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Kevin Volans

Publisher: Chester Music

Cover Him With Grass (1979)
Chester Music Ltd
Electroacoustic Works
Year Composed
17 Minutes
Programme Note
Kevin Volans Cover Him With Grass (1979)
The initial impulse for writing these pieces was a reconciliation of African and European aesthetics. They are not minimalist. When I wrote them I was frustrated both with the bland mechanism of repeat-pattern music and with serial technique. I wanted to move away from a conceptualist approach to composition.

Traditional African music has an existential quality which attracted me. It is essentially a music of being not becoming. It does not aim at transporting the listener, but reinforces and intensifies the here and now. The music is not conceptualised in any way.

I took the liberty of approaching European music from the point of view of an African. This learning process led me to more flexible solutions.

Shortly after writing these pieces I realised that style is not a way to begin a composition. Style is a red-herring: it can stand in the way of both the composer and the listener.

Kevin Volans

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