08/13/2019 12:46:36 Javier Obregon

Dear Mr. Dunn,
I can't explain why certain musical pieces have such a profound impact on my emotions. It doesn't matter what context or setting I may find myself in, but there are some musical themes that stop me dead in my tracks. One that comes to mind is "Gabriel's Oboe," by Ennio Morricone. I'm not sure why this piece is powerful for me...almost like it unlocks something deep within that I don't quite understand. As a trained musician and someone who is masterful in his compositions, does music still strike you in this manner, or has it lost any of its power...or maybe it even makes you marvel and appreciate it more? Is there any music that stops you dead in your tracks? Secondly, is there anything you have personally written that you are particularly proud of? Thank you for creating music for us, my life would have been much lamer if you had chosen a different path. Excited to see you in February 2020.


Ah, you like those dramatic descending bass lines and sus chords. That Morricone piece is very passionate and plays on a lot of our cultural expectations of tertian harmony. I appreciate your kinds words but I in no way consider myself a master. Regardless of what I know about the ‘bones’ of music I do still have moments like those you describe. Sometimes at a live concert I find myself laughing at the sheer intensity and passion of music. Seeing Messiaen’s Turanglîla Symphony live comes to mind, or the quartet Little Women, or the Baltimore-based grindcore band Full of Hell, or Patti Smith, or anything by Varese. I’ve have been brought to tears listening to Willie Nelson or Elliot Smith. Anything with real passion behind it has a lot of power.

I guess I’m particularly proud of most of the songs on the MadLove record and several things on my Four Films record as well as my recent Nocturnes for piano. It’s always nice to be solely responsible for something that you saw through to the end and which has focus and meaning to oneself.

Trevor Dunn