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#1702969 - 06/27/11 12:41 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Unequally tempered]
Jake Johnson Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/20/08
Posts: 84
Originally Posted By: Unequally tempered
Hi!

Restringing has progressed on the Emerlich Betsy
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pk12p0eJ9uI

The pianist playing here tried the Bechstein earlier in the evening and, expert in Chopin Mazurkas, commented that the temperament I use does the job of expression that a pianist otherwise has to insert consciously into playing.

In my continuing examination of Chopin there are a number of areas of Chopin's work where perfect fifths and thirds which "sing" seem to be very natural fitting in with the emphasis of the rhythm.

Reaction to the temperament is very extraordinary - on the one hand musicians such as my visitor the other evening rave about it and others, I guess of the nature of whom Ross Duffin complains, who metaphorically run from the room screaming. It's still a mystery to me why Ross Duffin falls for the Lehman Bradley temperament not merely for reasons referred to earlier, a debate on which I don't want to restart, but for the reason that I'm not greatly aware of the Lehman temperament leading to many if any perfect intervals which one would assume to be a prerequisite for Duffin's return to finding better harmony . . . So the book is a good proposition, makes a great point with significant validity but its conclusion is a mystery to me - to the point of being a non-sequiture as far as I'm concerned.

To find harmony, in my mind having played the 1775 organ at St Maximin in France and been looking at a lot of the French Baroque repertoire using Meantone, a quest from harmony has to start from there, relaxing it into playability in all keys, so giving nicely purish intervals, particularly major thirds in Bb F C G D and letting the far-flung keys take the strain. If the validity of the musicoligist's experience the other night has any weight, then this sort of tuning appears to accord with the spirit of Chopin and one must therefore start to ask how universal it was in terms of geographical spread within Europe and up to what date.

Best wishes

David P


This piano already sounds very good. Thanks for posting this new video, David.

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#1763755 - 10/03/11 05:26 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Hi!

Some Schubert . . .

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQBT5lclztU
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XXPjFabNEXU
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JnCHX64F5rs

I have varied the tuning slightly - does anyone notice any difference from before?

We have one recital at the end of the month with Kazimierz Morski and then we'll be sending off the hammers to be refelted.

Best wishes

David P
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#1764327 - 10/04/11 02:25 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Unequally tempered]
Jake Johnson Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/20/08
Posts: 84
David--I thought we'd lost you.

Over the past few days I've been installing new monitors. Everything that I'm listening to now sounds very different. I'm not sure that I trust my ears right now.

My initial impression, however, is that I like the older version of your temperament more. The new one, to me, sounds closer to Equal temperament--more brittle and at times tart. The attack seems more forcible, but I don't like the timbre as much. I can't offer an objective view, given my new system, but my first impression is that there is no need to improve on your earlier version.

On the other hand, the new pieces are faster, and they are played more aggressively, so the upper partials are more audible. If Mr. Barabino played the same piece using both temperaments, we could reduce the variable to the temperament.

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#1764441 - 10/04/11 08:51 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Johnson]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Dear Jake

Thanks

I've been absent only on account of a lack of new recordings . . .

For the latest, I used TuneLab97 with an inharmonicity graph applied. This took the top octaves up rather more than my norm and the bottom notes I felt to tie in with the centre more. Adolfo likes this more on his Steinway in England, which did not react so harmoniously to my usual methods using ears alone in the bass, but on the Bechstein, there was a marked difference between what TuneLab was wanting to do and what my ears wanted me to do in the Tenor C octave C3-C4, so I erred towards my ears.

The piano will take on a renewed persona when the hammers are refelted . . .

The Steinway and surprisingly the Bechstein have odd irregular inharmonicities in the Tenor C octave.

Steinway inharmonicity: 2nd harmonic varies from -0.5 to +2.6:
A1 ? 0.00 2.04 -1.37 1.10 2.67
C2 0.00 2.72 4.19 3.35 3.12 5.41
E2 ? 0.00 1.37 1.62 2.15 3.66
F2 0.00 -0.18 ? 3.22 4.58 5.83
F#2 ? 0.00 0.31 0.79 1.92 3.32
G2 0.00 2.65 2.62 3.49 4.34 5.45
G#2 ? 0.00 0.10 0.65 1.69 2.87
A2 0.00 2.62 3.24 4.03 4.95 5.79
A#2 ? 0.00 0.99 1.14 2.16 3.60
B2 0.00 -0.50 -0.08 0.88 1.74 2.75
C3 0.00 -0.09 0.23 1.01 2.02 2.85
C#3 0.00 0.00 0.40 1.40 2.35 3.40
D3 0.00 -0.11 0.87 1.62 2.45 3.50
D#3 0.00 0.33 1.13 1.93 3.14 4.30
E3 0.00 0.25 0.81 1.50 2.62 3.92
F3 0.00 2.01 2.57 3.33 4.83 6.33
F#3 0.00 -0.12 0.72 1.70 3.00 4.71
G3 0.00 0.14 1.18 1.99 3.89 5.59
G#3 0.00 0.16 1.43 2.41 3.88 5.70
A3 0.00 0.88 1.37 2.97 4.58 6.64
A#3 0.00 1.62 2.32 3.89 5.70 7.99
B3 0.00 1.22 2.31 3.52 5.76 8.26
C4 0.00 1.48 2.83 4.47 6.59 9.61

