My thoughts and out loud thoughts on composition, performance, and many things musical.

Second movement: Complete…?

So I’ve completed the second movement of A Man’s Will to a Woman. There is, what I think is lovely, a serial section with a serial improvisatory (abandonment of serialism?) section in the dead middle of everything.  I am almost done with the lyrics.  So I suppose I should say I am 90% done the second movement.  The intro is a very brief recollection of emotion from the beginning of the first movement, and moves almost immediately into a not-so-tonal-but-not-yet-serialistic section that then leads into the serialism.  My tone row (F E C D Eb Db G A B Bb Gb Ab) is spread across as the bass line through the entire section while the other voices move in specific versions of the row, some retrograde, some inversions, and some, you guessed it, retrograde inversions. Oh college music theory courses can be fun!

I used a reoccuring theme in the movement also as a transition into a very Bach-esque duet then trio section.  I have lyrics for that particular section as well that will hover in two-part harmony over moving lines.  That section dwindles down into a fairly simple mandolin chord-strumming section (simple…to gasp air from the serialism…) that I began playing one day.  I was just messing around and found that I could definitely incorporate it into the piece.

I am currently compiling ideas, bits and chunks, for the third and final movement, and will hopefully began mapping out a permanent outline in the month to come.  I just have so little time….ayayay.

I constantly am listening to classical piano and violin solos, as well as all things Punch Brothers.  I listen to Chris Thile’s Blind Leaving the Blind and try and remind myself, that I should NOT be striving to mimic his music, nor his compositional techniques, but rather than I am certainly infatuated with this particular instrumentation.

It turns out, as I still am setting Shel Silverstein’s Where the Sidewalk Ends poem to music, the more chunks I find myself making up on the guitar or mandolin I realize I am going to soon have more music than I know what to do with.  Well…actually…I know exactly what I’ll be doing with it.   I am growing more and more fond of the idea of writing music for just 2-3 instruments.  I can write my own solo stuff for days, but goodness I need those extra voices.  I think I have a few thing brewing in my mind that would be great for just guitar and mandolin, and then guitar, mandolin, and bass.

Also…I think I’ve developed a twitch.  …And it’s not from coffee.  …Anything else to really make me look like a music composing nerd…apparently is welcome.  Thank you twitch.  My eyes and neck hurt.

Also, here is a very brief snippet of (one) my I’m-a-hack mandolin skills and (two) idea that I think I am going to use as a development for the third movement. Enjoy. Seriously…”hack”…I can’t drive that point home enough…

…ALSO, I blatantly steal the sounds of Bach. Blatantly.


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