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Thread: Opinions on modern music

  1. #61
    Midshipman, Forte
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    Quote Originally Posted by some guy View Post
    There are no cars in nature. No skyscrapers, no freeways. No museums full of paintings. No glazed windows. No refrigerators.
    All of those items fulfill natural drives.
    I question that a-, poly-, and microtonality do.
    They may fulfill the composer's drive to explore, but I question that they fulfill any drives for the listener.

    And what would it prove if no folk music anywhere had microtonality, atonality, or polytonality?
    Our natural drives will be with us for a long time.
    In any endeavor, we must always consider those natural drives.
    I'm not saying that the natural drives are always good.
    In prehistoric times, there was little contact with anyone faraway, so there was no need to mix and mingle with people who came from faraway and who look different from ourselves.
    We developed xenophobia genes which are creating problems, now that Whites, Blacks, and Asians are living in the same place.
    Now we have to adjust.
    In prehistoric times, there was a clear division of labor between men and women.
    We developed sexist genes which are creating problems in our age of hundreds of occupations.
    Now we have to adjust.
    But why should we have to a-, poly-, and micro-?

    In the strictest sense, it might be said that these terms apply to western classical music, and in the same way no folk music has sonata-allegro or piano concerti or symphony orchestras. So what?
    Folk music has ternary form, of which the sonata-allegro form is an outgrowth.
    Folk music has solo virtuoso displays, of which piano concerti are an outgrowth.
    Folk music has ensembles, of which symphony orchestras are an outgrowth.

    And loosely speaking, lots of folk music has all three of those things (though polyrhythm is possibly more prevalent than those three).
    That's news to me.
    Please educate me.
    I know about Javanese music, in which the octave is divided into 5 equal units.
    I know that's one exception.

    certainly you should know that many twentieth century trends came out of the researches of composers in non-Western cultures around the world.
    That is also news to me.
    Please educate me.
    I have noticed that Hindemith sometimes practices heterophony, in which a vocal soloist and an instrumentalist play in unison for a while and deviate for a while. I have suspected that Hindemith borrowed that practice from non-Western music.
    I know that's one exception.

    Some cultures you know of may practice a-, poly-, and micro, but I can name one which doesn't. I am in a non-Western country which I have been for 8 years, and I have yet to find a folk song which isn't either pentatonic or heptatonic.

    You know, like plastic and poison gas and mathematics.
    Again, those are inventions which fulfill our natural drives.
    I used to preach pacifism, arguing that most animals do not wage battle against members of their own kind.
    But then I learned that we were the closest relative of the chimpanzees, who happen to be an exception to that rule.
    So now I don't know what to believe on that question.

  2. #62
    Captain of Water Music some guy's Avatar
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    tomato, First off, thanks for letting me off the hook there on that whole sackcloth and ashes thing. Second, you bring up a lot of stuff in your last post. I'm going to choose only two, if I may, as I don't have as much time as it looks like I do. (No, really!) One is the eastern influences point. I won't go into any detail, as there are lots of books that cover this in some depth and of course there's our dear friend Google... So I'll just briefly point out that Lou Harrison and Harry Partch and John Cage all got ideas and inspiration from non-Western sources. There are many more examples, but you can find that kind of thing online just as easily as I! Two is your claim about a-, poly-, microtonality: "I question that they fulfill any drives for the listener." Well, they certainly do for me. And since there are tons of recordings of this stuff (and of all sorts of other things as well--those three things cover a very small portion of twentieth and twenty-first century practice), I have to conclude that other people are equally fulfilled by them. (I doubt that recording companies are putting out CDs simply with my listening needs in mind.)

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by some guy View Post
    So if you were thinking of arguing that concrete and atonality are "unnatural," then I'm afraid you'll have to agree that folk music is "unnatural," too, eh?
    Nope.
    I read somewhere that that there have always and everywhere been three styles of music, corresponding roughly with what we call classical, popular, and folk music.

    I used to think that popular music should be stamped out, and that I should do everything in my power to help stamp it out, until I learned that we all had classical-popular-folk genes deeply ingrained in our psyches.

  4. #64
    Captain of Water Music some guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tomato View Post
    I read somewhere
    Um. Just because someone wrote something somewhere...

    Quote Originally Posted by tomato View Post
    until I learned that we all had classical-popular-folk genes deeply ingrained in our psyches.
    You learned this? You must tell me what you mean when you use the word "learn."

    Anyway, take two tablets of skepticism before you read anything else tonight. Oh, and call me in the morning, of course!

  5. #65
    Vice Admiral Virtuoso rojo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tomato View Post
    Sorry I didn't make that easier to understand.
    Women's libbers promote unisex, whereas humans do not carry unisex genes.
    Consequently, men keep right on patronizing strip clubs, girlie magazines, and houses of ill repute as they did before.

    By the same token, modern composers promote atonality, polytonality, and microtonality, whereas humans do not carry atonal, polytonal, or microtonal genes.
    Consequently, concert-goers keep right on patronizing Beethoven and Tschaikovsky as they did before.

    Some Guy, I realize I didn't make that very clear.
    You don't have to don a sackcloth and ashes.
    Thanks for the clarification, tomato. This is one interesting thread!
    ''Music, I feel, should be emotional first and intellectual second.'' - Maurice Ravel
    ''The greatest education in the world is watching the masters at work.'' - Michael Jackson


  6. #66
    Vice Admiral Virtuoso rojo's Avatar
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    While on the subject of reading, has anyone read Daniel Levitin's 'This Is Your Brain On Music'? I've got my Dad's copy; let's see if I find the time to read it! Oh, but don't tell me how it ends.
    ''Music, I feel, should be emotional first and intellectual second.'' - Maurice Ravel
    ''The greatest education in the world is watching the masters at work.'' - Michael Jackson


  7. #67
    Captain of Water Music some guy's Avatar
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    To answer your question, "yes." (But that's all I'll do, so as not to spoil the ending, you know!!)

