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#2071409 - 04/26/13 11:09 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: didyougethathing]
Nikolas Offline
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Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5431
Loc: Europe
I don't know if I'd ever be able to play indian music or something along those lines successfully. Balkans on the other hand a "a piece of cake" for me...

About classical music, and Greece is not exactly a home for such music, I think I've cultivated so many things to do with classical music that I'm a bit successful in that... :-/

But I think it's reasonable to think that we all carry around something from where we grew up and lived, etc...
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#2071432 - 04/26/13 11:25 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
Nikolas Offline
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Loc: Europe
Ok. And to break the ice completely and ridicule various things, here's a video with Greek children's music:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=LGBLs_cTc-0

you can enjoy the music (Arabic due to the rhythm, but different continent due to the melodic and harmonic elements)
you can enjoy the video (india, Persia, a tiger and various other things)
and if you could understand Greek you would also enjoy the lyrics (About a Persian Prince going to India, and a Bengal tiger)!!!

Islamey is amazingly better than the above, but I hope you had a laugh with this video! wink
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#2071465 - 04/26/13 11:58 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Nikolas]
bennevis Online   content
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From the ridiculous to the sublime (or should that be the other way round? grin ).....

A very English composer (despite his name).....

http://youtu.be/6Ede2QMi5JM

And the piano version (yes, I once played it myself.... blush) http://youtu.be/HMtoSfRmAXk
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#2071486 - 04/26/13 12:19 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
Orange Soda King Offline
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Loc: Louisville, Kentucky, United S...
Regarding ethnic music, Chopin, Liszt, and Brahms wrote a lot of music inspired by music of their respective cultures, too. smile

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#2071507 - 04/26/13 12:42 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Orange Soda King]
BDB Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Orange Soda King
Regarding ethnic music, Chopin, Liszt, and Brahms wrote a lot of music inspired by music of their respective cultures, too. smile


So did Mozart, Beethoven, Bach, Scarlatti, and pretty much everybody else.

One thing about Russian composers in general is that they had beautiful themes, but they were not especially good at developing them. So there is a lot of repetition in their music. However, in the case of Islamey, I suspect that the sort of repetition that people here find objectionable is a characteristic of the music itself. It is the way that the melodies would be played when they were originally played on the kanun or similar instrument. You learn dances by repeating what someone else did, so you repeat the music so others can repeat the steps.
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#2071510 - 04/26/13 12:46 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: BDB]
Mark_C Online   content
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Originally Posted By: BDB
....I suspect that the sort of repetition that people here find objectionable is a characteristic of the music itself. It is the way that the melodies would be played when they were originally played on the kanun or similar instrument. You learn dances by repeating what someone else did, so you repeat the music so others can repeat the steps.

I suspect that more of us would find it OK for dancing than for what it is.
(Serious.)

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#2071569 - 04/26/13 02:02 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
Schubertslieder Offline
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Registered: 02/02/13
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Loc: Michigan, USA
How would one dance to this music? Would someone please demonstrate?
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#2071571 - 04/26/13 02:06 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Schubertslieder]
Mark_C Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Schubertslieder
How would one dance to this music? Would someone please demonstrate?

Play it for any real young kid and I almost guarantee you'll find out real fast. grin

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#2071589 - 04/26/13 02:33 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
Schubertslieder Offline
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I would assume dancing to this type of music would require certain amount of skill even to the natives.
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#2071596 - 04/26/13 02:40 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Schubertslieder]
Mark_C Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Schubertslieder
I would assume dancing to this type of music would require certain amount of skill even to the natives.

No, just absence of inhibition!

Maybe you're talking about doing it in some "correct" way. I'm not. And IMO there isn't. grin

The main music that I've noticed to have this effect (on little kids) is Joplin rags. I'd think it's true almost to the same degree with Islamey, as long as it's played with pretty good rhythm.

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#2071687 - 04/26/13 04:43 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
BDB Online   content
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Here is another Russian piece based on folk dance tunes with a lot of banging and repetition, by a later generation of Russian composer.



Do those of you who dislike Islamey dislike this, also? It might be an interesting comparison.
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#2071787 - 04/26/13 07:57 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
Orange Soda King Offline
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That's an arrangement of parts a much larger scale work, though. I do like that piece a lot (although, I can't say I'm the biggest fan of that performance).