The Bechstein is better behaved with anomolies only between E3 to B3 but much wider 5th and higher harmonics:

C2 0.00 8.19 10.51 16.99 21.78 29.19
E2 0.00 4.90 8.00 ? 14.75 20.75
G#2 0.00 5.18 5.97 8.67 11.27 13.44
A2 0.00 6.51 8.38 ? 10.95 13.63
D3 0.00 5.27 4.81 9.34 11.71 17.60
D#3 0.00 6.90 8.37 11.36 16.22 20.99
E3 0.00 1.84 4.93 8.89 14.04 15.60
F3 0.00 -0.48 0.34 0.81 2.81 4.33
F#3 0.00 0.32 1.23 1.27 3.95 5.97
G3 0.00 1.93 4.15 7.13 11.19 16.83
G#3 ? 0.00 ? 2.24 ? 6.48
A3 0.00 0.91 3.34 6.03 9.26 13.20
A#3 0.00 1.53 3.12 4.73 10.43 12.76
B3 0.00 0.76 2.46 5.94 9.33 13.27
C4 0.00 1.32 3.70 6.03 8.50 13.03

The Steinway in Genoa, which I tuned straight without applying a curve was much more regular:
A1 ? 0.00 0.73 1.00 4.26 3.58
B1 ? 0.00 1.69 1.81 2.77 3.54
E2 0.00 5.59 1.54 2.07 1.72 2.21
A#2 0.00 7.43 7.06 7.58 8.47 7.39
D3 0.00 3.61 5.35 6.83 7.37 8.34
D#3 0.00 4.10 4.78 5.63 7.92 9.82
A3 0.00 0.42 2.52 3.84 5.43 7.93
D4 0.00 1.16 2.51 5.27 8.76 12.77
A4 0.00 1.81 5.59 10.23 5.07 23.99

and the 1930s Bechstein in Genoa was hideously irregular, especially in the 3rd harmonic:
F1 ? 0.00 2.55 7.84 6.84 11.35
G1 ? 0.00 0.41 5.12 7.91 8.53
G#1 ? 0.00 1.78 7.35 11.17 14.44
A1 ? 0.00 -11.11 -6.37 -2.20 -2.31
A#1 ? 0.00 2.08 4.79 5.30 6.65
C2 ? 0.00 ? 6.11 5.80 5.92
A2 0.00 2.82 4.62 6.16 6.97 9.00
A#2 0.00 1.89 2.46 3.72 5.62 8.00
C3 0.00 0.81 0.54 2.18 4.00 6.13
A3 0.00 0.34 1.63 3.79 5.10 7.26
A4 0.00 2.54 5.77 10.23 15.66 23.35

Best wishes

David P


Edited by Unequally tempered (10/04/11 08:53 AM)
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#1764474 - 10/04/11 09:55 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Jake Johnson Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/20/08
Posts: 84
Interesting. I must be honest and say that I like your earlier, narrower pitching of the first octave above A440, however, on your two pianos. Your thought that the human ear is particularly sensitive in that area struck me as right, or at least as right for your well temperament on those pianos. Delaying the stretch somehow gives them a quality I find hard to describe. (Human? Humble? Plaintive? None of these terms seems exactly right.)

On the other hand, have you followed the thread on expanding the temperament with M12's? I wonder how your temperament, and other well temperaments, would sound following those guidelines.

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#1764551 - 10/04/11 12:36 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Johnson]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Originally Posted By: Jake Johnson
Interesting. I must be honest and say that I like your earlier, narrower pitching of the first octave above A440, however, on your two pianos. Your thought that the human ear is particularly sensitive in that area struck me as right, or at least as right for your well temperament on those pianos. Delaying the stretch somehow gives them a quality I find hard to describe. (Human? Humble? Plaintive? None of these terms seems exactly right.)

