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#1343416 - 01/07/10 07:07 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Diane...]
David Jenson Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/22/06
Posts: 2109
Loc: Maine
Originally Posted By: Diane...
Wish you guys wouldn't always do so much fighting!


Killjoy! ... (I'm kidding! 'Just Kidding, Diane)

I stay out of the fray. I'm not smart enough to be in it in any meaningful way. That keeps me safe ... I think.
_________________________
David L. Jenson
Tuning - Repairs - Refurbishing
Jenson's Piano Service
-----

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#1343424 - 01/07/10 07:16 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
Bill Bremmer RPT Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/21/02
Posts: 3229
Loc: Madison, WI USA
I will take Dan's analogy to coffee to illustrate exactly what I believe. Dan says that if you order coffee, you expect one thing, something which is standard in North America. I have often interacted with visitors from France and I lived in France during my senior year at the university. I learned the language well and learned about the cultural differences between France and North America.

One thing French people consistently say when they visit the USA is how bad both the coffee and bread here are. I remember seeing a documentary on coffee on the History Channel. It said that for decades, the American public was sold bad coffee. There was really no alternative to it. Wherever you might buy coffee, there was only one kind. I recall my mother saying how bad restaurant coffee always was. It always had this certain taste that she did not like. At least at home, she could make better coffee in her percolator. The restaurants all made coffee the same way and all of the coffee distributed to restaurants was usually by only one distributor and only one kind of coffee. Coffee was coffee.

Americans came to accept that kind of coffee and like it for what it was. The same was true of bread. During my childhood, bread meant only one thing to me. It was what commercial bakeries produced in mass and sold to the public. There really wasn't any other choice or if there was at all, it was more expensive, so my mother never bought it and therefore, I never knew of it. All I had to do was to go to France to discover that both coffee and bread could be something entirely different from what I had known my whole life previously.

Sometime well after I had returned from living in France, the company Starbuck's, located in Seattle where the people love their coffee decided to offer its customers a choice. They quickly found that people were often willing to pay more for something that was not the usual coffee they had always known. Starbuck's business expanded rapidly. It grew to the point where there were Starbuck's coffee houses across the street from each other all over the USA.

Many other coffee houses also opened. They offered any and all kinds of variations. Even their standard coffee was not what coffee used to be. Where I live, there are now at least a dozen coffee houses, including two Starbuck's within walking distance. There are several brands. Each offers multiple possibilities as a coffee beverage. Any way you want it, they can make it. Each place has their own decor and each one wants you as a customer to feel that you are welcome and they have just what you like. Most customers choose something other than the standard brew. Any of those choices costs more than the standard but most people choose something other than the ordinary. That makes the business profitable. No such businesses used to exist but now they do and they employ people and pay taxes.

Mc Donald's used to only serve one kind of coffee and it was bad. Then, they tried offering "premium coffee" for a higher price along with their standard brew. So many people bought the premium coffee at the higher price and no longer chose the standard brew that Mc Donald's stopped offering the standard brew!

Gas station convenience stores also saw this trend and began to offer customers premium coffee. It all cost more but the people who bought coffee were glad to pay the higher price for something better.

Today at the supermarket where I shop and even at Wal Mart, you can still buy what used to be known as the only coffee there ever was and also the only kind of bread there ever was but you can also buy any number of alternatives. These businesses would not stock these many variations at higher prices unless a substantial number of people bought them! Retailers sell what people choose to buy.

It took a company like Starbuck's to take the initiative to offer the public something other than what they had previously. One distinction there is about a free market is that the consumer has a choice. I often see it written, "None of my customers ever asked for an HT". That is because they don't know that there is anything to ask for other than just one thing, a piano tuning. It is not really that they are expecting ET, they most often don't even know what ET is. They most often have been served previously a the bad "brew" of reverse well and not ET anyway.

Here, in Madison, Wisconsin, USA, it took the initiative and the foresight of two of my local colleagues to introduce and promote the concept of an alternative temperament in piano tuning. It was not me that started it. I resisted the idea initially and had the same notions about it that most technicians have. For me, it took hearing actual music played on a piano tuned that way to persuade me. Once I heard it, I was convinced of the value.

