Jim & John for flute solo (2015)

Duration c. 6 minutes Comissioned by the National Flute Association for their Young Artists Competition. Premiered by Lisa Bost, August 2015, NFA convention, Washington, DC.

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Program Notes

Jim & John for solo flute was inspired by a very distinctive style of blues fife and drum music I heard some years ago, recorded by Alan Lomax in Mississippi in the late 1950’s, in particular the song “Jim and John” as performed by the brothers Ed, Lonnie and G.D. Young. I was fascinated by the registral extremes in the music – a high cane flute playing blues licks accompanied by low field and bass drums, and decided to compose a work for solo flute which collapsed both melodic and percussive entities into the same instrument. Thus the title Jim & John can be taken not only as a tip of the hat to the original source, but also as a study in violently contrasting musical dualities: high and low, melodic and percussive, soft and loud, etc. Jim & John was commissioned by the National Flute Association for their 2015 Young Artist Competition.