On the other hand, have you followed the thread on expanding the temperament with M12's? I wonder how your temperament, and other well temperaments, would sound following those guidelines.


Dear Jake

Thanks for your observations. It's great to be able to bounce ideas and sounds off attuned ears . . .

I suspect that perfect M12s will work particularly well on instruments where the 5th harmonic is sharp and equating with the equal temperament stretched third, 13-14 cents sharper than pure. Looking at the different inharmonicities between the Steinways and the Bechsteins I measured in the upper harmonics, the small Genoa Steinway has relatively low IH in the 5th harmonics - so sounding sweeter and more solidly harmonious in the sweet keys of an unequal temperament whereas my Bechstein might sound sweeter in equal temperament with 5th harmonics more nearly equating with the Equal Temperament thirds. The relationship between the 5th harmonic and the generality of thirds in an unequal temperament may well govern how instruments responds, exaggerating or ameliorating the key colour . . .

Best wishes

David P
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#1837148 - 02/02/12 11:27 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Jake Jackson Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 576
Loc: Atlanta, GA
David,

I was just looking through this thread this morning, and I found that some of the links in the first few posts are dead or land on unexpected videos on your Youtube channel. Have you rearranged or renamed things on your site? I think I was able to find the videos that correspond to the original links, but I worry that some of the videos may be "lost" from our perspective.

More generally, have you any news? About Adolfo Barabino's plans to record in this temperament? About your further explorations of your Well variation or the work on your pianos? Any new recordings?

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#1957196 - 09/10/12 11:25 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Unequally tempered]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Hi!

I've no idea how video links should have changed - it must be YouTube rearranging things . . .

We did a recital outside the other day on a 1905 Broadwood. It was in full sunlight on a hot day and tuning was a nightmare. No doubt others will have experienced this problem and might have ways of overcoming it. I covered the instruments with silver bubble insulation which helped a little.

It's a baby grand, able to be lifted outside without too much trouble . . . but short bass strings and the bass I find horribly difficult to tune - it is a smudge of inharmonics and finding the best match I find to be a bit of a hit and miss activity at best . . .

Scarlatti on harpsichord and on piano
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MyUS0cADzvA
Beethoven Tempest http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yC6TsAa6T4Q
Chopin 2nd Sonata http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9NKv-gGTEWM
More Chopin & Encores http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJJ_VZrBGCw

Adolfo is hoping that his forthcoming concerts in the Channel Islands will be on instruments tuned to unequal temperament . . .

Best wishes

David P
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#1961444 - 09/20/12 08:11 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Unequally tempered]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Hi!

The recordings on the Broadwood are interesting - outside it was accompanied by birds - in the Beethoven, chirruping, in the Funeral March and wind whistling over the graves he excited the crows and subsequently with the Chopin encores he calmed them . . .

At risk of being accused of duplication I'm going to start a thread for unequal temperament on modern concert instruments having tuned for this concert artist on tour in the Channel Islands where in particularly on a Grotrian Steinweg, the contrast between the still pure fifths enclosing a gentle beating third was particularly magic, sounding like a violin or a singer. It was an incredible performance and combination of sensitive pianist with a piano upon which I commented was tuned to the language of the music:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QnYITP11UgQ

Best wishes

David P
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#1961586 - 09/20/12 01:54 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7157
Loc: France
I am usually very reluctant to that, but I appreciated the Schubert, the piano helps a lot, also.

Nice way to play and have fun ! thanks for posting
_________________________
Isaac OLEG - http://picasaweb.google.fr/PianoOleg pro

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#1967043 - 09/30/12 07:42 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Olek]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Hi!

We have just had the first wonderful concert on the 1885 Bechstein since the hammers have been re covered.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1O9vHGQm0UY is Beethoven Appassionato in which sunshine emerges from mist

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTJzZawHRSM Tchaikowsky Meditation

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AyXbLgcb1sg Tchaikovsky Dumka Russian Rustic Scene op59

all played by Sachiko Kawamura.

Best wishes

David P
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#1967123 - 09/30/12 11:08 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Unequally tempered]
woodog Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/21/12
Posts: 375
Loc: Bowling Green, KY
The Tchaikovsky Meditation was extraordinarily beautiful!

It seemed like the instrument was grateful for being able to sing like that.

Has this always been a well kept instrument, or is it a rescue or a bit of both? (apologies if this has been discussed prior).

again, very nice.

