Song Set #1 (1989)
3 Songs for Soprano and Piano
Approximate Duration: 12 minutes
Leslie Casson, Soprano
Jeffrey Kowalkowski, Piano
Song 1: “The Latter Rain” by Jones Very
Jones Very hailed from Salem MA and while teaching at Harvard, suffered a mental breakdown that he never fully recovered from. He spent most of his life as a recluse.
Song 2: “The Seven Sorrows” by Ted Hughes
British poet Ted Hughes seems to be better known as the husband of Sylvia Plath than the Poet Laurette of England until his death.
Song 3: “Sing Unto The Lord”
In my series of song sets, I attempt to juxtapose seemingly random or unrelated poems / poets to create an interesting effect. The opening song, “The Latter Rain” by Jones Very celebrates Mother Nature. “The Seven Sorrows”, with its incredibly stark imagery, is written in 7/4, with each sorrow (stanza) having a different tonality. The set ends with a song of gratitude using bits of text and phrases.