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#75353 - 07/10/02 10:37 PM Molly strikes again
Loc: Worcester, MA
perfect pitch with a perfect pitch on a perfect pitch.
I didn't think it was legal in baseball to pitch a pitch with pitch on it. Or is that the bat?
#75354 - 07/10/02 11:58 PM Re: wondering
Loc: Eastern Ontario, Canada
Songs, of course, can engage you completely
(from waaay above!) Thanks for clarifying, Fish. I think this is true, too. I guess I was illustrating for myself, in my brain, by holding up two performances side by side (in a manner of speaking): Beethoven's Fifth, frig zample, and Spamlet - whoops, HAMlet, fr'another ig zample. The former is elevating and stirring and all them things; the latter makes you think, about life, the universe, and everything.
But songs combine two arts: music and writing. Music for the tune, writing for the lyrics/message. And you're right: words and music working together and making very strong medicine. I love listening to songs by my fave poet-philosophers/songwriters - Bruce Cockburn and Paul Simon spring instantly to mind but there are many more, of course.
Let us go in peace to love and serve the board.
#75355 - 07/11/02 11:34 AM Re: wondering music
Loc: New England, USA
Here's another late entry.
In my salad days I studied voice and did concert work. Was even on Ted Mack's Amateur Hour. Also did "pop" stylings and made a fair bit of cash when it was needed.
Believe it or not (those who have heard my speaking voice) I was a coloratura!
Then I started smoking.
Now voice is shot and what comes out is definetly not a coloratura!!! I think a pleasantly acceptable contralto might emerge if I took the tome to practice again.
I love music and I think orchestral music (any type- trios to rock to Boston Symphony) is in the arts exactly to keep the emotions involved. If it wasn't there we might all slide into being scientists. Heaven forfend! ©
#75356 - 07/11/02 03:46 PM Re: wondering music
Loc: Piedmont Region of Virginia, U...
Hamlet and Beethoven's 5th
Both inform the intellect and the emotions. I could never place one above the other. However, I've listened to the 5th by far more times than I've read Hamlet And I've thought more about the 5th probably more than I've thought about Hamlet, including a wide range of thoughts and emotions, from tragic to comic, for both have been poked fun at!
There's mental meat in both of them. Sure, you can pull the language out of Hamlet and dicuss very easily the language, the history, the references, Shakespeare's use of facts and how he modified fact. You can discuss the poetry, the emotions conveyed, the way the play has been staged and could be staged. Endless conversation.
But you could also discuss the 5th in detail: arrangement of orchestral voices, use of meter, accent, dynamics, phrasing (what a debate!), form, chord structure, and so on. You could discuss various interpretations by different orchestras under batons of different conductors. You could discuss the performances of individual performers in those different orchestras.
We could easily construct here very long, seemingly endless lists, of what the two experiences of seeing Hamlet and hearing the 5th could provide us--and, yes, hearing Hamlet and seeing the 5th . The depth of our conversations would only be limited by our depth of knowledge about theatre and orchestral performance, to use two very broad terms that don't begin to show the many ways in which our thoughts and emotions are drawn into the two disciplines.
Unfortunately, language has the edge here. In order to talk about Beethoven's music, we use the medium of language. And Shakespeare is already comfortably resting in that medium. That's why it may appear, first thoughts turned that way, that there's more to think about. Shakespeare has already provided all those thoughts! And, why, Beethoven? We must translate what happened musically into language.
However, think about what those musicians are doing to produce the sound to finally cause emotional response in an audience, and you move into an area that can so often be highly intellectualized by musicians and certainly very thoughtfully emotionalized.
I move through an experience. My mind recalls a phrase from Hamlet. I move through another. My mind recalls a musical phrase from the 5th. There is such a pool of response from those two great works from which either my intellect or my emotional being can draw--may be informed--may find coincidence.
I could never place one work above the other for either intellectual stimulation or emotional. I find it to be absurd to try to do so. And I would suspect any serious lovers of both literature and music would find it absurd to try to do so. The more I learn about one discipline, the more I appreciate the art of those I value as the masters. Both my mind and emotions are informed, and equally informed, but in different ways. And I believe it is impossible to pluck out certain mental processes from these two disciplines and say that some are not intellectual simply because they may seem to be emotional or not directly related to language.
