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Editions 75 publishes the works by the American composer Tom Johnson

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When I prepared the Seven Pieces of Tilework  with the sound engineer Daniel Deshays, we thought it would be a CD, but now that the CD market has all but disappeared, it seems best just to place this music on the web site, where it can be heard by everyone without payment. In classical music, composers and performers never earned very much money from record sales anyway. The records were made mostly just to promote the ideas, and to stimulate the real profits generated by real musical experiences – live performances, and this continues to be the case. Our hope is that some performers will want to order the scores, that some broadcasters and concert producers will want to present them, and most of all, that listeners of all types will learn to appreciate music constructed as “tilework.” 

“Tilework” has to do with fitting together little tiles so as to fill lines and loops. One can think of this as making mosaics in one dimension, but it is also very much like stringing beads onto necklaces in various patterns. In musical terms, the Tilework series is a collection of compositions in which individual rhythms fit together into musical sequences without simultaneities, so that a single melodic instrument can play two or more voices at once. I gradually found so many ways of doing this that I ended up with a piece for each instrument of the orchestra. The year of 2002 was devoted almost exclusively to such pieces, published early in 2003. I am still waiting to hear good performances of Tilework for Oboe, Tilework for Horn, Tilework for Trumpet and some of the others, but by now excellent interpreters have made excellent recordings, and they all benefit by coming together.

Tom Johnson, Paris September 2010  


Tilework for Flute, played by Michael Schmid  

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Tilework for Clarinet, played by Cristo Barrios 

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Tilework for Saxophone, played by Laurent Estoppey 

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Tilework for Tuba, played by Arnaud Boukhitine 

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Tilework for Percussion, played by Adam Weisman 

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Tilework for Piano, played by John McAlpine 

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Tilework for Double Bass, played by Jean-Daniel Hégé 

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