I was leafing through my diary in July and I noticed the entry "begin composing for Apollo for Huddersfield". Understandably, I was very excited about this but when I noticed the entry "Go to Yamaguchi's barbeque" I forgot all about it, as I was late. When I arrived, out of breath, at my painter friend Tomoya Yamaguchi's house I noticed a beautiful orange canvas. I fell in love with it. To my astonishment Tomoya presented it to me. When I returned home I hung the painting above my desk and started writing Reach Out.
I've been spending lots of time at home recently, and have just bought a new cookery book called 365 Japanese time Japanese recipes and I'm working through it page by page.
Therefore my days have recently been a mixture of very serene activities: cooking, cleaning, and looking at my new painting. I think that this serenity has rubbed off on the first half of the piece. It seems quite atmospheric and clean to me.
However, when one has too much time on one's hands tangential memories pop up uninvited. When I was half way through Reach Out the guitar riff from "Sweet Child of Mine" by Guns 'n' Roses invaded my inner ear and refused to go away. I suddenly remembered that when I was studying for my GCSEs my room mate was always practicing this phrase over and over again. He was not the only one, sometimes it seemed as if the entire boarding house was playing lead guitar slightly out of tune. For months at a time all you could hear was the easy version of Eric Clapton's "Tears in Heaven" or the opening riff of "Sweet Child of Mine". It was enough to encourage anyone to become a contemporary composer! Ever the aspiring 'babe magnet' my room mate would play this passage at an incredible speed with enormous mistakes..... which sounds like a fitting motto for any romantically involved adolescent.
In August then, I kept hearing my room mate's rather poor Guns and Rose impression. From that morning, I had a craving for heavily distorted Rock music. So I had to change my daily CD from "The Best of the Beach Boys" to "The best of Bachman Turner Overdrive". I began to miss my long hair. I think that this has affected Reach Out too.
So in the seven weeks that I spent writing this piece I've had some rather strange experiences in the safety and comfort of my own home.
For me, the act of composing is really connected to all the events in my life, even small ones. If I had been kidnapped by Guns and Roses when I started writing this piece the whole thing could have been a scherzo (of sorts). If Tomoya had have given me his painting 3 weeks later the piece might have had a very slow atmospheric 2nd half.... or do I need to get out more?
I am wondering what my next piece will be like... hmmmm very exciting!
(edited by Harry Ross)
「Reach Out」はイギリスのアポロ・サクソフォンカルテットのために2002年に作曲された。曲は大きく2つのテクスチャから成り立っている。弱音の持続音とブレスノイズ、急速な短いパッセージとで構成される淡くどこかしら浮遊感のあるフレーズは藤倉氏としばしばコラボレーションもするイギリスのアーティスト山口智也氏からプレゼントされたオレンジのキャンパスからの印象である。藤倉氏は「Reach Out」を作曲中、何故か高校時代のルームメイトが練習していたガンズ・アンド・ローゼズの「Sweet Child of Mine」のギターリフが頭に中で鳴りだし、中々離れなかったそうだ。冒頭のフレーズを遮るように現れる速いパッセージは、そのギターリフの藤倉版とでも言えるかもしれない。曲は冒頭の柔らかなフレーズを中心としながら断続的に強奏部を含み展開していく。展開の合間に見られる同音による連打音が次第にその存在感を強めて曲にリズムを生み出すと、そのリズムは4本のサクソフォンの激しいトゥッティとなる。曲は前半のギターリフのモチーフやマルチフォニック、グロウなどを含みつつロック音楽さながらに疾走し、その頂点を迎えた直後に曲の冒頭が回想され、静かに幕を閉じる。