The above audio is from the opening of Meredith Monk's New York Requiem (ECM Records).
In 1993, during the period of the AIDS crisis, my friend Tom Bogdan asked me to write a piece for him to sing. As I began working, I realized that this could be the requiem I had always wanted to write — not with the Latin text, because I didn’t want it to be literally Christian — but a requiem nonetheless.
And then, every time I called Tom he was taking a friend to the hospital, or going to another friend’s funeral. While New York Requiem was originally conceived during that time period, it was really inspired by all kinds of loss.