Today in my area, we have a situation analogous to the Starbuck's phenomenon. The alternatives to ET are known and are more popular and in far more demand than ET. People have "tasted" what we offer and are willing to pay more for it. Those of us who use non-ET's don't want any piano we tune to sound like any piano the ET tuners or the reverse well tuners tune. There may be people who just want the regular and they can get just the regular but when they call one of us, they get what we offer and it is not the regular, just like Starbuck's and all the other coffee houses and other places who serve coffee.

All of this was possible only through the mutual respect that local RPT's have for each other by association with PTG, bye the way. Had there been no PTG Chapter, had we not had meetings and presentations, it would have never happened. None of us would probably ever have known who Owen Jorgensen was. The ETD's we have today would not exist as they are now.

To know only one way to tune, to believe only in one way to tune and do that imperfectly while shutting out all other possibilities is to limit oneself needlessly and ultimately, it will be to one's detriment as others around sign on to the Starbuck's concept. Steinway has always been like that. I was told rather rudely by Ron Conners once in his distinct Brooklyn accent, "We respond to the artists, when the artists start asking for it, we'll do it". Well, that day has arrived. Steinway artist Peter Serkin now specifically requests the 1/7 comma meantone temperament. If he comes to where Peter who started this insulting thread lives and Peter scoffs at him, Peter Serkin will just find someone else.

After tuning a piano for André Michel-Schub (also a Steinway artist) for the Beethoven Emperor Concerto in 1990 in a well temperament, he was so thrilled with it, he asked for it in Los Angeles and was rudely told by the technician, "Forget it, you're getting ET!" That Steinway artist was forced to accept what he didn't want and what he didn't want was ET and that was now 20 years ago.

The time will come when these requests by high caliber artists will become more common. I have long seen that the motivation for resistance to non-ET's by many technicians is primarily that they will be forced to learn something new. The same motivation exists on this forum with regards to PTG and RPT. The greater the presence of both, the more intimidated they feel by both. Let's make a rule against even mentioning PTG or RPT just so we won't feel any pressure. That has not worked. I am not the only person who suggests to novice technicians that they seek membership in PTG and RPT status. I am not the only person who refers pianists to RPT's. I won't be banned from this forum for doing so. You can choose to either live it or live with it. PTG, RPT's and non-ET's are not going away.
_________________________
Bill Bremmer RPT
Madison WI USA
www.billbremmer.com

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#1343430 - 01/07/10 07:28 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
Gadzar Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/15/06
Posts: 1767
Loc: Mexico City
Well said! thumb
_________________________
Rafael Melo
Piano Technician
rafaelmelo@afinacionpianos.com.mx

Serving Mexico City and suburbs.

http://www.afinacionpianos.com.mx

Top
#1343445 - 01/07/10 07:56 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
JBE Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/09
Posts: 377
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: Bill Bremmer RPT
[quote=Bernhard Stopper][quote=Bill
Why would these composers consistently choose those remote keys if there were not something there whose distinction they preferred?



Don't forget about today's composers. Today's composers composing on pianos tuned in ET still compose in different keys for the same reasons. Even in ET, each key provides a different feel and quality musically. Your intellect will say it can't be, but it is true.

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#1343447 - 01/07/10 07:57 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Bill Bremmer RPT]
Silverwood Pianos Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/10/08
Posts: 4197
Loc: Vancouver B. C. Canada
Originally Posted By: Bill Bremmer RPT
I will take Dan's analogy to coffee to illustrate exactly what I believe. Dan says that if you order coffee, you expect one thing, something which is standard in North America. I have often interacted with visitors from France and I lived in France during my senior year at the university. I learned the language well and learned about the cultural differences between France and North America.

One thing French people consistently say when they visit the USA is how bad both the coffee and bread here are. I remember seeing a documentary on coffee on the History Channel. It said that for decades, the American public was sold bad coffee. There was really no alternative to it. Wherever you might buy coffee, there was only one kind. I recall my mother saying how bad restaurant coffee always was. It always had this certain taste that she did not like. At least at home, she could make better coffee in her percolator. The restaurants all made coffee the same way and all of the coffee distributed to restaurants was usually by only one distributor and only one kind of coffee. Coffee was coffee.

Americans came to accept that kind of coffee and like it for what it was. The same was true of bread. During my childhood, bread meant only one thing to me. It was what commercial bakeries produced in mass and sold to the public. There really wasn't any other choice or if there was at all, it was more expensive, so my mother never bought it and therefore, I never knew of it. All I had to do was to go to France to discover that both coffee and bread could be something entirely different from what I had known my whole life previously.

