Author Topic: Recordings That You Are Considering  (Read 1920066 times)

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Online Madiel

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15380 on: October 04, 2019, 11:00:36 PM »
Ok. Now the work begins. We'd have to look at the phrasing in, f.e. a fugue by Hugget and see  how it relates to the tonal structure of the music, and then, if there are prima facie  inconsistencies, see whether they can be justified by some other objective.

What other objective do you have in mind? And whose objective? My entire point is that performers who put their own objectives first are doing the composer an injustice.

Again, I have not heard Hugget. But it's not "a fugue by Hugget". It's a fugue by Bach. Hugget can play whatever Hugget likes, but as soon as an album is sold with the name Bach on it, that means something.
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Offline Pat B

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15381 on: October 05, 2019, 08:59:02 AM »
But you can't say whether the phrasing is inappropriate  unless you've identified its motivation. We can see straight away that So. You. Don’t see. . . is inappropriately articulated because the sentence is made up of meaningful units of a language we understand. But music isn't language- like that. When people say that the phrasing is unnatural or excessive, without identifying the performer's motivations for doing it like that, they're really saying nothing more interesting than I don't like it. It's a disingenuous way of trying to make a totally personal response sound as though it's saying something about the performance rather than about the speaker.

Stating that a performance changes tempo frequently is absolutely a statement about the performance.

Claiming it’s excessive is indeed a matter of the listener’s preference, but that comes with the territory. I don’t think we need every single sentence made about a performance to disclaim that what appeals to one listener may be unappealing to another.

Isn’t it possible to sing like an aria without holding a steady tempo?

Online Madiel

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15382 on: October 06, 2019, 10:22:09 PM »
Is anyone familiar with this album, or the recordings in previous incarnations? The publication dates are in the 1980s so I assume they've been available before.

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Offline André

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15383 on: October 09, 2019, 04:45:07 PM »


Today I listened to an 1802 opera by Catel and found the performance of the highest quality. I singled out tenor Mathias Vidal and bass Nicolas Courjal for praise. I figured I would investigate their work and found this.

This DVD of Berlioz’ La Damnation de Faust casts them in the roles of Faust and Méphisto  :)

Plus, Roth and Les Siècles... I am sorely tempted !

Offline mc ukrneal

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15384 on: October 10, 2019, 03:58:50 AM »
But you can't say whether the phrasing is inappropriate  unless you've identified its motivation. We can see straight away that So. You. Don’t see. . . is inappropriately articulated because the sentence is made up of meaningful units of a language we understand. But music isn't language- like that. When people say that the phrasing is unnatural or excessive, without identifying the performer's motivations for doing it like that, they're really saying nothing more interesting than I don't like it. It's a disingenuous way of trying to make a totally personal response sound as though it's saying something about the performance rather than about the speaker.
I don't understand. I don't think it matters what the motivation is. Singing (and playing instruments) is a series of choices. You can have the 'right' motivation and play it 'wrong and have the 'wrong' motivation and play it 'right'. Yet even this doesn't mean anything in reality, as there is no right or wrong. If there are, then the performer has little latitude to experiment or take risks, something that has diminished over the years in classical music anyway. What I think does exist are good and bad decisions, or perhaps better and worse decisions, if you understand what I am driving at. Then again, I don't hold the 'composer's intention' up on a pedestal. Once it's out there, it's yours to do whatever.
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Online Mandryka

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15385 on: October 10, 2019, 04:03:34 AM »


Isn’t it possible to sing like an aria without holding a steady tempo?

Sure

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/FiSKXxWgA4w" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/FiSKXxWgA4w</a>





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Online Mandryka

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15386 on: October 10, 2019, 04:20:37 AM »
I don't understand. I don't think it matters what the motivation is. Singing (and playing instruments) is a series of choices. You can have the 'right' motivation and play it 'wrong and have the 'wrong' motivation and play it 'right'. Yet even this doesn't mean anything in reality, as there is no right or wrong. If there are, then the performer has little latitude to experiment or take risks, something that has diminished over the years in classical music anyway. What I think does exist are good and bad decisions, or perhaps better and worse decisions, if you understand what I am driving at. Then again, I don't hold the 'composer's intention' up on a pedestal. Once it's out there, it's yours to do whatever.

