Monday, March 31, 2008

March 31 - Above and Beyond

Record Credo of Genre Implosions No. 1 and do orchestration of Variations on Americana, astoundingly through page 16.

Before this, help Nick Montes re GarageBand, and do a demo recording of Difficult from Vocal Sonatina No. 1 ("Spitzer"), ultimately with Helium Voice which maybe, possibly, kinda is a keeper -- actually finishing it at home.

Previous to that, Richard Rodgers Sound of Music: Do-Re-Mi first 16 bars in Theory for dictation, sight-singing, and harmony -- how can one resist the apparently only other song to feature solfege on sequential notes of a scale since Guido d'Arezzo's Hymn to St. John? One can't.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

March 30 - The Journey Out

Time to leave the Vaca Mountains and English Hills again, at least for awhile,

turning and getting on I-80, the northside of the Lagoon Mountains as a bumpy dark green horizon,

the south side of the Poverty Hills starting to sere out against rogue cumuli.

Harriet's driving, so I get to take slightly better pictures than normal of some of the 680 sights, including Long Barn and its backing fingers of vegetated canyons reaching up to the Sulfur Springs summits,


the Hovel Hills,

and Horse Farm

On beyond, approaching cloudier conditions near Orinda,

up to

and through the Caldecott Tunnel

for another rehearsal of Antigone: III-V and San Rafael News at Berkeley's Chamber Arts with Eliza, Kristin, Beth, and Janet;

then to the City for a brief practice with John Partridge, checking the Goat Hall mail, dropping the PHNH key off with Erling, lunching in the chill of Connecticut Yankee, and checking out the Phoenix Theatre near Union Square (an interesting 49-seat venue six floors up in the Native Sons Building) -- ultimately heading to Marin, approaching the Rainbow Tunnel

through the 101 Headlands Canyon,

down the Waldo Grade with Mt. Tam rising.

Stopping at the Strawberry Starbucks yields views north to Horse Hill,

west to an outlying eminence in greater Mill Valley,

and south back to Marin City and the highlands beyond.

It's Symphony night, but we're early, so we take our leisure by driving the long way around China Camp, three-quarters circling San Pedro Mountain,

past the Brick Yard,

to the heroic viewpoint at Rat Island Cove, where Mt Burdell looks great

at any distance.

So does the isle itself

(just offshore of the picnic area),

a spot of singularity,

as distinctive a presence as the shadowy Turtleback beyond.

We arrive at the Civic Center, with Frank Lloyd Wright's singular spire,

and views of the north slope of San Pedro Mountain (across from the druid-circle-flowers of the duck pond's artificial island),

the eccentric light sculpture in the round-about (one assumes Frank Lloyd Wright's own?), and

Mt. Tam glowing in the half-light beyond the parking lot.

Concert is fine (and in color, live) and will be reviewed tomorrow, appearing in Commuter Times this Friday, and excerpts at and

Page 4 of Variations on Americana orchestrated upon return.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

March 29 - Glory in the House Most Dayo

Finish Genre Implosions No. 1 ("Mass Confusion"): III. Gloria, built from Glorias associated with Pope Gregory I, Johannes Ciconia, Antonio Vivaldi, Igor Stravinsky, Francis Poulenc, and Leonard Bernstein (two).

Finally begin preparing for publication the July 2005 issue of 21st-Century Music, with another study of the Complete Crumb edition from Bridge Records. Do a works list for George and post it at

Out and about briefly, and in the evening, some time devoted to orchestration (including 3rd page) of Variations on Americana with concepts changing as we go along

Friday, March 28, 2008

March 28 - Have Mercy, Will Travel

Finish I. Introit and II. Kyrie of Genre Implosions No. 1 ("Mass Confusion"), progressive superimpositions of sound files -- the former of two Gregorian chants (Introit for Easter and Gaudeamus, the second in two separate performances), the latter Kyrie IV, Kyrie XI, and examples from Guillaume de Machaut's Messe de Nostre Dame (two versions), Missa "L'homme arme"s by both Guillaume Dufay and Johannes Ockeghem, Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina's Pope Marcellus Mass, F.J. Haydn's Missa in tempori belli, Igor Stravinsky's Mass, Leonard Bernstein's Mass (the quadrophonic tape and march), and my own Missa "The a deux."

Also thinking of Stravinsky's Introit from Requiem Canticles, Ralph Vaughan Williams's Mass in G Minor and Mr. Mister's Kyrie.

