“Canons” is the first of three movements in Mahboob (2011), a self-portrait for piano containing material which is emblematic of my music. It is composed in a naive, diatonic style; however, the underlying structure is somewhat more complex. The main subject is a symmetrical, six-note figure which is heard in a series of micro-canons and variations. The figure (F♯-G♯-A-E-D-C♯) resembles segments of the melody from Satie’s Gymnopédie No. 1, and the rhythmic profile is similar to that in the Gymnopédies. The section that follows the introduction is adapted from my earlier piece Oxford & Augusta (2001), from which I wanted to draw out the above suggestion of Satie while adding some denser textures.
Composed 2011, recorded 2013, Roland digital piano direct
My thanks to my wife Nehal El-Hadi for designing the Arabic wordmark “Mahboob” for this post.
Music and composer’s notes copyright Bruce Russell 2013