Forrest
_________________________
Graham Fitch's Piano Pedagogy Site
(A WORTHY RESOURCE!)

--------------------
current studies:
Debussy: Suite Bergamasque
Beethoven Op. 78
Bach WTC 1, C# Major (#3)

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#1967205 - 10/01/12 08:00 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Unequally tempered]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Hi!

The further videos are now online:

Debussy Prelude
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SthGamF8qIQ

Debussy Clair de lune
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXVShKy0LP4

Schumann : Fantasie op.17
  Durchaus fantastisch und leidenschaftlich vorzutragen
Maessig. Durchaus energisch
Langsam getragen. Durchweg leise zu halten
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wd0o7qzIGz8

Schumann Traumerei
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PAAW6jQaEKY

On another thread, someone in England is debating whether to buy an old Bechstein or a modern piano. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QnYITP11UgQ recorded on a Grotrian Steinweg demonstrates the superior artistry of the Bechstein tonality. In modern pianos the 5th partial is generally suppressed in the tone, leading to a much less interesting and less orchestrally evocative sound.

Quote:

It seemed like the instrument was grateful for being able to sing like that.

Has this always been a well kept instrument, or is it a rescue or a bit of both? (apologies if this has been discussed prior).


This instrument has provided concerts at Hammerwood Park for a quarter of a century and has had the hammers refelted by Abel with their premium felt this year, together with fitting new rollers. Now that these are bedding in, it needs some fine tuning of regulation.

However, "singing like that" is something that all pianos can do if tuned this way. Equal temperament as applied in standard form merely causes atonal shimmering. Instead, the adjustments to equal temperament to allow home keys to be more harmonious and remote keys to be less-so enable keys to sing with indivudality, and for orchestral effects to be set up. One member of the audience commented afterwards that the piano "sounded like a Clarion" at times. This would be on account of the use of many perfect fifths. Thirds sing with vibrato in contrast to the straight beatless fifths and to which harmonics of bass notes are tuned.

Best wishes

David P


Edited by Unequally tempered (10/01/12 08:07 AM)
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#1967284 - 10/01/12 12:29 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Phil D Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/15/10
Posts: 551
Loc: London, England
I'd love to hear this piano with new bass strings. The low bass sounds good but the tenor is a bit lacking sometimes. But still, sounds great smile
_________________________
Phil Dickson
The Cycling Piano Tuner

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#1967665 - 10/02/12 07:50 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Phil D]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Dear Phil

:-) Yes occassionally I'm hearing that tubbiness of bass strings past their prime . . . but it's the temperament that enables the music to shine through!

Are you trying any unequal temperaments for any of your customers?

Best wishes

David P
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#2104641 - 06/18/13 09:55 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Hi!

I've been able to so some more recordings which you might enjoy
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gd1nv4wy4mw of which
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6lbNdHBtbvw is the piano section and I'd appreciate feedback on the three different mics tested as to which give the best piano sound

J S Bach Sonata in G for viola da gamba and Harpsichord
Byrd Ut Re Mi Fa Sol La
Buxtehude Fugue in C Major alla Gigue
Brahms Chorale Prelude on Es ist ein Ros entsprungen
Beethoven Sonata for piano and cello in G Minor

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wK9hAZP4zmY
Debussy- Prelude from Pour le piano
Beethoven- Sonata in E flat op31 no 3
Johnson - Jazz impromptu no 1 (South African composition)
Debussy- L'isle joyeuse
Bach- Prelude and Fugue in b flat minor no22 Bk 1
Liszt -- Mephisto Waltz no1

and

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XU-ilRBeZ84
Bach Partita No 1- Praeludium-Allemande-Corrente-Menuet 1 and 2-Giga
Chopin- Nocturnes Op.9 nr 2 and Op. 15 nrs 1 and 2
Chopin Etudes Op.25 nr 1 and Op.10 nr 9
Grieg - Wedding March
Chopin Scherzo in Bb minor

are two more piano recitals

The Sachiko Kawamura recital http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PAAW6jQaEKY was the first with this instrument with renewed hammer felts, the Abel premium grade rather than the standard rather hard stuff that is giving modern piano refurbishments a horribly hard sound . . .

Best wishes

David P
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#2105076 - 06/19/13 09:34 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Unequally tempered]
Jake Jackson Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 576
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Lovely as always, David. Were these pianos tuned to your temperament?

I certainly hear the most difference between the analogue and the digital versions. I hear what might be expected--more emphasis on the mids and lows. Saturation, I suppose. And I'm in the camp that still likes that sound. I do not think that one recording sounds better than another, exactly.

