Had to get creative with the audio links. Not exactly obscure pieces just not widely available outside of CD. Again, I hope you enjoy listening and this will promote sharing of music.
Oh and thanks to my Dad for hitting the post button as weebly doesn't have a schedule post function and I am currently somewhere in the Gulf of Mexico. Happy Tuesday!
I first saw this at PASIC 2008 with the Ohio State University Percussion Ensemble playing it. Scored for all hand percussion, it was right up my alley at that point in my life. It came at a period where I was getting away from mallet percussion as my primary percussion writing. Pretty rocking piece.
Introduced to me though Chapman Welch, this piece has an absolutely killer opening and closing. The piece actually inspired a project in my MUSI 403 Basic Electronic Music course that I've taught for the last three years at Rice. Essentially, the students had three gesture projects. (1) they listen to a piece of music and create a graphic score for the piece. (2) they had to draw a gesture and then create it in sound. (3) they had to listen to a gesture and recreate it in sound. The opening gesture of this piece served as the inspiration for that project which was a really "fun" (probably brutal) challenge for my students as it helped them ultimately create more interesting gestures with their recorded sounds in their compositions.
As you go through this list you will not find many recent pieces for acoustic instruments. I think some of the best composers have focused on the electronic music genre due to its capability for a vast array of sounds and its capability for expressing the present in a visceral way. I found this piece at the suggestion of the composer of the next entry. I love this piece for its gestures and textures. The sounds have a certain fragility about them and the use of "real" or identifiable sounds along with created sounds gives the listener an extremely stimulating venture through Barrett's sound world.
(piano and interactive live electronics)
Of my favorite active composers, Elainie has to be my favorite. I met her when I was an undergrad at BGSU. I wasn't studying composition at that point so I primary knew her from playing her students' works at the end of the year as a favor to her and also to our weekly visits in the produce section of Krogers when I worked there. Since that time, I have become a huge fan of her music and particularly this piece. I saw it first at SEAMUS 2011. It completely blew me away. I came back to Rice and asked Elainie for an interview and for the patch and used the information for a lecture I gave on the idea of
hyperinstruments; instruments created through using electronics to extend or augment the instrument's physical and realistic capabilities. I paired this piece with Mario Davidovsky's Synchronisms No. 6 for piano and tape. The above picture was taken at EMM 2011 with Dan Tramte, another BGSU alum and good friend (percussion and composition).
(piano and orchestra)
Yeah. I know. That is Tom Hulce in Amadeus. But, to be honest, that is how I really came to love this piano concerto. It is the primary non-diegetic music for the film. Still a movie I will re-watch and not feel guilty about it (I cringe every time I even think about Mr. Hollands Opus).
Mozart is one of the few classical era composers to whom I ever "want" to actively listen. When this desire surfaces, I go to this piece or another one that will make the list later on. I think Mozart was at his best in the minor mode. It has also been written that Mozart used his piano concertos as a means to developing his dramatic technique he is known for in his operatic works.