Saturday, March 7, 2015

Dichotomy... Impressions of Kerouac

Daniel P. Lutz
Concord Band Commission (1997)

Dichotomy…Impressions of Kerouac is a work for winds and percussion inspired by impressions of the American writer and poet, Jack Kerouac. The piece was commissioned by the Concord Band in 1997 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the writing of the novel On The Road, considered the defining work of the Beat Generation, as well as the 75th anniversary of Kerouac’s birth. Dichotomy is intended to be a non-verbal, musical interpretation of a man who inspired a generation. The idea of a “dichotomy,” or the two sides of the man, was spurred by the apparent co-existence of the radical and the traditional in Kerouac’s writings and life, from the extraordinarily structured environment and mores of immigrant French-Canadian Catholic beginnings to the almost surreal rebellious wanderings and amoral experimentation of the Beat Generation. Incorporated in this musical interpretation are elements of chance music or free improvisation within a highly structured musical form; the use of traditional/highly consonant folk melodies juxtaposed amongst dissonant experimental musical ideas … all revealing contrasting moods and emotions much like the composer’s overriding impression of the man who once described himself as a “strange solitary crazy Catholic mystic,” Jack Kerouac. (Source: Daniel P. Lutz)

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