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What is your relationship with music? 
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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
"Pretty Women" is one of the songs from Sondheim's musical Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.
It is indeed a fine piece of music, but it is best when listened to in the entire context of the musical. I would recommend finding a copy of the live stage performance of Sweeney Todd, often called "the Dream Cast" that was filmed in 2001, starring George Hearn, Patti LuPone and Neil Patrick Harris, among others. I would not recommend watching the 2007 Tim Burton adaptation, as it strips away most of the music and plays up the tragedy and plays down the wonderful morbid humor which is essential to Sondheim's vision. Also, no one in the Tim Burton film is really up for the vocal challenge that the music presents. I love Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter, but they're just not meant to be singers.

Sondheim was truly a brilliant composer and lyricist. Once you have watched this (or even listened to its soundtrack), watch for the song "A Little Priest," specifically noting the lyrics, and you will see just how much of a linguistical genius he really was. I am sorry to hear that he died, I was completely unaware. Such a shame.

R.I.P.



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Fri Apr 02, 2010 3:23 pm
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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
Don't start mourning yet! Reports of his death are vastly overrated! Apparently it was his 80th birthday last week, not his death! Sorry for the confusion. Thanks for the info on Pretty Women. How is it that you know so much?


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Fri Apr 02, 2010 4:23 pm
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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
Veneer wrote:
Don't start mourning yet! Reports of his death are vastly overrated! Apparently it was his 80th birthday last week, not his death! Sorry for the confusion. Thanks for the info on Pretty Women. How is it that you know so much?


:x
I just now thought to look up his death and found nothing, and thought, "Wait, there is no way Sondheim could have died without my knowing -- he is my brother's personal hero, and I just saw my family two days ago, so one of them would have, at some point, let me know he died, and if not, it would have been covered under my Yahoo news that I read everyday." I can't believe I didn't even think to look it up until JUST NOW, literally. Shows how gullible I can apparently be! Good unintentional April Fool's joke! :lol:

How is it that I know so much?
I have never been asked a more flattering question, thank you. :blush:

I'm not really sure. I pick things up as I go along. My family is very into musical theater, my brother especially (he's one hell of an actor and singer), and Sondheim is my brother's personal hero, as I mentioned. Through his love of Sondheim's music I found out about it, and when I find music, especially musicals, that I like, I obsess, until I know absolutely every note and every last lyric so well I could sing it all myself. (I was also "blessed" with a good ear and aural memory, which means that I can remember endless quotes from movies, even if I don't like them, and sometimes can quote a movie as I'm walking out of the theater after seeing it for the first tme.)

I also listen to a very wide range of music, as opposed to just sticking with one genre, and I tend to be able to notice how other types of music influence each other, and I also adore history, so intertwining my love of literature, history, language, and music, I have created a relatively large collection of knowledge that I can sometimes command, am sometimes unable to grasp any coherent idea at all, and also shows itself at random moments and for no apparent reason. I don't ever profess to know everything, and in a million lifetimes I will never be able to know as much as I could ever possibly want to, but I am proud of the knowledge I do have, and of the capacity to continue gaining knowledge and insight to link that knowledge to what I already know. I'm kind of picturing it as some sort of giant spiderweb, if that makes any sense. (I also believe I have what they call spatial synesthesia, where I see abstract concepts visually and as taking up actual physical space: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synesthesia.) I also look things up a lot. I like knowedge, I like reading, and I like learning. I guess that's "how I know so much."

I definitely don't believe I know enough, that's for sure. There's far too much more to learn!

(Yeah, I'm a total nerd.)



Fri Apr 02, 2010 8:59 pm
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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
Again sorry about reporting Sondheim's death. I probably wasn't paying attention until I heard the piece of music. It was not intentional.

