Roger Reynolds: All Known All White (CD)

Available at:

…the serpent-snapping eye... is available on vinyl at:

Ping and Traces are available on vinyl at:

…the serpent-snapping eye
... (1978)
Trumpet, percussion, piano, and tape

Ping (1968)
Piano, flute, percussion, and live electronics

Traces (1968)
Flute, piano, cello, and live electronics

Liner notes by Roger Reynolds and Peter Yates

Primary Artist(s): Edwin Harkins, Trumpet; Cecil Lytle, Piano; Daryl Pratt, Percussion, Roger Reynolds, Piano; Karen Reynolds, Flute; Paul Chihara, Percussion; Alan Johnson, Electronics; Yuji Takahashi, Piano; Lin Barron, Cello

Label: Pogus P21025-2

Dates of recording: 1972, 1984
Recording: Josef Kucera, James Campbell

Editing: Josef Kucera

About …the serpent-snapping eye...:
My intention … was to explore those situations in which a loss of orientation leads us more deeply into the moment itself. There is a certain aquatic feel to the music, in which the performers are joined with a complex and sonorous fabric of computer generated sound. […] The work is twenty minutes long, divided into three roughly equal sections. In the first, the primary aim of the performers is to match, submit to and intensify the taped sounds. The second, in which the synthesized sounds are sparse, introduces a feeling of independence as the performers respond, reflecting on models provided by the tape. In the final section, the live performers complement and elaborate upon – they attempt to augment – the synthesized sound.

– Roger Reynolds

About Ping and Traces:
These recordings were made at the University of California, San Diego, where Reynolds had just taken up a position. The project was sponsored by an award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, of which Reynolds was the winner in 1971.

“The conception of Ping evolved during a two-year germination period, {and] includes three elements: [a] Beckett text on 160 slides designed by Karen Reynolds; a film; and combined instrumental, taped, and electronic sound. PING is the first break in the composer’s commitment to fully defined, ornamental textures. The piece is without score, although the individual parts are detailed.

Traces follows a more abstract succession of instrumental [sections], the pockets of predefined order being gradually more localized, the temporal and sensory content expanding in importance…. The total effect of the work – highly ordered concentrations of events strung along extended and formless strands of sound – necessitates dwelling upon these reflective trailings-away of selected elements from each movement after its organized detail is completed.

The two pieces … were composed to complement one another.”

– Peter Yates