Four Wheel Drive

Four Wheel Drive

Year: 2004

Heading: for symphonic band

First Performance:
April 29, 2004
by the University of Wisconsin-River Falls Symphony Band,
Kristin Tjornehoj, conducting

2.2.corA.2.Ebcl.3.bcl.ssax.2asax.2tsax.barsax set right/drum set left/marimba,glock/-amplified pnooptional bass gtr

Duration: 9'

Program Note:

Four Wheel Drive continues my exploration of creating a correspondence between drum patterns and pitched instruments imitating those patterns (this technique was used earlier in Rapture, Concerto for Percussion and Orchestra, 2001).  In this case the drum patterns are performed by two identical drum sets, placed right and left, with a wind ensemble in the center.  I had some themes I was playing around with, and when I decided to try putting a drum set pattern with it, I immediately wanted to “lock” those rhythmic patterns by assigning pitches to the drum beats, in a way “musicalizing” this non-pitched activity, and making thematic what we would ordinarily think of as just the “rhythm section.”  The result is reinforcing: the drumbeats gain meaning by having pitch, and the pitches have greater presence because they are articulated by the “ictus” of the drum beats.  My hope is the overall effect will be a bold, type-A sound; something one might think of when you are glad you have the grip of the road coming from all four wheels of your vehicle.