Sysnesthesia, I read about that in "This Is Your Brain On Music" which I am ashamed to report I did not finish. I must go back and finish it. Wait it might have been "The Accidental Mind", I can't remember which and I am too lazy to look it up. Do you experience tones as a color or taste? That is fascinating to me. Our minds are truly wonderful hunks of claptrap thrown together in the most haphazard way and yet look what they can do.

I must confess an envy for your knowledge and the speed that you fire off replies to these posts. Learning is rather cool is it not.


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"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." Bertrand Russell

"In answer to the question of why it happened, I offer the modest proposal that our Universe is simply one of those things which happen from time to time." Edward P. Tryon


Fri Apr 02, 2010 10:02 pm
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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
Learning is indeed cool.

The speed of my replies probably speaks more to my lack of a social life than anything else. I'm a bit of a hermit, and I love this forum because it provides me the outlet I desire and require to share my ideas with other people who read and like to learn. There are so many intelligent, articulate people here, and I am grateful to be able to share my knowledge and learn more from theirs.

I don't taste colors or see numerical or musical colors (although my boyfriend professes to see music in colors, something I am slightly jealous of), but I do see things, such as the organization of years, months, and days of the week with color and with an actual space, starting with the present year and going backwards (and forwards). Each century has a color, sometimes certain decades have specific colors but this changes over time, and each month and day of the week has a very specific place and color that doesn't change.

It's rather hard to explain and even harder to explain over the internet, with no chance to use my hands or draw even a crude picture. I can say that it's been that way for as long as I can remember, although I no longer see the Pilgrim's coming to America in physical space right before the 1960s, as I did when I was very young and had no concept of historical time.



Sat Apr 03, 2010 3:59 am
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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
Your spatial calendar in technicolor is totally cool. The only thing that I have that remotely resembled that was that when I was kid and maybe even now I thought of vehicles in terms of gender. Not in a sexual or genitalia fashion but just simply cars were women and trucks were men. BTW the same for cats and dogs. I guess now I would simply say that cars seem feminine and trucks masculine. Perhaps I have some Spanish blood thrown in with all the dumb Irish.

Yes I remember the landing at Plymouth rather well, it was right after Khrushchev banged his shoe on the podium at the UN and they launched Sputnik! What color changes did Wagner have to make?


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“Being Irish he had an abiding sense of tragedy which sustained him through temporary periods of joy.” W. B. Yeats

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." Bertrand Russell

"In answer to the question of why it happened, I offer the modest proposal that our Universe is simply one of those things which happen from time to time." Edward P. Tryon


Sat Apr 03, 2010 6:58 am
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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
Veneer wrote:
What color changes did Wagner have to make?


None, really, he just went into the 1800 color century instead of the 1900 color century. I see the 1800s as being a dull orange, and the 1900s as being white, with the numbers of the decades being black in descending order on a white background. Like I said, really hard to explain.

Also, the colors aren't really "technicolor," as they're not bright and vibrant, they're pretty dull and muted colors, but colors all the same. I wish I could paint a picture of what I see in my mind when I think of this, but so far none have ever come close to true representation.

(Weirdo. :lol:)



Sat Apr 03, 2010 1:39 pm
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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
I can drive my loved ones crazy with my ability to listen to the same song over and over for a while. I am just trying to assimilate it into my being, and I have found headphones to be handy now. Music is a constant part of my life that I know almost nothing about. I do not look up much info on musicians that I like, I just like what I like and di8scard the rest. Some musicians I have liked for a long time I get to know pretty well, but others barely know the musician's name/album title.

Music can heighten moods, but almost never change my mood. My brain does select it's soundtrack based on my internal thermometer sometimes, other times it is just repeating something I heard or thought of, when I meet/work with someone who has a musically celebrated name, I hear their songs for a while when I see them, "Marie", "Renee", "Donna". Thankfully people don't do that as much these days.


