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Adagio from J.S. Bach Concerto in D minor BWV 974

I’m just getting started on this piece. There’s a terrific version by Glenn Gould in one of his collection CDs here. It says that it is based on an oboe concerto by Alessandro Marcello. I’m not familiar with this composer, but I do love the piece, and especially the way Gould sings along with his piano, probably without realizing it.

Anyway, I thought it might sound good on my microtonal slide Bosendorfers. I use three different D minor scales, based on different otonality and utonality scales. I’ll document these after I’m certain that they will work together. Two are based on a D at 182 cents, and another with D at 204 cents. The other notes in the scale are also different. I have a fourth scale that uses a 7:6 for the minor 3rd on F, but it’s rather harsh, so I may not use it. The others have the F as 6:5, which is the standard minor third.

This version is just the first 14 measures. I am using Csound to replace the mordant and trills with slides. I need to work on them some more so they don’t stand out too much.
Woods


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Adagio from BWV 974

The woods so wilde #3

This version is a final cut of the short eight measure theme from Orlando Gibbons in the Fitzwilliam Virginal Book I song XL, “The woods so wilde” from approximately 1620. I play the eight measures straight, then Markov Chain Drunkard’s Walk across the eight measures, forward or backward. This continues for a few dozen measures, then the theme is restated at the end. More here and here.
Woods


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The woods so wilde #3

The woods so wilde #2

I took the straight piece I shared yesterday and had the preprocessor choose the order for the eight measures, using the Markov Chain Drunkard’s Walk. It randomly chooses which measure to start with, then the next measure must be either the previous or subsequent measure with wraparound to the start from the last measure.

For example, this version plays the measure 7 first, then 8,9,8,9,1,2,1,9,1,2,3,2,1,2,1,9,8,7,6,5,4,5,6,5,6,5,6,5,6,5,6,7,8,7,8,9,1,9,8,9. Measure 9 is just a single G major chord, not in the original score.
Woods


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The woods so wilde #2

The woods so wilde by Orlando Gibbons

This is a piece from the Fitzwilliam Virginal Book volume 1 song XL arranged by Orlando Gibbons. The origin of the piece is obscure. William Byrd also did a version. I was looking back at my earliest Csound pieces and found one from 1996 that was this piece by Gibbons arranged in 53-EDO.

The version presented here is from the 31-limit tonality diamond, with three scales. It starts in F major, derived from the Bb (16:9) otonality. It then moves to G major, derived from the C (1:1) otonality, and includes a stop in C major, derived from the F (4:3) otonality. These modes have a nice 4:3 relative to the root of the chord, as well as a perfect 7:4. Gibbons includes several variations, but I don’t care for them. I haven’t decided how I will do my variations.
Woods


or download here:
The woods so wilde

In a Landscape #2

I adjusted the tuning for this version. Instead of being based on A (5:3) Utonality, I switched to D (9:8) Utonality. Now, the Bb is 16:15 to A, instead of 12:11. I originally chose A utonality because I “liked” the Bb, but now that I’ve switched to the D Utonality, it’s much more in line with what I think the composer would have chosen. The original version in A is here.

Degree Name Ratio to A
1 A 1:1
2 Bb 16:15
3 C 32:27 (22 cents flatter than the normal minor 3rd: 6:5
4 D 4:3
5 E 32:21 (27 cents sharper than the normal 5th: 3:2, but this note is only used a few times in the piece
6 F 8:5
7 G 16:9
9 B 8:7

Landscape


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In a Landscape #2

In a Landscape by John Cage – retuned – #1

I have always loved this piece, both on piano and harp. The version presented here is played on my microtonal slide Bosendorfer using Csound.

The tuning is based on A (5:3) Utonality. Note the Bb as a 12:11, 151 cents above the A. A 12 EDO Bb would be 100 cents above the A, so it’s a quarter tone sharp. The rest of the intervals are low number just ratios. It’s sort of in the key of A minor, but ends in D minor. I haven’t tried a D minor utonality. Maybe next time.

Degree Name Ratio to A
1 A 1:1
2 Bb 12:11
3 C 6:5
4 D 4:3
5 E 3:2
6 F 8:5
7 G 16:9
9 B 8:7

One of my favorite versions of this piece is on Just West Coast on Bridge Records, with performances of Cage, Harrison, Young, and a wonderful set of Partch Barstow performed on Vocals and Guitar by John Schneider. In a Landscape is played on Celtic Harp by Amy Shulman, which was “tuned to a pure B-flat mode in one octave and G in another.” I don’t know what that means, but it sounds wonderful.

Landscape


or download here:
In a Landscape #1

Kortte lebe, Kortte blühe #1 – AKA Bach March in G – Arranged by S. Suzuki

Casting about for a piece my cellist son could play at my daughter’s upcomming wedding, I googled Bach Cello March. This piece came up. It’s something my son played in Suzuki cello studies in 3rd grade. I bet he could kill it today, now that he’s in his late 20’s and has a great instrument.

Bach wrote it as one movement of a cantata, Vereinigte Zwietracht der wechselnden Saiten, BWV 207, for orchestra, soloists, and chorus. He was commissioned to write it to celebrate the appointment of Gottlieb Kortte as professor of Roman Law at Leipzig University in 1726. The title of the cantata translates as “United discord of quivering strings”, which sounds like a title Henry Brant might come up with. Do you suppose Bach had a sense of humor? Has anyone written “Johann in Love”?

The title, “Kortte lebe, Kortte blühe” translates as Kortte Live Kortte Flower. Let’s hope the good professor Gottlieb took the advice and flowered his Roman law like the best of them.

Dr. Suzuki transcribed the theme as a child’s piece for piano and cello.

I’m wondering if I could tune it to my G major on C Otonality scale that I used for the Gavotte II. Today’s presentation is the first 16 measures.

Kortte


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Korte #1