Sometime well after I had returned from living in France, the company Starbuck's, located in Seattle where the people love their coffee decided to offer its customers a choice. They quickly found that people were often willing to pay more for something that was not the usual coffee they had always known. Starbuck's business expanded rapidly. It grew to the point where there were Starbuck's coffee houses across the street from each other all over the USA.

Many other coffee houses also opened. They offered any and all kinds of variations. Even their standard coffee was not what coffee used to be. Where I live, there are now at least a dozen coffee houses, including two Starbuck's within walking distance. There are several brands. Each offers multiple possibilities as a coffee beverage. Any way you want it, they can make it. Each place has their own decor and each one wants you as a customer to feel that you are welcome and they have just what you like. Most customers choose something other than the standard brew. Any of those choices costs more than the standard but most people choose something other than the ordinary. That makes the business profitable. No such businesses used to exist but now they do and they employ people and pay taxes.

Mc Donald's used to only serve one kind of coffee and it was bad. Then, they tried offering "premium coffee" for a higher price along with their standard brew. So many people bought the premium coffee at the higher price and no longer chose the standard brew that Mc Donald's stopped offering the standard brew!

Gas station convenience stores also saw this trend and began to offer customers premium coffee. It all cost more but the people who bought coffee were glad to pay the higher price for something better.

Today at the supermarket where I shop and even at Wal Mart, you can still buy what used to be known as the only coffee there ever was and also the only kind of bread there ever was but you can also buy any number of alternatives. These businesses would not stock these many variations at higher prices unless a substantial number of people bought them! Retailers sell what people choose to buy.

It took a company like Starbuck's to take the initiative to offer the public something other than what they had previously. One distinction there is about a free market is that the consumer has a choice. I often see it written, "None of my customers ever asked for an HT". That is because they don't know that there is anything to ask for other than just one thing, a piano tuning. It is not really that they are expecting ET, they most often don't even know what ET is. They most often have been served previously a the bad "brew" of reverse well and not ET anyway.

Here, in Madison, Wisconsin, USA, it took the initiative and the foresight of two of my local colleagues to introduce and promote the concept of an alternative temperament in piano tuning. It was not me that started it. I resisted the idea initially and had the same notions about it that most technicians have. For me, it took hearing actual music played on a piano tuned that way to persuade me. Once I heard it, I was convinced of the value.

Today in my area, we have a situation analogous to the Starbuck's phenomenon. The alternatives to ET are known and are more popular and in far more demand than ET. People have "tasted" what we offer and are willing to pay more for it. Those of us who use non-ET's don't want any piano we tune to sound like any piano the ET tuners or the reverse well tuners tune. There may be people who just want the regular and they can get just the regular but when they call one of us, they get what we offer and it is not the regular, just like Starbuck's and all the other coffee houses and other places who serve coffee.

All of this was possible only through the mutual respect that local RPT's have for each other by association with PTG, bye the way. Had there been no PTG Chapter, had we not had meetings and presentations, it would have never happened. None of us would probably ever have known who Owen Jorgensen was. The ETD's we have today would not exist as they are now.

To know only one way to tune, to believe only in one way to tune and do that imperfectly while shutting out all other possibilities is to limit oneself needlessly and ultimately, it will be to one's detriment as others around sign on to the Starbuck's concept. Steinway has always been like that. I was told rather rudely by Ron Conners once in his distinct Brooklyn accent, "We respond to the artists, when the artists start asking for it, we'll do it". Well, that day has arrived. Steinway artist Peter Serkin now specifically requests the 1/7 comma meantone temperament. If he comes to where Peter who started this insulting thread lives and Peter scoffs at him, Peter Serkin will just find someone else.

After tuning a piano for André Michel-Schub (also a Steinway artist) for the Beethoven Emperor Concerto in 1990 in a well temperament, he was so thrilled with it, he asked for it in Los Angeles and was rudely told by the technician, "Forget it, you're getting ET!" That Steinway artist was forced to accept what he didn't want and what he didn't want was ET and that was now 20 years ago.

