MORTON FELDMAN & the Electric Guitar

christian wolff

When Morton Feldman’s electric guitar piece for Christian Wolff was stolen from Wolff’s car in 1967 [the score was actually in the guitar case that was stolen], it was considered to be lost forever. All there was left was a raw sketch, found in the late 1990’s by Jogrim Erland, but still no-one knew how the original score looked like.

However in 2008 a radio recording was discovered of Wolff playing the Feldman composition ‘The Possibility of a New Work for Electric Guitar’.

Recorded in the mid 60’s, with a very poor sound quality, it was the start of Seth Josel’s reconstruction of the score. The reconstruction of the Feldman sketch is on the left page, and the transcription of the Wolff audio-recording is on the right page.

So what to make of this? Is this the real thing? Or will it always be what it is, a reconstruction? We wanted it so badly! A piece by Feldman for our beloved instrument.

Listen for yourself! Here are three guitar players working with Seth Josel’s reconstruction of the score.

Gaku Yamada
Wiek Hijmans
Ruud Harte
A beautiful edition with lots of information, ilustrations and scores!

WORKPLACE #2

Today, while working on a transcription for electric guitar of a Telemann ‘Fantasia’ [1735], i was thinking of another transcription i once made a long time ago of a piece by Orlando Gibbons [1583-1625],

The piece i’m referring to ‘Five Part In Nomine’ was scored for Wurlitzer Electric Piano, Vibraphone and Electric Guitar. A fine instrumentation!

This may be the right moment to post a transcription i made of a panel discussion that was video taped by Other Minds in 2010. https://archive.org/details/OMF_2010_03_04_c2_01

Charles Armirkhanian is discussing the 2nd String Quartet with composer Jurg Frey.

what strikes me so is this important role church music, psalms and hymns and chorales played and still play in music. This leads me to my own fascination with church music in general. From the Ecole de Notre Dame, to Orlando Gibbons, to Claude Goudimel, [the composer to which Jurg Frey might be referring to, when he speaks of his book of chorals], Goudimel the composer of the Genevan Psalter Book, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Claude_Goudimel], to Jurg Frey, to Morton Feldman ‘ if i want my music to demonstrate anything, it is that ‘nature and human nature are one’. Unlike Stockhausen, i don’t feel called upon to forcefully ‘mediate’ between the two. Stockhausen believes in Hegel; i believe in God. it is as simple as that’. [‘A life without Bach and Beethoven’ – Give my Regards to Eight Street]. The feeling is universal, at least in the context of western music, and of importance to me. I’m convinced that some knowledge of this subject will give you good insights of music in general.

So for now i’d like to end with the mentioning of Roscoe Holcomb, a Kentucky Mountain Music man with a strong faith.

Beautiful book/DVD/CD by John Cohen!

INSPIRATION

notes from my sketchbook

texts, drawings, notations, technical stuff are all from my sketchbooks

12 june 2019

from my wish to play soft, abstract and harmonious sounds came the energy and motivation to start to think about chamber music and eventually to write music for chamber music ensemble.
Electric Chamber Music, because at the center of this writing is the electric guitar. so far i’ve written some 25 pieces in the last year. Solo pieces, duets, trio’s, quartets, and lately i’m working towards combinations with woodwind instruments [clarinet, flute] and percussion.
besides thinking and writing the music i wanted to test the written material. an Ensemble would be perfect for this musical journey.
my great great grandfathers name was Sijme Storm, he was the gardener of ‘Kasteel Soelen’ / ‘Soelen Castle’ in the 19th Century. Enough reason for me to name the Ensemble after him.

my main inspiration for the project: – Ecole de Notre-Dame, – Morton Feldman, – Jürg Frey.

André Hogeslag/ Sijme Storm 2019