Music Scales

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Music Scales

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- Luminita Dutica Vol 9-10-2015
- Mozart_and_the_Tromlitz_flute.pdf
- MARTIN, Henry. 2010. "Seven Steps to Heaven" _ a Species Approach to Twentieth-century Analysis and Composition
- Music and the Brain
- Tenney James Meta-Hodos and Meta Meta-Hodos
- Method Singing
- Introduction to Music Theory.epub
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- Spatial and Psychoacoustic Factors in Atonal Prolongation. Lerdahl
- Switchblade 327 - Trumpet
- Pitch Tables
- Too Late - Fisher Sheet Music
- Scales of Measurement
- Developmental Techniques as Structural Tools
- Engaged_Music Patricia Martinez, 2007

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beauty and life. Even music has a foundation in the series as:

There are 13 notes in the span of any note through its octave. A

scale is composed of 8 notes, of which the 5

th

and 3

rd

notes

create the basic foundation of all chords, and are based on whole

tone which is 2 steps from the root tone that is the 1

st

note of the

scale.

The piano keyboard scale of C to C above the 13

th

keys has 8

white keys and 5 black keys, split into groups of 3 and 2.

In a scale the dominant note is the 5

th

note of the major scale,

which is also the 8

th

note of all 13 notes that comprise the

octave. This provides an added instance of Fibonacci numbers in

key musical relationships. Interestingly, 8/13 is 0.61538, which

approximates phi. Whats more the typical three song chord in

the key of A is made up of A, its Fibonacci and phi partner E

and D, to which A bears the same relationship as E does to A.

this is analogous to the A is to B as B is to C basis of the

golden section, or in this case D is to A as A is to E

How is the golden ratio used in music?

Golden ratio is a ratio and in music we can refer to this ratio to

spatial dimensions as well as to temporal dimensions. In the art

of painting and generally in all plastic and figurative arts the

implementation of a dimension is relatively simple whereas in

the art of music, the implementation of a dimension ratio

becomes more and more complicated.

In music the term interval describes the relationship between

the pitches of two notes. Those intervals may be described as

harmonic (vertical) if the two notes sound simultaneously, or

melodic (linear) if the notes sound successively. Intervals may

be labeled according to the ratio of frequencies of the two

pitches and you can at first implement and apply the above

shown dimension ratio to those frequencies: you will have a first

example of the golden ratio in music. Furthermore in music we

can also consider the intervals of time that is the time intervals

between a note and another one.

The Golden Ratio appears in the relationship of the intervals or

distance between the notes. Each of these intervals or note pairs

creates either a tonic (consonant) sound or a dissonant sound, in

which the listener desires to hear it followed by a tonic sound to

"resolve" the tension created by its unstable quality.

The octave has a similar consonant quality that could be

represented visually by two squares of equal size. A correlation

could be made between the consonant properties of the interval

of an octave to the first two squares in the golden rectangle or

the first two numbers in the Fibonacci sequence which are

represented as 1,1. From there the relationship reflects a ratio of

8:5 in the interval of a Major 6th (an approximate Golden Ratio

of 1.6), in the first and sixth notes of a diatonic (Major) scale.

The ratio of this interval is related by the rhythmic beats that are

created by the respective frequencies of the sound waves and

interpreted as sound in the human ear. Suffice it to say, that the

interval of a Major 6th is supposed to be the most aesthetically

pleasing since it contains the golden ratio.

The interesting part of this, according to H.E. Huntley, author

of the Divine Proportion, is that it is a relationship of the

consonance and dissonance of the rhythmic "beats" that occur in

the sound waves of the resonant frequencies between notes in

the diatonic scale. Huntley goes on to explain that the reason

that we prefer visual aspects of a Golden Rectangle over a

perfect square is measured in the amount of time it takes for the

human eye to travel within its borders. This period of time is in

same proportion (Phi) to the beats that exist in specific musical

intervals. Unison (two notes of the same frequency being played

simultaneously) is said to be the most consonant, having a

rhythmic quality that is similar to the time interval that is

perceived by the eye when viewing a perfect square.

The difficulty of using the Golden Ratio

In music the term interval describes the relationship between

the pitches of two notes. Intervals may be labeled according to

the ratio of frequencies of the two pitches and you can at first

implement and apply the above shown dimension ratio to those

frequencies: you will have a first example of the golden ratio in

music. But, if this implementation can be relatively applicable to

harmonic intervals, it can be a real destruction of the art for

melodic intervals. Furthermore in music we can also consider

the intervals of time that is the time intervals between a note and

another one. Now, the implementation of dimension ratio

becomes artistically restrictive in a dramatic way. So, you can

find the Golden Ratio in music as in other arts but the difficulty

is to compose using the Golden Ratio as a starting point without

destroying the art nature.

