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Topic: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

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  1. #21

    Re: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by jazzobizz
    while learning the basics it may be useful to tell that rules are there to be broken.
    No. Rules are there to be understood and adopted as general guidelines. You can't decide a rule doesn't apply in a particular case until you understand what the rule says.
    Breaking a rule for good reason is the mark of a true artist, one who understands the rules well enough not to be imprisoned by them. Breaking a rule through ignorance is the mark of an ignoramus, one who does not understand the rules well enough to know that they exist in the first place. The difference generally shows in the results.


    Edit: I apologize if my tone was a bit harsh. This is something I feel rather strongly about. Too many people are claiming that they don't need to learn the basic rules and principles, because they're supposedly outmoded. Nothing could be further from the truth, IMHO.
    Last edited by marnen; 06-09-2006 at 02:42 PM. Reason: Trying to be more diplomatic.
    Marnen E. Laibow-Koser
    Composer / Web developer
    http://www.marnen.org

  2. #22

    Re: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

    [MEDIA]
    Quote Originally Posted by marnen
    No. Rules are there to be understood and adopted as general guidelines. You can't decide a rule doesn't apply in a particular case until you understand what the rule says.
    Breaking a rule for good reason is the mark of a true artist, one who understands the rules well enough not to be imprisoned by them. Breaking a rule through ignorance is the mark of an ignoramus, one who does not understand the rules well enough to know that they exist in the first place. The difference generally shows in the results.


    Edit: I apologize if my tone was a bit harsh. This is something I feel rather strongly about. Too many people are claiming that they don't need to learn the basic rules and principles, because they're supposedly outmoded. Nothing could be further from the truth, IMHO.
    [/MEDIA]

    I was not clear enought; I agree it's a good idea to learn the rules and I did that myself and am glad I did all this work; just reading different posts I think it's good to tell people who want to learn that there are just basic rules and give them a perspective for after they complete the course so that they don't get afraid.Breaking those basic rules is obvious, you don't need to be a "great artist" it's done a long time ago already;again not talking about atonal music if you just take the music from the end of 19th and beginning of the 20th.......well just thought I had to point on that.

  3. #23

    Re: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

    There is a famous quote by Samuel Butler that sums up my feelings about this topic:

    "Life is like music, it must be composed by ear, feeling and instinct, not by rule. Nevertheless one had better know the rules."

  4. #24

    Re: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

    I also think some people are under the mistaken impression that music of the late 19th and early 20th centuries (and even later) somehow did away with all the rules of orchestration and voice leading. Surprisingly, the more you analyse music of the last 100 years or so, the more you realize that all those rules are STILL being applied, albeit in subtler ways.

    The rule about parallel 5ths may not apply because of more complex harmony and the greater acceptance of non-functional harmony, but surprisingly, there are very few actual parallel octaves (other than doublings) in all the great music of the last 100 years.

    I think the important thing is to distinguish the difference between rules of harmony/orchestration/counterpoint and the rules of any single particular harmonic language. The former will normally apply to the latter, while the latter do not absolutely apply to the former.

    jeeze, I hope I'm making sense... that'll learn me to post 5 minutes after waking up.

  5. #25

    Re: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by qccowboy
    I think the important thing is to distinguish the difference between rules of harmony/orchestration/counterpoint and the rules of any single particular harmonic language. The former will normally apply to the latter, while the latter do not absolutely apply to the former.
    Very, very well said. (Though I would quibble about how far rules of harmony can exist outside of a particular harmonic language.)
    Marnen E. Laibow-Koser
    Composer / Web developer
    http://www.marnen.org

  6. #26

    Re: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

    hi guys i have a question...we often see horns that play with strings (i'm talking especially about slow movements)....but sometimes trombones and tuba play too...in which case is better to use trombones and tuba and not only horns with strings??? sorry for my english i hope u understand!

  7. #27

    Re: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

    . Surprisingly, the more you analyse music of the last 100 years or so, the more you realize that all those rules are STILL being applied, albeit in subtler ways.

    hmmmmm I can't see where you see that at all if you study the composers who tried to write new stuff (so not talking about neo classical composers)
    few examples:Bartok/Messiaen/Ligeti and so on.

  8. #28

    Re: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

    It's certainly harder to see because it's subtler (just as qccowboy said), but it's still there. Messiaen draws on traditional harmonic styles even while breaking them. Bartók went a bit further afield, but again you can see the influence of "core-style" classical writing in many of his works. FWIW, he also took a lot of material from Eastern European folk music, and his compositional techniques were profoundly influenced by the techniques he found in the folk music he collected. I don't know Ligeti's work well enough to comment in any detail.
    Marnen E. Laibow-Koser
    Composer / Web developer
    http://www.marnen.org

  9. #29

    Re: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

    I don't want to toot my own horn, but my online harmony book talks a LOT about this issue: which principles of traditional harmony can be generalized.
    (See link in my sig.)

    Quote Originally Posted by jazzobizz
    . Surprisingly, the more you analyse music of the last 100 years or so, the more you realize that all those rules are STILL being applied, albeit in subtler ways.

    hmmmmm I can't see where you see that at all if you study the composers who tried to write new stuff (so not talking about neo classical composers)
    few examples:Bartok/Messiaen/Ligeti and so on.
    Alan Belkin, composer
    Professor of Composition
    University of Montreal

    http://www.musique.umontreal.ca/pers...n/e.index.html (links to examples of my music, as well as my online textbooks)

  10. #30

    Re: Dominant Chords, Doublings of Active Tones, Voice-Leading, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by marnen
    It's certainly harder to see because it's subtler (just as qccowboy said), but it's still there. Messiaen draws on traditional harmonic styles even while breaking them. Bartˇk went a bit further afield, but again you can see the influence of "core-style" classical writing in many of his works. FWIW, he also took a lot of material from Eastern European folk music, and his compositional techniques were profoundly influenced by the techniques he found in the folk music he collected. I don't know Ligeti's work well enough to comment in any detail.
    of course all composers learned the rules etc....but come on, read one Bartok string quartet or a Messiaen piece or even better read a little bit of his "traite de rhytme , de couleur et d'ornitologie" which is incredibly interesting BTW.Again all I wanted to say is that it's good while learning rules to know from the beginning that althought it's a great valuable knowledge, a composer has to break the rules to try to find a little something.OK except if he or she wants to write "neo something" music.
    Well, I won't go further than this post and that's just my little point of view.

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