Hello friends – I’m grateful to return with another installment of “Behind the Tracks“, a series of stories behind the music on my new album “Enter The Fadolín” (available now as a download, as a home-made autographed CD-R, and a collection of sheet music). Just a few posts left to write — thank you to everyone who has encouraged me to continue sharing these stories!
This post is about the three movements that make up the “Midnight Suite“, the longest piece on the album. Hear the three tracks below:
The “Midnight Suite” was — composed? improvised? — how should I describe a piece of music that came fully formed from the first note to the last? The “Midnight Suite” is music that was given to me to play during a spontaneous performance on Facebook Live. It presented itself — it found a way out — I was just there to play it and listen. That seems to me like an honest description of its creation.
I’ve never said much about the “Midnight Suite” –– the sole reason I went Live on Facebook that night was for the music to say what it needed to — but perhaps, with all of us having lived some distance from that night, it is important to give you a little context into the atmosphere in which this music entered my life.
That night was Saturday, May 30 2020. Earlier that week, George Floyd was murdered in Minneapolis and new details emerged in the investigation into the death of Breonna Taylor; hours before I began playing on Facebook, protests erupted around the country, demanding justice. I was alone at a borrowed house in eerily quiet suburban New Jersey, armed with a microphone and a fadolín. The disconnect between the turbulence of the tragic week and the quiet isolation was unsettling — in that rift, this music began.
At a point between the second and third movements I looked up at the screen to find comments from my mom, who was watching the performance from Moscow.
Perhaps that is all I should say and let the music speak for itself, as originally intended. Hoping you can enjoy and find comforting.
1. A Nign
2. falling (to the stars)
3. Sunrise (Ellipses)
Below, enjoy the third movement of “Midnight Suite” as danced and choreographed by Yin Yue, in a film by Tobin Del Cuore — and below that video, scroll down for the original Facebook Live stream from when the Midnight Suite was born. The version you hear on the album was transcribed the morning after the premiere, and I have performed it since then many times, almost note for note. I’m grateful to carry this piece — and this memory — with me, wherever the fadolín goes.
Enjoy and thank you!
||> See a playlist videos of Ljova’s new music released during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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