  8. #68
    Ensign, Principal Oneiros's Avatar
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    The only contemporary music that I can enjoy is the music of the "holy minimalists". I think the simplified musical language, combined with the depth of spirituality, makes this music really wonderful.

    Most other contemporary music seems meaningless to me; new sounds as ends in themselves, pastiches of quotation, etc... they're lacking in depth. Music is much more powerful than most of us realise, and so it's nice to find contemporary composers who can understand and respect this.

  9. #69
    Admiral Honkenwheezenpooferspieler Corno Dolce's Avatar
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    Hi Oneiros,

    Might you consider the music of Arvo Pärt be *holy minimalist*?

    Cheers,

    Corno Dolce
    *If a man wants God to hear his prayer quickly, then before he prays for anything else, even his own soul, when he stands and stretches out his hands towards God, he must pray with all his heart for his enemies. Through this action God will hear everything that he asks* -Abba Zeno-

    *Protagoras: "Truth is subjective. What is true for you, and what is true for me, is true for me. Your opinion is true by virtue of its being your opinion."

    *Socrates: "My opinion is: Truth is absolute, not opinion, and that you are in absolute error. Since this is my opinion, then according to your philosophy you must grant that it is true."

    "Improvisational Art": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSxVO3EoCRM

  10. #70
    Ensign, Principal Oneiros's Avatar
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    Corno,

    Yes definitely, along with Henryk Górecki and John Tavener. I think there are others too, but those three are the best known.

  11. #71
    Admiral Honkenwheezenpooferspieler Corno Dolce's Avatar
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    Hi Oneiros,

    Way cool. Gorecki and Tavener have written quite a bit of music that can sometimes really hit one in the Solar Plexus.

    Btw, there is a member on this forum whose moniker is *Corno*. Let's hope that there will not be any confusion. He is on the management side of this forum. I'm just a peon.

    ;-D


    Cheers,

    Corno Dolce
    *If a man wants God to hear his prayer quickly, then before he prays for anything else, even his own soul, when he stands and stretches out his hands towards God, he must pray with all his heart for his enemies. Through this action God will hear everything that he asks* -Abba Zeno-

    *Protagoras: "Truth is subjective. What is true for you, and what is true for me, is true for me. Your opinion is true by virtue of its being your opinion."

    *Socrates: "My opinion is: Truth is absolute, not opinion, and that you are in absolute error. Since this is my opinion, then according to your philosophy you must grant that it is true."

    "Improvisational Art": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSxVO3EoCRM

  12. #72
    Ensign, Principal Oneiros's Avatar
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    lol. Perhaps "Mr. Dolce" would be a better title then, to avoid the confusion? I can already see the English ladies lining up to sample some of that Italian "sweetness"... o_0

    But I digress.

    I agree with you there - the works of Pärt and Górecki in particular strike me as some of the most powerfully moving music of our modern day. I love in Pärt the way that phrases don't go anywhere - despite being tonal, the lack of traditional harmonic movement is really refreshing. I find that it induces a state of contemplation of each passing moment, without thinking about the past or future. It's really great that music can do such things.

  13. #73
    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Corno Dolce View Post
    . . . . . I'm just a peon. Corno Dolce
    Nay ... There are no peons on this forum

    We are all equals as far as I am concerned - the only difference is that a few of us have a broom and a wastebasket to use when the crumbs hit the floor.
    Kh ~~.
    Administrator


    Amateur musicians practice until they get it right ...
    Pro
    fessional musicians practice until they can't get it wrong ...


  14. #74
    Admiral Honkenwheezenpooferspieler Corno Dolce's Avatar
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    Hi Oneiros,

    Thank you for your flattering comments about my moniker. My moniker is the name of a stop on the Cavaillé-Coll organ of St. Ouen in Rouen. It is a *stringy* flute stop at 16' pitch with a very slight *Horn formant* characteristic. I'm not Italian, just a member of the Northern Teutonic race - a real meat and potatoes guy - WYSIWYG

    Yes, I very much agree with your characterizations Górecki and Pärt's music.

    Pärt wrote the very ravishing *Berliner Messe*, of which I am very enamored of. I got hooked on most of the music of Górecki after hearing his 3rd Symphony.

    Remain in peace,

    Corno Dolce
    *If a man wants God to hear his prayer quickly, then before he prays for anything else, even his own soul, when he stands and stretches out his hands towards God, he must pray with all his heart for his enemies. Through this action God will hear everything that he asks* -Abba Zeno-

    *Protagoras: "Truth is subjective. What is true for you, and what is true for me, is true for me. Your opinion is true by virtue of its being your opinion."

    *Socrates: "My opinion is: Truth is absolute, not opinion, and that you are in absolute error. Since this is my opinion, then according to your philosophy you must grant that it is true."

    "Improvisational Art": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSxVO3EoCRM

  15. #75
    Recruit, Pianissimo
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    Interesting thread
    Personally I am not at all into serial/minimalistic and such
    The modern composers I enjoy are Carter Pann,John Mackey,Michael Colgrass,Michael Daugherty,William Bolcom,John Newman and such

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