for alto saxophone, 8-string electric guitar, accordion, electric cello

Commissioned by the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) and the Indiana Music Teachers Association (IMTA)

duration: 8 minutes

Premiered at the MTNA/IMTA Conference in Terre Haute, Indiana on September 22nd, 2012 by Paul Bro, alto saxophone, Anthony Lanman, 8-string electric guitar, Ted Piechocinski, accordion, Kurt Fowler, electric cello

I’ve always loved progressive rock and metal music. As one wise man once said, “You’ll never escape the music you loved when you were seventeen.” And I’ve never tried. This piece is a tribute to all of that wonderful progressive rock that fueled my passion for music during my formative years, and contains that same drive, that same passion, and that same rush that it gave me all those years ago. The title is a reference to the feel of the music, and a tribute to one of the bands that got me started on my journey.

Rush also explores a whole new sound world for me – electric guitar, electric cello, alto saxophone and accordion – a combination I never thought I would hear, let alone have the opportunity to write for. It wasn’t until I did an arrangement of Astor Piazzolla’s L’Histoire du Tango for this group that I realized what a special sound and what a special group this was. Musically, the piece explores a few main ideas – one fragmented statement and one rock influenced melody. Its aim is to be a fusion of all of my past musical experiences, from playing in a touring rock band, to performing Bach suites on classical guitar, to playing John Dowland on the renaissance lute, to performing Steve Reich in a contemporary chamber orchestra.