The time will come when these requests by high caliber artists will become more common. I have long seen that the motivation for resistance to non-ET's by many technicians is primarily that they will be forced to learn something new. The same motivation exists on this forum with regards to PTG and RPT. The greater the presence of both, the more intimidated they feel by both. Let's make a rule against even mentioning PTG or RPT just so we won't feel any pressure. That has not worked. I am not the only person who suggests to novice technicians that they seek membership in PTG and RPT status. I am not the only person who refers pianists to RPT's. I won't be banned from this forum for doing so. You can choose to either live it or live with it. PTG, RPT's and non-ET's are not going away.



http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthrea...tml#Post1158969
_________________________
Dan Silverwood
www.silverwoodpianos.com
http://silverwoodpianos.blogspot.com/
http://www.facebook.com/SilverwoodPianosDotCom
"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

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#1343495 - 01/07/10 09:11 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: JBE]
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
Originally Posted By: byronje3
Originally Posted By: Bill Bremmer RPT
[quote=Bernhard Stopper][quote=Bill
Why would these composers consistently choose those remote keys if there were not something there whose distinction they preferred?



Don't forget about today's composers. Today's composers composing on pianos tuned in ET still compose in different keys for the same reasons. Even in ET, each key provides a different feel and quality musically. Your intellect will say it can't be, but it is true.


I definitely agree with that. To use an older example, I've heard Debussy's Clair de Lune played both in the original key and transposed to C major. It completely loses the atmosphere that Debussy is able to create in D♭. And yes, the pianos were tuned to ET.


Edited by Horowitzian (01/07/10 09:13 PM)
Edit Reason: added info and fixed those darn typos! :-)
_________________________
Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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#1343496 - 01/07/10 09:14 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Horowitzian]
BDB Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/03
Posts: 21569
Loc: Oakland
Yes, but were they tuned to A 435, as Debussy's piano probably was?
_________________________
Semipro Tech

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#1343499 - 01/07/10 09:16 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: BDB]
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
No, these were modern performances. Straight ahead ET and A440.


Edited by Horowitzian (01/07/10 09:17 PM)
_________________________
Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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#1343501 - 01/07/10 09:19 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: BDB]
Gadzar Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/15/06
Posts: 1767
Loc: Mexico City
Yes, but were they tuned to true ET or a bad Reverse Well disguised as ET?
_________________________
Rafael Melo
Piano Technician
rafaelmelo@afinacionpianos.com.mx

Serving Mexico City and suburbs.

http://www.afinacionpianos.com.mx

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#1343502 - 01/07/10 09:20 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Gadzar]
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
Meh.
_________________________
Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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#1343508 - 01/07/10 09:25 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: BDB]
JBE Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/09
Posts: 377
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: BDB
Yes, but were they tuned to A 435, as Debussy's piano probably was?


Pitch changes the atmosphere in completely different ways than key change does.

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#1343513 - 01/07/10 09:36 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Horowitzian]
Gadzar Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/15/06
Posts: 1767
Loc: Mexico City
Sorry...

Now seriously.

In the time of Debussy, second half of 19th Century, ET was not yet tunable. Only Quasy Equal and Victorian Well temperaments were available.

See the chart below:

Rolling Ball: Historical Temperaments

ET is a product of 20th Century, and true ET is from late 20th Century!

So, as Bill says, Debussy's music was explicitly composed at the remotes keys with their characteristic due color in mind.
_________________________
Rafael Melo
Piano Technician
rafaelmelo@afinacionpianos.com.mx

Serving Mexico City and suburbs.

http://www.afinacionpianos.com.mx

Top
#1343518 - 01/07/10 09:49 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Gadzar]
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
The point being, of course, that the reason Debussy used a remote key still comes through in a modern tuning.
_________________________
Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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#1343519 - 01/07/10 09:50 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Gadzar]
JBE Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/09
Posts: 377
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: Gadzar
Sorry...

Now seriously.

In the time of Debussy, second half of 19th Century, ET was not yet tunable. Only Quasy Equal and Victorian Well temperaments were available.

See the chart below:

Rolling Ball: Historical Temperaments

ET is a product of 20th Century, and true ET is from late 20th Century!

So, as Bill says, Debussy's music was explicitly composed at the remotes keys with their characteristic due color in mind.


Notice he said "modern performances". Two different keys, same piece of music with a modern ET tuning at A-440. Two different atmospheres were created simply by changing the key.

