Author Topic: Night_Moods  (Read 158 times)

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RJB54

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Night_Moods
« on: June 06, 2020, 12:53:06 PM »
I would like to present Night Moods (for piano).

Score:     https://app.box.com/s/jc0alpqt532tum3n6wt3gv0jnrcnb3zy
Audio-I:   https://app.box.com/s/pzqp4wxidcdw69dloyd3r57fz8ocnsae
Audio-II:  https://app.box.com/s/r35mwsdwgh7kxf7n9ah3r5rdomz55is0
Audio-III: https://app.box.com/s/roseiv66rv683s1bjacg9n7emadrg02p

The freeware MP3 generator I use has begun timestamping the MP3s it generates with sometimes ridiculously wrong lengths again so don't get perturbed by the lengths of these MP3s. For example, the .WAV file generated by Finale for the 2nd movement is 4 minutes long, but the MP3 is stamped as being 14'01" in length. The 1st movement is actually 5'40", the 2nd 4'00", and the 3rd 6'38".

As I've said before I am not good at coming up with cool, interesting, titles, so this piece has the rather pedestrian title of Night Moods.

I don't really do program music and this is the closest I will get to it in the respect that vaguely programmatic (impressionistic) associations can be applied/felt in these pieces.

In the first movement, we are in the woods at night and we hear the nocturnal creatures calling to each other, the wind rustling the leaves of the trees, the moon dancing between the clouds, the feeling of a storm brewing up with thunder off in the distance but which dissipates, and so on...

In the second movement, it is hot both inside and out and we are in a sinuous and sultry mood.

In the third movement, we are in that half asleep/half awake state where thoughts and emotions drift nearer and farther with little or no consciece control.

Technically, the challenge I set for myself in the first movement was to create something with minimal material.

This movement makes use of a single one of my rows at a single transpositional level. This row is segmented into three pitch collections labeled j, k, and l.

Segment j consists of two pitches (Bb and F). Segment k consists of five pitches (C, D, Eb, G, Ab) which comprise set-class 5-20 or the Sakura pentatonic scale. Segment l consists of five pitches (C#, E, F#, A, B) which comprise set-class 5-35 or the 'black key' pentatonic scale.

The movement rotates through these pitch collections in the order l, j, k except for one passage where they appear as j followed by k and l at the same time (one in each hand).

The challenge was to create a viable piece from these three pitch collections only, no interpolations of any kind, no transpositions, etc. For example, all of the pitches which appear from the beginning through the first three beats of m.52 are the pitches from Segment l. The last two beats of m.52 present Segment j and then in m.53 we get material using only the pitches from Segment k and so on.

My hope is that I was able to create something which works and doesn't feel too static while limiting myself in this manner. I'm sure you'll let me know :).

The second movement is a little more elaborate. This movement uses a different one of my rows which is segmented into two pitch collections labeled j and k. Segment j consists of eight pitches (which comprise an octatonic scale) while Segment k consists of the remaining four pitches (a diminished 7th chord). This movement makes use of various transpositions of the row and also incorporates some interpolations.

I particularly like the rhythmic/metric ambiguities in the second movement. Are we in a slow 4, a moderate 3, or a quick 3?

The third movement was originally posted as my Meditation #4 (to see that discussion go to http://www.composeforums.com/index.php?topic=2485.0). As that piece grew and developed I became unhappy with it as a 'meditation' as I felt it had grown beyond the scope of a meditation.

This movement uses yet another of my rows which is segmented into two pitch collections labeled j and k. Segment j consists of seven pitches (which comprise a diatonic scale) while Segment k consists of the remaining five pitches (a pentatonic scale).

Due to this segmented approach to the rows used, these movements are characterized by different scales. Movement I is pentatonic, II is octatonic, and III is diatonic and pentatonic.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2020, 12:55:19 PM by RJB54 »
Information is not knowledge. Knowledge is not wisdom. Wisdom is not truth. Truth is not beauty. Beauty is not love. Love is not music. Music is THE BEST.
Frank Zappa

SallyS

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Re: Night_Moods
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2020, 10:48:53 AM »
You've been busy Robert!!! I enjoyed this very much. I think there is a good balance between the three moments. My favourite is still meditation.... But the other two lead well in to it. I think perhaps the first movement is a little long.... and there's a couple of places it just seems to lose its direction... but generally it works for me. The simplicity of it is great.... and contrasts well with the rather darker, more complex second movement. Bravo!!

mjf1947

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Re: Night_Moods
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2020, 11:05:13 AM »
Robert .... I don't know why I missed this post; however, I am glad Sallys posted.

