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I have a friend who needed his piano tuned.

"How would you like it?" said the piano tuner.

"A bit sharp at the top and a bit flat at the bottom."

Any pieces you could offer us so we can hear an example or two?

btw, in case anyone doesn't know how to post a video (just in case!):

  1. go to youtube
  2. find the video you like
  3. copy address from address bar (e.g. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fFuyvbK_6Cw)
  4. take out the first part (i.e. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=).  This leaves you with the code for the video (in this case the code is   fFuyvbK_6Cw)
  5. Type two open brackets   ((
  6. Type youtube  ((youtube
  7. Add a space, then the code  ((youtube OMZODtaf4d4
  8. Close it with two close brackets ))

It should look like the following, but without the asterisk (hat tip to Migeru for this technique)

((*youtube fFuyvbK_6Cw))

Take away the asterisk (don't leave a gap)

and you get this (4:22):

---------------

And now a silly story: the same friend who has his piano tuned sharp at the top and flat at the bottom was talking about the microtonal keyboard:

"It reproduces," he said, "almost exactly the sound of an out-of-tune piano."

Of course, it depends what you play!

--------------

Hey, thanks for the comment!



Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 12:35:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Actually all pianos (at least grands) are tuned sharp at the top and flat at the bottom, it's called stretched octaves in the trade.

This is supposed to compensate for how the ear hears as well as for the fact that piano strings, being thick, are not true harmonic resonators, but tend to have harmonics which are off pitch. It's why good piano tuners don't use electronic devices when tuning.

On the other hand I do use one on my harpsichord because all the octaves are true and one has to adjust one octave and them make all the others match. Tuning octaves is easy, you just listen for a lack of beats. Modern electronic tuners even show how far off pitch a note is so it is easy to set other temperaments if one knows the deviation from equal in cents (hundredths of a note).

There is a just intonation group in NYC which tries to play everything in pure tuning. During the annual Bach festival on local station WKCR they invite the director on for a segment to illustrate how tuning affects the sound. Now the station is online as well so people can hear it everywhere. The festival starts up a few days before Christmas each year and runs for 7-10 days.

Policies not Politics
---- Daily Landscape

by rdf (robert.feinman@gmail.com) on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 01:32:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I have perfect pitch and anything even slightly out of tune makes me irritable and angry.  
by zoe on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 04:22:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That's not exactly an advertisement for perfect pitch.

When the capital development of a country becomes a by-product of the activities of a casino, the job is likely to be ill-done. — John M. Keynes
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 04:47:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
well, that's what I blame it on
by zoe on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 05:02:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I've found the slide guitar the biggest help in de-tuning my ear.  I was trying to learn indian scales, with the microtones.  I found some texts which explained the principles and I realised I could practice on a guitar if I had a slide, just slide up and down--hunt out the pitches.

--I'm intrigued now by perfect pitch; it reminds me of my thing about the three of the four beat--or whatever it is--the 'pap' beat, somehow it lacks ooomph.  The next track has been ooomphed.  They put in the drum beat I don't like--at 1:30, but only for a little while, quite a variety in there.  It's got that perfect pitch thing, they tune the synths to the exact co-ordinates, beyond the capacity of the human ear to discern the shades, and then overlay with what you like!

And then--heh...I thought it was humorous, that huge ant with the words 'The Reality of Destruction'--but who could notice when there's orgasms--or was it just the one, or their mate into a mic--trying to make a serious point about female sexuality and its constrictions in the new a--destroy those barriers, the giant X-Ray of an ant is here--reality--plus an orgasm or even two!  Or three!  

Now--cough cough!  

anything even slightly out of tune makes me irritable and angry.

A bloke once said to me, "Tom Waits?  Ugh!  I can't stand him.  I mean, I like the music--but that voice!"

~:7o (:

Now our sound worlds can start matching up--hey, how about a video with a melody that's sung or played such that your ears are singing ahhhhhhh!  I am a HUGE FAN of beautiful notes hit beautifully.  And I'm always happy to hear someone else's choices!

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 06:00:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
rg:

"It reproduces," he said, "almost exactly the sound of an out-of-tune piano."



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 07:35:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
When I was young, I never got Les Dawson--I'd heard the piano playing but it hadn't really registered--he knew what he was doing, he was an accomplished pianist who'd incorporated humour--well, when I first just recently re-listened to this guy following, and I must have seen a Les Dawson clip soon after--because it went-- kerching!

Also known as Melodius Thunk:



Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 08:50:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
(2:58 -- worth watching to the end)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.
by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 08:52:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Definitely worth watching.

Your comments about Les resonate with my experience. I remember having a conversation with a pianist about 15 years ago, drunkenly discussing musicians, when he came out with the statement that Les Dawson had to be a severely talented pianist, to be able to play things wrong enough to set your nerves on end, but still be recognisable as the tune they were failing to be.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 09:43:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
aka 'the loneliest monk'

well it beats elephant gerald!

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Sat Apr 12th, 2008 at 09:38:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
LOL!

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.
by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sun Apr 13th, 2008 at 05:17:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Monk is in the long tradition of playing a theme and variations. The only difference between his style and that of Baroque composers is that he substitutes harmonic variations whereas they used rhythmic changes (called "divisions" in the Elizabethan period).

Monk also used lots of seconds, ninths and other intervals that were "forbidden" by the rules of classical harmony.

I find it interesting that the biggest development of the past 30 or so years has been a transition to rhythm as the primary musical language rather than melody. In the classical world this began with Terry Reilly, Steve Reich, Glass, etc. In the pop world it has mostly been seen in the rise of rap and its spinoffs which is really a form of rhythmic declamation (like Greek theater).

Modern crossover groups (at least in the NYC area) seem to focus on short phrases which get repeated using changes of rhythm or meter.

I heard a traditional lieder recital yesterday on the radio and I can't imagine the younger generation sitting still for such an abstract form of music these days.


Policies not Politics
---- Daily Landscape

by rdf (robert.feinman@gmail.com) on Sun Apr 13th, 2008 at 01:13:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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