ISF Logo   IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » History, Literature, and the Arts
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Reply
Old 9th November 2017, 09:20 AM   #1
The Sparrow
Graduate Poster
 
The Sparrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Central Canada
Posts: 1,170
A good thing happened for me. Baroque music related.

So for about 8 or so years now I have been taking lessons from a seriously accomplished harpsichord teacher.

During that time I have aquired a harpsichord and 2 clavichords.

I have worked very hard trying to become a better player (I've played keyboard off and on my whole life)
I have challenges of some hearing damage which can make listening quite painful at times.
I also have physical issues with my hands, shoulders, and upper body. Getting old ain't for sissies! A career of
computer work hasn't helped.

I have fought through all this to try to be a better musician and because it gives me joy.
My teacher has retired from performing leaving a bit of a void in the early music scene in our city.


So, turns out in December a hot shot musician is coming into town to play with our chamber orchestra for a night of baroque music. The orchestra is
renting one of my teachers instruments. A big-assed french double manual harpsichord.

Well, at my teachers recommendation, little old me has been hired to do the harpsichord tunings for all the rehearsals and for
the live performance concert night.

I feel incredibly honoured. And its a paying job. Perfectly timed as I start my retirement the week after.
And it could lead to more similar work.

I'm just blown away and grateful. And humbled.

I'm being asked to be a contributing part of a serious musical event. I've worked so hard and suffered a lot. But it has come to mean a little something.

Feeling, terrified, happy, awed.
The Sparrow is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 09:28 AM   #2
calebprime
Somewhat Elitist Parasite
 
calebprime's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,335
great post.

2 actually five quest--

Do you tune to some historical tuning, to equal tempered, is it stretched at all?

How much tone-color variety can you get (subjective hearing aside, I mean touch and register) ?

Harpsichord is such a bright coppery timbre that it will cut through from behind everybody.

Do you have favorite players?

Do you have strong feelings about historical accuracy, etc.? (That's cool, I happen to be a synth person, which pretty much means fake.)

Oh, and so many people I know who are musical suffer from hearing loss, and it really interferes with some aspects of their pleasure. Do you use a hearing aid? How does it work, if you care to discuss?

-c
__________________
Life sucks, and then you die

( Sung to the tune of the old Time jingle: "Time flies, and you are there!" )

Last edited by calebprime; 9th November 2017 at 09:30 AM.
calebprime is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 09:37 AM   #3
The Sparrow
Graduate Poster
 
The Sparrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Central Canada
Posts: 1,170
Originally Posted by calebprime View Post
great post.

2 actually five quest--


Do you tune to some historical tuning, to equal tempered, is it stretched at all?
Personally I tune my intstruments to a=415 and I will use 1/4 comma meantone or Werkmeisiter.
For this gig they will probably want equal temperament and a=440.

Originally Posted by calebprime View Post
How much tone-color variety can you get (subjective hearing aside, I mean touch and register) ?
Scientifically, not a lot. But using techniques such as messing with articulation, finger pedalling, and shaping (on a small scale, not across the big beat) you can be very expressive.

Originally Posted by calebprime View Post
Harpsichord is such a bright coppery timbre that it will cut through from behind everybody.
Agreed. Better than piano for early music. :P

Originally Posted by calebprime View Post
Do you have favorite players?
I would have to say Bob Van Asperen.

Originally Posted by calebprime View Post
Do you have strong feelings about historical accuracy, etc.? (That's cool, I happen to be a synth person, which pretty much means fake.)
I love synth too! I am not a purist as long as it is tastefully done

Originally Posted by calebprime View Post
Oh, and so many people I know who are musical suffer from hearing loss, and it really interferes with some aspects of their pleasure. Do you use a hearing aid? How does it work, if you care to discuss?
-c
I don't use or need one yet. My problem is more of tinnitus and actual pain from moderately loud sounds. No way I can play piano anymore. It just hurts too much.

That's why electronic instruments are also good for me. I can control the volume.
The Sparrow is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 09:46 AM   #4
calebprime
Somewhat Elitist Parasite
 
calebprime's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,335
Originally Posted by The Sparrow View Post
Personally I tune my intstruments to a=415 and I will use 1/4 comma meantone or Werkmeisiter.
For this gig they will probably want equal temperament and a=440.


Scientifically, not a lot. But using techniques such as messing with articulation, finger pedalling, and shaping (on a small scale, not across the big beat) you can be very expressive.


Agreed. Better than piano for early music. :P


I would have to say Bob Van Asperen.


