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Santa Monica Library Presents Solo Bass Works by Minimalist Composer Tom Johnson


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By Lookout Staff

August 1, 2017 -- Best known for "The Four Note Opera," minimalist composer Tom Johnson can stretch seemingly simple formulas to mind-bending and often humorous extremes.

On Wednesday, August 16, at 7:30 p.m. bassist Tom Peters will perform two solo pieces for the instrument in the Main Library’s Martin Luther King Jr. Auditorium, 601 Santa Monica Boulevard, as part of the Soundwaves concert series.

"Doublings" and "Failing, a Very Difficult Piece for String Bass" both explore "self-reference," event organizers said.

Tom Johnson score
Musical annotation for a composition by Tom Johnson

"Doublings" generates "an endlessly developing melody through repeated iterations of a formula," while "Failing" requires the performer "to give a monologue about the performance as it happens."

According to the new music site "Other Minds," Johnson "is considered a minimalist, since he works with simple forms, limited scales, and generally reduced materials, but he proceeds in a more logical way than most minimalists, often using formulas, permutations, and predictable sequences."

Like Johnson, a former Village Voice music critic, Peters, who teaches at Cal State Long Beach, also is a published author.

An accomplished bassist, he performs with the Long Beach Symphony, Southwest Chamber Music and other groups,organizers said.

The monthly Soundwaves series presents artists who appear on the DRAM (Database of Recorded American Music) streaming service. The Santa Monica Library is the first public library to offer this service to its cardholders.

Listings of past and upcoming Soundwaves shows as well as sound and video recordings can be found at

This event is free and open to the public. Seating is limited and on a first-arrival basis.

The Main Library is served by Big Blue Bus routes 1, 7, R7, R10 and 18 and provides bicycle parking racks.

For more information, visit or contact the Santa Monica Public Library at (310) 458-8600.


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