Slow and Hidden

I’m starting work on an arrangement for the Simmons Sirens and I’m currently in the Land of Potential under the Shadow of OverAmbition. It’s a scary place. They asked me to do an arrangement of “Slow Me Down” by Emmy Rossum, and I decided to fully blend it with Imogen Heap’s “Hide and Seek”. Not only were they looking for a blendy smooth tune, but they’ve eyed Hide and Seek this past semester. No problem, especially since the chord progressions are so similar (and Slow sounds freakishly similar to Hide…).

So I have my charge, and now it’s the challenge of turning dream into reality. In most movies, this would be the time to cue the montage because now is when it gets kind of boring. It’s also quite tricky to make something, period, which is not what movies want to show. They’re all about the sex. But, my dear Reader, this is where magic is made.

I have my pen, my paper, my lyrics, and both tunes memorized. I’ve sat for a while and mused on the meanings of the songs, to see if their themes would meld well. I’ve daydreamed about performing the tune and if I should tie music with performance or it should be art for art’s sake. I researched all the decent YouTube videos and recordings of both songs, in any version but with an eye to the a cappella versions. I was disappointed to find that these two songs- with great melding or splicing potential- don’t get altered that much, so there’s not much to steal.

[aside: Hands down, though, my favorite recording of Hide and Seek was done by Transit.]

I made a list of how I want to characterize the two songs in conflict, hoping that I can pull together a Hegelian dialectic and get them to spar and synthesize before the end. Soloist vs. Ensemble, Compound meter vs. Simple meter, Arpeggios vs. Homophony. Fingers crossed on that one. I didn’t do so well on dialectic in music theory class.

So here I am- all my tools and ideas at my fingertips, waiting for magic. Somehow, I have to trust that my subconscious will start making decisions for me, giving me inspiration of how the pieces fit together. After much headscratching and tea drinking, ideally there will be some plan of action on paper before I start putting note to page (which will be another creative battle on its own).

So now I’ve just got to do it. Thanks, Nike, for the inspiration.


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