Divine Origin, a God from God I am

Divine Origin, a God from God I am–100$

This piece lasts about 1 hour 43 minutes with an introduction of 49 bars, and 7 parts 147 bars each with a different tempo and meter for each part. It is a testimony of my faith, the science of divinities and my journey to the Central Isle of Paradise.


Divine Origin, a God from God I am, Part 3




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Divine Origin,a God from God I am, Part 7




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Prayer of the faithful

We embrace the beauty, the goodness and the purity of the love of God, our Father, the First Source and Center, who has been living forever in the Central Isle of Paradise. We are not your foot soldiers, my Lord, and we pass no judgement as justice and vengeance do not pertain to our rights.
We hear the painful screams of the children of this world. They are experiencing and enduring the worst of our humanity. Have mercy, Michael of Nebadon, our Father-Creator, and strengthen their souls so they can open their hearts to love and brake the circle of violence on this planet. Have mercy also for those whose violence is the prime directive in their quest for self-gratification.
Forces of love, harmony, peace, goodness, mercy and compassion move our souls, hearts and minds.
Gloria in excelcis Deo Patris, Filii et Spiritu. Amen !

Terra Mater, Ex Innocentium Sanguine ut dolor tuus consolatus sit!




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Terre Mère, que tu sois soulagée du sang des innocents !

We are so powerless, aren’t we?

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From the “natif” concept

Here are two examples where the “natif” concept is in full effervescence.

First, the link to the chart of “Fonde.” Click on the title in red below in order to see the scores.

Fonde

The “play” button to listen to the song.




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Kote moun yo




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The talent of Makarios Césaire

I had a great privilege to meet with Makarios in 1990. My very longtime friend Rigaud Simon introduced us. It was with great pleasure that he came to the recording sessions of my “Rara Mwe” project produced by Robert Aaron at the Wave Lab Studio of David Gervai. Oh! Boy! What a time! During Makarios’ guitar solo in this song, Robert Aaron’s body was shaking without interruption while he was screaming: “He is killing me!”

Thanks, my man!

Siwèl




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written by Gifrants, arranged and produced by Robert Aaron.
Rythm Guitar and lead Vocals: Guitar
Lead Guitar: Makarios Césaire
Back-up vocals: Nadia Pressage, Michou Angus and Emmanuela Paul.

Pote M Sou Kè




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written by Gifrants, arranged and produced by Robert Aaron.
Rythm Guitar and lead Vocals: Guitar
Lead Guitar: Makarios Césaire
Bass: Bobby Raymond
Back-up vocals: Nadia Pressage, Michou Angus and Emmanuela Paul.

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Remembering Boulo Valcourt

Boulo Valcourt was one of the most Haitian talented musicians. He happened to be my cousin. We first met when I went to Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti, for the official Baccalaureate exam, Part I. We had the French schooling system at that time. Since we were the only ones who wanted to embrace music as a career, we clicked right away. So, when I came back to enter Law School, he invited me to stay with him and we lived under the same roof for at least four years before I left Haiti and moved to the States.

In this clip below, I talked about how he introduced me to Brazilian music and his music influenced me. The music starts around 3 minutes of the clip.

Omaj a Boulo Valcourt

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Two tracks of konpa music

Imagine this!

I just found 2 tracks of Konpa music which I have recorded around 1997: “Aladeriv”–an adaptation of the version released in “Serenade by Gifrants” and “Lanmou Blayi Sou Tchè Mwe” at the time I was leading my band “Vèvè.”

So many memories:
This version of “Aladeriv” was recorded by Ronald Félix in his studio. He also played bass in this song,I had Bonga on congas, Makarios Césaire on lead guitar (a marvelous solo) and Donald Guillaume, the former drummer of the Fugees on drums. Of course, I sang, played the guitar, keys and did the arrangement.

Aladeriv




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“Lanmou Blayi Sou Tchè We” was recorded by Alberto Netto and he also played drums. I had a Brazilian bassist called Jorge on bass, Ken Cook on keys, Patrick Mottaz on guitar, Eddy Brisseaux on trumpet, Bob Pilkington on trombone. I cannot remember the name of the tenor sax player.

Lanmou Blayi Sou Tchè We




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Enjoy! Those 2 tracks will be available for sale online soon!