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#2071804 - 04/26/13 09:30 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Orange Soda King]
argerichfan Offline
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Registered: 11/15/06
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Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: Orange Soda King
That's an arrangement of parts a much larger scale work, though. I do like that piece a lot...

I do too, though IMO no substitute for the original or Stravinsky's later revision.

For the piano arrangement, Pollini set the bar enviably high.
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#2071820 - 04/26/13 09:55 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
Orange Soda King Offline
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Registered: 11/25/09
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I agree, Pollini is my favorite.

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#2071846 - 04/26/13 11:04 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
BDB Online   content
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Does that mean it is a lousy piece that you only care for in one specific performance?
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#2071856 - 04/26/13 11:33 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: BDB]
argerichfan Offline
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Originally Posted By: BDB
Does that mean it is a lousy piece that you only care for in one specific performance?

Don't know if that was addressed to OSK or me (or both), but I can quite assure you that I do NOT think it a lousy piece, and I have no idea why you might have questioned that.

I certainly have not heard all the recordings of Stravinsky's transcription, I am just saying that I thought Pollini's incredibly outstanding. I have heard a few less satisfactory, which cause me to appreciate Pollini all the more.

What is it with you, BDB, I do not question your musical knowledge -which I admire- just perhaps the cranky, combative and often condescending tone of some of your posts.
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#2071862 - 04/26/13 11:50 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
Nikolas Offline
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Loc: Europe
Well, I think that Stravinsky did a lot more than just to juxtapose Russian folk music tunes together... So, yes, I dislike Islamey much more than Petrushka.

I should note, however, that from the three major ballets of the same era by Stravinsky, I'm most fond of the Rite of Spring.

EDIT: A small question by me then.

This video, from Piano Stories, has no.3 "How to live in an underground home" at around 04:30

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UvrqRpZ63w4

To me it sounds rather Russian (or Jewish?!?!?!), or at least with ethnic flavours (and it was composed prior to 2000). Does anybody else hear that?


Edited by Nikolas (04/26/13 11:53 PM)
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#2071874 - 04/27/13 12:07 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
BDB Online   content
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I asked about the comparison between two pieces with similarities of the factors that some people say make them dislike one of them. Whether there is a good performance of one of them clouds the issue. I just want to clear the discussion of that static. After all, it could mean that there could be a performance of Islamey that would make people think it is a great piece.

If you think that makes me cranky, combative, or condescending, you are welcome to your own opinion of me. But I think you are just getting upset over my phrasing, just as the person who did not know what "orient" means.
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#2071902 - 04/27/13 01:17 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: BDB]
argerichfan Offline
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Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8936
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.

Well that was not made clear:
Originally Posted By: BDB
I asked about the comparison between two pieces with similarities of the factors that some people say make them dislike one of them.

Nor was this:
Quote:
Does that mean it is a lousy piece that you only care for in one specific performance?

I took it as a reference to the Stravinsky. I have made no comments in this thread about the Balakirev, though I rather enjoy it FWIW. It was not until the Stravinsky issue came up that I elected to contribute to this thread.

BTW, I am not 'upset' over your phrasing -I think you give yourself too much credit- but I have seen you here a long time, and if I am used to the tone of your posts, I do not always think them appropriate. You would NEVER have got me on the 'oriental' thing, but I let that issue go, amusing as it was, I did not choose to get involved.

Methinks it is time to move on, a few drinks will be just the tonic, and maybe the folks on the Rachmaninov 3 thread are still debating the profundity of a piece which, apparently, is on the level of a Brahms Bb, Beethoven G major or the Mozart K491.
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#2071983 - 04/27/13 08:08 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
wr Offline
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Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8027
Originally Posted By: Goomer Piles

I thought of the same thing at the start of this thread! smile

Originally Posted By: Goomer Piles
I know some people feel as you [beet31424] do about some of Liszt's works, for example, but that's a controversial thing to say because Liszt is a top-tier composer. Is Islamey more easily scorned because Balakirev is not one?



Oops, I missed that.

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#2071995 - 04/27/13 08:40 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Nikolas]
wr Offline
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Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 8027
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
Well, I think that Stravinsky did a lot more than just to juxtapose Russian folk music tunes together... So, yes, I dislike Islamey much more than Petrushka.

