Elegy and Observation is an environmental requiem. Drawing on ancient and modern texts, the piece leaps and lurches among perspectives from intimate to global, tender to catastrophic. So too, our perceived relationship to the natural world is constantly shifting, from the poet’s tension between fear and delight, to scientific observation, biblical prediction of catastrophe, the unassailable truth of species extinction, and the poetry of those who have experienced natural disaster.
The songs comprising my October 2020 release, Ghosts of Our Former Selves, including the two presented here, were deliberately composed in a confessional mode. They form a forty-minute sonic memoir that draws on everything I have spent my six-plus decades learning as a composer of contemporary classical music (especially computer music) with deep roots in jazz and popular music traditions.