Dots & Dashes is an intense, drummy, quartet for unpitched percussion in which composer Dustin Schulze aims to bridge the feel of tribal drum and dance music popular in West Africa with the complex, odd-meter construction found in popular western classical music.
This piece is written for Schulze’s former teacher, Brad Arnold, who had previously written a snare solo for him in high school using his initials (DLS) in Morse code (–.. .–.. …) as the primary ostinato. Shulze includes that theme along with a 2+3+2+2+3 ostinato, both of which serve as the driving force behind the piece.
Instrumentation consists of simply drums and various cymbals, though players rotate frequently between playing on drum heads and rims, and will need to navigate an ongoing array of intricate rhythms and modulating meters. Once rhythmic challenges have been worked through, advanced high school players will wow audiences with this aggressive show piece.
Dots & Dashes ships as a professionally spiral bound folio with a full color cover. Individual parts are included as printable PDFs on a CD-ROM.