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Is there anything Bach did not do??? Virtual Instrument Plugins
Old 13th March 2014
  #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vatraxos View Post
I remember being at a party once and this guy was complaining that Bach ruined music because after him microtonal music basically vanished from the western tradition. Now I have no idea if such a statement has any truth to it and even if it does if such a thing could constitute ruining music but it might be something interesting to look into if anyone is curious enough...I wasn't.
Edited....

You may not be familiar with this but Bach was an early adopter of the idea that music could be played in all of the keys, on the same instrument, without retuning.

Check out the Well Tempered Clavier. "Edit" - see the link, too deep of a topic and too many if's to explain here, see the link provided on page 3

http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbt...20did%20n.html

Apparently, Bach did not ruin your friends day. In his tuning keys would likely still have character, though it is debatable whether the WTC was written to highlight those keys, or teach how to play in them.

I have a party story too!!!! I was in a bar (way underage), and a bit how you say... tipsy... listening to Zepplin on the jukebox, when all of a sudden Jimmy Page busts into playing Bach's Bourree...... I nearly [email protected] myself.


Blue notes would blur the lines a bit (though a great suggestion). He was a great violinist as well, and they have to adjust the pitches to play (enharmonic notes are not usually played exactly the same on a string instrument to my knowledge) in tune. So, he DID use and was highly aware of microtones (considering he broke the code), however he did not play b5's like BB.

We have a second thing for sure though.

Vibrato and Bends.... If you did that in Germany prior to 1900.... let's just say you would not have got the gig!!!
Old 13th March 2014
  #62
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Herr Weiss's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagelove View Post
The Bach he givith and he taketh away.

You may not be familiar with this but Bach was the first one (that I am aware of, please correct if I am wrong) to prove that music could be played in all of the keys, on the same instrument, without retuning.

Check out the Well Tempered Clavier. Before that, you could only play in a couple keys per tuning. The further you went away from that original key, the more out of tune it got. He (most likely as he was the resident genius at the time) was able to figure out how to tune the keyboard so you could play in all the keys at the same time. Thats right, he also invented the tuning we use too. Even if he did not invent the tuning, he was the first composer to prove it could be done.

Think about that for a second. I one lifetime he not only figured out how to tune the instrument, he also wrote some of the most difficult works to this day on the instrument. He practically invented the keyboard technique used today.
!

"Bach was not a tuning theorist, he was a musician. People like Andreas Werkmeister were tuning theorists and offered Bach a different system of tuning from the common place Meantone of Bach's time but it was definitely not Equal Temperament, not even remotely close to it"

-Bill Bremmer


Any proof that J.S. Bach did not invent ET ? | Piano Tuner-Technicians Forum | Piano World Piano & Digital Piano Forums


Herr Weiss
Old 13th March 2014
  #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herr Weiss View Post
"Bach was not a tuning theorist, he was a musician. People like Andreas Werkmeister were tuning theorists and offered Bach a different system of tuning from the common place Meantone of Bach's time but it was definitely not Equal Temperament, not even remotely close to it"

-Bill Bremmer


Any proof that J.S. Bach did not invent ET ? | Piano Tuner-Technicians Forum | Piano World Piano & Digital Piano Forums


Herr Weiss

Wow fantastic post and link. Too much to take in for a single read. Couple questions.

When did et start being used? Correct me if I am wrong, according to the link, the use and definition of ET is up for debate.

So you would call "Bach's" tuning well temperament?

... I will read it a few more times, thanks again!!!
Old 13th March 2014
  #64
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Santiago's Avatar
 

Interesting thread, I will try to answer, although several people have already suggested answers (the poster who mentioned Captain Beefheart, in particular).

Bach worked within the constraints of his time and culture: composed acoustic "classical" European music. At the time there were no records or recordings, so his music was always experienced live.

In terms of melody, harmony and rhythm (the domain of traditional Western musicology), he does cover a lot of ground.

However, by the genre he was working on, he misses out on many other musical features that other people have used since him (and some of them before him, in other parts of the world).

