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

Gavotte II Transformed #3

This one is another drunkard’s walk, but with the addition of making choices between two different 6th degree ratios (the E in the piece), and two different 7th degree ratios (F#).
The algorithm switches between E as 5:3 above G, and E+ as 7/4 above G. It can choose F# as 23:12 or F+ as 11:6 above G. Sometimes they can pick two different tunings at the same time. The difference is pretty minor but it does sound more harsh this time. This is a work in progress.
Gavotte II


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Gavotte II Transformed #3

Gavotte II Transformed #2

This is a transformation of Bach’s English Suite #3 Gavotte II movement, BWV 808. The original is here. For the transformation, I allow my preprocessor to chose which measure to play using the Markov Chain Drunkard’s Walk algorithm. I have a list of all the measures in order, and let the preprocessor choose which one is next, constrained to either the next or previous in the list. For example, if measure 5 is chosen, then the next measure to be played can be either 4 or 6, forwards or backwards in the list. If I’m at the end or beginning of the list, it wraps around. There are only 19 measures in the movement.

I start the piece by playing the first five measures in order, then start the randomizer. The next ones chosen for this run through were the following:

  • Measure 19
  • Measure 01
  • Measure 02
  • Measure 03
  • Measure 02
  • Measure 01
  • Measure 02
  • Measure 01
  • Measure 19
  • Measure 01
  • Measure 02
  • Measure 01
  • Measure 02
  • Measure 03
  • Measure 02
  • Measure 03
  • Measure 02
  • Measure 03
  • Measure 04

Eventually our drunk wanders across the entire piece after about 100 choices. At the end, I play the last five measures straight.

Gavotte II


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Gavotte II Transformed #2

Gavotte II #1

Today’s creation is a realization of the 2nd Gavotte in Bach’s English Suite #3 BWV 808 on Prent’s Microtonal Slide Bosendorfers. There are two Gavotte’s in the suite. The first is in G minor, and the second in G major. The score indicates several repeats, including the request to repeat the first after the last repeat in the second. I’ve only completed the second Gavotte, in G major. The tuning is taken from the 31-limit tonality diamond. I used a G major scale derived from the 16 notes in the C otonality. The are a nearly perfect diatonic just scale, with the exception of the F#, which should be a 15:8 above the G tonic, but is actually 23:12, 38 cents sharp. And out of tune with the perfect 4:3 C. It has a perfect F tuned to 7:4, but alas that’s a note that Bach did not include.

Here is the complete scale:

Degree Name Ratio
1 G 1:1
2 A 9:8
3 B 5:4
4 C 3:2
5 D 4:3
6 E 5:3
7 F 7:4
G F# 23:12
1 G 2:1

Gavotte II


or download here:
Gavotte #1

Berceuse #3 in Db Major Opus 57

I’ve continued work on the lullaby by Frédéric Chopin, his Berceuse opus 57 published in 1843, when he was 33. This version includes the entire movement, 70 measures long.

The scale I used is mostly diatonic, with a few extra notes to achieve what I think Chopin might have done, had me been as twisted as me. The notes are all derived from the Otonality on C#. My names for the 16 Otonality degrees in 31-limit are, starting at the 1st overtone, 1 through 9, then A, B, C, D, E, F, G. In this piece I did not use the 6th degree, 13:8 or the Gth degree, 31:32. The 14 I did use are shown below.

Degree Name Ratio
1 Db 1:1
9 D 17:16
2 Eb 9:8
A E 19:16
3 F 5:4
B Gb 21:16
4 G+ 11:8
5 Ab 3:2
D A 25:16
E Bb 27:16
F B 29:16
7 Cb 7:4
8 C 16:15
1 Db 1:1

Berceuse


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Berceuse #3

Berceuse #2

I’ve continued work on the lullaby by Frédéric Chopin, his Berceuse opus 57 published in 1843, when he was 33. Here are measures 56-71, the ending that I found so transcendent when I first heard it. I made the C flat a 7:4 above the D flat major key. I also tried some other odd ratios here, including replacing the 6th degree (now a 27:16) of the scale with a 13:8, and the 4th degree (now a 21:16) with an 11:8, but my ears would have none of it.
Berceuse

or download here:
Berceuse #2

Berceuse #1

I’ve started work on a lullaby by Frédéric Chopin, his Berceuse opus 57 published in 1843, when he was 33. There is one passage towards the end that is truly transcendent. I’m starting at the beginning. Today’s offering is measures 1-16. The tuning to represent the 12-EDO Db major is derived from the Otonality of Db, but the notes I’m using in this part are a typical diatonic just scale:

  • Db 1:1
  • Eb 9:8
  • F 5:4
  • Gb 21:16
  • Ab 3:2
  • Bb 27:16
  • C 15:16
  • Db 2:1

The Gb is 27 cents flat, a 64:63 off. But the rest are a relatively sweet diatonic major scale.
There are a total of 16 notes in the 31-limit Otonality. I’m picking them carefully. I think Chopin only chose notes other than these diatonic ones as chromatic stepping stones when he moved from one major scale note to another.

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Berceuse #1

Berceuse

Chaconne #8

I’ve revised the arpeggios and fixed a few wrong notes in my version of the Chaconne by J.S. Bach as transcribed for piano left hand by Brahms. I previously didn’t make the arpeggios flow from bottom to top, but they do now. It sounds more pianistic this way. The tuning is still based on three scales:

  1. D minor based on the Utonality on D
  2. A major based on the Otonality on F, starting a 5:4 above the F
  3. D major based on the same Utonality on D, but picking different notes

More info on this work can be found here, here, here, and here.


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Chaconne #8