picking up from yesterday


Regarding Derek Walcott’s  interview I mentioned yesterday, I was able to email myself quotes from it. Using them, I started a google doc of notes about him and Omeros. I do this from time to time: make a doc with my reading notes, often with books I do not own. But Omeros affected me so much. I realized that I missed some erudite allusions, not to mention, the subtleties of Walcott’s form. In the absence of a good reference book about the work I can use the interweb to nail down some of these allusions.

Image result for sea grapes derek walcott

Yesterday morning laying in the morning dark I read the poem, Sea Grapes, by Walcott (also the name of his 1976 volume of poetry).

Sea Grapes

That sail which leans on light,
tired of islands,
a schooner beating up the Caribbean
for home, could be Odysseus,
home-bound on the Aegean;
that father and husband’s
longing, under gnarled sour grapes, is
like the adulterer hearing Nausicaa’s name
in every gull’s outcry.
This brings nobody peace. The ancient war
between obsession and responsibility
will never finish and has been the same
for the sea-wanderer or the one on shore
now wriggling on his sandals to walk home,
since Troy sighed its last flame,
and the blind giant’s boulder heaved the trough
from whose groundswell the great hexameters come
to the conclusions of exhausted surf.
The classics can console. But not enough.
I love the ending line. But I didn’t really recognize Nausicaa. But a quick look at Wikipedia reminded me of her role in the Odyssey. This morning I ran across Walcott reading this poem. It’s short and worth a listen.

Also to continue from yesterday, I looked up Samuel Colerdige Taylor in Groves. He is in the same generation as Vaughan Williams, Holst, Ireland and others. He was one of the group and thinking about his musical language as an outgrowth of his love of Dvorak and probably the English Pastorale school makes sense although I didn’t read anything specifically alluding to the pastorale school in regards to him.

Elgar championed his compositions. As did Stanford. Since he combines the stuffy Anglican background with an interest in African American music I find him interesting to say the least. He seems to have taken to heart Dvorak’s idea of using folk resources.
IMSLP has a page for him with lots of compositions.
Also, here is a clearer reference to where I first found Taylor’s music. “Piano Music of Africa and the African Diaspora” Vol 3 Early Advanced Compiled and Edited by William H. Chapman Nyaho. The link is to the Oxford University Press page for this volume. There are other volumes in this series and I will probably look in to acquiring them after I finish exploring this volume. I think I purchased Volume 3 from Craig Cramer’s list of used music for sale he emails out.
Here’s a video of the piece I have played. Or at least an interp of it. This player changes it which is fine by me. Note that in comments is one by Sir Taylor, Taylor’s great grandson: Zachius Matthew Coleridge Taylor.

For a closer reading of Taylor’s 1905 score listen to this video.

Interesting comments on this video on YouTube as well. Apparently the performer knows the editor of the series alluded to above. Cool. I do think I prefer her interp to the jazzed up version, but maybe that’s because I’m interested in learning more about Samuel Coleridge Taylor.

Noteflight – Online Music Notation Software

Inevitable I guess. I have bookmarked to check it out. I’m curious about how well  the playing into notation works.

How Trump Is Transforming Rural America | The New Yorker

Bookmarked to read.

Esperanza Spalding Will Record ‘Exposure’ in Front of the World – The New York Times

I think Spalding is an unadorned genius.

I have music from this album queued up on YouTube right now. This bookmark to help me remember to listen to it something.

Ticking Watch. Boat Engine. Slowness. The Secrets of the ‘Dunkirk’ Score. – The New York Times

My brother seemed to be taken with this new movie. He also remarked on the music. It sounds interesting.

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