Strange Rims was composed in 2005, and was the 1st piece I composed after relocating to New York City. It was composed during a 40-day bus tour around the country as well as at my new apartment in midtown New York City. The complexity and difficulty of the music reflects some of the transitions to the new urban big city life I encountered in New York coming from a more sedate lifestyle in amongst the avocado groves of north San Diego county. I had a hunch that my composing could change direction somewhat during this time of transition and reflect a different character. In anticipation of this new stage, decided to compose one of the more technically difficult ensemble works I have written to date. I pushed the boundaries of my own style and ability in order to compose something unique for piano in this piece. I had in mind a brilliant pianist Soyeon Lee from Korea who inspired the composition with her virtuoso technique, and her unique personality. The musical direction was further directed by one of the strangest music tours I have been on with a cast of characters containing some who did not get along at all and quit the tour, while others got along too well and created a different kind of havoc. With a pianist from the Pacific Rim as one source of inspiration, while the wheels on the strange bus tour kept turning on the American highways, the title "Strange Rims" captured the many layers I was living and seeing at the time.
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