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The nearly-apocryphal, much-discussed, AVENUE X has my full and undivided attention now (well, save two massive copying gigs from which I attempt to chip away tiny bits daily), and it’s all about finishing the short score. After thinking about this piece for as long as I have (I pitched it to the commissioners over a year ago), sketching it last fall, and now finally taking it up in full swing after setting it aside for a month to deal with THE RIVERS OF BOWERY, I was afraid that this final push would be somewhat of a letdown…almost as if I felt I had written the thing already. In fact, I write this post because I find myself pretty excited about how this short score is shaping up, and pleased that the direction this piece is taking seems quite different from the last one. That’s always the fear, of course—if I write pieces too close together, well, the self-stealing creeps in, the same tricks pop up, and you wonder whether Originality is even an option anymore. Of course, the Composition-relation-formula still holds:

if {Piece A ~ Piece B} and {Piece B ~ Piece C} then {Piece A does-not-resemble Piece C}

(Credit where credit is due. Commonality Formula courtesy of the great G.T.)

But the above is not too be helped … I was only concerned about an exaggerated relationship between BOWERY and X due to their nearby deadlines. On that score (pun intended), so far, so good: BOWERY is all about an A-flat-based tetrachord juxtaposed against a major-minor arpeggiated progression. X seems to be all about an altered F blues scale over syncopated 5ths. See? Completely different…

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