#90seconds (7) - Chick Corea

Photo: Christine Bush (CAMI Music LLC)

The Matangis have started a new initiative: #90seconds.
Matangi seeks deepening and artistic interpretation of online artistry in these times of isolation and loneliness.

Based on Helmut Krausser's novel Melodien, Matangi is looking for the secret melodies with mysterious healing powers which are believed to be lost. Composers from all over the world participate in this quest and compose a 90-second melody for string quartet. (read more)

In 2014 we recorded the CD JAZZICS!. For this CD we were looking for compositions which are denying their musical borders. Compositions written by classical composers but with a clear jazz approach, and pieces by jazz composers who wanted to look beyond the boundaries of jazz. When we found out that living legend Chick Corea had also written a string quartet, we decided to do everything we could to obtain the sheet music. Unfortunately, that turned out to be easier said than done. Eventually we came into contact with him through an agent. The sheet music came, but turned out not to be ready to play and had to be put in the computer and made suitable for quartet; everything was notated pianistically. The recordings took place and we neatly sent him a copy of the result. Never heard of him again.

Until suddenly a few years later an email came in from his manager who asked on behalf of Chick to say that he had heard the recording and was very happy with our performance. A good starting point to see if we could meet him in person and maybe even, if we had the guts at the time, to ask him if he would want to write a piece for us. His agent responded positively and we agreed to meet in Germany at a concert. When I checked the agenda on Chick's website a month before the appointment, the concert in question suddenly disappeared. Slightly nervous I emailed the agent again and he told me that the concert had been canceled. Disappointed, I told the news to my quartet companions.

We were therefore very happy that we heard earlier this year that Chick would be playing in the Netherlands in March. March 19, 2020 in Utrecht we would finally meet! You probably already feel it coming, but the day before our meeting corona threw a spanner in the works. When we had recovered from the initial shock that ALL our concerts were suddenly canceled, the thinking started. How do we get something beautiful out of this nasty situation. This is how the project #90seconds came about, in which we asked 26 composers to write a healing melody. We decided to put on the naughty shoes and also approach Chick for this. Literally within 1 minute there was an answer in our mailbox, he wanted to do it. The next morning his "Lyric Walz" was in the mail. Who would have ever dreamed that!
And the appointment ... let's hope three times is the charm!

Karsten Kleijer

(watch the #90seconds videos here)
(read the other blogposts here)

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