Project #3

It always seems to be the case that when I’m partway through a given project (just past the halfway mark on the Rodelinda Variations currently), the idea for the next project will arrive.

This one’s right on schedule.

So right now I’m doing a collection of variations on themes from Haendel’s “Rodelinda” and having a blast doing so.

However, I know that this is a total vanity project, mostly because no one in the universe aside from me will have any interest in it. People tend to want collections of a certain genre; they want all jazz pieces, all études, all rock songs, or all Baroque. They do not want a collection of pieces based on Baroque themes that are jazz, ragtime, Impressionist, swing, rock, etc.

And while it appears I can write anything, the two types of music that seem to come out most easily for me are the stream-of-8th-note preludey études, and swing — or swung ragtime, as I think of it. Ragtime I tend to think of as straight-eighths but syncopated, and swing I tend to think of as dotted but unsyncopated. My left hand lines are also not just octave-chord-octave-chord but can sometimes be oct-chord-chord-oct or whatnot.

As a result, I’m not entirely sure what the hell I write, because it appears to be both dotted and have tons of cross-barline suspensions, which I love like I love oxygen, a well-cooked pork loin, and superwash sock yarn that doesn’t pill like a sumbitch the first goddamned time you wash it.

Anyhow, if there’s a name for that, that’s what seems to come out the most easily for me, along with Bach-preludesque walls of Nth notes that contain both the melody and harmony alongside one another.

So what I think I’d like to do next is a collection of longer swung-ragtime pieces based on favorite arias from “Cesare.” And the whole aria this time, not just the intros. That should be fun. I suppose I can call it “Rägtime” or something.

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