So, for instance, there is no electronic timbre research (so no overdrive, distortion, phasing, compression, etc...), no studio techniques to alter pre-recorded sounds (and obviously no microphone technique), no polyrhythms (as can be found in gamelan music from South East Asia, far earlier than him), no groove-based music, no minimalists techniques (for instance Steve Reich's phasing mechanisms, Arvo Part tintinabulism, Terry Riley's music modules), no micro-tonality, etc...

Working with sheet music rather than recordings also has its own limitations, of course. The composer cannot predict what will be the specific sound of every orchestra that plays their pieces, so Western orchestras are constructed to be as consistent and predictable as possible. It's a cool system, but of course not perfect, as you miss out on the personality of the performers (people like Howlin' Wolf, Captain Beefheart or Django Reinhart would never have made it as classical interpreters and yet were great).

This does not diminish Bach or Western classical music in any way, of course, he was working with what he had and within his culture and achieved amazing innovations.

However there's a lot of other music out there to discover that is non-Bach related.
Old 13th March 2014
  #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagelove View Post
Not being a jerk, I have no idea what you mean. I assure you he moved minor 7th chords around the keyboard. Fun fact, he practically invented/popularized (like evh with tapping, not the first, but most recognized) using the thumb and pinky while playing the keyboard.
I'm talking about a chord sequence such as

Cm7 - Ebm7 - Gm7 - Fm7

Which is heard in a ton of EDM and comes from playing a synth patch which is a m7 chord, but with one finger.

Steve Jones did much the same thing with a major chord in the Sex Pistols.

I know you've got a furrow to plough here but you ARE coming off as a bit of a jerk and I'm going to disengage.
Old 13th March 2014
  #66
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Carnalia Barcus's Avatar
 

Well, or at least a superfan who believes something that in his own mind, is more or less non-falsifiable.

It's possible to state that P (and for any arbitrary proposition), where no matter what is brought up as an objection, one is able to interpret those objections and apply rhetoric so that everything is taken to ultimately be further support that P . . . at least in the mind of the person stating that P (it usually doesn't convince anyone else).

And if that were more novel rather than being par for the course in particular sorts of discussions, it might be a bit entertaining in its display of a certain type of psychology.
Old 13th March 2014
  #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkheadedbug View Post
I'm talking about a chord sequence such as

Cm7 - Ebm7 - Gm7 - Fm7

Which is heard in a ton of EDM and comes from playing a synth patch which is a m7 chord, but with one finger.

Steve Jones did much the same thing with a major chord in the Sex Pistols.

I know you've got a furrow to plough here but you ARE coming off as a bit of a jerk and I'm going to disengage.

I really did not think I (and hope I was not) was coming off as a jerk. I really did not know what you meant by moving a m7 chord around the keyboard. Now that you made it more clear I understand perfectly.

That is a progression I have not seen of his to be honest. He definitly used all of those colors, minor iii, minor v,.... though I am doubt in that sequence.

I just played through it, because of its "differentness" and my ear training, I kind of hear it as

i biii, i bvii

again that is just how it strikes my ear, I will add that progression to my toolbox.

Also, I very much apologize if I offended you somehow. I really did not know what you were talking about. I listen to no EDM. Thanks again.
Old 13th March 2014
  #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carnalia Barcus View Post
Well, or at least a superfan who believes something that in his own mind, is more or less non-falsifiable.

It's possible to state that P (and for any arbitrary proposition), where no matter what is brought up as an objection, one is able to interpret those objections and apply rhetoric so that everything is taken to ultimately be further support that P . . . at least in the mind of the person stating that P (it usually doesn't convince anyone else).

And if that were more novel rather than being par for the course in particular sorts of discussions, it might be a bit entertaining in its display of a certain type of psychology.

Yes a superfan, but I have given absolute credit where it was due in the thread. My main objection to your specific example was that moving 5th around was not new, and he most certainly would have been aware of it. He just never wrote it down.

