Performed by Buddy Griffith on double bass and John Bailey on piano.
The Sonata in D for Double Bass and Piano is a single movement Sonata Allegro form that works to juxtapose simplistic, diatonic, chant-like music with dense, chromatic, ‘romantic’ music. Both themes emerge from an initial stasis into immediate contrapuntal conflict. Neither side is given quite enough room in the exposition, but representative key centers of D and A-flat are established for the chant and romantic themes, respectively. The development features a rapid shifting of ideas as the two concepts influence one another harmonically, temporally, and motivically. The recapitulation features the themes in reverse order, suggesting a triumph of the romantic theme which is finally presented in full. But then the chant theme returns unadorned, emerging seemingly unscathed by the conflict or by its nemesis’ poignant assertion. A brief coda refuses to confirm either, or maybe it validates both.