When I started writing Blissing Out in the winter of 2012, the saxophone was still an uncharted territory for me. I had long admired the instrument's versatility and power as well as the unquenchable thirst that classical saxophonists seemed to have for new music. In the hands of John Coltrane, the instrument had became a vessel for music of staggering depth and clarity - music that was absolutely central to the universe of my taste.
Writing for the Anubis Quartet, I knew that I could explore the instrument from a great many angles and that my collaborators would not balk at the unfamiliar or the challenging. This piece is a dramatic scene in which four musical characters interact - introducing themselves, feeling each other out, and establishing common ground.
Blissing Out was premiered by the Anubis Quartet (Ryan Muncy, Michael Ibrahim, David Wegehaupt, and Allison Balcetis) at Nichols Hall in Evanston, Illinois on February 11th, 2013.