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3 pieces for violin

3 Pieces for Violin
by Warren Ellis

I worked with the two dancers … listening to the way their shoes slid

3 pieces for violin was originally concieved as dance music for the Canadian troupe, the Holy Body Tattoo, it was premiered feb 2000 and wil tour for the next two years.

I had been approached sometime before to contribute some solo music to the project,and this recording is the result. The theme of the dance was the tango and I was asked to write music in an appropriate style. Tango is a style of music I have never attempted to play or write, and for that reason decided any attempt to try and write something in that vein would be at once dishonest and most probably insulting to a fine form of music.

So I decided to deconstruct, if you like, the elements I heard in Tango music, its percussive nature, sliding melodies, glissandos, the emotional intensity, and try to create it in a figurative way, using only the violin. I worked with the two dancers in a small studio in Paris, listening to the way their shoes slid, and improvising to the movement that they were creating for the piece.

The result is what you hear, recorded in my bathroom by my lovely wife. Mick Turner heard it and thought to give my failing career a boost by releasing it on the wonderful King Crab Records. Bless him.

warren ellis, paris
oct 2001

Warren is one third of the dirty three, half of grinderman and is one of nick cave’s bad seeds.

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