Tuesday, January 25, 2011

V.S. Computer Playback

Here is a completely untweaked computer playback of A Louisiana Sashay, a.k.a. Vermont Song, as it now stands. There's some kind of glitch at one point where it briefly sounds as though there are two flutes, and the final chord for the harp isn't arpeggiated as it is in the score. Real people will probably play it a bit slower, with pauses and/or ritards here and there.

This playback, though, is good enough to get an idea of the piece, and it seems to work. I finished the writing of it Sunday morning and have listened to it a number of times since, and nothing calls attention to itself as needing fixing. I'm very pleased with a number of things that happen in the piece and look forward to seeing how it will come off in actual performance.

I've sent PDF scores and parts to my friends up in Vermont for whom it was written, asking if there are any awkward or unplayable bits, especially in the case of the harp. If it passes that test, I think it's nearly done.

The only problem in writing the piece (other than trying to keep straight what the harp can and can't do) was finding the time to spend with it and then having the patience to keep working at it to get something that sounded "right", measure by measure. That Thomas Edison quote about invention being 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration is very apt in my case. There were any number of places where nothing seemed to work and it took an hour or more to find something that did work for just a measure or two. Somewhere along the line I thought of using a stopwatch to see just how many hours it took me to get less than five minutes worth of music, but decided not to, being afraid that seeing an actual number might make me slower in taking up the writing of the next piece. 


  1. Carol Wood25/1/11 17:13

    Lyle, I am so totally honored by this! Harpists all over the world are going to love it, I'm sure.


  2. Carol - Thanks! It wouldn't have been written if I hadn't heard you and Susan that afternoon back last August. Hearing the two of you playing (and laughing and having such a good time) in your harp room was wonderful and I knew right then I was going to try something for harp and flute for you to play. It wasn't any easier to write than anything I've done, but it think it was the most fun.