Listen to the moan of a dog for its master.
That whining is the connection.
There are love dogs
no one knows the names of.
Give your life
to be one of them.
Love Dogs indirectly reflects my longtime love of the work of the great Sufi poet Rumi, from whose words the title of the piece is taken. I've also had a love affair with Sufi Qawwalli music, and the piece shows this influence in its form: long arching solo lines interspersed with charged repetition. The inflective vocabulary is drawn to some extent from American Bluegrass music (the fast-pulsed iterative rhythmic drive, and the scoops and slides), while the melodic contours are flavored by vocal music from southern Albania. There is a surprise turn into a Funk groove that was motivated by the connections I felt between the musical materials of the piece–or maybe it's just that I've been told that the work's dedicatee once played in a funk band, or that George Clinton (the leader of the famous 70's funk band Parliament/Funkadelic) lives just a few miles from my house. In any case, the immediacy, the earthy physical exuberance, the celebration of ecstasy, and the intensity of focus on rhythmic entrainment that are all present in Funk suddenly seemed not so distant from those same qualities in Sufi music. Love Dogs yearn for completion, and send their yearning out into the world in all kinds of loving ways: treading lightly on the earth; cultivating peace in their hearts, in their communities, and on the planet; caring for people, plants and animals in quiet ways; making inspired matches between creative souls and the tools of their art; finding the sacred places in our hearts for us; making music. We probably all know someone who is well on their way to Love Dog-dom. Give your life to become one of them! Don't waste another minute!