Monday, August 06, 2007


Seafair: Oberto won the race. Thet've been trying forever and finally did it. Art is happy and I'm going to buy some sausage.
Also, I've more or less finished the tuba concerto. At least I've got the sound alright, but unless there is a possibility of performance, I see no reason to waste a lot of paper printing out scores.
So..... on down the score to violin. Ick!, after all the thrill and noise and magnificant loudness of the brass concertos, I am now stuck with the wimpy squealy violin. I really prefer a solo voice that can be heard above it's envionment. Maybe an amped violin. Nah, that would be cheating, against the rules I've set for this project.
Or, maybe, I should go back to the horn concerto, which doesn't work very well, it's really boring.
I'm writing a piece for string quartet as warm-up but haven't actually started the concerto yet.
But you (By you, I mean me) never know.

Also, I've resurrected an earlier piece for two violins, which I am planning to present at the salon now that the salon is being held at a non-toxic venue not yet hostile to my presence.
I'll post it soon.
I need to hire two violinists for this project. Any horsehair cowboys, any catgut wranglers out there reading this?
I've got a LaneSavant grant that should cover expenses.

I've got to put the past behind me and move on. Now that I've let cheeses into my heart I must make profitable use of the time I have left between now and the triple bypass.

Young Frankenstein opens (tomorrow?). Tempted to buy tickets.

You know?. (of course you don't) I think I've dad a headache for the last week or so,
not that my head actually ached, but this morning it suddenly feels like it has been and now it's gone.
My wife claims that migraines can be like that, whatta I know?

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Blogger butch said...


Didn't the hydros just about rattle your windows there on the lake? I was busy reading HARRY POTTER VII, and watching my DVD of THE BATTLE OF ALGIERS, so I missed out on all the hype. Or are you a bit too far south to see all the hub-bub?

For a violin maker of the umpteenth magnitude, it is odd to see you refer to a violin as "wimpy squealy" instrument. If there are strings on one's heart, and I believe that there are, then the violin, viola, and cello hit perfect pitch within me; bring me to tears and lift my sagging spirit. When it comes to amplified violin music that "rocks", one cannot beat Jean-Luc Ponty.

Jean-Luc Ponty (born September 29, 1942, Avranches, France) is a virtuoso French violinist and jazz composer.

Ponty is the son of a violin teacher, who began his instruction before he moved on to the Paris Conservatory. By the mid 1960s he had moved towards jazz, recording with Stéphane Grappelli and Stuff Smith. Ponty's attraction to jazz was propelled by Miles Davis's and John Coltrane's music, which led him to adopt the electric violin. Critic Joachim Berendt wrote that "Since Ponty, the jazz violin has been a different instrument" and of his "style of phrasing that corresponds to early and middle John Coltrane" and his "brilliance and fire". [1]

In 1967 he visited the USA for the Monterey Jazz Festival [2] and then made an appearance on Frank Zappa's Hot Rats album.

Ponty subsequently worked with Stéphane Grappelli, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, and Frank Zappa, and appeared on more than 70 recordings. His symphonic style to jazz fusion made him a popular fusion artist of the 70's.

In 1972, he featured prominently on Elton John's Honky Chateau album, to the point that a picture of him was included in the album sleeve, which is only reserved for those who presented a strong presence on one of Elton's early 70's albums. He plays an electric violin solo through a Leslie speaker on the song "Mellow", which almost causes it to sound like a Hammond organ, and uses distortion on the song "Amy", effectively dueting with lead guitarist Davey Johnstone.

In 1977 he pioneered the use of the 5-string electric violin, with a lower C string. He sometimes also uses a 6-string electric violin called the Violectra, with low C and F strings – not to be confused with the violectra he played from the late 1960s to the mid-80s which had 4 strings, but tuned an octave lower. Ponty was among the first to combine the violin with MIDI, distortion boxes, phase shifters, and wah-wah pedals. This resulted in his signature, almost synthesizer-like sound.

In 2005 Ponty formed the acoustic fusion supergroup TRIO! with legendary bassist Stanley Clarke and Banjo virtuoso Béla Fleck.

I am certain that you have enjoyed Ponty's performances. If not, please do. You will dig him. It seems that some "classical" musicians scorn his stuff; it is too hip for them, I guess.

Wow, what great news about the Salon. Who needs the trolls at SSO in order to further your career and education? Let's hope you can scare up some fiddlers two. Maybe Anonomann can help...

I will bet that the theatrical production of YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN will be a hoot. Mel Brooks forever, I say.

Melva gets "ocular migranes" frequently. She doesn't always get pain, it is just that the brain, the visual cortex, the occipitol lobe, goes haywire for a time, and thinks look funny.

You "know" a lot, and are still learning, as we all should be; keeping your cortex fecund with new ideas and theories and work.


11:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with your view(s) on violins! BUT:
How about a concerto for double-bass??? Practically no composer has done so. It's sooo bad that a friend who is Principal Double-Bass in the Mecklenburg State Orchestra in Schwerin had to re-write someone's Bassoon Concerto to have one to play as soloist in a concert with the Neubrandenburg Philharmonic (I've forgotten who that "someone" was. He would like to perform a Concerto for Double-Bass by the Polish composer Porodowski, which he learned as a student at the Hanns Eisler Conservatory in (East) Berlin, but nobody knows where the orchestra parts can be found (I even asked at a recital for Double-Bass players at the UW, and none of them knows aboutr this concerto, either. So, here you'd have no competition.

Titling a film "Young Frankenstein" is good marketing (says this ex-marketing prof.); the main market for films is the under-30 age group, who would be attracted by the "Young" in the title. Even better to reach this age group: "Young Frankenstein Swoops on McDonald's"!

Gotta get back to packing; I'm moving Friday (the 10th).

5:29 PM  
Blogger Lane Savant said...

The plan for the concertos is to go down the score, I.E. Flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, horn, trumpet, trombone, violin I, violin II,
viola, cello, bass. But, I suppose, seeing as how I wrote the rule that I could simply declare that the last group be titled "strings", and can be composed in any order.
"Young Frankie" is a stage play based on the movie. I am dubius because of the brilliant casting of the movie. Bud Megan Mullaly is genius so it could work. I don't know about the rest of them, never heard of, actually.
Mel Brooks is uber-genius so I'm laughing already.
How 'bout Young, New, 10% off Monster from McDonald's deep fat fryer?

9:52 AM  

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