THE HINCHINBROOK RIFFS
For marimba and digital delay
(duration ~ 8.00)

To purchase the score and parts for this work, please see the print music catalogues

Program note –
Hinchinbrook Island is one of the world’s most diversely beautiful wilderness areas. It lies off the Cardwell coast, halfway between Cairns and Townsville in North Queensland Australia.
Originally populated by the Bandjin people, its current name was given by Captain Cook in 1770 & it is now listed as part of the “Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area” being Australia’s largest island National Park.
I first encountered the island whilst cruising the coral coast on my father’s yacht in 1975, & I was awestruck & inspired by the overwhelming grandeur of the rugged peaks & lush tropical gorges.
A number of musical motives or “riffs” immediately came to mind which I notated & initially incorporated into one of my very first compositions, “The Hinchinbrook Riffs” written for my garage band at the time “Eggs Benedict”.
The piece consists of a string of “motives” or “riffs” that are digitally copied within the delay & made to repeat 600 milliseconds (about half a second) after they have been performed “live”. The performer is required to interlock with the delay signal by adhering to a strict tempo indication (100 beats per minute), creating the riffs to interplay & trip over themselves, causing interesting rhythmic & melodic variants that surge & ebb in wave – like formations.
Originally written for guitar, the idea for the marimba version was suggested to me by Rebecca Lagos, principal percussionist with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.

Live performance notes –

* Preset the digital delay for one repeat only.

* If using a stereo sound system, pan the “live” marimba signal to the left side & the “delayed” marimba signal to the right side (or visa versa) – the object being to obtain maximum separation between “live” & “delayed” signals.

* Avoid feedback – monitor the “delayed” signal through mini earphones rather than a foldback wedge.
This gives you the opportunity to synchronize your performance with the “delayed” signal, whilst avoiding feedback.

* Its imperative that you are able to hear the delay signal as clearly as possible so that you can stay “in sync” with it.