I wonder, however, if digital recording, by giving less emphasis to the mids, brings out more of the "tang" of slight discords? Would be more noticeable on ET perhaps, or with pieces in less popular keys using a well temperament.

Regardless, thank you again for posting your recordings and for keeping us up to date with what you are doing. Any progress in Mr. Barabino's album using these recordings? I hope that you will be involved in the recording and mastering.


Edited by Jake Jackson (06/19/13 09:35 PM)

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#2105127 - 06/19/13 10:55 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Gary Fowler Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/27/13
Posts: 375
Equal temperment is tried and proven. It is what people's ears/brains are used to hearing. Sorry, but it's here to stay.
_________________________
Making the world a better sounding place, one piano at a time...

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#2105130 - 06/19/13 11:00 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Gary Fowler]
beethoven986 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/20/09
Posts: 3319
Originally Posted By: Gary Fowler
Equal temperment is tried and proven. It is what people's ears/brains are used to hearing. Sorry, but it's here to stay.


And unequal temperaments have been around a lot longer, and every scholarly musician should at least be aware of their existence, if not aurally exposed to them. They aren't going anywhere, either. There's room for both.
_________________________
B.Mus. Piano Performance 2009
M.Mus. Piano Performance & Literature 2011
PTG Associate Member
Certified Dampp-Chaser installer

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#2183227 - 11/16/13 06:17 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
In view of Beethoven's presence on this thread it's a pleasure to be able to present some Beethoven which I've found on an archive tape labelled with information only about the instruments:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xn_xVzEE0w0

If not earlier from around 14 minutes or so the performance starts to touch the sublime.

Best wishes

David P
_________________________
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David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
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Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#2183325 - 11/16/13 11:37 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7157
Loc: France
To me the piano was not professionally tuned.

It is not an old recording, not THAT old, the piano is tuned as an organ, I have heard some organ specialist tuning, using plain octaves, or harpsichord specialist, they tune with that nasal sounding octave.

As you seem to be specialist on old temperament, what is that one? I heard a large c G 5th, unless it is c#.

Pianists where playing more tempered pianos in most old recordings I heard.

The difficulty is to obtain an "equal temperament" that allow a definite tone color change between tonality, without sounding sour, without resorting to non tempered 5ths that create too much imbalance in my opinion.

The solution I use is to stick to the piano in a relatively short octave, tempering in the low mediums.. The 5th begin to have some noticeable color change, while the fast beating intervals are sounding normally.

Then octave spread and the leeway provided by iH allows to avoid too screaming intervals.
The basses however are more difficult to balance as defects are more easily heard.

But the evident color variation when playing arpeggios or chords is visibly appreciated by pianists for a big part of the repertoire.

It push toward an "old" tone, but a thousand years of that recording, the piano is yet warm and colorful.

It is "too easy" to go toward screaming intervals so to have a few pure 5ths.
Pure 12 are musically more interesting and enjoyable in my experience.

The voicing on the recorded piano here is absent.

Let off does not happen on a Eb6 we hear the hammer blocking on the strings.
A lot of keys do not speak - should be risible if not sad.

Maybe due to the action the pianist put a few jabs and forget a few notes - she put some heart in the playing anyway.

As I said, not a professional job, and the recording is too clean, even if cleaned, that must not be before 1950, and I am generous. UT is not an excuse to provide a pianist such instrument in my opinion.

Could be one of your recordings in my opinion , why is it presented as "authentic" ?

Best regards.

Funnily the tuning settle during the playing so the unisons are less pinched and begin to be sonorous in the middle of the concert.


Edited by Olek (11/16/13 04:07 PM)
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#2183448 - 11/16/13 03:40 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: beethoven986]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7157
Loc: France
Originally Posted By: beethoven986
Originally Posted By: Gary Fowler
Equal temperment is tried and proven. It is what people's ears/brains are used to hearing. Sorry, but it's here to stay.


And unequal temperaments have been around a lot longer, and every scholarly musician should at least be aware of their existence, if not aurally exposed to them. They aren't going anywhere, either. There's room for both.


To me they make the piano sound "strangled" , no much joy in listening, must be a little funny to play, but I believe it is more an intellectual posture than musical taste.

Or the realisation is not as nice it could be, or the piano limits, or the recording, but while I do not appreciate an ET with mistakes that strike, nor an ET that offer not enough color I cannot hear what I could appreciate in a similar tuning done on a harpsichord, for instance.