Now, if the piano had been tuned in ET at the time of composition would the composition have turned out differently?
Who knows.

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#1343525 - 01/07/10 10:00 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Gadzar]
Peter Sumner- Piano Technician Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/09/07
Posts: 852
Loc: San Francisco
I'm tuning for cellist Steven Isserlis and pianist Kirill Gerstein in Santa Rosa tomorrow night...so I think I'll try a true ET or a bad Reverse Well with a half nelson with fries on the side....at least they can snack while they play....I'm sure it will be spiffing!

My grandpa used to say 'there's nowt so funny as folk'...he must have been reading these pages.

Thread closed as far as I'm concerned...over and out....
_________________________
Peter Sumner
Concert Piano Technician



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#1343526 - 01/07/10 10:01 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: JBE]
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
Thank you, Byron. smile
_________________________
Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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#1343577 - 01/07/10 11:24 PM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Peter Sumner- Piano Technician]
JBE Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/09
Posts: 377
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: Peter Sumner- Piano Technician
I'm tuning for cellist Steven Isserlis and pianist Kirill Gerstein in Santa Rosa tomorrow night...so I think I'll try a true ET or a bad Reverse Well with a half nelson with fries on the side....at least they can snack while they play....I'm sure it will be spiffing!

My grandpa used to say 'there's nowt so funny as folk'...he must have been reading these pages.

Thread closed as far as I'm concerned...over and out....


Sounds good Peter. Just don't eat at the "roach coach" first!

You might end up belting someone before the show! smile

Top
#1343594 - 01/08/10 12:04 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Horowitzian]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2392
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Originally Posted By: Horowitzian
Originally Posted By: byronje3
Originally Posted By: Bill Bremmer RPT
[quote=Bernhard Stopper][quote=Bill
Why would these composers consistently choose those remote keys if there were not something there whose distinction they preferred?



Don't forget about today's composers. Today's composers composing on pianos tuned in ET still compose in different keys for the same reasons. Even in ET, each key provides a different feel and quality musically. Your intellect will say it can't be, but it is true.


I definitely agree with that. To use an older example, I've heard Debussy's Clair de Lune played both in the original key and transposed to C major. It completely loses the atmosphere that Debussy is able to create in D♭. And yes, the pianos were tuned to ET.


C, Db or any other key nearby, with any decent ET, Clair de Lune will only shift a little overall in the beat rates of the M thirds and a few other intervals and thats it. The reason Db has the effect it does on this piece is that the majority or music most people hear is in the key of C or G. They get used to the sound, flavour and pitch. Its no doubt that Db will sound unique and refreshing in these circumstances. Go to Britain and drive on the left a little while...same effect.

Bill, you keep saying that your miffed about the Behavior thread not allowing members here to mention the PTG. What I, and most every one else reads there is that the owner doesn't want this forum used for recruitment or for beating people over the head with something incessantly (hint,hint). I hope you don't follow a written temperament sequence the way you do that thread...lest you end up in highest octave before your done.

Personally, I'd rather hear the banjo and jaw harp from Deliverance twanging in EBVT than your constant whining about how that thread curtails the need to open that PTG Pez Dispenser of yours on the members here.



Edited by Emmery (01/08/10 12:06 AM)
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

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#1343596 - 01/08/10 12:07 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Emmery]
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
Emmery, I can't back it up with fancy math, but there's something more in it than familiarity breeding contempt, so to speak.
_________________________
Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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#1343609 - 01/08/10 12:39 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Horowitzian]
Emmery Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/02/08
Posts: 2392
Loc: Niagara Region, On. Canada
Horowitzian, the fancy math would not sell it on me even though I understand it well. I approach tuning in the same way an artist prepares his pallet with colours. If they wanted to paint a sombre picture with mostly shades of black, I'll give them black. All my clients want ET...if I don't give it to them plain and straight, they will find someone else who will. I fool around every now and then with hysterical temperaments for fun, play a couple tunes, and when I'm done, I tune my piano back to sounding like what a piano should sound like.
_________________________
Piano Technician
George Brown College /85
Niagara Region

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#1343625 - 01/08/10 12:53 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Emmery]
Horowitzian Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/18/08
Posts: 8453
I think you are mistaking my intent. I'm NOT the one pushing historical temperaments here. My point is that there still is some semblance of outer keys even in ET. Perhaps not everyone hears it that way (and different people do hear the same music differently!), but it's the way I hear it.
_________________________
Close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades, and nuclear weapons.

