Thierry Tisserand : Couleur Salsa
Les Productions D’Oz: Score and separate parts (10, 3, 3, 3, and 2 pages respectively)
Here is another work by this highly respected composer, who can really do no wrong (well if he has, then I haven’t seen it yet!)
This latest Couleur (he has done a number of other works with this title dedicated to Mambo, and indeed others) is marked Giocoso, semper ritmico and is a stately 76 crotchets a minute, set in Em, that begins with a percussive rhythm on guitar 3 before guitar 1 then enters, set around an arpeggiated Em chord and its near relatives. Then Guitar 2 follows suit, and four bars later guitar 4 generally sticking to the lower end of the harmony work. Finally 16 bars in, the initial theme enters immediately on the four guitars, before leaving it to the 1st guitar to continue it. There are a number of glissandi, some semi-quaver runs and plenty of places for accented off beat chords, and arpeggios that make for a very exciting opening. Throughout there is plenty of interplay between the parts , so there aren’t many occasions where one player has the easy ride, with the possible exception of occasionally the 4th guitar, whose writing is not quite as frenetic as the other three. A brief Lento enters at bar 63, marked espressivo, the theme emotes around the top areas of the fingerboard, before reverting to the main them and speed 20 bars later, for a final reminder of the way the piece started. There are some exciting moments here near the coda where nearly all the players have as many rests as notes, before a forte run upwards on all the guitars leads to a final pair of staccato accented chords of the minor 6th, and it is all over.
Again, this is relatively short, but excellent, melodic and fun piece from Tisserand. It is not very difficult, but you have to be very good players to make the most of it, but any lovers of this man’s music will know what to expect and I can see this being a very popular work indeed.