The intervals sound very soon abnormally screaming and miss the expected quietness. I heard something more pleasing in an outdoor concert recorded on the Youtube site of Mr Barabino

What misses the most here is partial matching and natural consonance, so that denatures a lot the yet very old tone of an instrument that is not much expressive yet, possibly due to its condition and action.

To each his own ...

I have than nice book "Musique et Temperments" with samples recorded, but at the organ and the harpsichord, the instruments are not under the rule of inharmonicity and sound quieter more easily.



Edited by Olek (11/16/13 03:41 PM)
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#2183843 - 11/17/13 10:09 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Olek]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Dear Isaac

This blind recording is interesting for the reason that . . . it's not one piano. It's two pianos with two pianists . . . and the pianos blend together so interestingly that it's difficult to distinguish other than the tuning having got better later on!

I think the tuning of one of the instruments changed possibly with room temperature but the awkward instrument is a baby Broadwood which on account of the short bass strings is a pig to obtain a good harmonic tuning as the iH of the tenor down is so strong. This instrument was built originally as a playerpiano around 1905 and had an extraordinarily heavy action which we have lightened with internal springs, making it much more playable but far from perfect as yet.

On this recording, however, the difference of instrument and associated tuning style for each does give a feeling of contrast between the instrument playing orchestra and the Bechstein serving as the solo instrument.

At the end of the day, one asks "what is music?" and the answer must be in the conveyance of meaning, feeling and emotion rather than the conveyance of notes. The comparative recording of the Chopin 2nd Sonata some years ago http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgA1-I5MfNY is demonstrative of that.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k1GnV8oaOVU exemplifies the orchestral effects capable of being achieved.

Best wishes

David P


Edited by Unequally tempered (11/17/13 10:12 PM)
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#2184813 - 11/18/13 09:08 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Dear Oleg

In case of doubt, the "deficiencies" of what we like to hear in a tuning are truly problems inherent in tuning a baby grand - from preference for these two Beethoven pianos we'd have chosen the Emerlich Betsy of 1856 together with the Bechstein but to move the instrument through doorways would have cost a professional removeals firm at a cost which would have made the concert wholly uneconomic. But with such a pair of pianists, what an interesting recodring opportunity.

For the avoidance of doubt
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1z3o0x4dKJI
and
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QnYITP11UgQ
are the sort results I like to achieve in a tuning.

The Alderney instrument was a Grotrian and this was quite interesting. I damped the untuned string lengths with strips of cut tea-towell being the only thing to hand before the recital and the sound of the instrument was so pure than the singing thirds against perfect fifths was quite a wonderful phenonomen.

The Boston Steinway was frustrating as the tuned aliquot lengths were very untuned, to an annoying degree and damping them out took away more brightness than I like to hear in an instrument. No doubt as equal temperament is so out of tune the tuning of aliquots is wholly unnecessary but when one is tuning to perfect intervals the untuned aliquots scream.

Best wishes

David P
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#2184989 - 11/19/13 08:29 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7157
Loc: France
Thanks for those links David.

Liked the tone of the Grotrian and the Boston, but really the tunings are off limits to me.

If we where to look for some enghancement due to acoustical effects of pure intervals, it may not provide so much drawbacks that some intervals sound really strange , as this is in the way of quiet listening.

ET can be made less "shimmering" indeed now the piano is more a percussive instrument than many so there is always a part of that.

WHat we call "perfect intervals " with a piano are definitively tempered a little, be it because of the iH of the piano itself.
SO in the end the piano tuning tend to that by itself.

The good question is indeed "what is music" tuners can be caught easily in the joy of acoustical enghancements.

The idea is to provide different level of quietness in the same tuning ?

The calssical harmony ask for more ruled intervals in my opinion.
Then , I for one do not like too much prediteable harmonies, even if that is not there that the pianist plays, some differnces seem to be appreciated.

In that regard the tone tend to go toward older recordings tone. (some of them are really screaming, tuning wise)

Wonderful unisons in your tunings, David, this i not so common, (voicing is perfect too)

I still have to obtain a good recording of a tuning that use a cycle of 5ths as a base without being too extreme. All I have was done with bad equipment as that Schubert...

to be continued.

Best regards
_________________________
Isaac OLEG - http://picasaweb.google.fr/PianoOleg pro

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#2185011 - 11/19/13 09:38 AM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Olek]
Unequally tempered Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/11/11
Posts: 149
Loc: UK
Dear Isaac

Thanks for your comments. The unisions you've heard are really due to the quality of the pianos and not of me, and really why the Steinway, even the Boston, and the Grotrian, modern pianos are so superb.