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#1343638 - 01/08/10 01:06 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Horowitzian]
JBE Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/09
Posts: 377
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: Horowitzian
Emmery, I can't back it up with fancy math, but there's something more in it than familiarity breeding contempt, so to speak.


Yes, I agree. Alfredo from the previous page tried to explain it by saying that musicians compose from what they happen to hear in their heads. If they are hearing something in their heads, they match it effortlessly to the key that it happens to fit best in. It is something beyond the reaches of the intellect as we know it. But I think there is some truth in what Emmery says as well. It may be a combination of things.

I meet people all the time with the ability to name the note while looking the other way. Some call it perfect pitch, I don't know. But the very strange thing is one guy nailed every note I played randomly and the piano was at A-430. I pitch raised to A-440 and tuned it and again he could easily name any note without a reference. I asked how he does it and he said each key has a certain color and feeling and it doesn't matter what the pitch is. So I think this could partly explain the different feelings that different keys in music produce. Even when tuned in modern ET.

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#1343698 - 01/08/10 04:24 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Gadzar]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7654
Loc: France
I am pretty sure that tuners in any part of the world, where listening to 5ths and 4ths all along the scale and try to avoid wolves, and that without any particular need for theory, just for musical ears. (As I guess Bill Bremmer is doing)

the piano because of its enlarges harmonic spectra, allow for many tweaks and corrections, they would be idiot not to use that.

I also feel color change with more accident, in ET (while I did not understand why).




































.
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#1343700 - 01/08/10 04:28 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: JBE]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7654
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: byronje3
[quote=Horowitzian]
I meet people all the time with the ability to name the note while looking the other way. Some call it perfect pitch, I don't know. But the very strange thing is one guy nailed every note I played randomly and the piano was at A-430. I pitch raised to A-440 and tuned it and again he could easily name any note without a reference. I asked how he does it and he said each key has a certain color and feeling and it doesn't matter what the pitch is. So I think this could partly explain the different feelings that different keys in music produce. Even when tuned in modern ET.



I can ear a piano which is low in pitch because of the different sound of the less tense wire. at 430 it sounds yet an "A" to me ,at 415 Hz (semi tone from 440) it will be only if I decide that by taking a reference note , but it will be more difficult.
When tuning for concerts daily, I often tried to tune the A442 without reference, for fun ! it worked more than half of time.
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#1343720 - 01/08/10 05:38 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Olek]
Mark R. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/31/09
Posts: 2021
Loc: Pretoria, South Africa
Dear all,

I have a quick and (hopefully) simple question. What is a "reverse-well" temperament? Is it one that has purer distant keys (bottom half of circle of 5ths) and more lively closer keys?

I'd be interested to know why a tuning that is "sold" as ET is, according to a few posters here, often-times a reverse-well.

Regards,
Mark
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1922 49" Zimmermann, project piano.
1970 44" Ibach, daily music maker.

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#1343722 - 01/08/10 06:00 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Mark R.]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7654
Loc: France
Please find some "clinical ET in that recording". !

BTW the unisons are clearly tuned with attack gestion on that forte piano.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ny5gNCTZpk0

clinical perfection ! and a nicely unison tuned piano :
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rBX8Y7yHzxU


Edited by Kamin (01/08/10 06:13 AM)
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#1343725 - 01/08/10 06:01 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Olek]
alfredo capurso Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/10/07
Posts: 1063
Loc: Sicily - Italy

Hello Kamin,

..."I also feel color change with more accident, in ET (while I did not understand why)."...

I have always been sceptical about this "colour" argument in favor of UTs, though respecting other opinions. Somehow, I do not compare colour with out of tune, immagine with a wolf interval.

If I hear a flat or sharp note, single or in a chord, it puts me off, it weakens my attention, in a way it makes me go from a state of sorrow to disgust, depending on the degree of "out of tune".

Actually, it bends my ear against my will, it sticks out like a flavour I do not like, I never welcome it as an original tip.

Every time it is as if I lost "altitude", where before I could enjoy harmony and melody. Every time it can turn in a bit of a shame and, after the first out of tune note or chord, I will not feel anymore like I can relax, somehow my listening and enjoyment will modify, maybe in a not reversible way.

