‘Blue’ Gene Tyranny, Whose Music Melded Genres, Dies at 75
“Blue and Bob had this symbiotic relationship from again in Ann Arbor,” Mr. Gordon, who additionally participated within the creation of “Good Lives,” stated in a cellphone interview. “The character Buddy is just like the avatar for the music of ‘Blue’ Gene.”
“What we generally acknowledge as music in ‘Good Lives’ was ‘Blue’ Gene’s,” Mr. Gordon defined, “however the total composition was Bob’s.” Mr. Tyranny would contribute in several methods to later Ashley operas, together with “Mud” (1998) and “Celestial Excursions” (2003).
In his personal music, a lot of which he recorded for the Beautiful Music label, Mr. Tyranny moved from early efforts with graphic notation and magnetic tape to compositions that drew from common types. Some alternatives on his debut solo album, “Out of the Blue” (1978), like “Main a Double Life,” have been basically pop songs. “A Letter From Residence,” which closed that album, blended discovered sounds and dreamy keyboards with an epistolary textual content, spoken and sung, starting from the mundane to the philosophical.
He labored extensively with electronics and labored all through the Nineteen Nineties on “The Driver’s Son,” which he termed an “audio storyboard.” A realization of that piece, a questing monodrama set to lush timbres and bubbly rhythms, might be included in “Levels of Freedom Discovered,” a six-CD boxed set of unreleased Tyranny recordings due on Unseen Worlds within the spring. Mr. Tyranny, who misplaced his eyesight in 2009 and gave up performing after 2016, helped to compile the set, hoping to provide his disparate canon a coherent form.
Mr. Tyranny’s compositions divided crucial response. “To this style, Mr. Tyranny’s work too usually skirts the trivial,” John Rockwell wrote in a 1987 New York Occasions overview. However Ben Ratliff, in a 2012 Occasions overview of the final new recording issued throughout Mr. Tyranny’s life, “Detours,” provided a unique view: “Mr. Sheff represents a number of totally different American energies.”
He added, “He doesn’t stint on lovely issues — main arpeggios, soul-chord progressions, strains that circulation and breathe — and his keyboard contact is rounded and beautiful, a sense you bear in mind.”
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