But what I am coming to departs from the industry. As humans we grow up with mummy and daddy as our first local heroes and then we easily seek local gods thereafter. Teachers become our gods rather than the subject they teach, of which if we study well we can be in full command. It's in this way that for instance Jesus's teachings have been hijacked by a Jesus Christ person worship cult rather than the worship of the Creator, the process that Creates, to which every religion, even Darwinistic atheism leads.

The relevance is that we easily don't see the shape of the wood for the trees, mistaking the conveyance of the message as the message itself.

In this way, the piano has become a cult of perfection in which easily we see the instrument as an object of perfection and we seek tuning, players and composers who make the piano sound nice, so that we fall in love with the piano, the instrument. This is promoted by the personality cults, the brand names, who have a financial and vested interest in representing that their instruments represent the only perfect form of the instrument.

So my perspective is different. The piano is a tool, it is a means of conveyance of the music, of the message intended by the composer.

In this perfection cult we lose sight of the shape of the wood looking only for perfection of placement of the trees - and for this reason whilst a live performance can express music of the most professional musicality, a recording is adjudged not by the shape of the wood and its beauty, but whether every note is in its right place. For this reason I had to suppress the recordings I recently placed on YouTube whilst other performers, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XU-ilRBeZ84 can survive provided anonymity is assured by reason of using the assumed ancient technology of magnetic tape.

So in tuning as I do, I am not looking to make the piano sound good, even for the music to sound comfortable, because the composers were not writing to worship the instrument but to convey something else, meaning. This was why Beethoven gave such attention to the specific keys in which he was writing.

Chromatic is nothing to do with semitones: chromatism is to do with colour. Moving up a semitone shifts the spectrum of harmonic accordances. So this is the reason behind the idea of home keys which fit one like comfortable slippers and remote keys which one wears as protective boots to walk miles. Of all pieces the Raindrop Prelude is demonstrative of this in D flat http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xsn9g4pS2RA which should be and can be in close intervals a very nasty key but is used because of the lack of harmonic accordances, so making it mysterious, defined clouds and patches of sunshine emerging from the mist, a sense of everything being slippery. Vibrations are not coinciding.

Listen to any part of that recording and it might sound odd, unpleasant, ordinary, awkward, but listen to the whole and the shape of the wood that one has circumnavigated during the course of listening becomes so much more beautiful and interesting than any equally tempered rendition of this piece you've ever heard recorded before.

Haydn is a composer who is lost by having adopted equal temperament: he was relying on the key of F minor to express the darkest grief. Something dismal. Unfortunately no pianist has ever recorded Haydn on one of my tuned pianos yet, and more extreme is the completely foul sound of http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzrIWR3s84Q and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G3I2AtocK5E tuned to electronic perfection. In that second recording, with all the temperaments at his disposal the organist was most specific in choosing the one that most conveyed what he felt the music to be conveying most meaningfully.

So in tuning the Broadwood and the Bechstein for the two pianist two piano performances of the 3rd and 4th Beethoven piano concertos, the Broadwood with short triple wound bass strings with most confused harmonics actually gave a representation of perhaps an imperfect 19th century orchestra whilst the more refined harmonic structure of the Bechstein adjacent provided resonance to the truer and pianistic harmonic structure.

In tuning I pay particular attention to the purity of the perfect 5th harmonics in keys with perfect fifths and in keys with near thirds, accordance of the thirds if they happen to coincide nicely with the 5th or 9th inharmonics. So tuning becomes a balance between the best fit between these harmonics which not only reinforces key character but also the innate resonative power of the instrument.

The tuning that I use would have appealed to Bach and to composers of Masonic tradition using a number of perfect fifths as close as possible in proportion of 12 to the Divine or Golden Section. The influence of Freemasonry in 18th and 19th century enlightenment and the vision of the Great Architect is left not specifically shrowded in secret but was to have its influence in the subliminal. Being below the level of perception, it was easily lost. However, audience response to the music, rather than the instrument, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgA1-I5MfNY is that whilst many cannot hear the difference, those who can find renewed interest in music that formerly they had thought to be boring.

This effect of tuning is even apparent on a piece on an instrument on which the assumption is that it's the instrument or the player making the difference:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wSf7-4t_SWc
In another key, it really is the tuning that demonstrates an edge, even neglecting the loss of purity when the reeds appear:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dhF17YdpQn0

Whereever I can I try to examine tuning and its effect in different keys. This tuning http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UwoglLif3ps is not that which I apply to pianos where I go for a significant number of specific pure fifths but the key colour results are of a significantly similar character.