I love synth too! I am not a purist as long as it is tastefully done



I don't use or need one yet. My problem is more of tinnitus and actual pain from moderately loud sounds. No way I can play piano anymore. It just hurts too much.

That's why electronic instruments are also good for me. I can control the volume.
talk more about shaping if you want.

If I were smarter, I could link our perceptions about what is a musical performance to a little image Daniel Dennett uses to demonstrate how sensitive to touch we are.

That is, how much you feel even if you use an intervening pencil or stick or something.

The exact connection between that and the harpsichord eludes me, but I think I'm trying to say that you're right and it's really interesting how as performers you can capture musical intuitions without velocity but with timing, pedalling, and the other stuff you're hopefully about to explain. Much can be conveyed with timing. We are perceptive animals, capable of sensing erratic timing, for instance.

Whatever that hand-waving that pianists do actually is, it helps them let the phrases breath and have the right weight.

Discuss.
__________________
Life sucks, and then you die

( Sung to the tune of the old Time jingle: "Time flies, and you are there!" )

Last edited by calebprime; 9th November 2017 at 09:47 AM.
calebprime is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th November 2017, 11:39 AM   #5
The Sparrow
Graduate Poster
 
The Sparrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Central Canada
Posts: 1,170
Well, as for shaping, hmmmm I don't want to over simplify and get scolded by someone.

Lets say IN GENERAL, with baroque music, you shouldn't alter the tempo of the 'big beats'
By big beats I would say in general to think of counting one beat per bar.
So in general, all bars are the same length in time.
WITHIN the bar though, one can slightly alter the lengths of notes to slightly change their emphasis and thus achieve effects of micro accelerations and de-celerations, or tiny agogics or fermatas.

If you think of later classical and romantic era music, it messes with tempo in a sweeping gradual way that spreads across multiple bars. In the baroque, we do that more on a microscopic scale within the bar, striving to balance the minuscule lengthening of notes with minuscule shortening, all in order to shape and express, while still preserving the regularity of the big beats.

Does that kind of make sense?

Keep in mind I am speaking in generalities. Sometimes these 'rules' are willingly broken. It's just a simplified 50,000 foot view.
The Sparrow is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 11th November 2017, 05:55 AM   #6
The Sparrow
Graduate Poster
 
The Sparrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Central Canada
Posts: 1,170
Well, I am happy about it anyway LOL
The Sparrow is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 11th November 2017, 07:41 AM   #7
calebprime
Somewhat Elitist Parasite
 
calebprime's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,335
We need fake controversy.

I don't care about historical authenticity, any more than I care about my beef being grass-fed. I'm boorish. I once played loud guitar.

Jazz is better than pop. Except when I say so.

Toddlers should be seen but not heard, especially your neighbor's toddlers.
__________________
Life sucks, and then you die

( Sung to the tune of the old Time jingle: "Time flies, and you are there!" )

Last edited by calebprime; 11th November 2017 at 07:43 AM.
calebprime is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 13th November 2017, 04:46 AM   #8
calebprime
Somewhat Elitist Parasite
 
calebprime's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,335
sorry, SP, it is a good thread and it doesn't need to belong to the "experts", so maybe it's too bad I jumped in.

I enjoy it when people simply post about what interests them, not necessarily as part of a dialog or an argument.

As I've made obvious, I don't know much about the historically-informed approach to making music. But it might not have been obvious that I have a lot of respect for that approach, I just don't do it myself.

One thing I feel very strongly about is guarding against hearing loss. My brother-in-law majored in music as an undergrad, now he says his hearing aid -- an expensive one -- makes playing the piano sound like he's "in a bathtub" -- meaning clangy and too resonant, maybe short metallic-sounding reverb, I'd guess.

Heck, I'm paranoid enough to always have foam earplugs on hand and to wear them in the shower because a new shower nozzle makes a high-pitched tone. (It might be the Cubans!)

Both my parents lost their marbles before their hearing. I hope the same for myself.
__________________
Life sucks, and then you die

( Sung to the tune of the old Time jingle: "Time flies, and you are there!" )
calebprime is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 13th November 2017, 05:32 AM   #9
The Sparrow
Graduate Poster
 
The Sparrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Central Canada
Posts: 1,170
Thanks Cabelprime.

A word about protecting your hearing though. Don't over protect as that can lead to hyperacusis. Just be diligent
The Sparrow is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 13th November 2017, 05:59 AM   #10
calebprime
Somewhat Elitist Parasite
 
calebprime's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,335
that horse already left the hyperacusis barn, ran around the entire estate, and now, through the fog, can be seen, ominously, through the rising smoke and steam rising from the embers of the still burning barn, placidly munching on some hay.

