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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: A perspective on reading, written music

Please note this is an archived topic, so it is locked and unable to be replied to. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link:

alaskafiddler - Posted - 05/06/2022:  08:50:13

As topic comes up from time to time. Some might find interesting... some of which addresses comments often heard on traditional music, fiddle sites.

From  music theory channel 12tone. Cory has lots of other interesting music theory videos. 


BanjoBrad - Posted - 05/06/2022:  09:49:09

Looks interesting, I'll try to make time to watch it. I'm not sure, but that could be music, just not notated correctly.

alaskafiddler - Posted - 05/06/2022:  10:01:27

It's not about if notated correctly...

Rather that is written symbol -

what is "music" is what actually hear.

So goes into the issues involving that.

Edited by - alaskafiddler on 05/06/2022 10:10:44

Mobob - Posted - 05/06/2022:  12:34:01

excellent presentation, its all in the interpretation of the written symbols, kinda like a script, but can be spoken, brought to life, many different ways I may choose to express it differently than you, but the script remains the same.

Lonesome Fiddler - Posted - 05/06/2022:  13:10:18

What's on the page is simply on the page. It's the musician that brings it to life.

pete_fiddle - Posted - 05/06/2022:  13:24:40

I like/love the way that musicians from different backgrounds interpret the dots. That's what music is all about to me.

BanjoBrad - Posted - 05/06/2022:  14:26:21


Originally posted by alaskafiddler

It's not about if notated correctly...

Rather that is written symbol -

what is "music" is what actually hear.

So goes into the issues involving that.

In my case, without the dots, I would only have other people's performances available to me for music.

UsuallyPickin - Posted - 05/06/2022:  16:31:53

Thanks, R/

boxbow - Posted - 05/07/2022:  08:05:16

Very illuminating. It clarified my perspective a bit on the never-ending dots vs. by-ear discussions, although he was addressing the rather larger subject of what notation does well and does poorly. The main goal of any notation is communication. I found his subdivision of musical elements into fixed and unfixed elements to be relevant specifically to the discussion of playing by ear in that playing by ear allows the player to make music with far fewer fixed elements and that it's the context of the user's need that determines which is appropriate.

Brian Wood - Posted - 05/07/2022:  09:38:25

Phew!! That is a pretty intense video. Since I write fiddle tune transcriptions it was interesting to me, if a bit rapid-fire. Stylistically, I expect anyone who reads my transcription sees it through the lens of which style the tune is representing. I think it's relatively easy for those of us used to Bluegrass, Old Time and Irish styles because we have an understanding of the framework of those styles. Familiarity with a style is key (sure, pun intended, this time). Finding the balance between representing too much or too little information in a transcription is always a goal for me.


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