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Author Topic: COMMENTS FOR AUGUST, 2006  (Read 5614 times)
eurekabruce
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Ehhh . . . What's up, Doc?


« on: August 12, 2006, 04:07:41 PM »

THIS WILL APPEAR IN THE M-ARK AT SOME FUTURE DATE:

Hi, ArkMensans!

I thought this month I'd talk about music.  I suspect most of us have had at least some music training in school.  If not, what the heck are they doing in education, these days?!  I was in some chorale or other since my elementary school days.  I was never in a band, but I think that would have been fun, too. 

Anyway - to get to my point - I wonder how 'hip' we Mensans are to the technical side of music: you know, theory, and sight-reading, and solfege, etc.  When I went to NYC to become an operatic baritone, I had to study all this kind of stuff . . . hard.  After all, I'd been a science major.  I had to study Music Theory at the Juilliard School of Music.  I had to take solfege privately.  I had to take a gazillion opera workshop classes at the New School University . . . and the list goes on.

I note that our erstwhile M-ARK editor plays the French Horn.  In fact I'd be willing to bet that a good percentage of you have had training in voice or some instrument.  Hmmmm, wonder if we could assemble an ArkMensa Orchestra and Chorale.  Well, maybe that's a bridge too far.

How many of you have ever looked into all the tonalities that exist besides the everyday stuff?  I once watched something on PBS that discussed other tonal divisions besides the standard 12-tone tempered scale we use today.  They played pieces composed in tonalities beginning at 13 steps per octave, then on to 14 steps, then 15, and so on.  Quite frankly, most of it sounded like cats having sex on a tin roof . . . that is until they got to the 22-tone scale.  This music was beautiful.  It's as though it all came back into 'focus' at 22 steps.  Well, this blew my mind!  I had no idea.  Who knows, perhaps some day somebody will start a new musical trend.

Then, one day, I got into an argument with a friend who was a guitarist and had a masters in music.  Yeah, I know, I should have kept out of that one.  We were discussing minor keys.  BTW, how many minor keys are there, and name them.  Go to the Middle East, and what are you going to hear?  Anyway, I'm now a sadder and wiser man.  I'll give you a hint: one of them is 'Phrygian.'  Oh, yes, there are more.

I'd kind of like to hear, in letters to the editor or B-B posts, what your own musical expertise and experiences are.  Sounds like fun!

Regards,

Bruce
Loc/Sec
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maags
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"Uplifted" by Max D. Standley


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« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2006, 09:25:45 AM »

OK, I'll go first.   Smiley

I played cornet for three years in Jr. High school. Was fairly good, third or second chair first section. One guy and I kept switching places with challenges. The music teacher said I would have been first chair but the first valve on my horn kept sticking, which was a real pain. Annoyed the heck out of all the boys in the class that were behind me.   Evil 

Of course, there was only one other girl in the class, she had 5 years of private lessons and was first chair - story of my life. Worked so hard to succeed when others got the breaks, but circumstances blocked the first chair. The best I could get was second chair.

But, I actually practiced just about every day trying to get better and overcome that danged sticky valve, and loved playing. So maybe that was for the best.   33   I may have become very annoying if I had been the best trumpeter in that 100+ band with about 25 cornet players.   crazy 

Ahh, who am I kidding, we were all band geeks. No one cared what we were doing.   Grin

There's a synergy to music when played or sung with others that you don't get in many other places in life. It can be very visceral. I found it to be almost intimate, even when performing in front of a crowd. It touches a part of the mind that it seems nothing else does. Magical, it is.    smitten

In high school I switched to chorus because I didn't want to do the marching, and heard the band teacher was a real... SOB. Actually, I enjoyed chorus pretty well too, except the teacher kept trying to get me to sing alto when I was actually a 1st tenor. I know, girls aren't supposed to be tenors, but alto was just too high for me.   Roll Eyes

We sang in band too, before playing our instruments, so we could figure out what it was supposed to sound like.

Can read the treble clef in written music - Every good boy deserves favor. Grew up with classical because my mother listened to it all the time. Of course, went with rock as a teen in the 60's, but still loved classical (Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, and so on), jazz, blues... pretty much anything but country. Well, some country, that is. I like Willie and a few others.

Don't know a lot about chords, a little about keys, and mostly just listen to it without much analyzing. But, am very willing to learn. Max and I have talked about getting a keyboard to mess around with some.

That sounds very interesting about the tonalities. I love minor keys, they often sound so plaintive. Chinese music has it's own flavor to it. There has been a show on Link TV (I think) called Music of the World that features lots of different styles and flavors that we have been listening to lately. It is astonishing the variety  humans can come up with.
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Avatar artwork by Max D. Standley.
eurekabruce
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Ehhh . . . What's up, Doc?


« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2006, 08:24:58 PM »

Outstanding, Ms. Maags!  What a bundle of telent you are!  Okay, the rest of you.  I know there's a lot of musical talent out there.  Let's hear it.

BTW: Maags - Could you, as a matter of course, please post each of my monthly comments on the official website like we used to do.  If already done, thanks!

Regards
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maags
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Posts: 456


"Uplifted" by Max D. Standley


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« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2006, 03:22:22 PM »

The discussion about the placement of the Secretary's message has been moved here so people can post in this topic about music.  thumbs up
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Avatar artwork by Max D. Standley.
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