[bailey and lamb]

In the late '90s Burn had been toying with the idea of arranging some of Derek Bailey's guitar solos for an instrumental ensemble.It is difficult to imagine music that is more idiosyncratic; and yet, conversely, Burn found that aurally these pieces powerfully suggested other instrumental colours. In addition, what Burn perceived as the 'weight' of each note played by Bailey, had a strong correlation to that of other instruments played in the same register. In short he heard Derek Bailey's guitar solos as unequivocally idiosyncratic yet powerfully suggestive of orchestration.


Having sought Derek's permission to do such work, he transcribed a number of pieces of Bailey's early work. Conversations with Rhodri Davies led to Burn working with Cranc on this project; Rhodri Davies - Harp, Angharad Davies - Violin and Nikos Veliotis - Cello. 'from ten, two and three' is the title given to the set of arrangements. An early version of these pieces presented certain problems of co-ordination within the group, and with the collaboration of the musicians a second version was developed. Some of these pieces were broadcast in 2008 on BBC Radio 3 during a programme about composition and improvisation that had interviews with, amongst others, Burn and Richard Barrett. Later a new recording was made with Satako Fukada, Hannah Marshall and Ruby Aspinall. At Steve Beresford's suggestion, a piano version of these arrangements was made and performed by Phil Thomas at Huddersfield University. (And also by Burn himself at Munich and Ulrichsberg in 2007). Pat Thomas used a different version of the score for his concert at the Holywell Music Room, subsequently released on FMR CD 259-0508.



Burn's penchant for arranging - early in his career he had worked professionally as both composer and arranger - suggested working with Alan Lamb's 'Wire Music'. Burn transcribed and arranged four of the 'wire music' pieces; this time for 'inside piano'. Help with this work came from inventor John Thorn who manufactured a number of devices needed for the performance of these arrangements. Earlier he had made a device for Burn that they called The Maniped. This allowed the pianist to play keyboard clusters with a foot-pedal and was used at his solo performance in the 1995 LMC festival. Excerpts from the arrangements of Alan Lamb's pieces were performed at the 2007 Kaleidophon in Ulrichsberg with John Thorn's devices placed both inside the instrument and attached to the body of the instrument.


Solo guitar arranged for Violin, Harp and Cello

Solo guitar arranged for Violin, Harp and Cello.

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© 2016 by Chris Burn.