two voices (2012)

from by david toub

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about

This is a work for any keyboard or two separate instruments. two voices started as an experiment in which one voice plays all the black keys and the other plays all the white keys. There are five black keys and seven white keys, so one has all 12 tones to play with. I wanted to see, just out of curiosity, if I could take some very banal themes and make them at least somewhat interesting. I was also curious how long this nonsense could go on.I imposed another constraint: each measure had to have each voice play all of its assigned notes. And no chords.If you haven’t figured out by now, I was really unsure of this approach, since it doesn’t seem entirely conducive to improvisation, which is how I generally compose and thus manage to avoid systems and processes, which are the bane of folks like me who do not like academic and mechanical methods to write music. Surprisingly, one can actually manage to improvise within these constraints, and even make what I think is a pretty good piece of music.

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from three piano works, released February 14, 2015

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david toub Wyncote

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