Ian Gammie : Soliloquy
Corda Music Publications: 4 pages
In Ian Gammie’s Preface he says that the piece should have a lingering air of introspection, a gentle nostalgia, and that is exactly the feeling you get when playing this piece of his. It begins ostensibly in Dm , but with no flat B key signature, and the marking of ‘With Rhetorical Melancholy’ .This very carefully thought out opening section moves through a number of keys in the space of the first ten bars and although the speed is not at all fast, the writing is not immediately obvious as to where it is going to go , or land on next , and so it really does have the feeling of a soliloquy where even the solo speaker is not entirely sure what he is going to say next , and in what order. A second idea then enters moving into D Major, but not a great deal happier for it, and both the preceding sections ae each repeated. Then the opening idea returns with one or two variants along the way before a new idea, again In D Major takes the player into some very moving harmonic territory, before another repeat of that section leads back to the previous second idea, now marked Con Passione, but still having almost identical material to before. Then at the end the opening Dm melody returns one final time and closes pianissimo on a Dm chord.
This is a complex piece of writing, wherein it takes the guitarist a few plays before the feeling and emotions behind the writing start to come through. Again, with many of this composer’s pieces, they are literally like no one else’s music and they are never bland, or boring, or obvious, far from it. If anything my only criticism is that unless the player is willing to have several goes at the piece, before making his mind up on its merits that a number of players would give up on it before it secrets came out on show. It’s a pity if that happened, as this is yet again, another very worthwhile piece from Gammie, which has a great deal to offer.