Print Edition Price: 

$29.95 score with 4 parts

Year Authored (or revised): 


Instrumentation : 

quartet for double basses

Duration (min): 





Innova, 2018

The title of my double bass quartet, Soundings, is a reference in part to the nautical term for measuring the depth of water. This term has an obvious connection to the double bass as the “deepest” sounding string instrument of the orchestra. “Soundings” can also refer to various types of exploration, and the five movements of the piece are my personal “explorations” of the instrument that is closest to me. Soundings was commissioned by and is dedicated to Robert Oppelt, Rick Barber, Jeff Weisner and Ali Yazdanfar, all members of the National Symphony Orchestra at the time of this commission in 2000.

The second movement, “Diaphanous,” was written entirely using natural harmonics on the double bass. Some of these harmonics are quite high in the partial series and may be more accurately performed as artifical harmonics. This decision is left to the discretion of the performer, although the ideal of the sound should always be the transparent quality of a harmonic created from an open string. The seventh partial is, of course, flat in relation to more tempered tuning, and for the purposes of the harmonies created in this movement may be adjusted a bit higher by pulling the string to the side.

Listening Sample: 

Internal Fields

Ensemble Type: 

instrumental quartet
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