Did you see I found pretty close to the chord you asked for?

again I appreciate everyones input in the thread, it might just seem like I am justifying everything because I am one of two people answering questions in the thread. I was hopeing that would not be the case, as I started the thread to learn something (which I did, the excellent tuning post above), not hear myself talk.
Old 13th March 2014
  #69
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If it makes you feel any better, just so I don't come off as a know it all.

I have no idea what a "furrow to plow" is either.

See I don't know everything!!!


p.s. I am also not sure why people took offense to the topic, isn't it a little better than the same 5 questions asked/answered a thousand times on this site?

I think evidence to it being a good topic is that we had to come to almost the 20th century to find something. Pretty enlightening imho.
Old 13th March 2014
  #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Santiago View Post
So, for instance, there is no electronic timbre research (so no overdrive, distortion, phasing, compression, etc...), no studio techniques to alter pre-recorded sounds (and obviously no microphone technique), no polyrhythms (as can be found in gamelan music from South East Asia, far earlier than him), no groove-based music, no minimalists techniques (for instance Steve Reich's phasing mechanisms, Arvo Part tintinabulism, Terry Riley's music modules), no micro-tonality, etc...
While that might seem obvious at first glance, I heard someone mention something very sad recently.

The technology to be able to record could have been realized long before Bach's time. Isn't it horrific to think that if they had only discovered it earlier, we could have been blessed to hear the works of all the masters playing their own music...

Imagine, Bach at the organ, or Beethoven at the piano.

It is almost heartbreaking.
Old 13th March 2014
  #71
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Herr Weiss's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagelove View Post
When did et start being used? Correct me if I am wrong, according to the link, the use and definition of ET is up for debate.

So you would call "Bach's" tuning well temperament?
Equal Temperament began being used widely in the 20th Century.
Bach's tunng was Well Temperament, very close to ET but not quite.

Here is another link to a much smaller article to help you understand a little better. I am happy that you are interested in the subject.
The audio examples 13 to 18 may be helpful.

Explaining the Equal Temperament


HW
Old 13th March 2014
  #72
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Santiago's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagelove View Post
While that might seem obvious at first glance, I heard someone mention something very sad recently.

The technology to be able to record could have been realized long before Bach's time. Isn't it horrific to think that if they had only discovered it earlier, we could have been blessed to hear the works of all the masters playing their own music...

Imagine, Bach at the organ, or Beethoven at the piano.

It is almost heartbreaking.
Wow, that would have been amazing - it would have changed the direction of Western music and would have had huge repercussions.
Old 13th March 2014
  #73
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herr Weiss View Post
Equal Temperament began being used widely in the 20th Century.
Bach's tunng was Well Temperament, very close to ET but not quite.

Here is another link to a much smaller article to help you understand a little better. I am happy that you are interested in the subject.
The audio examples 13 to 18 may be helpful.

Explaining the Equal Temperament


HW
Great read, some of it I knew, but the audio examples really hit home.

That f# example is painful!!!

I could live with the "Werkmeister temperament", but than again, as a guitar player, we learn to accept some tuning "deficiencies". I am sure it would drive a violinist nuts.

Do you think the Werkmeister tuning has enough "character" to the keys to make it recognizable to a modern trained musician?
Old 13th March 2014
  #74
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Herr Weiss's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagelove View Post
Do you think the Werkmeister tuning has enough "character" to the keys to make it recognizable to a modern trained musician?
Yes I do. The Equal temperament is accepted 'cause it's the only temperament most people ever heard. There are many others out there instead of the "dry" stale ET.

Check out Mr. Bremmer website. He tunes in what he calls ebvt, The Equal Beating Victorian Temperament. I understand that he hasn't tune ET in 30 years.

Bill Bremmer RPT

Take a listen to the audio samples.

HW
Old 13th March 2014
  #75
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I listened (only on a laptop) and if I am honest, I do not hear anything magic, or anything I would miss with et. In fact on the jazz improv, a couple of the chords bugged me, slightly out of tune. Enough that I would reach up and tweak the string on my guitar.

I guess my ears have been bastardized into accepting ET as the truth.

Do you hear it the same way?