I have been to various quartet playing, what a pleasure when they can express THE highest degree of harmonicity and "in tune" melodic lines. Nothing to do with UT or pure intervals (my opinion), I believe it results from a precise "tensile" form of equilibrium between all possible chords. Then, modulations can litterally evoke any state of mind or immage I could not foresee, and I enter a rare non-time dimension.
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#1343734 - 01/08/10 06:35 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: alfredo capurso]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7654
Loc: France
But ... Ther is a particularly "clinically ugly sounding" CFII S on the video from the inauguration of the Yamaha new factory on that Island (the name escapes me).
I am pretty sure they prepared the piano to its best, it is simply not lively sounding.

SO it is not only a question of justness, it is a question of equilibrium, as you state.

That said, for what I can hear on Utube and recordings most of the US pianos (Steinway included) have a bland tone with no much possibilities for change in tone, and I suspect that searches for more contrasted resonances comes from there initially.

Glengould was obliged to sing and speak in order for his brain to correct the dryness of the real output from the piano (and he left his own instrument out of tune)

After having been played some the pianos tuned without energizing the unison attack will tone better (the pianist "build his tone" while it would have be the tuner to do so). But it is yet less good sounding than if phase gesture have been installed from the start.

Sorry not to be very politically correct on that public forum. I dont state that one have to tune like it or like that (while I find it is sad to miss musicality because of a slighly twisted approach) but I cant refrain trying to understand why this is happening.

I react the same when a note is out of tune in a recording, it lessen my joy and attention, exactly as you describe (if I tuned the piano I feel very bad !!!)
But that really sticks out in ET, while in UT you have to get use to the harmony so I suppose it bothers you less (if you even notice)

I agree that that C maj chord is sounding magnificent with the last chord of the EBVT recorded by Pat, but this is somehow a static thing. Music lives with modulations, there are yet changes in tone with modulations, even if not as contrasted in ET than with UT.

I believe that the sense for that musical equilibrium differ from people to people.

I appreciate the purity of Stopper tuning, but I get the feeling that large spanning will lessen the tonality impression, so keeping something to still temper, as with your method is may be a solution

Best regards, from snow and cold (poor Parisians !)
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#1343735 - 01/08/10 06:42 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: alfredo capurso]
alfredo capurso Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/10/07
Posts: 1063
Loc: Sicily - Italy

Opinion: I think the "colour" argument, long ago, has been drawing an indulgent veil over the difficulty to tune chords. I like when human being can turn a fault into a virtue, though not if this operation goes to the detriment of truth or sincerity.

Mark, you write:

..."I'd be interested to know why a tuning that is "sold" as ET is, according to a few posters here, often-times a reverse-well."...

This is a mistery, Mark, as it is a mistery how 12ths and 15ths can ever invert. I do not feel like I'm allowed to ask "which ET are you talking about", I have not had any answer.

Kamin, "clinical perfection" is like "sterile sound", are not discussable, they are not concepts but "crusade" tools, say they are used as a jemmy (opinion).

Thanks Peter.

Emmery, I do not think it is fear using Hysterical T. in stead of Historical T. I do not thing this is the given chance. The way I understand, also ET goes often hysterical, everywhere. This is (also) why I would not use this title as a sledgehammer.
.
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#1343742 - 01/08/10 07:10 AM Re: Hysterical tunings etc... [Re: Olek]
Bernhard Stopper Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/22/08
Posts: 212
Loc: Germany
Originally Posted By: Kamin

I appreciate the purity of Stopper tuning, but I get the feeling that large spanning will lessen the tonality impression, so keeping something to still temper,

Get real Isaac, and keep your affective argumentation out of a forum of experts.

Constating purity (a well definable and obective property) while constating at the same time a lessened tonality impression (an extremely subjective adjective, one of the sort we hear constantly from you) is more than offensive mood. Ask your brother if he has a lessened tonality impression because he is tuning his violin with pure fifths, you know well from the Cordier tuning that when tuning with pure fifths, one has even way more spanning.

You are welcome to criticize, but do it in an objective way. The style you are actually using makes you appear obscure, really.







Edited by Bernhard Stopper (01/08/10 07:23 AM)
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