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Jan
20
comment Why is the lowest note on the piano an A?
It's quite amazing that the last innovation in the number of notes was the 97-key Bösendorfer in 1900, and it was not until 2009 that the latest innovation, the 102-key Stuart & Sons, was technologically possible. Contrast this with the rapid innovations in pianos between about 1812 and 1880. That shows that the technology went about as far as it could up until 1900 and then had to wait more than a century to go any further.
Jan
20
comment Why is the lowest note on the piano an A?
I have written to Stuart & Sons with questions and gotten a personal reply. They built their first 102-key model in 2009. They say that they were only able to achieve this when French builder Stephen Paulello made available a new technology in piano wire strings -- which goes to show that all of this history was driven by the technology of making strings above all else.
Jan
20
comment Is F Lydian mode in the “key” of C Major?
@RockinCowboy, exactly. And this idea that F Lydian is a mode of F goes all the way back to the Gregorian Chants circa the 8th Century AD. I should have mentioned that in my answer. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gregorian_chant
Jan
20
comment Why is the lowest note on the piano an A?
@RockinCowboy, I didn't say that they stopped at low "A" solely because of physics. I said it was the "sweet spot" of physics and technology and commerce, meaning popularity among the piano-buying public. Bösendorfer is still building 97-key 290 models, but I doubt that they make much money doing it. I suspect that their "regular" 88-key models earn the money; the rare 290 with its very high price is almost a prestige item.
Jan
20
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Jan
20
answered Why is the lowest note on the piano an A?
Jan
20
comment Is F Lydian mode in the “key” of C Major?
@Tim, OK, that's my point. Generally speaking saying the letter name alone does indeed presuppose that it's the major mode. My professor never failed to point out that this is not the case 100% of the time; for example, when somebody says "F" but they mean "F Lydian".
Jan
20
comment Is F Lydian mode in the “key” of C Major?
I think you've got my intent. This is my old professor's way of impressing upon us the importance of recognizing the tonal center, and then understanding that a composer can build different scales and modes on that tonal center.
Jan
20
answered Is F Lydian mode in the “key” of C Major?
Jan
20
revised What musical instruments JS Bach owned and had purchased during his career?
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Jan
19
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Jan
18
comment What is a “stunt guitarist”?
Google "Adrian Belew" and "stunt guitar" and you'll find a lot of hits too. Adrian Belew has been using the term "stunt guitarist" to describe himself throughout his career.