The 3 works are quite lovely.  The 3rd is so much "Debussy-esque" I would have thought it was written by him.  It is my favorite of the three; although, they all have charms.

My only observation, which I have mentioned before, that at times by prolonging the thematic material ... stretching it ...... you may lose some dramatic impact.

Well done~!

Mark



sandalwood

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Re: Night_Moods
« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2020, 11:28:37 AM »
Here's another admirer, marveled also by your prolificity. I enjoyed listening to the pieces a lot. As I've said before, I'm hearing them as impressionist music (very occasionally with glimpses of new age, maybe :)).

Of the proverbial two kinds of music, I believe these fall safely on the "good music" side. Bravo!

RJB54

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Re: Night_Moods
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2020, 12:21:54 PM »
Thank you all.
Information is not knowledge. Knowledge is not wisdom. Wisdom is not truth. Truth is not beauty. Beauty is not love. Love is not music. Music is THE BEST.
Frank Zappa

Jerry Engelbach

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Re: Night_Moods
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2020, 12:56:13 PM »
I dunno how I missed this, too. You sneaked it in in the glare of midday.
 
Marvelous pieces. Definitely remind me of Debussy piano preludes, although your melodic/harmonic system only coincidentally touches on him.
 
The program notes are interesting, but didn't matter to me. I just enjoyed the inventiveness and complexity.
 
Do you try to promote live performances of your work?
 
Cheers,
Jer
Finale 26
NP3
GPO 5
JABB 3
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RJB54

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Re: Night_Moods
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2020, 03:18:52 PM »
Do you try to promote live performances of your work?

No I do not. Unfortunately for me I haven't had any interactions with musicians, other than with the people here, for decades.

For many years all of my creative efforts went into my work designing software systems, designing user interfaces, becoming expert in several programming languages, writing technical documents (manuals, user guides), etc.

I had no time for music making and lost contact with all of my musician friends.

Since I've gotten back into music making (or at least music writing) I have had no time to try and meet musicians. This has been exacerbated by my move from New Jersey to Florida where I know nobody.

Plus, I'm old, have multiple health issues, and am still working and commuting (at least pre-covid), which means that working up the energy to find and cultivate musicians who might be interested in performing my music is not very likely.

So, in essence, I just write for the people here.     
Information is not knowledge. Knowledge is not wisdom. Wisdom is not truth. Truth is not beauty. Beauty is not love. Love is not music. Music is THE BEST.
Frank Zappa

RJB54

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Re: Night_Moods
« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2020, 03:19:41 PM »
Oh, and Jerry, I forgot to mentions, thanks for the comments.
Information is not knowledge. Knowledge is not wisdom. Wisdom is not truth. Truth is not beauty. Beauty is not love. Love is not music. Music is THE BEST.
Frank Zappa

gogreen

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Re: Night_Moods
« Reply #8 on: June 21, 2020, 05:49:05 AM »
"Night Moods" is wonderful. I think the title is fine.

One musical comment--I agree with Mark:
Quote
My only observation, which I have mentioned before, that at times by prolonging the thematic material ... stretching it ...... you may lose some dramatic impact.

You really need to get this performed. Do you have a Facebook account? Easy to find performers there. Less so on LinkedIn, but still possible. If not, a talented high school or college player could perform this in recital, a semester's project, perhaps. Covid and health issues aside, it's entirely possible to forge productive composer-performer relations online--without ever meeting people in person. That includes performers and publishers. I think many musicians and audiences would benefit from playing and hearing your music.

Art

RJB54

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Re: Night_Moods
« Reply #9 on: June 21, 2020, 05:58:48 AM »
Art, thanks.

I refuse to do Facebook for several reasons, but I'll look into LinkedIn. I've always thought of LinkedIn in the context of business but I guess there could be other types of people there. Thanks for the suggestion.
Information is not knowledge. Knowledge is not wisdom. Wisdom is not truth. Truth is not beauty. Beauty is not love. Love is not music. Music is THE BEST.
Frank Zappa