try to update a bit more often. In the meantime, a rather dreary description of my recent compositional trials follows.

Compositional Update

I think I now have an idea how the second movement to my trumpet/organ piece is going to go. It has been through multiple revisions and has been a bit of a struggle for me. But, I think I can hear the shape of it now and can envision being satisfied with working it out.

So I started with the first version without thinking about using the harmon mute on the trumpet. Then I decided to dedicate this movement to Miles Davis. The harmon mute is a slight nod in his direction. But Lord knows I wasn’t trying to match his genius or even show musical influence or do a tribute.

So the second version,  included a B section using the mute. Then I decided the new material was incongruous with the old. This included a carefully worked out four part harmonization of the melody, Lord I want to be a Christian. I cut everything but the muted section and made a third version.

Then I decided the muted section would need a B section of its own. The fourth version of the piece included a fairly worked out organ accompaniment. It was simple but I really liked it. Again, the new B section didn’t fit. So for the fifth version, I decided to use the original four part harmonization in a new key. After toying around a bit with this, I arrived at what I hope is the beginning of the final version.

In its present state I toned down the A section and saved some of the better parts for its return after the B section. So now the piece starts very dissonant and dreamy, moves to a chorale setting in a different key of the melody with the organ playing three distinct lines like a trio under the trumpet playing the melody. Then the A section returns and builds to denouement. I am more satisfied with this idea.

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