Sleeping Giant had our first fundraiser concert/party yesterday, at a lovely home right at Fulton Ferry Landing. It reminded that I’m quite grateful to find myself living in the midst of a thriving milieu of composers and musicians here in New York. One of the benefits of this is that we get to do projects together, which makes life less lonely than it otherwise would be for a composer. Sleeping Giant is merely one of the more public faces of this. At one point in my life I might have scoffed at the idea of a “composers’ collective” (the term sometimes seems shorthand for “none of us is quite interesting enough to carry a show on our own”) but I can’t help but see Sleeping Giant as something different. For one thing, it’s simply giving a name to a set of relationships, collaborators, artistic friends and foils that would have existed anyway.
The following is an example of one of these efforts. Clifton Gates is a piece written for me by Jacob Cooper, which I played back in June at Bargemusic. The combination of solo piano and electronic processing took some finagling to get right, but I think Jacob arrived at a pretty brilliant combination of sounds, something that melds his longer, more purely electronic experiments with beautifully moody, intricate piano writing. The title is in fact a reference to John Adams’s beloved Phrygian Gates, though it takes the metaphorical electronic gates and makes them literal.
Timo Andres, piano
Clifton Gates was recorded a couple weeks ago at my apartment on Clifton Place by Jacob and fellow Giant (and budding audio engineer) Chris Cerrone. Some days my living room is a recording studio and my bedroom a makeshift control room, as you can see.