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Dec
23
comment How to give classes on improvisation
@Turion I'll try to elaborate tomorrow if I get some time. Something a little bit more simple for soloing would be So What? - people just move over two different minor-7 chords; it's pretty straightforward. The big thing to remember about all this is that you're teaching people to think creativelyas opposed to specific jazz techniques. Anything I write out would be through that vein - focusing on improvising in a general sense.
Dec
23
comment How to give classes on improvisation
I would add that they should learn C-Jam Blues and progression in all 12 keys, being able to arpeggiate the chord changes. A good introductory class might be having them focus on listening by having musical "conversations" either in groups or as a full group. You can make up rules like "only 4 people improvising at a maximum time" using only body percussion. Imposing limits / frameworks forces people to be creative. Arbitrary or ridiculous rules ("must use an animal sound") can get people to think differently, thus, more creatively, thus improvising will be more fun.
Dec
14
answered What is state and response and modal sequence in music theory structure analysis?
Dec
14
comment What is a Schenkerian graph?
Thank you Caleb for the concise definition. Just to clarify for others, though Caleb does mention notation reflecting the importance of some tones, I just wanted to add that the whole point of Schenkerian Analysis is to determine the most important structurally harmonic elements of a given piece. Further, understanding (and the subsequent analysis) of the music is done primarily by listening - the idea being that you could listen to a piece of music while reading a Schenker graph and easily be able to discern where you were in the music. Some performers use this analysis to great affect.
Dec
10
comment What makes a wind insturment sound louder or softer?
Unfortunately, I disagree with you here as well. Trumpets use a tiny amount of fast-moving air through a small aperture, but are still able to create large volumes of sound. By contrast, when I play tuba, I still use huge volumes of air to play sub-contra notes quietly, due to their frequency. Dynamic is determined by the speed of the air, not the volume.
Dec
10
comment What makes a wind insturment sound louder or softer?
@MattPutnam I disagree with you there - I know many musicians that circular breath (including myself) to very effectively link phrases or, in some cases, perform music that couldn't be performed effectively otherwise. Also, circular breathing is one of the core techniques for playing didgeridoo, which is a cultural instrument as much as a musical one.
Dec
10
comment How do I play a run of keys or a certain pattern of ascending or descending notes, fast?
@As I think I've said about 100 times before on similar questions, you must start and practice slow. Very, obnoxiously slow. So slow that you can play it without making a mistake. Keep a practice journal. Every day you practice, write down your metronome speed. Try to improve by 1 click every session. Repeat this process until you can play comfortably beyond your target speed. The more you do this, over time, the less you will need to do it. To play fast, you must play slow.
Dec
10
comment Key choice for brass instruments
@Gauthier For example, on a CC tuba, F and Bb scales most just use 1st, 2nd, and open valve combinations creating a very open, resonant sound. A major on the other hand uses no open valves. It's still a very friendly key, but less so than F or Bb. On my tuba, Db is just a very stuffy key. Obviously, you can play devil's advocate with enharmonics (Db/C# or Gb/F#), but the reasoning for flats used here may be more psychological than acoustic. Putting the keys in flat can make people think of "darker" sounds or reduce key-signature anxiety. As a friend of mine said, "A# is not the same as "Bb".
Dec
10
comment Key choice for brass instruments
@Gauthier Oh! I completely forgot about horns!! Yes, obviously horns are included as transposing instruments. Tubas are non-transposing. Yes, even if the tuba is F, Eb, Bb, or C, none of them transpose. With the exception of C tubas, flat keys resonate more fully because of the open tube. Because most brass instruments are pitched in flat keys (tpt, horn, tbn, euph, most tubas) they use less tubing when playing in flat keys, thus, the intonation is better and the instrument resonates more freely. With brass instruments, the more tubing you add, the more out of tune / stuffy the sound goes.
Dec
8
comment How best to handwrite scores?
@Dom Not to be too nit-picky, but it's pencil first, then pen. For the OP: I also know several composers who use rulers (crucial for orchestral scores!)
Dec
8
comment Key choice for brass instruments
@Gauthier Trumpet is the only brass instrument you need to transpose, and even then, trumpets very commonly read in flat keys. As I mentioned in my other comment, sharp keys are harder to tune because those keys don't naturally resonate with the fundamental of the instrument. Thus, since you're fighting the natural tendency of the instrument, which resonates more freely in flat keys, tuning intervals and pitches in sharp keys will be more difficult. Also, FWIW, much band music is written in flat keys while much orchestral music is written in sharp keys - it's easier for the strings.
Dec
7
comment Key choice for brass instruments
@Gauthier This preference has to do with the fundamental resonant frequency of the instrument. For trombone and tuba (non-C non-transposing instruments, Bb is first position (tbn.) and can be open for tuba (BBb Tuba), for trumpet, Bb is open as well. Since the open, resonant frequency of the instrument is set in a "flat" key, music written in flat keys will sound more resonant than music written in keys that doesn't naturally resonant with the instrument (E major), thus, brass players see more music written in flat keys, thus, brass players favor flat keys. Sharp keys are harder to tune also.
Dec
6
revised How to prepare for a music major?
edited body
Dec
6
comment How to prepare for a music major?
Personally, I've found music history to be much for informing compositionally than theory, but that's just me. Theory helps if you're stuck on an idea sometimes. Also, melodies absolutely do not form the basis of all compositions.
Dec
6
comment How to prepare for a music major?
@aparente001 Yes, you're right, I forgot! Analyzing other people's music does take theory, but analyzing your own music (especially when composing) takes experience and an objective eye; composers must keep their idealized, mental projection of their intent in focus.
Dec
5
comment How to prepare for a music major?
Though they both lived at the same time, I do not believe Schoenberg and Prokofiev shared compositional techniques with one another. Now, Stravinksy on the other hand...
Dec
5
revised How to prepare for a music major?
spelling
Dec
5
comment Is there a convention to notate anticipation?
@MikeHildner The convention for showing rhythm with chords is to write "slash" notehead style. Half-notes / Whole-notes turn into boxes, quarter and smaller turn into slashes. Dots and stems are notated the same. You see this is jazz, rock, and pop charts very commonly. So, to simply show the "anticipation", merely write out the rhythm of the chord change and put the appropriate chord symbol above the rhythm.
Dec
5
comment Naming of notes in choral music?
There aren't special names for notes for vocalists. There are different systems for showing pitch register, but most of them are antiquated and you only need them when you're reading European textbooks. Stick with scientific notation and make everyone else get on your level. If you don't know which "D" ("D3 or D4?") speak up - ask someone. If they don't know the difference, explain it to them. You'll come off looking smart / alert and they'll learn something new, plus, everyone will be on the same page.
Dec
5
comment What does it mean when there are two 1s with a curve over a note?
Either way you slice it, it is poor notation; likely a French score.