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Sometimes in NYC, though the scene is so close-knit, it can be years before you play with someone. Matt Brewer was one of those folks for me.  In spite of this, there is a feeling one gets from hanging out, usually after concerts or bumping into each other on the street, that adds up to knowing you’ll play well together.  I realized on the day of our video recording that this was just the second time we were performing together after having lived in NYC for 5 years. Not surprisingly, the music felt completely natural and relaxed.

There is incredible propulsion to how Matt plays time and an equally powerful accuracy to his technique and pitch.  He is someone who is expanding what is possible on the bass. This immense ability was one of the things I was thinking about as I wrote the piece.  For example, I knew he would execute the challenging ostinato I wrote with relative ease.  I was also thinking about the lonely mood of the Douglass Music venue and what might sound beautiful in that space.  

I’ve always wanted to write a piece for bassoon and bass and I’m so grateful to have had Matt’s artistry on this piece. On a side note, I felt as though I was holding on for dear life behind his solos.  Even though I had a relatively simple background figure to play, it was incredibly difficult not getting distracted by Matt’s sublime virtuosity.  Each solo of his was truly amazing and it was very difficult to choose the “winning” take – perhaps one day I’ll release the alternates!

This piece marks the third month and installment of The Seasons project – it’s been a joy to release these little vignettes into the world and see the response.  A huge thanks to Matt Brewer and the video work of Alex Chaloff in bringing this duet to life.

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