What instrument do you play?

Thanks again for contributing!!
Old 13th March 2014
  #77
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That made my day

Oscar is the man!!!

If you have not seen it, check out the Donna Lee all stars. First the tempo is insane, second during his solo, all the other guys (who are geniuses in their own right) look at Oscar like ..... Damn .....

Thanks again!!!
Old 13th March 2014
  #78
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You're welcome, it's my pleasure.
Old 13th March 2014
  #79
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I was pondering baroque ornamentation and how much it relates to jazz improvisation. The chord-scale relationships in jazz are well known to have a precursor in Baroque era figured bass. It's no coincidence that jazz pianist Keith Jarrett is an avid Bach aficionado, as are many other jazzers.

With that officially as an aside, let us now turn to the person most obsessed with J.S. Bach in the history of mankind. No, it's not Bach, it's pianist Glenn Gould.

Some view him (and his technical prowess developed via the "finger tapping" technique) as an overly mechanical practitioner of Bach, with too much enunciation, articulation and overt clarity. The opposing view is that the contrapuntal nature of Bach actually demands such a rigidly well defined and relentless delivery.

No one plunges into the depths of Bach speculation and analysis with such effortless enthusiasm.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AirAT7gN6A0
Old 13th March 2014
  #80
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Herr Weiss's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagelove View Post
I listened (only on a laptop) and if I am honest, I do not hear anything magic, or anything I would miss with et. In fact on the jazz improv, a couple of the chords bugged me, slightly out of tune. Enough that I would reach up and tweak the string on my guitar.

I guess my ears have been bastardized into accepting ET as the truth.

Do you hear it the same way?

What instrument do you play?

Thanks again for contributing!!
They were not meant to be magical or anything that much different. It is something that grows on you, an acquired taste. Of course, if you play Bach in ET, you are not hearing exactly what Bach heard.

Here is another link before I forget. (some stuff on Bach)

Temperament: A Beginner's Guide

Here are some random paraphrases/quotes in the subject:

One can spend a lot of time debating historical temperaments. The tunings are broadly similar but vary in degree rather than greatly in effect...What is really important in the end is not, which tuning one uses but that it must comply with certain criterias:

The most used keys (white notes) should be the purest and most harmonious.
The least used keys (black keys) should be the most colorful.
The keys should progress nicely from purest to the most colorful.

I play the piano and I'm able to take care of my pianos so they are always at their optimum state. Maybe if I become a pro tuner/technician, I will also appreciate the diverse qualities of unequal temperaments, but for now, Equal Temperament is sufficient.
Am I able to hear a difference? Kind of, no expert by any means, yet.


HW
Old 13th March 2014
  #81
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Herr Weiss's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by eldon2975 View Post

With that officially as an aside, let us now turn to the person most obsessed with J.S. Bach in the history of mankind. No, it's not Bach, it's pianist Glenn Gould.

Some view him (and his technical prowess developed via the "finger tapping" technique) as an overly mechanical practioner of Bach, with too much enunciation, articulation and overt clarity. The opposing view is that the contrapuntal nature of Bach actually demands such a rigidly well defined and relentless delivery.

No one plunges into the depths of Bach speculation and analysis with such effortless enthusiasm.

YES, Glenn Gould was the best. My favorite.


HW
Old 13th March 2014
  #82
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Herr Weiss's Avatar
 

I just don't know how he managed to play seating in such a low seat.



HW
Old 13th March 2014
  #83
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heh I conclude you are concealing your knowledge and full understanding of his highly unorthodox technique HW ?
Old 13th March 2014
  #84
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Herr Weiss's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by eldon2975 View Post
heh I conclude you are concealing your knowledge and full understanding of his highly unorthodox technique HW ?

Thank you eldon2975, I really needed a good laugh.

YOU are the one with supernatural powers.

All the best to you!!!



