Idle Swamp
program notes

When Dan Trueman approached me to write a piece for the Laptop Orchestra,
I saw an opportunity to accomplish two things at once (oh, the productivity
increase!).  The first was to have fun imagining what could be done
with this kind of ensemble.  I chose as a model one of my favorite
listening experiences: sitting on the back porch enjoying the symphony
of summer frogs and insects that inhabit central New Jersey.

The second was to honor one of those 'important people' in my life.
Paul Lansky was my teacher during graduate studies at Princeton in
the 1980s, and he has been a true mentor ever since.  Two years ago Paul
celebrated his 60th birthday.  Being the astounding procrastinator that I
am, it has taken until now for me to produce something to contribute to
the festivities.  To generate the sounds in the piece, I am using a digital
synthesis technique called "LPC"; Paul pioneered the musical use of this
technique.  In dedicating "Idle Swamp" to Paul, I also figured it gave me
free license to ransack his music and steal ideas, especially from his
landmark piece "Idle Chatter" -- hence the name of my piece.  I hope you
enjoy listening as much as I did creating the music, and Happy [belated]
Birthday, Paul!