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Gifrants Konpilasyon Volim I

Gifrants Konpilasyon Volim I

My latest cd is out! It is a compilation of 17 songs from several albums. Digital versions are available online. But, people can get the physical album only from this site below, or click on the front and back cover pics.
The price is $ 20 (Canadian dollars). Mailing and handling fees included–only for North America: US and Canada.
Gifrants Konpilasyon Volim I/

Back cover

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Article du Nouvelliste le 23 Juillet 2017

Le lien à cet article sur mon parcours en musique:

Gifrants et l’âme musicale haïtienne

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“Latibonit o” for clarinet and piano

This song is one of the most famous Haitian folk songs. I have arranged it, used it as an example in my book Kantik Natif, Volim I, in order to codify the “natif” concept. It is also one among a few others that I will arrange with this instrumentation–clairnet and piano. All exclusive rights have been assigned to the “Société de Recherche et de Diffusion de la Musique Haïtienne” (SRDMH) based in Montreal. All archives are held at UQÀM (Université du Québec à Montréal). Anyone interested in having those scores should contact Mr. Jean-Claude Nazon, the current President of the SRDMH.

I invite you with great pleasure and pride to listen to this version. Peace!

Latibonit o




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Writing for a marching band

I have been approached many times regarding arranging or writing for a marching band. I have been very reluctant to do so since I do not believe that we should consider that “rigorous military underlining” for music, specially in our culture. For example, I do not think that the anthem of Haiti, my Motherland, reflects and reveals the soul of our culture, belief and traditions. So, for most Haitian peasants not to know their national anthem has nothing to do with illiteracy, but rather with that strong missing link that unifies all segments of the Haitian population–our own identity. That identity is being lost with the education offered by foreign institutions that were in charge of education, and the importance of “ruling” the Haitians despite the independence of Haiti. Once must not forget this accrued pressure of acculturation that crushes constantly traditions for the “development” or “modernization” or “westernization” of countries that were former colonies, or dependent of technology for the progress of their peoples.

That piece below entitled “Kote moun yo”, which is a well known Haitian folk song has been arranged for a marching band with the following instrumentation: 3 flutes, 3 clarinets, 2 alto saxes, 3 tenor saxes, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, 2 tubas and a drum set.

Once again, it is an illustration of the “natif” concept and I’m very proud that I can show the beauty of our music and the sophistication of the possibilities offered in the area of musical arrangement.

Kote Moun Yo




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Divine Origin–a god from God I am

From the longest piece I have ever written, this 3rd movement is written in 9/4–the telling of my origin and my final destination.

A testimony of the ties between God, my Father, and me!

Divine Origin, a god from God I am

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Haitian folk children songs in classical music?

Yes!
I have arranged 7 of them for a string quartet–violin, violin, viola, cello. The SRDMH (Société de Recherche et de Diffusion de la Musique Haïtienne) based in Montreal, and Crossing Borders Music Collective in Chicago, have been given the exclusive rights to those pieces. That means if any groups or organizations that are teaching music to kids and teenagers in Haiti need scores of Haitian children songs, they can approach those two non for profit organizations mentioned above. It is important to mention that those songs have been arranged for beginners.
I’m listing also the piece that El Sistema of Massachusetts has inserted in their repertoire. and might be listed in the repertoire of El Sistema in the States and around the world. However, that piece is arranged for an orchestra with vocals. It is entitled “The Light Within” and below are the lyrics.

Open my heart and see the light within
Open my heart and see this light shining
It’s feeding my soul with love
Will you hold my hand
For I’m just a friend
Passing through this land
Before reaching the stars
High in the sky
There in the heavens
I’ll be shining some day
From this light within
Open my heart and see the light within
Open my heart and see this light shining
It’s feeding my soul with love
With love, with love

Lyrics and music by Gifrants.