I've seen Hamlet performed live a few times, and a few more in films. I've studied it in depth one time. I've certainly listened to the 5th countless times, but it doesn't take as long to perform as Hamlet. Certainly the artists in both performances can be equally engaged in bringing about the effects they hope to realize in their audiences. Both types of artists exercise their minds and hearts if they are the best kinds of artists. And the best kinds of audiences, I would argue, equally engage their minds and hearts.
The 5th feeds me immediately right where I am in thought and emotion. Hamlet requires that I must concentrate. The 5th requires varying degrees of concentration from me, some greater than others depending upon how much I want to concentrate. But I could write as much about one as the other, and I could write about each intelligently, especially with some good sources by my side. Each gives me cause for celebration that human beings, so creatively gifted, could rise to such heights, could produce such artistic works of such depth, complexity and intensity that future artists could lay their hands upon them and interpret them anew.
No, I could not put one discipline above the other, even though language is so readily available to us and certainly our writing on a word board may give an immediate, if questionable, advantage to language. But not in the minds of, at least, musicians. Mozart wrote a great deal of text. Ask Mozart, if we could, how he had best exercized his mental capabilities: in his letters or in his music. I don't think there's any doubt how he would respond.
But I know how I spend my hours--I know how much I listen to music--and I know what thoughts that listening inspires. Sometimes there's great good that comes from getting away from just words into a place that informs us of mental imagery, memory, and anticipation that all spring from musical arrangement of sound.
That's a bit of my take on the subject.
#75357 - 07/11/02 05:08 PM Re: wondering music
Loc: Birmingham, Alabama
Ha! - - Music transcends poetry and prose in essence. Music is not written for musicians. Music is written for mankind. A gift from the gods. As I write I listen to Richard Strauss's opera "Elektra". The human who is a human has not yet been born who can listen to this emotive work and not be transformed by it's dramatic expression of the tragedy and grandeur of being alive. Words are tyranny. Music frees the soul to reach our destiny and the stars.
#75358 - 07/11/02 05:26 PM Re: wondering music
Loc: New York City
<<Words are tyranny. Music frees the soul to reach our destiny and the stars.>>
If so, the tyranny of words is its own irony. Has music freed the soul to reach those figures, or was it--the soul--born of words to heaven? Words may exalt what they are not; that is the stealth with which they exalt themselves.
#75359 - 07/12/02 03:09 AM Re: wondering music
Loc: Birmingham, Alabama
...the tyranny of words is its own irony. Has music freed the soul to reach those figures, or was it--the soul--born of words to heaven? Words may exalt what they are not; that is the stealth with which they exalt themselves.
No Inselpeter, the tyranny and irony of words is that I think I understand what you just said.
#75360 - 07/12/02 05:13 AM Re: wondering music
Loc: London, UK
Wow! (exclamation, not name!) So many singers! Best add another one to the list... To date, principally baroque chamber music, but I'm getting quite into Blues at the moment.
One thing that always amazes me amongst my non-singing friends is the lack of recognition of the voice as an instrument. Any other views on this?
Agree with WOW as well that music is there to keep the emotions involved - it doesn't matter what the music is, if you play/sing it without emotion you might as well not bother as it will convey little to your audience and there'll be no link between the performer and the audience (witness the current rash of manufactured pop bands)
#75361 - 07/12/02 06:19 AM Re: wondering music
Loc: New York City
<<No Inselpeter, the tyranny and irony of words is that I think I understand what you just said.>>
I would have liked have left it with "the tyranny of words is its own irony," but I thought people would get mad.
#75362 - 07/12/02 08:48 AM Re: wondering music
Loc: Toronto, Canada
I sure wish I got as much out of music as Wordwind does! My sister says that Beethoven's 5th often brings her to tears. The only music that has ever done that to me is music with words. This is definitely not because I'm a cold, emotion-less being -- my brain just doesn't seem to hear music the way other people do. But I think my singing lessons are helping me to listen a little more discriminately.
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