Monday, August 17, 2009

"Restless. Solitary." (maybe after Samuel Barber)

More songwriting fun with verbatim excerpts from James Joyce's novel Ulysses!

"Restless. Solitary."

Solitary hotel in mountain pass.
Autumn. Twilight. Fire lit.
In dark corner young man seated.

Young woman enters. Restless. Solitary.
She sits. She goes to window. She stands.
She sits. Twilight. She thinks.

On solitary hotel paper she writes.
She thinks. She writes. She sighs.
Wheels and hoofs. She hurries out.

He comes from his dark corner.
He seizes solitary paper.
He holds it toward fire.

Twilight. He reads. Solitary.

This is from a late section of the novel where everything is presented in Q&A format. This entire lyric is presented (in paragraph format) as an answer to the question: "What suggested scene was then constructed by Stephen?"

I see that Samuel Barber already beat me to the idea of scoring this passage, which he did under the title "Solitary Hotel," a damn fine title - probably too perfect of a title for the oddball kind of record I want to make.

I haven't listened to Barber's song, but will track it down - who knows, maybe even license and record it and be done with this part of the score. Before I discovered his piece, I heard in my head a piano/vocal composition, maybe Carl Pandolfi on piano and Heidi Dean on vocals.

But since I also am always trying to work with Frank Di Piazza, I have to think of the song "Solitude" by his band The Imps (the link opens an mp3 of the song), produced by Adam Long, who mixes and masters all of our poetry scores. Maybe Frank would take a crack at it.


My stand-in for the Solitary Hotel is St Louis' own Bevo Mill, from Thom Fletcher's Monstromo Flickr.


More in this series

"I'm tired of all them rocks in the sea"
"Pretty pretty petticoats"
"Music without Words, pray for us" (instrumental, or not)
"SIGNOR MAFFEI: (With a sinister smile)"
"Sad music" (instrumental)
"Monkey puzzle" (Fuller, Joyce, King)
"What kind of a present to give"
"Fires in the houses of poor people" (Fuller, Joyce, King)
"Christfox in leather trews" (Fuller, Joyce, King)
"All future plunges to the past" (Fuller, Joyce, King)
"She was humming" (Fuller, Joyce, King)
"Silly billies:" (Fuller, Joyce, King)
"Happy Happy" (Fuller, Joyce, King)
"A sugarsticky girl" (Joyce, King, A Better Guitar Player Than Me)
"Everybody eating everyone else" (Joyce, King, You)
"Blood not mine" (Joyce, King, Your Name Here)
"Sell your soul for that" (Joyce, King, Your Name Here)
"Over the motley slush" (Joyce, King, Whoever Helps Me)"My childhood bends" (Joyce, King)"
"Don't you play the giddy ox with me!" (Joyce, King)

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