The Language of Modern Music

angerMy new string quartet is shaping up, slowly. What is helping me this time is to think of an audience. As a matter of fact, I have been thinking quite specifically of an audience of woman factory workers and composing “for them”. I am visualising them and even the spot where they and the quartet will be sitting.

Music without a goal is rather difficult to f…………

At that very moment I was interrupted by a Skype communication from a pianist friend (he’d better remain anonymous) complaining about having to work on the Ligeti Etudes. (He’d already written earlier in the day to complain that “I am up to my BIG BALLS in work” and “I have had ENOUGH of LIGETI . F U C K that dead jerk …. I have to do all his etudes on Friday”….)

Here is what he said this time……

Anon says: FUCK DEAD HUNGARIAN NOISY COMPOSERS
Geoffrey King says: how are your 2 large balls?
Anon says: UNBEARABLE NOISY CLAUSTROPHOBIC BAGS OF RUBBISH
Geoffrey King says: I am just writing a note about my quartet for the blog, so that I understand what I am trying to do
Anon says: 2 conditions to write ugly contemporary music : SOFT and EASY . otherwise it’s PURE RUBBISH
Anon says: DIRT 
Anon says: TRASH
Anon says: CRAP 
Geoffrey King says: The la grenuoiller movement will be the second one 
Geoffrey King says: grenuillere
Geoffrey King says: grenouillere
Geoffrey King says: FROG
Anon says: SHIT 
Anon says: VOMIT 
Anon says: PUKE 
Anon says: STINK 
Geoffrey King says: I’m glad I have a friend who’s such a fan of contemporary music… (chuckle) 
Anon says: am going. bye

As I was saying……music without a goal in mind is difficult to write. So, my first big piece, written when I was sixteen or seventeen (Contrasts for piano), explored the number seven within the language of 1960s style Stravinsky and also that of Webern. And because of this focus, it was fairly easy to write. And I still love it………but I certainly wouldn’t recommend dishing that piece up to an audience of factory workers.

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