You’ll feel shame

Updated 2 May 2019

You’ll feel shame but won’t address it or speak about it or sometimes even know that it’s affecting you but it will be there. The most conscious thoughts will be justifications you’ll know are weak. You were part of a history that will be repressed. A country that really won’t deal with what it did to itself and how distorted it became. It’ll take months or years or decades (or sooner) to address it, and when you finally get there you’ll feel queasy from the shame. You know it now. This is not what you wanted, at least, not all of it. You have hatreds and prejudices and but a morality that nags. “Something is not right.” And the shame will creep in. And you’ll justify your initial intentions while still knowing there was wrong that was there and not just wrong but one of those very basic wrongs. The shame may temper what you teach your children and save the next generation. Maybe. If the damage isn’t already done.

This is what I hope for you.

Updated 2 May 2019

A Former Alt-Right Member’s Message: Get Out While You Still Can

A lady completely bat-shit connected to the news outlets and pundits and participants in some of the most extreme racism and anti-semitism of the recent political climate. Katie McHugh acts regretful, makes excuses, blames “the climate.” Relationships with and those associated with: Daily Caller. WorldNetDaily. Breitbart. Her essays and tweets contain extremely extremely vile statements about other POC and Jews and one of her current excuses is that there were much worse racists.

Orchestral Study #3 (adagio with melisma)

  1. Orchestral Study #1 (flowing and hymn-like)
  2. Orchestral Study #2 (driving and chaotic)
  3. Orchestral Study #3 (adagio with melisma)
  4. Orchestral Study #4 (allegro)
  5. Orchestral Study #5 (variations)
  6. Orchestral Study #6 (space)
  7. Orchestral Study #7 (dialogue)
  8. Orchestral Study #8 (toccata)
  9. Orchestral Study #9 (seven interludes)
  10. Orchestral Study #10 (rupture, slowed down and from different angles)
  11. Orchestral Study #11 (a crowd, disassembled)
  12. Orchestral Study #12 (thesis)

This got away from me.

My intent going in was to write an adagio in simple ABA with more tonal harmonies. Maybe like a Brahms slow movement or more one from a Walter Piston symphony. I’ve been brushing up on Piston symphonies during commutes and am enjoying getting reacquainted. My goals (chosen after I finished the last study) were tone color and dynamics. With this study, I feel like I’m writing better across the orchestra but am still floundering with combining instruments.

I wanted the first section to be tonal and melodic, but I worry that it has too much of a “pops” orchestral feel. That’s the risk I had worried about starting these studies: moving from tonality in rock music to orchestral risks sounding unchallenging.

As I was working through that languid opening, I switched gears to the second section: a major key chant/melisma interrupted with expansive declarations.

While fitting the first two sections together, I made notes on what became the third section, which was intended as a perversion of the themes that came before. This was written more fully on the piano during improvisation and though the polytonality worked very well on the keyboard it was a crazy mess trying to get it to work with orchestra. At one point I was going to leave it out because the tone felt wrong. I went through two earlier attempts before coming up with the final arrangement. The first had a very strict rhythm and mostly for winds, but it didn’t have the “edge” that I felt at the keyboard. The next attempt used written rubato and exaggerated cross rhythms (with almost no meter), but it just created too much chaos along with the polytonal dissonances. The final product ended up with a balance of chaos and structure, edging towards chaos. I think most of my time was spent just on this section.

The piece has an ABCBA structure. Languid and melodic, melisma, perversion of themes, abbreviated melisma, triste languid coda.

I still need to attempt an actual, beautiful adagio. Next goals: vivace and maybe try for a more organic structure without abrupt changes.