Dust Bowl Diaries


INSTRUMENTATION | | timp.1perc* | strings

finger cymbals, rainstick, suspended cymbal, 3 tam-tams (small, medium, large)

10′ 30″

Rural America in the 1930s suffered unprecedented hardships pressing homesteaders, ranchers, and farmers to their limits. The countrywide economic depression was exacerbated by environmental disaster. Frenzied agricultural boom followed by a decade long drought turned bounty into adversity. Drought, dust storms, brush fires, and tornadoes brought devastation and fear – fear of natural occurrences that echoed people’s concerns for long term survival in a downtrodden society.

Dust Bowl Diaries is not a direct reflection of experiences during these times or a depiction of the disaster. Rather, it parallels the uncertainty felt by a land both bountiful and hostile. The music builds gently and innocuously, slowly revealing harsher undercurrents that surface and dissipate. Though altered, the soundscape remains intact just as communities pressed on after the storms, physical and otherwise.