This work was composed in December, 2007, in memory of my friend and teacher, the composer/conductor Stephen 'Lucky' Mosko. When I was his graduate student, Lucky suggested I write a string quartet, but I had other ideas and never got around to it. In thinking of how best to honor Lucky's memory, I decided to finally take his suggestion and write that quartet. The work is comprised almost entirely of short cadential formulas, strung together like beads. This chain is broken in only a few places, by a chorale, and solo melodies for each of the four instruments which the players embellish and vary in quasi-improvisation. For many years Lucky's property in Green Valley, California, was littered with bells, stuck in the ground, silenced, like tombstones in a bell graveyard. I thought it was time to revive the bells, to celebrate an unforgettable and inspiring musician, educator, and friend. This recording is by the wonderful Formalist Quartet, and was made at the straw bale house built by composer Lou Harrison, in Joshua Tree, California.
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