However, regarding the listener, the degree to which the

application of the golden ratio in music is salient, whether

consciously or unconsciously, as well as the overall musical

effect of its implementation, if any, is unknown.

Musical instruments are often based on phi

Fibonacci and phi are used in the design of violins and even in

the design of high quality speaker wire.

Composers that used the golden ratio and how they

used it

James Tenney reconceived his piece For Ann (rising), which consists of

up to twelve computer-generated upwardly glissandoing tones (see

Shepard tone), as having each tone start so it is the golden ratio (in

between an equal tempered minor and major sixth) below the previous

tone, so that the combination tones produced by all consecutive tones are

a lower or higher pitch already, or soon to be, produced.

Ern Lendvai analyzes Bla Bartk's works as being based on two

opposing systems, that of the golden ratio and the acoustic scale, though

other music scholars reject that analysis. In Bartok's Music for Strings,

Percussion and Celesta the xylophone progression occurs at the intervals

1:2:3:5:8:5:3:2:1. French composer Erik Satie used the golden ratio in

several of his pieces, including Sonneries de la Rose+Croix.

The golden ratio is also apparent in the organization of the sections in the

music of Debussy's Reflets dans l'eau (Reflections in Water), from

Images (1st series, 1905), in which "the sequence of keys is marked out

by the intervals 34, 21, 13 and 8, and the main climax sits at the phi

position."

This Binary Universe, an experimental album by Brian Transeau

(popularly known as the electronic artist BT), includes a track titled 1.618

in homage to the golden ratio. The track features musical versions of the

ratio and the accompanying video displays various animated versions of

the golden mean.

The musicologist Roy Howat has observed that the formal boundaries of

La Mer correspond exactly to the golden section. Trezise finds the

intrinsic evidence "remarkable," but cautions that no written or reported

evidence suggests that Debussy consciously sought such proportions.

Also, many works of Chopin, mainly Etudes (studies) and Nocturnes, are

formally based on the golden ratio. This results in the biggest climax of

both musical expression and technical difficulty after about 2/3 of the

piece.

Pearl Drums positions the air vents on its Masters Premium models based

on the golden ratio. The company claims that this arrangement improves

bass response and has applied for a patent on this innovation.

In the opinion of author Leon Harkleroad, "Some of the most misguided

attempts to link music and mathematics have involved Fibonacci numbers

and the related golden ratio."

MOZART

J.F. Putz, a mathematician, has measured some of Mozart's works.

Mozart's piano sonatas were convenient targets, because in Mozart's time

they were customarily divided into two parts: (1) Exposition; and (2)

Development and Recapitulation. Sure enough, the first movement of

Mozart's Sonata No. 1 in C Major consists of 100 measures that are

divided into the customary two parts; 38 in the first, 62 in the second.

This ratio 38/62 (0.613) is as close as one can get to 0.618 in a

composition of 100 measures. The second movement of this sonata is also

divided according to the Golden Section, but the third movement is not.

Many other Mozart piano sonatas seem to employ the Golden section, but

some deviate considerably. So Putz could not really claim that Mozart

consciously used the Golden Section to "improve" his music (Question #1

above), but there are certainly a lot of "coincidences."

DEBUSSY

Given that Debussy's music is apparently so concerned with

mood and colour, one may be surprised to discover that,

according to Howat, many of his greatest works appear to have

been structured around mathematical models even while using

an apparent classical structure such as sonata form. Howat

suggests that some of Debussy's pieces can be divided into

sections that reflect the golden ratio, frequently by using the

numbers of the standard Fibonacci sequence. Sometimes these

divisions seem to follow the standard divisions of the overall

structure. In other pieces they appear to mark out other

significant features of the music. The 55 bar-long introduction to

'Dialogue du vent et la mer' in La Mer, for example, breaks

down into 5 sections of 21, 8, 8, 5 and 13 bars in length. The

golden mean point of bar 34 in this structure is signalled by the

introduction of the trombones, with the use of the main motif

from all three movements used in the central section around that

point.

The only evidence that Howat introduces to support his claim

appears in changes Debussy made between finished manuscripts

and the printed edition, with the changes invariably creating a

Golden Mean proportion where previously none existed.