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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
Music is something of a wonder drug for me. Over the course of a day I will play a wide variety to adjust my attitude for the situation at hand. I listen to New Age instrumentals when I wake up irritable with low blood sugar or come home from work with a headache, Rock to pump my blood up for exercise or work, Jazz, such as Gerry Mulligan or Joe Henderson,playing softly next to the bed to put me to sleep. Boogie Woogie and Swing lift my spirits, Alternative music is good when I'm bored, and of course there is always something to inspire a romantic mood.



Sat Apr 03, 2010 4:40 pm
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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
Music is weird. It's 'different' from language, yet the nature of the 'difference' remains occult.
Music is waves. Music is tones. Pitch. Music is relative.

What for some is 'music', for others it is not.

Do we really 'perceive' it through our ears ... or is there a yet unfound (co-)sensor for ... "music"?

I am a compulsively analytical mind, and my relationship with "music" is often defined by 'indifference'. It might not be quite as described in the book (where it is called a 'syndrome') - there are exceptions ... weirdly. Or perhaps 'indifference' might be the wrong word, but I often do not understand people who claim they 'love' music, because I do not even know how to define 'music', and I am not sure if they themself try to define it beyond emotional value. Often perhaps, there is no need for other than emotional explanations, but Oliver Stacks' book opens the discussion about music in a more scientific paradigm.

When I say 'indifference', I mean it has no other aesthetic-emotional value for me than 'language'. They are so alike (for me), music and language, - tones, rhythm, waves. Sometimes language (even written) seems to me like 'music', and sometimes 'music' is 'just' language. I also have some sort of synaesthesia which enables me to see 'forms' and 'dynamics' in words as in sounds. Perhaps this adds to my difficulty to really define or understand why music is so different from language.

From the point of view of physics, both 'phenomena' are waves. (Or well, the theory would become more complicated would we consider quantum physics.)

Reading a book by Oscar Wilde or Vladimir Nabokov gives me the same intense feeling and perception like when listening to Beethoven's Sonata "Pathetique".

Earworms - this phenomenon occured among my synapses too. :) But then again, certain words and sentences too. See memes. ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meme )

And last but not least, here a fragment of perfection, a fragmented fragment :) of what we like to call 'musica universalis' or the "music of the spheres":

Carmen of the Spheres : http://www.archive.org/details/GregFoxC ... theSpheres

Is this "music" or "waves" or "random sounds" ... ?



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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
Veneer wrote:
I hate the 12 tone scale, or at least I think I do.


Let me say that what you hate is the twelve tone ROW, not the scale. Virtually all western music uses the same twelve tone scale as Schoenberg used, including your favorites, Rimsky-Korsakov and Stravinsky... Also, Stravinsky played around with 12 tone rows, too. For instance, how do you feel about "Requiem Canticles"?

A "row" is a technical term meaning that the musical figure uses each note in the mode once and only once. A 12 tone row therefore visits each note in the 12 tone "chromatic" scale one time only. As a result, there is generally no obvious key center, which is what leaves many listeners feeling somewhat disoriented or unsettled. Like all music, it is an acquired taste. If you grew up listening to Shoenberg, Berg, and Webern, you probably wouldn't think of this methodology as all that hateful.

There are a few examples of Western music that don't confine themselves to the 12 tone chromatic scale. One of my favorites is Charles Ive's "Three Quarter-Tone Pieces for Two Pianos". Two pianos are necessary, because one of them needs to be tuned a 1/4 step down from the other, so that there are 24 pitches per octave, between the two of them. This arrangement allows for tonalities and chords that just aren't available in the normal piano literature.



Last edited by Randall R. Young on Wed May 04, 2011 1:41 am, edited 1 time in total.



Wed May 04, 2011 1:40 am
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Post Re: What is your relationship with music?
Actually You just hurt your relationship? General songs and suggestions before you get back together - or cure a broken heart. If you have a broken heart, to begin the healing process, these songs perfect start, make you feel happier, to cure a broken heart. I am sure at this point, you do not like to listen to the songs really happy .


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