Sua Cosa, Op.52 by John W. Duarte


This recording is from Arne Brattland’s first recording from 1987, Grieg, Duarte and Biberian.

Programme Notes by John W. Duarte (1987)

The Italian guitarist/composer Angelo Gilardino commissioned, on behalf of the publishing house of Berben, a piece in homage to the late Wes Montgomery (1925-1968), a jazz guitarist of extraordinary talents. Montgomery was entirely self-taught; he created wonderful music but understood absolutely nothing of its theory, and his playing technique (using only the thumb of the right hand) was as unorthodox as it was effective. It was said that he was able to do many of the things he did, only because no-one had ever told him they were difficult! One of the last pieces he wrote was called Mi cosa (My thing), a title I adapted for my homage: Sua Cosa, Op. 57 (His thing). The opening and closing sections suggest the smoky, early-hours atmosphere of the clubs where he so often played, the following theme follows the general pattern of the traditional 12-bar blues, part of the basic stock of all jazz musicians, and is stated in octaves, a hallmark of Montgomery’s own style; the reflective central section freely quotes from Mi cosa itself. I have tried to give this work the essential dignity of a tombeau.



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