I should note, however, that from the three major ballets of the same era by Stravinsky, I'm most fond of the Rite of Spring.



And the Rite is full of bits and pieces of folk tunes. I forgot where I saw it, but somebody went to the trouble of identifying a lot of them - they are not original inventions by Stravinsky, but borrowings. Maybe, since this is the 100th anniversary year of the piece, that analysis will get some attention.

But there's not much point in comparing the kind of piece that Islamey is with very different sorts of pieces. I think Islamey belongs to a certain genre of arrangements and fantasies on pre-existing tunes. There is the huge output of stuff based on opera in the 19th century that falls into that category, of course, but there is also a lot of other material, like Mendelssohn's Fantasy on "The Last Rose of Summer", or the way Liszt appropriates some tunes for his "Venezia e Napoli".

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#2072001 - 04/27/13 08:56 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: BDB]
Goomer Piles Offline
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Registered: 04/14/13
Posts: 160
Originally Posted By: BDB
If you think that makes me cranky, combative, or condescending, you are welcome to your own opinion of me. But I think you are just getting upset over my phrasing, just as the person who did not know what "orient" means.

Listen - what IS your problem? 'That person' has a name, and 'that person' knows FULL WELL what 'orient' means and you know it.

It was YOU who chose to address me in a thoroughly demeaning demeanor as if YOU know everything and I guess no newcomer here could possibly match your smarts. That's a real nice welcome mat you lay out for new members here - unfriendly and patronizing.

It amazes me that in a place that could be a celebration of a shared passion, there is snarkiness instead. Or do you think your massive entitlement is just your justifiably 'artistic temperament'? Whatever, it stinks.

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#2072006 - 04/27/13 09:10 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: wr]
Nikolas Offline
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Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5431
Loc: Europe
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
Well, I think that Stravinsky did a lot more than just to juxtapose Russian folk music tunes together... So, yes, I dislike Islamey much more than Petrushka.

I should note, however, that from the three major ballets of the same era by Stravinsky, I'm most fond of the Rite of Spring.



And the Rite is full of bits and pieces of folk tunes. I forgot where I saw it, but somebody went to the trouble of identifying a lot of them - they are not original inventions by Stravinsky, but borrowings. Maybe, since this is the 100th anniversary year of the piece, that analysis will get some attention.
Of course I know that the Rite is filled with such tunes. But as far as taste is concerned I largely prefer it than Petrushka or The Firebird... :-/

I'm not sure there's any reason to keep discussing this. Maybe my comments were a bit 'harsh' and one sided. Lets try this: "Generally speaking, music with ethnic elements do not appeal to me".

But there is a question that nobody has replied and needs asking I think:

[b]"What's so amazing about Islamey?" Meaning. Does anyone think that this is a huge masterpiece (like moonlight sonata, for example), or something just as "good" (whatever "good" means).

I think replying to that might solve all the issues with Islamey! wink
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#2072030 - 04/27/13 09:59 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
BDB Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Goomer Piles
Originally Posted By: BDB
If you think that makes me cranky, combative, or condescending, you are welcome to your own opinion of me. But I think you are just getting upset over my phrasing, just as the person who did not know what "orient" means.

Listen - what IS your problem? 'That person' has a name, and 'that person' knows FULL WELL what 'orient' means and you know it.

It was YOU who chose to address me in a thoroughly demeaning demeanor as if YOU know everything and I guess no newcomer here could possibly match your smarts. That's a real nice welcome mat you lay out for new members here - unfriendly and patronizing.

It amazes me that in a place that could be a celebration of a shared passion, there is snarkiness instead. Or do you think your massive entitlement is just your justifiably 'artistic temperament'? Whatever, it stinks.


There are nearly 70,000 "names" on this board, using the term advisedly because I do not use my name on it. I have not memorized all of them. You may think of that as a failing of mine. You are welcome to do so.
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#2072036 - 04/27/13 10:05 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: BDB]
Goomer Piles Offline
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.

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#2072039 - 04/27/13 10:11 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Nikolas]
BDB Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Nikolas
Originally Posted By: wr
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
Well, I think that Stravinsky did a lot more than just to juxtapose Russian folk music tunes together... So, yes, I dislike Islamey much more than Petrushka.

