“As a composer, I have a certain aversion to providing program notes about my pieces, a feeling which is shared by many, although certainly not all, of my colleagues. I feel that such notes often do more harm than good, since they sometimes predispose the listener to certain modes of listening which are inappropriate to the content of the work. Therefore, I would ask the listener, if possible, to disregard what I or anyone else may have to say about the piece and just listen, which, after all, is all that any composer can ask of his or her audience.” —John Melby
“The score of Saxony specifies a temporal sequence of ‘available pitches’ to be used by the player as the basis for improvisation. This improvisation may be quite free rhythmically, expressively, even stylistically, but it is completely controlled, harmonically, by the fact that pitches given are those of the first 32 harmonic partials of a low E-flat. A cumulative tape-delay system is used to create both a rich vertical sonority and a complex polyphonic texture via canonic replications of the player’s melodic improvisation. The piece was commissioned by the Ontario Arts Council and first performed by Don MacMillan in 1978.” —James Tenney
This title, originally issued on the CRI label, is now available as a burn-on-demand CD (CD-R) or download in MP3/320, FLAC or WAV formats. CD-Rs come in a protective sleeve; no print booklet or jewel case included. Full liner notes are accessible via the link above.