VISION QUEST was written
during the summer of 2002 as a work for myself to play, as I had not
written a work for bass in many years.
Many of my works are taken
from an improvisation to a greater or lesser degree. This work is
developed from a keyboard improvisation, however, it bears little
resemblance to the original as the transformation has been
extensive. The original improvisation served as more of a
springboard for the inspiration and the development of the piece.
The term "vision
quest" is usually associated with Shamanism, and refers to a period
of solitary fasting and chanting in the wilderness in search of a
spiritually defining vision. The work, however, is not
particularly sectarian or partial to any particular religious
tradition. The work is meant to represent an ecstatic religious
experience in a more abstract sense. Neither is the music
particularly Native American in character, though the ending
"vision" section does bear a passing resemblance to the music
associated with traditional Peyote ceremonies.