Hello! I'm in the process of doing a major update to my site, and will re-release it soon with some updated music and other good stuff. In the meantime, please enjoy this recording of the incredible JACK Quartet performing my work, Asterism III.
When I lived in Ithaca, NY, I had the extremely good fortune of making music and befriending Kathleen (Kathy) Brahney, who not only is a spectacular singer, but is also a very talented painter and visual artist. With immense wit, she captured her feelings about American politics in the years 2016-2017 (and beyond!) in a five-part series of paintings called “A Modern Bestiary,” and ASTERISM III is inspired by the painting titled "The Asp: Dark vs. Light" from the same series.
At the center of Kathy’s painting lies the expression of opposites — truth and lies; darkness and light — and I thought that this presentation of opposites could have interesting ways of being expressed in sound. In ASTERISM III, then, I wrote music that also presents sonic opposites: the natural sound of the instrument, versus “muted” sound (as if one were to cover their ears); music marked as “serene” and slow-moving, versus trepidatious, agitated music; the sound of natural harmonics, versus artificial harmonics; and so on. Although these contrasts mimic the opposites expressed in Kathy’s painting, I did not set out to create music that was meant to be qualified as “dark” or “light,” or signify “truth” or “lies.” By not infusing the piece with my own specific programmatic ideas, it is my hope that whomever listens to ASTERISM III can find an opportunity to hear and interpret these opposites in their own way.