Composer, arranger, musician

Space Music Etudes

Aug. 26, 2017

What is space music? The first things that come to mind are Gustav Holst’s The Planets and the iconic soundtrack to Star Wars. Then I think of bright timbres, non-functional harmony, chords that sway back and forth. I decided to make a few etudes while I was setting a poem by Jane Barlow (Ond and All) to music. The voices come from the golden disc that was sent with the Voyager spacecrafts in 1977 as greetings to any intelligent life the probes might encounter.


One and All

O’er boundless fields of night, lo, near and far
Light, dewdrop’s blink, and Light, Aeonian star.
Wan wraiths that flickering roam by marish ways ;
Fierce surge of levin-bright foam where oceans blaze --
Fly’s spark and flame gulfs dire, your fount is one,
Deep in the worlds’ arch-fire of all suns’ Sun.


A burning seed of strife Fate strews, and so
Life, men’s grudged dole, and Life, gods’ feast aglow.
Clod’s captive, senses’ thrall, oft grieved, soon slain ;
Immortal, glad o’er all to range and reign --
Frail breath, and spirit eterne, beyond thought’s seeing
Ye touch for one sole bourne all being’s Being.

- Jane Barlow