Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Blues Monday on a Wednesday

This past Monday, I managed to finish transcribing the opening section of the Scherzo -- the middle section is basically done already. So here's my "take" on The Blues. Remember, I'm not trying to write genuine Blues or imitate Gershwin (that's a little out of my league), just trying to absorb it into my own style. This may be a little different than my original scratchings.

The violin part may sound bluesy, even if it begins to lose track of the tonality and the 12-bar structure fairly quickly (it is, after all, a scherzo), and the piano part may sound fairly bluesy with its repeated chord patterns (if you let your imagination roam), but together they probably sound like two guys in a smoky bar who've started to improvise but haven't really figured out which planet they're on.

The tempo is fairly relaxed (quarter note = 90 according to the ol' metrognome). There are a couple of "uh oh" and "oh yeah" chords in the piano part I need to figure out, and the pedal pattern continues throughout the piano's chords, too. But basically, this is it:

and so on...

I wasn't trying to pay hommage to or imitate Ravel's Violin Sonata, either -- rather than embrace it, I thought about just devouring it and moving on. The trick is, now, moving on to the next paragraph. One of the tricks is the interruption of the "rock-n-roll" motive in that next-to-last measure before the pianist gets back on track, as if "oops, sorry, another phrase to go, sorry." Then he ends up restarting on the wrong beat: should I have the violinist continuing adamantly in the strict meter or should I have him drop a beat, too? Maybe a little later.

Today was going to be the day to break through the bar-line to the next paragraph, but it didn't turn out to be a good day, creatively speaking: there were five things about concentration that just gave me the writin'-the-blues blues...

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