If you have hyparacusis and you know it, please don't clap your hands!
"
etc.

It's not that I have hyperacusis! It should seen as entirely normal for a grown man to flinch in anticipation of the loud sound that's about to happen! How else will I prevent the coming discomfort, etc.

It's not that I have hyperacusis. It's that everyone else is oblivious and too happy.

People should startle and flinch and run around like hunted animals!

And, think of the benefit to the neighbors of having Radar living amongst them: I can tell that there's an 86db leafblower 10 blocks away up on Lapham Circle, and I know the codes. The neighborhood around me is quieter now, because of my efforts. I expect nothing but gratitude, especially from the landscapers, who I have chastened and edified, I feel.

Actually, this leafblower thing has become a real issue in Newton. People are coming to blows again.
__________________
Life sucks, and then you die

( Sung to the tune of the old Time jingle: "Time flies, and you are there!" )

Last edited by calebprime; 13th November 2017 at 06:19 AM.
calebprime is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 14th November 2017, 06:16 AM   #11
The Sparrow
Graduate Poster
 
The Sparrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: Central Canada
Posts: 1,170
Originally Posted by calebprime View Post
..... People are coming to blows again.
Chortle chortle!
The Sparrow is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th November 2017, 04:50 PM   #12
bruto
Penultimate Amazing
 
bruto's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Way way north of Diddy Wah Diddy
Posts: 21,705
Originally Posted by calebprime View Post
sorry, SP, it is a good thread and it doesn't need to belong to the "experts", so maybe it's too bad I jumped in.

I enjoy it when people simply post about what interests them, not necessarily as part of a dialog or an argument.

As I've made obvious, I don't know much about the historically-informed approach to making music. But it might not have been obvious that I have a lot of respect for that approach, I just don't do it myself.

One thing I feel very strongly about is guarding against hearing loss. My brother-in-law majored in music as an undergrad, now he says his hearing aid -- an expensive one -- makes playing the piano sound like he's "in a bathtub" -- meaning clangy and too resonant, maybe short metallic-sounding reverb, I'd guess.

Heck, I'm paranoid enough to always have foam earplugs on hand and to wear them in the shower because a new shower nozzle makes a high-pitched tone. (It might be the Cubans!)

Both my parents lost their marbles before their hearing. I hope the same for myself.
My mom prayed that she would not lose her hearing whatever else, and died entirely devoid of marbles but hearing a pin drop down the hall. In some ways it was nice, as she did get to enjoy some music, but in some ways less so, because her taste for innovation and novelty, once adventurous and complex, dwindled (e.t.a. and also led to sensitivity to ambient noise). Still it could have been much worse. Along with Sinatra and Readers Digest horrors, she never forsook Mozart.

I have some hearing loss, though it is not too bad yet, but it does lead to a bit of imbalance and distortion on one side and I find I don't compulsively listen to music all the time, as I once did. Nor can my tarnished and no longer golden ears make much distinction between media. Ah welladay. As long as there's still Mozart.
__________________
Sir, I have found you an argument; but I am not obliged to find you an understanding. (Samuel Johnson)

I love this world, but not for its answers. (Mary Oliver)

Last edited by bruto; 16th November 2017 at 04:51 PM.
bruto is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 16th November 2017, 05:36 PM   #13
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 13,223
I used to work at a company in London that did music instrument hire.
Mainly studio stuff but we had a selection of keyboards.
It was our flight cased harpsichord that you can hear playing on the Stranglers 'Golden Brown'
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th November 2017, 10:16 AM   #14
Dr. Keith
Not a doctor.
 
Dr. Keith's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Texas
Posts: 14,168
Just caught this thread. Very exciting news for you, The Sparrow, and I wish you the best of luck.
__________________
I once proposed a fun ban.

Suffering is not a punishment not a fruit of sin, it is a gift of God.
He allows us to share in His suffering and to make up for the sins of the world. -Mother Teresa
Dr. Keith is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 17th November 2017, 11:42 AM   #15
CriticalThanking
Designated Hitter
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: On in memory
Posts: 3,037
Congrats, The Sparrow. I wish we had a bigger early music scene here.

Seriously jealous of your growing instrument collection. I can't retire yet - the cost of my coming instrument addition is larger than any pending nursing home. Still waiting on my first rackett.
CriticalThanking is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » History, Literature, and the Arts

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:19 PM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
2014, TribeTech AB. All Rights Reserved.
This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.