“Sequence, symmetry & simplicity”–my composer’s motto, 1996. 15 years later, inspiration strikes and the same schemes still seem sparkly.
Musical symmetry in the eponymous string quartet I wrote for my grandmother Madra, who would’ve been 105 this year: a”/d’ d”/f’ f”/c’ c”/g’ g”/e’ e”/a’ (1998)
This is as close to a personal musical symbol as I get: c’/f f’/d d’/g g’/c (1994)
He’s my age, maybe a little older. We’re a few feet apart in a tightly packed subway car, 8:45. He’s aged a lot in appearance since the last time I saw him, at the sandbox with our infants. I’m looking at him and it doesn’t seem like he remembers that, nor certainly not the brief… Continue reading My papa talk, your papa talk
(2009/2011) When I was about 13, without any knowledge of my past beyond the fact that I was a black transracial adoptee, I decided to create an alter ego. In my mind he was a jazz musician, sometimes a cultural diplomat from the West who had reconnected with his own roots in Ethiopia—or depending on… Continue reading Mahboob
We need you jazz and blues people, too. We need you jazz We need you jazz and We need you jazz We need you jazz We We need you We need you We need you jazz and you jazz and jazz and you jazz jazz and blues jazz blues jazz and blues and blues people, too.… Continue reading ||: || :|| (on repeat)
You cannot schedule joy. When you do, it will inevitably be deferred by grief all the worse for what it supplanted. Joy has to come to you; you have to be open to its experience at the time it chooses, and while it may elude categorization or expression. Over the years, I’ve recast those words… Continue reading Everything’s coming up you, robots