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Gypsy Tonic (Download)

for solo marimba
Level: Advanced
Duration: 5:30
State Lists: Missouri | Texas
Release Date: 2015
Delivery Method: Direct Download
Product ID : TSPCS15-006DL
Price: $14.00
Item #: TSPCS15-006DL

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Description

Mixing equal parts gypsy jazz and traditional gypsy music, Jesse Monkman has summoned the ghost of famed French guitarist Django Reinhardt with Gypsy Tonic. This advanced marimba solo is full of technical challenges and will require solid four-mallet chops, but the rewards in terms of musical energy and attitude are undeniable. The entire piece is like a condensed medley of styles in the aforementioned gypsy jazz realm. Odd meters abound throughout, yet the overall character of the music never comes across as overly heady; rather, it remains youthful and dance-like. Gypsy Tonic represents another great contribution to marimba literature by Monkman.

Instrumentation

  • Marimba—low C

Reviews

Inspired by the gypsy jazz band of which the composer is a member, “Gypsy Tonic” is a roughly six-minute solo for 5-octave marimba that uses the modes and harmonies of traditional gypsy music and “gypsy jazz” to create a challenging work that travels through a number of different moods as the piece progresses.

Consisting of four main sections and a coda, each section brings its own sense of character to the piece. The opening navigates between mostly 7/8 and 5/8 and sets up the overall mood for the work. The second section begins with an ostinato in the left hand while a melody is played in the right hand in octaves. This homophonic texture is soon abandoned as a more linear style of writing takes over. Brisk sixteenth-note triplet gestures along with long running phrases of straight sixteenth notes will make this section challenging for inexperienced players. The third section returns to a homophonic style of writing with a quarter-note ostinato in the left hand in 2/4, while the right hand plays a melodic line that is later harmonized. The final section of the work before the coda is based around an 11/16 pattern with an-other monophonic melody. Harmony is introduced toward the end of the section that transitions us into a coda that uses material from the very beginning of the piece. Sixteenth-note triplets build to a series of downward glissandi, moving to a final ending statement.

While it does have some technical demands, this piece does not delve into anything that an undergraduate student or possibly even advanced high school student would not be able to handle. With a tonality that is accessible to an audience, and manageable technical challenges, “Gypsy Tonic” would work well as an undergraduate jury or recital piece.

–Brian Nozny
Percussive Notes
Vol. 54, No. 2 – May 2016

Description

Mixing equal parts gypsy jazz and traditional gypsy music, Jesse Monkman has summoned the ghost of famed French guitarist Django Reinhardt with Gypsy Tonic. This advanced marimba solo is full of technical challenges and will require solid four-mallet chops, but the rewards in terms of musical energy and attitude are undeniable. The entire piece is like a condensed medley of styles in the aforementioned gypsy jazz realm. Odd meters abound throughout, yet the overall character of the music never comes across as overly heady; rather, it remains youthful and dance-like. Gypsy Tonic represents another great contribution to marimba literature by Monkman.

Instrumentation

  • Marimba—low C

Reviews

Inspired by the gypsy jazz band of which the composer is a member, “Gypsy Tonic” is a roughly six-minute solo for 5-octave marimba that uses the modes and harmonies of traditional gypsy music and “gypsy jazz” to create a challenging work that travels through a number of different moods as the piece progresses.

Consisting of four main sections and a coda, each section brings its own sense of character to the piece. The opening navigates between mostly 7/8 and 5/8 and sets up the overall mood for the work. The second section begins with an ostinato in the left hand while a melody is played in the right hand in octaves. This homophonic texture is soon abandoned as a more linear style of writing takes over. Brisk sixteenth-note triplet gestures along with long running phrases of straight sixteenth notes will make this section challenging for inexperienced players. The third section returns to a homophonic style of writing with a quarter-note ostinato in the left hand in 2/4, while the right hand plays a melodic line that is later harmonized. The final section of the work before the coda is based around an 11/16 pattern with an-other monophonic melody. Harmony is introduced toward the end of the section that transitions us into a coda that uses material from the very beginning of the piece. Sixteenth-note triplets build to a series of downward glissandi, moving to a final ending statement.

While it does have some technical demands, this piece does not delve into anything that an undergraduate student or possibly even advanced high school student would not be able to handle. With a tonality that is accessible to an audience, and manageable technical challenges, “Gypsy Tonic” would work well as an undergraduate jury or recital piece.

–Brian Nozny
Percussive Notes
Vol. 54, No. 2 – May 2016



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