Dictation today is Jester Hairston's Elijah Rock

G Minor:

Do Do Do Me Fa Sol
Do Do Do Me Fa Fa Me Do Te


i i2 iv6 V
i i2 iv i64 iv6 v6

Giant black moths massacre the sun's bright rays, there and back again re Marin, detouring over the West Vaca Mountains via Napa under heavy sky, patches of blue near home, from exotic minor to blues, perhaps even lightening up (with later lightning?) to mixolydian.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

March 27 - Naiad Upending a Steeplechase

On the way to work, begin new work --

Op. 161 GENRE IMPLOSIONS NO. 1 ("Mass Confusion")
I. Introit
II. Kyrie
III. Gloria
IV. Gradual
V. Alleluia
VI. Credo
VII. Offertorium
VIII. Sanctus
IX. Agnus Dei

-- various collisions of sound files....

Before this, do corrections, final graphics, and print-out for April 2008 21st-Century Music (soon to be posted at and

After this, Quiz 10 in Music Theory, with examples drawn from George Gershwin, Kurt Weill, Sergei Prokofiev, and Anton Webern.

Home, designing new business cards and beginning the Chronicle section of the May 2008 Journal. Also, decide to re-activate the ILike website, so that mp3's can be downloaded....

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

March 26 - I Once Was Lost

Morning, out again, back to Left Bank, and the laptop has been found by the heroic cleanup crew.


Dictation is first four bars of Duke Ellington's Concerto for Cootie, main theme

F: Fa Re Ri Mi Sol Re Ri Mi, with repeat in rhythmic variant

Harmony, simplified from original, in call-and-response with melody,

I IV vi I64 vi7 V7 V7 I

Home, exhausted, but at least orchestrate another page of Variations on Americana and do the corrections for the April 2008 issue of 21st-Century Music ( and

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

March 25 - More About My Exciting Commute

By the number of pictures of the I-80 / 680 corridor, one might be led to believe that I love my commute, which I pretty much do.

But there are limits.

After Theory dictation from The Wind God (specifically the 12-bar My Little Finger Blues) plus intriguing compositions from Cecilia and Joel, head back home, print up some Music History: Volume III copies, head back out, teach evening course (works by Alban Berg through Dmitri Shostakovich, not quite making it through all the rep... so we'll continue next week), extended chat with Lamar Johston and Brian Perry over the vagaries of life,

head out to Left Bank with Owen. It is at this point that the mind grows foggy: upon arriving home, no laptop. Strong recollection of having taken it into restaurant, fuzzy notion of thereafter. Try calling -- no answer. Go back, on the off chance that someone's cleaning the place on the graveyard. Dark establishment locked tight, peering in... perhaps that's a computer case on the floor where we sat. Case the joint, finding the service entrance, still no luck.

Home, orchestrating first couple of pages of Variations on Americana, figuring I may as well be productive, as slumber is not forthcoming.

Monday, March 24, 2008

March 24 - Back to All That Jazz

Back to Theory with dictation of Louis Armstrong's West End Blues, first four bars of main theme:

Eb: Ri Mi Sol Ri Mi Sol Ri Mi Do Sol Mi Do Ti Te

In the lab thereafter, recording instrumental versions of San Rafael News: II Conference Room Technique (transposed m3 down) and

V. Lifespan

Sunday, March 23, 2008

March 23 - Resurrection Symphony

Rise up, rise up,

we look unto the hills, from whence come our salvation. Powerful gasoline, a clean windshield, a shoeshine, and redwoods-hard-up-against-chaparral help.

And music, always music, maybe Mahler maybe Mark mayhem and mild -- birds, the rustle of leaves, an occasional vehicle -- sounds rising from the riparian depths to the high oak savannas.

(one hopes, however, for the absence of certain strains, warned in the mossy slopes,

of cause and response, call and effect).

Naturally Napa for this ninth and final official day of spring break, in a symmetry of knarled limbs

and a symphony of elfin overhangs;

a verdant Vermontian, Verdian tunnel --

Stravinsky sinuously soaring to the sky.

Out of the canyon, heading back down south toward Orchard Road, there's Mt. George again,

across a sea of vineyards, and

looking back to the east side canyon checkerboard of vegetation,

even a few digger pines.

Back in the car, we cruise up canyon again and down into Oakville again, south Route 29 again,

dining at Mustards, across from a mansion in the Yountville Hills, ordering beer (of all things)

chez Budweiser Fairfield (of all places), which we pass on the way back, the wind so severe that even the horizon, atilt, is moving up.

Shadows are moving up, too, on the Fairfield Pyramids and



and the North Lagoon Mountains near Vacaville,

where sycamores,

palms and tulip trees glow for an instant, then it's night once more.

Record instrumental version of Vocal Sonatina No. 2 ("Vatsyayama"): III. "On the Means of Attracting Others to Oneself"

All the rest is silence. So far.