Sins of the Old Testament composed by Rodney Money (b. 1978) for Violin, Clarinet, Bassoon, Tuba, Claves (or Cowbell), and Hand Drum (ex. congas, bongos, djembes, etc.)
Program notes:
"Sins of the Old Testament" describes three bible stories taken verse by verse from the Bible. The verses are listed below by order of musical movement. The composition is based on set theory and is in three movements. Set theory isolates a group of pitches by treating them as equals. In most cases, there is no tonal center in set theory, but instead the composition was conceived by going through transpositions, inversions, and retrogrades of the sets creating new sounds. The attempt was to create music that sounded ancient because historians do not know exactly what the music sounded like in Biblical times. Each movement begins a new set. The notes in the set were chosen specifically to describe the atmosphere giving backdrop to each story. Even though there are many solos in this composition, the composer creates new instruments when he combines them together in unison to create a new voice to the ear of the listener.
 
 
II Samuel 11: 1-27, 12:14 (II. David and Bathsheba)06%20Sins%20of%20the%20Old%20Testament_%20David%20and%20Bathsheba.mp3
 
Thank you so much for listening and let me know your thoughts!
~Rod 

king saul and the witch.pdf

david and bathsheba score.pdf

golden calf score.pdf

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  • My though exactly. "you know, this kind of modern music I can used to", And this comes from someone with a classical background as a piano player and listener. I could hear the "new" but I could relate it to the "old" I know and love, and that made exploring something new easier and enjoyable.

    I do not know much about instrumentation but I felt that using the violin was critical for this outcome. It just gave it that something.

    And Bob, I have to disagree with you. Let's not talk about this here, but I'd be happy to discuss this in the chat sometime.
    Rodney Carlyle Money said:

     My goal for this composition was to compose a work that uses modern compositional technique such as set theory but anyone could still enjoy listening to it. 

    My Very First Post: "Sins of the Old Testament" for Violin, Clarinet, Bassoon, Tuba, and Percussion
    Sins of the Old Testament composed by Rodney Money (b. 1978) for Violin, Clarinet, Bassoon, Tuba, Claves (or Cowbell), and Hand Drum (ex. congas, bon…
  • Thank you, Bob, for giving me things to think about and for taking the time to post some of your thoughts. Those were just examples of modern technique, but they do not have to be formulas to take away creativity. For me personally, if there was a point to using modern techniques it would be the discovery of new sounds from the norm of scales. It gives the composer a new pallet of colors to use or tools to build upon providing new inspiration to compose works stretching personal boundaries that otherwise would never be possible using traditional methods. I am not sure how you could separate music and math? Even at the most basic level you have time signatures, divisions amongst measures creating rhythms, and intervals within melodic lines and chords, but I understood what you meant. The fear that music based solely on math can take away from the emotional value of the music, but it can also enhance feelings that we receive as listeners. Take for example, Schoenberg’s “A Survivor from Warsaw.”

     My professor from back in the day’s advice was quite simple, “The music needs to work, both musically and be performable.” It can be from popular music to serialism, but it needs to make since. I still believe that the simplest advice can still be some of the best advice.

    “Learning the rules so you can break them” is quite cliché, but let me put this statement in another way, “Learning the rules so you can use them as you see fit.” Let the rules not limit your creativity, but act as a tool for guidance and then when you have the courage to change theory for emotion, then let your imagination go free. It’s like studying how to build a house, but when you add your own imagination to the technique then that house becomes something very unique; your own style. And having my music have a style all its own and sound like me is a very high goal for me personally. In everything I write my heart and the emotion in which it seeks is my ultimate guide. Take the last few measures of “David and Bathsheba” describing the loss of their child, for example. As a father, I cannot fathom more usage of the heart than that.

    ~Rod

    Bob Porter said:

    Things to think about;

    a. " Modern compositional techique" does not have to mean set theory, 12 tone, atonal, or any of a number of formulas that in my view can take away creativity. I reject any almost any stated relationship between music and math.