I should note, however, that from the three major ballets of the same era by Stravinsky, I'm most fond of the Rite of Spring.



And the Rite is full of bits and pieces of folk tunes. I forgot where I saw it, but somebody went to the trouble of identifying a lot of them - they are not original inventions by Stravinsky, but borrowings. Maybe, since this is the 100th anniversary year of the piece, that analysis will get some attention.
Of course I know that the Rite is filled with such tunes. But as far as taste is concerned I largely prefer it than Petrushka or The Firebird... :-/

I'm not sure there's any reason to keep discussing this. Maybe my comments were a bit 'harsh' and one sided. Lets try this: "Generally speaking, music with ethnic elements do not appeal to me".

But there is a question that nobody has replied and needs asking I think:

[b]"What's so amazing about Islamey?" Meaning. Does anyone think that this is a huge masterpiece (like moonlight sonata, for example), or something just as "good" (whatever "good" means).

I think replying to that might solve all the issues with Islamey! wink


One should be aware that Stravinsky studied with members of Balakirev's circle, so he is the next generation of Russian composer. I think structurally, the 3 Movements are more advanced than Islamey. A brilliant mind like Stravinsky's builds upon the experience of the previous generation. I would be interested to know whether you agree with that assessment.

It might have been better to compare Islamey with the last of the 3 Movements, or maybe the entire piece, but I did not want to spend a lot of time on it.

It also might be interesting to compare it with another piece of traditional tunes arrangements that a lot of people do not like, the Saudades do Brasil.
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#2072042 - 04/27/13 10:31 AM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
patH Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Goomer Piles
AGAIN - and this excludes people who apparently can not read and are here only to insult - is the subtitle 'Oriental Fantasy' by Balakirev or his publisher?

I don't know for sure, but Henle publishers, who prides itself on publishing Urtext editions (editions true to the composer), sells it as "Islamey - Fantaisie Orientale". So I'm guessing the title is the original title by Balakirev.

The preface of the Henle edition mentions that it was originally published by Jurgenson. Maybe you'll have to find a facsimile to know for sure.


Edited by patH (04/27/13 10:42 AM)
Edit Reason: corrected typos
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#2072092 - 04/27/13 12:40 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
Mark_C Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Goomer Piles
.

Goomer: I realize it's dangerous to wade into something between other people, but I just wanted to say, BDB isn't like that. (There were times that he and I had our moments too grin but, he's not like that.) I don't feel like going back to what started it between you and him, but I did read it when it happened, and it didn't seem like anything like how it seemed to you. Whether or not you took something the wrong way, I think you can rest assured that he's not like that and that just going on from here as though nothing happened will be more than fine. smile

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#2072106 - 04/27/13 12:54 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: argerichfan]
Goomer Piles Offline
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Registered: 04/14/13
Posts: 160
In anonymous settings like this, words speak louder than actions. I know what I read, and I am as qualified as anybody to understand a put-down. So thanks, but I don't need any interpreter here. Compare the way BDB addressed me with the way others handled the historical context of the word 'oriental', and there is an ENORMOUS difference, namely the difference between respect and utter disrespect.

FWIW, it seems like 'argerichfan' knew the deal too but, as you say, choose not to 'wade in'.

Originally Posted By: argerichfan
BTW, I am not 'upset' over your phrasing -I think you give yourself too much credit- but I have seen you here a long time, and if I am used to the tone of your posts, I do not always think them appropriate. You would NEVER have got me on the 'oriental' thing, but I let that issue go, amusing as it was, I did not choose to get involved.

So Mark, while your intention may be good here, you weren't the person who was deliberately belittled and the way you 'read it' is irrelevant to me. And also FWIW, I would not have brought this up again if it weren't for BDB saying again 'the person who did not know what "orient" means.' Anybody who read the earlier exchange would know very well that there's NO evidence I didn't know what 'orient' means, and there was NO point in BDB reiterating that nonsense except to denigrate and insult.

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#2072109 - 04/27/13 01:05 PM Re: What's so bad about Islamey? [Re: Goomer Piles]
kapelli Online   blank
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I like Islamey smile
Much more than many Beethoven sonatas smile

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