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Topic: OT: Pot - Kettle

  1. #1

    OT: Pot - Kettle

    I don't know how many of you have read 'This is Your Brain on Music' by David Levitin, but it gave me a great chuckle today.

    In the introduction he complains that musicians shroud what they do in excessive terminology, which may deter those from other disciplines who want to study it. At first I thought; he's got a point. Then I thought; hang on, here's a physician and neuroscientist, someone from two disciplines that have needlessly invented Greek labels for several hundred thousand body parts, two disciplines that have more convoluted theories than you can shake a stick at - and he's whining that we use a few terms.

    When I read on, it turned out he wasn't even complaining about the rather random side of our discipline - the fact that we mix Italian, Latin, French and German on one score, or that we Brits have odd non-explanatory names for note values. He was complaining that we have notation at all, and that we have concepts such as pitch and timbre.

    I couldn't help laughing. I'm guessing, when I read on even further, that it'll turn out he was just trying to endear himself to non-musicians by empathising with their possible confusion - he can't really believe a discipline can exist without a way of talking about itself. But the way it came over was just great.

  2. #2

    Re: OT: Pot - Kettle

    You remind me that I got this book a year or so ago and still haven't gotten around to reading it. I wonder if I can find it somewhere in the piles of books in the house...
    Dan Powers

    "It's easier to be a composer than it is to compose."
    --Ray Luke (1928-2010)

  3. #3

    Re: OT: Pot - Kettle

    What page(s) are you referring to?
    Sean Patrick Hannifin
    My MP3s | My Melody Generator | my album
    "serious music" ... as if the rest of us are just kidding

  4. #4

    Re: OT: Pot - Kettle

    I'm not surprised. Most of the time, even we composers don't know what the heck we're doing.

    Come on, people, fess up!
    "The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese." -Steven Wright, comedian

  5. #5

    Re: OT: Pot - Kettle

    I would like to add a line from a great movie... "Raider's of the Lost Ark"

    I'm just makin' this up as I go

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