    2. The three things your professor told you, while true, seem a bit to subjective.

    c. Wanting to learn the rules just so you can break them (you have no idea how many times I've heard this), is not a very high goal for you.

    4. In the end, I believe that your heart needs to do the composing, not your head.

    My Very First Post: "Sins of the Old Testament" for Violin, Clarinet, Bassoon, Tuba, and Percussion
    Sins of the Old Testament composed by Rodney Money (b. 1978) for Violin, Clarinet, Bassoon, Tuba, Claves (or Cowbell), and Hand Drum (ex. congas, bon…
  • I am happy that you could find my work enjoyable, and you could find the element in which you could connect with. I am honored that a classical pianist found time to explore something new so I thank you for that also. You are so correct, my friend, the violin was absolutely critical in this work. In the 1st movement, she represented the witch and provided the backdrop for an eerie and unnatural texture; in the 2nd movement the violin sung out the majestic melody above the ensemble; and in the finale, the violin delivered the dance. Thank you once again, and it was great to meet you.

    ~Rod         



    Spiros Makris said:

    My though exactly. "you know, this kind of modern music I can used to", And this comes from someone with a classical background as a piano player and listener. I could hear the "new" but I could relate it to the "old" I know and love, and that made exploring something new easier and enjoyable.

    I do not know much about instrumentation but I felt that using the violin was critical for this outcome. It just gave it that something.

    And Bob, I have to disagree with you. Let's not talk about this here, but I'd be happy to discuss this in the chat sometime.
    Rodney Carlyle Money said:

     My goal for this composition was to compose a work that uses modern compositional technique such as set theory but anyone could still enjoy listening to it. 

  • Thank you for stopping by also Sahil, and thank you so much for the compliments.

    ~Rod
     
    Sahil Jindal said:

    This is a very well done work. There is a uniqueness to them all, yet a similarity that the listener can recognize. Well done!

  • Ray, please check if I posted it correctly now. And for the record, I am a pencil and paper kind of guy so anything in your eye that you see as arrogance is simply a technical difficulty that I have to overcome.

    ~Rod


     Raymond Kemp said:

    Hi Rodney,

    The suggested method of providing audio files for the music dissection category must be the same for everyone from novice to the great and good here. I haven't listened to your music because you seem to deem yourself above such rules.

    Is this a matter of life and death? No, simply good manners, like having a look around first, maybe giving a few tips or encouragement to others here and there, then....... presenting an example or two of ones own work.

    Kind Regards

    -Ray

  • Rod,

    I hope you don't mind I brought up your old-ish thread. This is such fantastic storytelling! Excellent music, really touched me (even though I admit I do not appreciate religious topics). I would never have guessed that there were any set theory operations behind such obviously heart felt, moving music. 

    In the Golden Calf movement, the violin part brough Jean Luc Ponty to my mind.

    As commented by others, there is a cohesive quality to the 3 parts, though they are so different. Perhaps it is the personality of the violin part.

    Very impressive.

  • Rodney,

         I was wondering why there were three movements, and now I know.  I have to agree with Bob Porter.  Where is Bob?  I hope he's in good health and still commenting.  There are many beginner composers who can benefit from his expertise. 

         Your first piece is in D min.  The second wavers between Bb maj. and Bb min. The third piece, which to me is the most interesting and fun, is in A min. but you throw in a chord ABEF#AB which Ravel used in his Jeux d'eau.  Did you know that?

         At first I thought, what a weird combination of instruments, then I realized the violin, clarinet, and bassoon typify the sound we expect to hear as mid-eastern/gypsy.   The tuba is the only odd instrument, but the combo works because you have three rather mellow instruments versus the violin which stands out as the soloist.

         I'm struggling with the definition of atonal or avant garde.  To me this is still tonal.  The third movement is the best.

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