Ti Zwazo




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Dodo Ti Pitit Manman




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The Light Within




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Le violoncelle Imaginaire

Le violoncelle imaginaire de Gifrants

Notes de présentation par Claude Dauphin

Le violoncelliste imaginaire de Gifrants est un recueil de sept pièces pour violoncelle seul. Le défi est grand pour un compositeur de notre temps de s’aventurer sur ce terrain où règnent sans partage les six suites pour violoncelle seul de Jean-Sébastien Bach, écrites entre 1720 et 1725 et la Sonate pour violoncelle seul, op. 8 de Zoltán Kodály, composée en 1915. Ainsi, fallut-il attendre près de 200 ans avant que le compositeur hongrois du XXe siècle ne vienne bouleverser les conventions de jeu établies par son prédécesseur baroque et inaugurer une nouvelle ère dans le jeu de ce noble instrument, le plus apparenté à la voix humaine. Non sans ressentir, consciemment ou inconsciemment, l’influence de son célèbre devancier, Gifrants a le mérite d’être le premier à pourvoir le répertoire savant d’Haïti, son pays d’origine, d’un ensemble d’oeuvres consacrées à ce merveilleux instrument.

Dans la première pièce, Patris Gloria, se suivent quatre épisodes notés Grave, Con calore, Con espressione, Con passione. La deuxième, Blue Moonlight, décline cinq sections : Espressivo, Amoroso, Dolce, Con anima, Morendo. Ces deux pièces sont dominées par des formules mélodico-rythmiques jouées à l’archet et rompues par des cellules contrastantes en pizzicato. Cette alternance systématique, signe le style du compositeur et donne de son discours une impression d’esquisses improvisées, de soliloques erratiques, soudain raffermies par des strettes modales, avant qu’une courte Coda n’en énonce la conclusion.

Pourtant ces pièces sont évolutives et comportent des passages lyriques. Déjà Blue Moonlight apporte en sa troisième partie une complainte modale symbolique d’une aspiration à la cohésion. Naviguant contre vents et marées, entre élans et affaissements, frayant à travers de nombreuses lézardes motiviques, cette complainte, cadençant sur des doubles cordes harmoniques, trace un chemin d’unité sereine à travers un parcours parsemé d’embûches.

Debonnaire’s Flair se distingue par une danse scherzando (Gustoso), affirmation d’une joie de vivre évidente. Puis une cadence et un pont en pizzicato conduit à une deuxième section appelée Gentile (mes. 27-62). Suit une troisième section, Gracioso (mes. 63-80), dont le scherzando évoque le Gustoso du début, effet restreint de réitération chez Gifrants. Vient une évocation de mélopée paysanne, Con Espressione (mes. 81-122). Enfin, poursuivant dans l’esprit du rappel, la pièce entame une réexposition du Gracioso avant d’amorcer une cadence finale (mes. 143-147) tenue sur des intervalles de quinte.

Solace me semble la pièce la plus intéressantes du recueil. Le Giocoso (mes. 1-24) inaugure un style percussif caractérisé par des pizzicati effervescents. Un soudain ralentissement, sur des intervalles plaqués de tierces, de quintes et de sixtes, installe une sorte de pause dans le
discours avant que ne reprenne, arco, l’esprit dionysiaque du début. Un nouvel arrêt sur un accord de quintes superposées annonce une nouvelle section (mes. 25-49) sur des motifs fragmentés en soliloques erratiques, caractéristiques du style de Gifrants : alternance de motifs ascendants et descendants en cellules de quatre doubles avec saut d’arrêt. Puis le rythme s’élargit en triolets puis en croches. La cadence repose sur une mélopée en mode éolien. Une réexposition des tambours percussifs du début (mes. 50-93) forme une coda où les pizzicati dialoguent avec d’inquiétants motifs de l’archet.

Silhouette commence par des élans de triolets (Con passione, mes. 1-22) qui scandent bien vite une cadence dorienne (mode de ré). On passe alors à l’Agressivo (23-32), jeu de motifs de tierces ascendantes, sur quatre doubles accentués, en la majeur, un des rares passages aussi évidemment tonal au contraire du langage modal prédominant. La section 3 (mes. 33-69) se veut un rappel du Tempo primo (Primer tempo, indique, en latin, la partition). Le matériau modal est pentatonique. Mais la cadence finale revient au principe de tonalité, esquissant une pirouette vers la relative mineure (fa dièse) du ton principal la majeur. La quatrième section (mes. 70-82) est notée Con Fuego (en espagnol au lieu de l’italien Con fuoco). Elle conduit à une cinquième section (mes. 83-91) notée Agressivo qui est un rappel de la deuxième section. Le Con passionne (mes. 92-113) qui suit réexpose l’introduction. Puis la pièce s’éteint Morendo sur un accord de quarte.

