Although this is the first instance, I knew at some point I would reach a letter in which I had to spotlight two composers instead of just one. I had decided when that happens it would be treated as a “Bonus” and I would just make two separate posts instead of one. The one exception is today’s post. The reason I have decided to combine these two composers is because, although they have never met before, they seem to have a lot in common. Today’s composer’s are Jeremey Parel and Jesey Meche. I met Jesey in high school and and we both became composition/percussion double majors at Hartt.
One of my favorite things about Jesey is we both share a need to obsess over things that interest us. We both feel a need to listen to an entire band’s discography, search through their live footage, find any writings they have and, any sheet music we can find. Thanks to this Jesey has shown me so much music I wouldn’t have heard otherwise including: Neutral Milk Hotel and Sufjan Stevens. This obsessiveness carries directly into his compositional process (sometimes directly sometimes indirectly).
I met Jeremy earlier this year at CalArts. He is also pursuing his MFA in Composition. Jeremy works very methodically and in someways his process can appear similar to Jesey’s method of obsession. While it’s not an all consuming practice like Jesey’s method, it is a very focused and dedicated practice that can yield similar results and excellent music.
Both Jesey and Jeremy incorporate humor in their work. What makes it particularly successful is the humor is NOT the focus of the composition it is a byproduct of the composition. Both in their music and life Jesey and Jeremy have very similar senses of humor and personalities in general. Their music can also be very serious and even dark as well. Perhaps a good comparison would be the Novels of Kurt Vonnegut. While they are incredibly funny and even goofy/silly at times, overall they may have a moral grounding and message to be delivered to the reader.
So, Jesey meet Jeremy and Jeremy Meet Jesey!
Recommended Listening/Viewing (Jeremy Parel):
Concerto for Harpsichord and Strings
Five Pieces of Trash
Recommended Listening/Viewing (Jesey Meche):
i will float until i learn how to swim
i will speak until i learn how to speak