Perhaps the starkest example of this comes with La cathdrale

engloutie. Published editions lack the instruction to play bars 7-

12 and 22-83 at twice the speed of the remainder, exactly as

Debussy himself did on a piano-roll recording. When analysed

with this alteration, the piece follows Golden Section

proportions. At the same time, Howat admits that in many of

Debussy's works, he has been unable to find evidence of the

Golden Section (notably in the late works) and that no extant

manuscripts or sketches contain any evidence of calculations

related to it

BARTOK

Bla Bartk memorial plaque in Baja, Hungary

Erno Lendvai (1971) analyses Bartk's works as being based on two

opposing tonal systems, that of the acoustic scale and the axis system, as

well as using the golden section as a structural principle.

Per Nrgrd

Nrgrd has composed works in all major genres: six operas, two ballets,

seven symphonies and other pieces for orchestra, several concertos,

choral and vocal works, an enormous number of chamber works, ten

string quartets and several solo instrumental works.

In the 1960s, Nrgrd began exploring the modernist techniques of

central Europe, eventually developing a serial compositional system

based on the "infinity series" (Nrgrd 1975), which he used in his

Voyage into the Golden Screen, the Second and Third Symphonies, I

Ching, and other works of the late 1960s and 70s (Mortensen [n.d.]).

Nrgrd is also a prolific writer. He has written many articles dealing

with music not only from a technical but also a philosophical viewpoint.

Music

Uendelighedsrkken in G major (the first 32 terms)

Nrgrd's music often features the use of the infinity series for

serializing melody, harmony, and rhythm in musical

composition. The method takes its name from the endlessly self-

similar nature of the resulting musical material, comparable to

fractal geometry. Mathematically, the infinity series is an integer

sequence (Fibonacci sequence is an integer sequence). The first

few terms of its simplest form are 0, 1, 1, 2, 1, 0, 2, 3,

(sequence A004718 in OEIS).

Nrgrd discovered the melodic infinity series in 1959 and it

proved an inspiration for many of his works during the 1960s.

However, it was not until his Voyage into the Golden Screen for

small ensemble (1968)which has been identified as the first

"properly instrumental piece of spectral composition" (Anderson

2000, 14)and Symphony No. 2 (1970) that it provided the

structure for an entire work (Nrgrd 1975, 9). The harmonic

and rhythmic infinity series were developed in the early 1970s

and the three series were first integrated in Nrgrd's Symphony

No. 3.

Chopin

Many works of Chopin, mainly Etudes (studies) and Nocturnes,

are formally based on the golden ratio. This results in the

biggest climax of both musical expression and technical

difficulty after about 2/3 of the piece.

Opposite beliefs

Some people believe that all the claims that some Gregorian

chants are based on the Golden Ratio, that Mozart used the

Golden Ratio in some of his music, and that Bartok used the

Golden Ratio in some of his music are without any concrete

support. They also say that it is less clear cut whether Debussy

used the Golden Ratio in some of his music and that here the

experts don't agree on whether some Golden Ratio patterns that

can be discerned are intended or spurious.

"Amen break"

The "Amen break" was a brief drum solo performed in 1969 by

Gregory Cylvester "G. C." Coleman in the song "Amen, Brother"

performed by the 1960s funk and soul outfit The Winstons.

Mathematician Michael S. Schneider saw a wave form of the well-

known drum sequence known as the Amen Break. Its a drum 5.2 second

sequence performed by Gregory Cylvester Coleman of The Winstons and

has been sampled and used by countless artists since it was recorded in

the 60s. Schneider, seeing the waveform through the eyes of a math

professor, recognized a pattern, a relationship called the Golden Ratio. So

he began to analyze the drum sequence and its deeper meaning.

He examined the wave image in his computer and found that Golden

Ratio relationships were indicated among the different peaks. He said that

To appreciate this relationship between the Golden Ratio and sound, its

worthwhile to consider some of the ideal, eternal, unchanging principles

of Golden relationships which can only be approximated in nature, and

by artists, architects and musicians.

It gained fame from the 1980s onwards when four bars (5.2 seconds)

sampled from the drum-solo (or imitations thereof) became very widely

used as sampled drum loops in hip hop, jungle, break core and drum and

bass music.

The song itself achieved fame within the hip hop and subsequent

electronic music communities when a former Downstairs Records

employee known as Breakbeat Lenny compiled it onto his 1986 Ultimate

Breaks and Beats bootleg series for DJs.

It created a jarring difference in tempo in the center of the song; it

allowed Hip-Hop DJs to extend the beat by switching between two copies

of the record on two separate turntables at a danceable tempo while

ignoring the rest of the song. The Amen break gain a massive amount of

fame in the late 80s hip-hop community, crossing over to the U.K. and

European dance music scenes shortly afterwards. Eventually, the song

was reissued in its original form at a higher quality sound.

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