Finally with regard to perfect fifths being impure on account of iH of each piano - yes - my tuning practice has increasingly incorpated this and where speed of setting out the scale is required, I use the iH curve suggested by Tunelab which I assume takes a "best fit" between the inharmonicities and the required intervals. But often I fight against the computer in the octcave below middle C in whcih I give specific care. It is, however, on account of inharmonicity and the "best fit" approach that different instruments do respond to the tuning in a different way, whilst from the point of view of the piano, equal temperament gives an equal fudge to all making the quality of inharmonicities irrelevant.

The tuning at Alderney and the Steinway Boston at a venue in Scotland is testimony to the excellence of those particurlar pianos. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HiX5Xjtb7-E and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhNf3zRd5cs specifically in the "Bad key" of A flat are interesting on a mid size Yamaha - from memory a D2 or G3 similar to another Yamaha that gives most pleasant results I maintain the in south of France.

Best wishes

David P
_________________________
_______________________________
David Pinnegar, B.Sc., A.R.C.S.
- East Grinstead, Sussex, UK -
- http://www.organmatters.com -
_______________________________
Restoring life to music . . . and music to life . . . and a good deal more!

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#2185094 - 11/19/13 12:20 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7157
Loc: France
Dear David,
you are modest

it is perfectly possible to tune uncomfortable unisons on a perfectly good instrument I experienced that myself.

See there
http://youtu.be/pMd1MaZAh5c

around 9:00 for instance as nothing happens when the piano is played, the poor pianist is limited in the nuances possibilities.
hard on the teeth, I call that...

It takes about 20 minutes for the pianist to "build some tone" as it can be heard at the end of the recording when the unison begin to sound better and are manageable, but still +
and it goes along with some out of tuneless.

So your unison on both Grotrian and Boston are perfectly build and project clearly, allowing for a full range of nuances from the start.






Edited by Olek (11/19/13 12:21 PM)
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#2185102 - 11/19/13 12:40 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7157
Loc: France
I appreciate your explanations, but, have been accustomed to listen to music in a different way, there are 2 things I find distrurbing in those UT recordings, despite the real excellence of the tuning job.

I hear an extremly rich harmony and some very pleasing chords ore melodic parts.
The suddenly an unfortunate configuration happens and something sticks out (Alfredo Barabino noticed that and avoid plating twice that C#3 the second time in the Chopin, as C# A# are really sticking out strangely. )

I hear interruptions in some melodic lines , wonder yet if it is due to the large contrast in consonance with the piano that "voice" the tones so differently (AS the piano is a self consonant instrument a lot, even the muted notes participate to the ones played)

The warming of basses however is absolutely magnificent. If only the "good notes" should be used I'd absolutely would use such kind of "organ style "tuning.

You can get some of that with tuning recipes as CHAS (at the piano) or whatever relies on 12ths only moderately tempered.

You may be right that education play a role there.
ALso I am afflicted of "perfect ear" that tend to make difficult the listening of pianos in too extreme tuning.

As I like Persian or Indian music, microtonality or whatever funny thing done with tempering and scales, this is not the source of my disappointment.

II also wonder if there is not a good part of imagination added by the pianist, that tend to be a little more attentive to the tonal output than to the music, seem to me.

Anyway I do not find ET to be "Atonal in nature" when used at the piano. The own "flaws" of the scaling yet is pushing the tuner is some directions he may follow or not, with the problem it have no much to do with tempering and cycle of 5ths but more with the iH inconsistencies. Still it allows for some margin.


For instance, in the Et version of Chopin, the tuning is not a "perfect ET" the F# is not in the even progressing scheme, may be because not enough tunings have been done.

And I seem to prefer the ET version as it allows more possibilities for interpretation, to me.

Does not take so much the control on tone so the pianist is not obliged to listen the same and can concentrate better to the musical intention.

At the organ that seem to be a very different matter, and we can understand better what happened when the era music was written.

Still I find that Chopin listening an interesting experience. Thank you for providing it.




Edited by Olek (11/19/13 01:05 PM)
_________________________
Isaac OLEG - http://picasaweb.google.fr/PianoOleg pro

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#2185345 - 11/19/13 07:07 PM Re: Some sweet video's: an older piano tuned to an Unequal Temp [Re: Jake Jackson]
Olek Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/14/08
Posts: 7157
Loc: France
Now where do you want to add any official UT there :



ANd there :


Tunings where way more musical then


Edited by Olek (11/19/13 07:13 PM)
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Isaac OLEG - http://picasaweb.google.fr/PianoOleg pro

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