HW
Old 14th March 2014
  #85
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Glenn is also the man, one of my favorite interpreters, especially the Art of Fugue.
Old 14th March 2014
  #86
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Carnalia Barcus's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Herr Weiss View Post
Am I able to hear a difference? Kind of, no expert by any means, yet.
Yeah, re EBVT, "kind of" for me too. It's a very subtle difference when it's apparent, and looking at the tuning chart, a lot of the differences, in cents, are smaller than what most humans can discern.

I have to say I was kind of disappointed listening to it because of it being such a small difference. But that's because when I listen to alternate tunings, I basically want it to sound as different as, say, Harry Partch. (Or I figure "what's the point?")
Old 14th March 2014
  #87
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vespesian's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagelove View Post
I did, good read. Most of it is pretty well know if you have studied bach.

It point out one of the incredible things about bach's music.


You can put on a piece of his music, listen and say... that is beautiful..

Then you find out if you turn the page upside down, it is the exact same thing????

Remember he did not take weeks on end to figure these things out, scratch out notes, rewrite them over and over (in finale) until it's correct.

He though, "I am going to write a piece that is the same frontwards as backwards"

Then sat down and [email protected] wrote it (like a boss), and moved on to the next piece.

Crazy....

Agreed. Especally in Art Of The Fugue, which is kinda mind-blowing. Also, some of the symbolic number coding (eg., use of multiples of 3 - to represent the Trinity - in religious works, like Mass in BMin) is also amazing. Bach is waaay deep.
Old 21st March 2014
  #88
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Well it looks like this thread is coming to an end. In a last efforts to learn something, I had a few thoughts on the subject and things in the thread.

There were a couple people who mentioned things that while it is true, Bach may not have done

A song only in power chords

Four minor seventh chords in a row

I hate to sound like I dismissed their ideas, however we are talking about arguably the greatest genius ever in music. I assure you, he would not in any way be confused or astounded by these things. He would likely tell you (insert demeaning comment here) and might even sword fight you!!!

There is a famous story where Bach compared the playing of a certain bassoonist to the bleating of a nanny goat... long story short, sword fight.... nobody died.

Perhaps I should have titled the thread, is there anything Bach could not do (or would not understand upon first listen). There were some good suggestions.

Complex rhythmic settings

Bending notes

Very advanced harmony (likely post Wagner), though we never really did find a harmony he did not do at least once. Perhaps some jazz harmony concepts, tritone subs etc. Though, I would not be surprised of you found a tritone sub somewhere in the AOF.

Anything else??????

If this is the end of the line for this post. I think it speaks for itself that we needed to come to almost the 20th century before we found things that you could argue Bach would not understand.

p.s. Could you imagine if Bach listened to Coltrane and bird for a couple hours... all of our jobs would be a lot harder.
Old 21st March 2014
  #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagelove View Post
Anything else??????
Given the presumptuously entertaining time machine premise, Bach would aurally vomit within 30 seconds of listening to Hendrix's "Purple Haze". He'd then be in a blind rage for days, and would seek out and destroy all existing tritones.

I don't think he'd mind the "boom-tish" 4/4 drum tracks though, providing they weren't overly squashed/distorted. The trick would be for the snare to be damped and tracked to tape with a lush, 30% wet reverb.
Old 21st March 2014
  #90
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I know your just kidding, but I think he would be able to appreciate what Hendrix could do on the instrument.... Once he got past the cranked Marshall.

When I was about 18, I was going to music school and had a Chinese ear training/sight singing teacher (awesome guy, great teacher). I mention Chinese because.... he was CHINESE. Never heard rock music, classically trained in voice etc....

Anyway, I played him a recording of me playing Eruption. As soon as it came on he gasped and was like "somethings wrong with the guitar"..... He had NEVER heard distortion!!! Long story short, by the time the tremolo part came up... he said.... "ahhh virtuosic".

Funny if you were there.

Then there was the time he asked me... Talking about a blues shuffle (c c6 c7 c6..)

In the Bruse (see what I did there???), how come you no call it am7 (talking about the c6.. i.e. pinky down on the guitar). Were like, it is c6.... but, it's am7????

Then there was his definition of syncopation....


p.s. The verb on the snare would definitely need to be set to the "church" setting.
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