Indiana University

Composition Department

Recordings

The Music of John Gibson

Slumber

Fixed media, 5.1 surround sound

Available on [re], a DVD-Audio and DVD-Video release by Everglade Records (EVG06-01)
Stereo mix available on Music from SEAMUS, volume 18

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Slumber was commissioned by the Third Practice Festival for a DVD of multichannel pieces that engage the music of the past in some way. In Slumber, I looked to music from Schumann’s Kinderszennen, “Kind in Einschlummern.” I asked pianist Mary Rose Jordan to record this piece. Then I subjected parts of the recording to the whims of my own software, which stratifies the spectrum of a brief sound and creates many shimmering, out-of-sync repetitive patterns. Slumber begins noisily but eventually settles into a quotation from the end of the Schumann. The listener slowly senses the presence of the piano — first only as a subtle timbral reference, then as explicit piano notes reconstructed from the recording, and finally as the unprocessed Schumann phrase.

Almost all of the sounds in the piece come from the piano recording. The synthesizer solo in the middle section was performed by me, using a glove controller. Thanks to Mary Rose Jordan for playing the piano, and to Neil Cain for engineering the piano recording.

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