© 2019 Erik Griswold.

Drifting cowboys in a mist (2012)

String quartet. 12:00.

A road trip through the deserts of California and Arizona was the inspiration for Drifting Cowboys in a Mist. The passing scenery from Route 66 and Interstate 40 through the western badlands and cactus strewn landscapes rekindled my secret love of country and western. Loading up Hank Williams’ (and the Drifting Cowboys) Greatest Hits on my laptop, I began to absorb the Hawaiian tinged steel guitar of Don Helms and the poignant fiddle solos of Jerry Rivers. As I studied and analyzed their music I somehow began to draw a connections with impressionism (Debussy), early jazz (Bix Beiderbecke - “In a mist”), and Bartok (String Quartet No.3). All these influences merged together in a wide ranging homage. I was delighted to have the opportunity to compose this, my first string quartet, for Kurilpa String Quartet, who bring immense talent, dedication, and inspiration to Queensland Conservatorium.

Drifting Cowboys was premiered by Kurilpa String Quartet at
Crossbows Festival, Brisbane, 13 May 2012.