Writings About Music

Setting Sail

Michael Robinson exploring the coast of Maine.

At the onset of beginning the notation of a new composition after weeks of preparation, I thought to share what this means and entails as follows.

The tones become me. I become the tones. I do my best to plot a promising course for us to travel upon together. Sometimes we find peace, sometimes adventure – sometimes both.

Music composition is a world of sounds imagined for future audibility by others. It reconstructs the inner and outer dimensions of the moments spent elaborating upon the thrust of the compelling vision of maybe, of perhaps, endeavoring to touch timelessness so that the circumstances of each invention take on interest only if the music captivates listeners by taking them away from where they thought they were.

The tones (swaras) of Raga Abhogi became part of my life like water, air and food during the weeks spent composing Nectar-Spells.


Vienese clavichord and Indian tabla weave intricate melodic-rhythmic tapestries from playful to frenzied for Ocean of Honey.


- Michael Robinson, November 2018, Los Angeles


© 2018 Michael Robinson All rights reserved


Michael Robinson is a Los Angeles-based composer and writer (musicologist) who has been a lecturer at UCLA, Bard College and California State University.