Broken Steps Along My Way comporte cinq sections : A) Espressione (mes. 1-23) ; B) Aggressivo (mes. 25-37) ; C) Con vivo (mes. 38-59) ; D) Con Espressione (mes. 59-68, rappel de A) ; E) Con fuego (mes. 69-fin). L’un des moments forts se situe à la partie D (mes. 53-54) où surgit cette formule de centonisation (fragment mélodique amovible) familière dans la construction des mélodies du vaudou. Elle fait office de rappel fantomatique qui vient hanter la mémoire du compositeur solitaire au cours de ses déambulations oniriques. À la section E, la métabolisation de ce motif lui attribue des teintes purement grégoriennes (mes. 81-82 ; 86-87) qui contrastent avec les accords fondamentaux (do-mi bémol-sol) et renversés (sol-mi bémol-si bémol ; sol-ré si bémol) aboutissant à conclusion plagale (quatrième degré renversé : sol-mi bémol-si bémol).

Soulful Trance, ultime mouvement du recueil, comporte six épisodes : A) Allegretto (mes. 1-36) ; B) mes. 37-53 ; C) Leggiero. Cet épisode fait un pont de 12 accords plaqués, puis réitérés, qui résonnent comme 24 coups de cloches sur le cadran d’un Jour J. D) Con brio (mes. 82-99) ; E) Allegretto (mes. 100-132). Cette section récapitule l’exposition. Elle est marquée par des jeux d’échos entre arco et pizzicato ; F) Con brio (mes. 132 à fin), est une coda cadentielle.

Ces sept pièces oniriques, aux titres sibyllins font de Gifrants un poète égaré dans les méandres de la musique. Elles sont animées d’une liberté d’improvisation axée autour du principe de la variation continue. L’opposition du jeu de l’archet et de la corde pincée (pizzicato) occupe presque toute la place dans les procédés compositionnels du Violoncelliste imaginaire dont la grammaire générale reste indifférente au langage moderne du violoncelle inauguré par la Sonate op. 8 de Kodály (1915). Pas de scordatura ni d’attaques col legno ou sul ponte ; nul jeu polyphonique ni variations de timbres. Mais on y trouve une parenté fondamentale dans
l’intérêt du compositeur haïtien pour les modes anciens, ces gammes sur tous les tons, sans dièse et sans bémols. Parmi eux, Gifrants fait grand usage du dorien (mode de ré), de l’éolien (mode de la naturel), parfois du phrygien (mode de mi), du mixolydien (mode de sol) et du pentatonique (mode de cinq sons sans demi-tons). Il pratique en toute liberté le passage d’un mode à l’autre, ce qui, en langage modal, s’appelle une métabole et remplace la modulation de la musique tonale. Côté morphologique, Gifrants cultive le genre rhapsodique : peu ou prou de réitérations, pas de développement thématique, mais un découpage en sections (entre cinq et huit) chacune marquée par un mouvement expressif noté à l’italienne, dans la bonne tradition de la musique de chambre, avec quelques glissements inattendus vers l’espagnol (Con fuego, nos 5 et 6) ou le latin (Primer tempo, no 5).

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Unbreakable–the book

At last, after four months of delay, my next book “Unbreakable” will be published next week.

It contains 7 pieces written for a string quartet. My musical journey continues with inspirations and feelings which I try to convey with my “unbreakable faith” in God, my Father.

Below the audio one of the pieces included in this book:

Following My Father’s Steps




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Release of “The Imaginary Cellist”

I have recorded 2 projects with Crossing Borders Music Collective. This has been made possible with the help of its founder and the very talented, Mr. Tom Clowes to whom I’m forever grateful.
I have released the first one, entitled Pinnalaganash, Volim III,” a few months ago. The second one, entitled “The Imaginary Cellist” will be published this week, available first on cdbaby.com and all its affiliates and vendors the following weeks.
As mentioned by Prof. Claude Dauphin, I’m the first Haitian composer to write solo pieces for the cello. I invite you to listen to this project and hope that you will find great pleasure in doing so.

Here is one of the pieces performed by the extremely talented cellist Tom clowes

Broken Steps Along My Way

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