Scott Johnson's Bowery Haunt *It's Not Only Rock 'n' Roll to Me*
I remembered something I noticed 15 years ago about Bowery Haunt. This comes after some other notes on Bowery Haunt --
Sept 14 The Village Trip
In Memory of Scott Johnson
7PM at Loft393
The bass line in the sweet slower section in the middle is 0167, after which it works its way back to to where it began. And 0167 opens the piece.
He dodges symmetries, but in that manner, it's nevertheless all about those, like the Tristan Prelude dodging the fully diminished 7.
--dodge the 8tonic in the first line. Dodge with 027, some grey glue. (Robert Morris told me he thinks of 027 as grey. I say it's indigo or pink, but Morris is right. It so often functions as water between things that stand out more.)
--m5 -- knock F# down to F natural in a whole tone manner, add D# in a whole tone ornament of F augmented major 7 (a subset of the augmented scale). He keeps that going. He holds onto things. That creates his very clear middle ground.
--m11 e minor major 7 (I take A & F# as a changing tone figure ornamenting G natural). He's not afraid of very familiar things. This is tonal music. E minor maj7 is a subset of the augmented scale and the inversion of the augmented maj7. See Bach BWV 995, aka BWV 1011.
-- m12 drop D# add Bb and here he dodges the augmented scale.
--m16 Bass line moves from F to E.
That bass move is fleshed out into 0167, as E-F is answered by a hinge through B-Bb.
This reminds me of Carter's "Changes". There the all trichord hexachord is foud in slowly unfolding lines that we start to think of as structural.
These points and the other notes on Bowery Haunt are the points that put Scott in the catagory of composers that want to master things, not get them of their backs.
This is not quite right. What Scott does is overdetermine in audible ways. Its a lack of complacency that moves him to butress in many many ways. All of my Bowery Haunt notres are admonishions, mostly to myself, but I hope Scott dsets an example to many.