perc. quartet for 4 drum sets
Talujon Percussion Quartet with funds from the Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust
When Talujon Percussion Quartet asked me to write a piece for 4 percussionists I immediately thought of the drums. I am a long time fan of drummers and their ability to play simultaneously with both hands and feet, so I thought why not four of them? I went to David Cossin’s studio to try ideas out. When we got to the hi-hat I became mesmerized. It’s an amazing instrument – 2 cymbals crashing together by means of a foot pedal and struck from above. It produces an enormous range of shimmering colors. Just opening and closing the cymbals allow for symphonic possibilities. You can play the cymbals on the edge, play on the bell (top), roll, attack, be delicate, and my favorite – make the hi-hat roar. The first 7 minutes of the piece are entirely on hi-hats. Then I add in cymbals. That’s where the title of the piece comes from – it was printed on the back of one of the ride cymbals. From there the piece spreads out to the drums, eventually leading to a cacophony of conflicting pounding speeds on the whole drum set. Towards of the end of Dark Full Ride the four players are playing beats at different tempos while speeding up and slowing down relative to each other.