FormA: avant-garde archtop!

Here’s a new piece, FormA, dedicated to me by the Swedish composer, Mårten Falk. It uses an unusual tuning: Eb Ab D G Bb E (bass to treble). I hope you find it as enjoyable as I did to play…Your comments welcome.

4 thoughts on “FormA: avant-garde archtop!”

  1. This is an amazing visual and musical performance. I know what would happen to me if I tried to switch from plectrum to fingers like that!

    Can you explain the tuning, please.

    With these special tunings, does the composer write the music and then decide that it would be easier to play in an altered tuning. Or is the tuning is created first, and then the music written to suit it.

    Is the score available. I’ve had a quick look on-line but can’t see it.


    1. Hi Michael. I don’t know why Mårten came up with this tuning, but it’s a very interesting one. Apart from the harmonics sections, the rest was quite hard to read from the treble clef, and there is no tablature to help out. I have permission to send you the score, which I’ll do this afternoon, hopefully. I imagine there are parts of the score which were improvised, while other parts were worked out. Hopefully the composer can chime in.


  2. Hi,
    Well the reason for the tuning and the modus operandi:
    First of all, I do not play steel string myself but when I tried it, I really liked the clarity of the harmonics so that’s what I wanted to use. But the harmonic possibilities of harmonics (pun unintended…) with standard tuning is very limited so I wanted to find a tuning that offered both dissonant, atonal possibilities as well as tonal ones. That is the reason. When I found the tuning that gave me these possibilities, I tried some stuff that I liked and wrote down. Later I was sitting in the sun while my daughter had her horse riding class and I looked through my sketches and decided for the form which is a Rondo with some Sonata-similarities.
    When I came home I simply tied it together…


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