Tracks was composed in 1988 for the Nuevo Trio, a classical guitar trio of music students at Virginia Commonwealth University (Richmond, Virginia) during my graduate studies in music composition. It was an extremely fertile creative period for me, during which I also produced String Quartet No.1 and Ruins (my first piece for orchestra). At that point in time, the influences on my work were quite varied, ranging from strict formal instruction in 16th-century counterpoint with composer Alan Blank to liberating performances by the classical-composer-turned-punk-rocker Dika Newlin. I was part of a very active community of artists, dancers, and musicians in Richmond, enjoying abundant opportunities to have my work performed.
Tracks came out of this vibrant context of creative output and musical camaraderie. It attempted to capture the energy and colorful environment of that time and place. Thirty-five years later (in 2023), I reset Tracks in a version for small orchestra, the goal being to expand the bold statements and expressive palette of the original guitar trio version yet further.
MIDI Realization (computer generated)