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Friday, November 20, 2009

Anagrams and resolution, transparency, definition, clarity...

... about the Real Thing: I found the Wikipedia suggestion about "resolution", music-wise to be quite inspiring - i.e. - Musical resolution

Sentences like this: "A dissonance has its resolution when it moves to a consonance. When a resolution is delayed or is accomplished in surprising ways--when the composer play with our sense of expectation--a feeling of drama or suspense is created." or "... lacks a tonal center to which to resolve. The concept of "resolution", and the degree to which resolution is "expected", is contextual as to culture and historical period."

Audio-wise, the above seems to hint about the enhanced level of attention through the sense of surprise after timing/chordal/melodic changes in music.

To a broader extent Low Frequencies, Medium Frequencies or High Frequencies better resolution - not exageration, boosting, tilting up or the like - or transparency augment the sense of understanding, of proximity to the music and its meaning.

Interesting would be better defining and speculating around the (audio-wise) concepts of "transparency", "definition" "clarity" and "resolution"... all from a sane, contructive point-of-view, leave alone the hated industry hypes.

Being "resolution" a multi-faceted, multi-meaning term, I found this sort-of "dark side of resolution" intriguing and worth reporting, like - as whole life seems VERY, almost painfully, utterly mysterious - as it is all based on abstractions, subtleties, conventions, meanings and habits... when this consciousness happens, it's like something changes and also the humblest word - as the basic brick which builds, supports our lives - need a careful explanation and has its weight in everyday life.

Also: a tuning fork, the basic, humble tool which makes a full orchestra to play "in tune" is - as applied math and acoustic, a sort-of interpretation of Nature and its Laws - giving 440 cycles (hertz) flat to the trained musician ear, who filters the pure tone as "the officially accepted" tuning pitch, by convention... Well tempered klavier

The diapason (tuning fork) is not something abstract, but a vibrating steel bent bar, producing an A = a note... such a note - now, by convention, at 440 hz, centuries ago (yet still used in ancient music praxis) was at 415, 417, 430 or even 447 hz, tomorrow... who know?

Translated from "Wikipedia": "In '500 and '600 in Rome, church organs were giving LA (A) pitch to choir - i.e. the fourth octave note (A4). Every church had his "main tone", which was between 390 and 400 hz.

In 1859 the tuning pitch for symphonic orchestra pitch was at 448,8 hz. In that same year, in Paris, a panel of notable musicians (Berlioz, Rossini ecc.) stated - with an imperial paper - the "diapason" for all French territory as 435 Hz.

Later, back in 1880, the mathematic and musicologist Alexander Ellis searched and published the pitch frequencies used in several european cities, quoting year and frequency of A, as follows:

Berlino (concerti) 1721 421,9
Berlino (concerti) 1859 451,8
Bologna (concerti) 1869 443,1
Bruxelles (teatro lirico) 1859 442,5
Firenze (opera) 1845 444,9
Liegi (concerti) 1859 448
Londra (opera) 1857 456,1
Londra (opera) 1880 435,4
Londra (concerti) 1826 423,3
Londra (concerti) 1877 455,1
Madrid (opera) 1858 444,5
Milano (Teatro alla Scala) 1857 451,7
Milano 1849 446,6
Napoli (Teatro San Carlo) 1857 444,9
Vienna (opera) 1823 433,9
Vienna (opera) 1862 466

In 1885 in Wien it was discussed the possibility to imitate Paris' hint to adopt a european pitch note and frequency... such a decision was reached about one century after, standardizing the A = 440 hz on June 30th, 1971.

In Italy such an official statement was (untimely) dating May 3rd 1989:

"Normalizzazione dell'intonazione di base degli strumenti musicali", che all'art. 1 recita: "Il suono di riferimento per l'intonazione di base degli strumenti musicali è la nota la3, la cui altezza deve corrispondere alla frequenza di 440 hertz (hz), misurata alla temperatura ambiente di 20 gradi centigradi".
(Translation - The tuning reference tone for musical instruments is A3, whose pitch must correspond to the frequency of 440 hz, as measured at 20 degrees Celsius temperature).

Standardization and conventions really build (or dismantle) the world how we know it...

BTW... did you notice that "tone" has - by chance - one of its anagrams as "note"?

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