Sunday, June 14, 2020

In These Uncertain Times

It's a stupid little phrase, uttered so often on so many commercials during the hostage crisis. When you're locked up, and there are fewer things to do, there's actually less uncertainty, not more. Also, all times have been uncertain, just in different ways, so I decided to write a little thing to make fun of the insipid piano music that accompanies most of these little nuggets of idiocy. If it doesn't sound mocking, it's because you don't know my feelings about Maj7 chords -- they're not exactly ugly, but to me, they sound weak. They're meant to be transitional chords, not the main event.

Let me backtrack a bit, though. I was back in the score that gave birth to the just posted Emergence, and as I may have mentioned before, I really like stacks of fifths. There are several ways to stack fifths, and one of those is to have two pairs of fifths with the bottom of second pair a major third (in this case, plus an octave) above the bottom of the first. When you do this, you get a Maj7 chord, here it is F Maj7. I wrote the first bar with that chord,then a single note before the second chord, and thought, "Yeah, this sounds like it could be on one of those "In These Uncertain Times" ads in which companies, instead of telling you why you should by their products, tell you that they care. Guess what? They really don't; they just think that if you think they care, you'll fall for their nonsense and buy their stuff regardless of whether it's not very good. And it must work, or they wouldn't keep doing it. Or maybe it really isn't very effective, and their marketing departments are run by morons. Maybe both.

Anyway, it's a throwaway little thing for piano, in boring old 4/4 time in F major with lots of Maj7 chords, written in a couple of hours, although being by me, it did have to spend some time in D minor. For the most part, it's just a calm little piece about the actual lack of uncertainty in these uncertain times.

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