I think questions about right and wrong are interesting. We have a score very often and it's IMO clearly important to know what the signs mean if you're going to try and make a performance. It's a good idea to to find out, for example, what that funny time signature means at the start of the gigue of Bach's 6th keyboard partita.  And if I as listener have done the research too, that enhances my relationship to the performance.

When I hear, to take an example, a mid century performance of a piece of Monteverdi or Machaut  which presents it same way as a Schubert mass or a Verdi opera  -- same vocality and sonority -- I want to ask why they do it like that. And the answer won't be found in things where "right" and "wrong" apply in any straightforward way -- it's not as if the scores have indications which tell the performer how to project his voice. These performance decisions may well embody ideas about the relation of the past to the present, about time and history and modernity and actuality. And I think it's interesting to try to articulate these things.

When I hear a performance of a piece of music it's a bit like I hear someone trying to say something to me, and my task is to understand what they're saying.
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Offline Florestan

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15387 on: October 10, 2019, 05:10:36 AM »
I don't understand. I don't think it matters what the motivation is. Singing (and playing instruments) is a series of choices. You can have the 'right' motivation and play it 'wrong and have the 'wrong' motivation and play it 'right'. Yet even this doesn't mean anything in reality, as there is no right or wrong. If there are, then the performer has little latitude to experiment or take risks, something that has diminished over the years in classical music anyway. What I think does exist are good and bad decisions, or perhaps better and worse decisions, if you understand what I am driving at. Then again, I don't hold the 'composer's intention' up on a pedestal. Once it's out there, it's yours to do whatever.

I agree.

I think questions about right and wrong are interesting. We have a score very often and it's IMO clearly important to know what the signs mean if you're going to try and make a performance. It's a good idea to to find out, for example, what that funny time signature means at the start of the gigue of Bach's 6th keyboard partita.  And if I as listener have done the research too, that enhances my relationship to the performance.

When I hear, to take an example, a mid century performance of a piece of Monteverdi or Machaut  which presents it same way as a Schubert mass or a Verdi opera  -- same vocality and sonority -- I want to ask why they do it like that. And the answer won't be found in things where "right" and "wrong" apply in any straightforward way -- it's not as if the scores have indications which tell the performer how to project his voice. These performance decisions may well embody ideas about the relation of the past to the present, about time and history and modernity and actuality. And I think it's interesting to try to articulate these things.

When I hear a performance of a piece of music it's a bit like I hear someone trying to say something to me, and my task is to understand what they're saying.

This over-intellectualized approach runs the risk of not seeing the forrest because of the trees.

I compose music because I must give expression to my feelings, just as I talk because I must give utterance to my thoughts. --- Rachmaninoff

Online Madiel

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15388 on: October 10, 2019, 06:10:59 AM »
Your anti-intellectual approach runs the risk of not seeing the forest for the trees.

You needed to flip the metaphor for this response to be convincing. Try telling Florestan he risks not seeing the trees in the forest.
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Online Madiel

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15389 on: October 10, 2019, 06:15:01 AM »
And, to reply to the further comment you've deleted in the meantime... that's a pity, because I think you would have been right on this occasion.
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Offline Florestan

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15390 on: October 10, 2019, 06:16:23 AM »
Your anti-intellectual approach runs the risk of not seeing the forest for the trees.

My approach is neither intellectual, nor anti-intellectual, it's pragmatic. I simply listen. If I like what I hear, fine. If I don't, fine again. Why a specific performer plays the way s/he does is of no interest to me whatsoever because knowing the rationale(s) behind the interpretive choices won't make me enjoy a performance I dislike or viceversa. The proof is in the pudding.
I compose music because I must give expression to my feelings, just as I talk because I must give utterance to my thoughts. --- Rachmaninoff

Offline j winter

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15391 on: October 10, 2019, 07:09:36 AM »
My approach is neither intellectual, nor anti-intellectual, it's pragmatic. I simply listen. If I like what I hear, fine. If I don't, fine again. Why a specific performer plays the way s/he does is of no interest to me whatsoever because knowing the rationale(s) behind the interpretive choices won't make me enjoy a performance I dislike or viceversa. The proof is in the pudding.

I agree that the proof is in the pudding, but I think this highlights something I mentioned in another thread, the difference between responding to something as a work of art and responding to it as a piece of craftsmanship.  I think for most listeners, the response is rarely 100% one way or the other, but a combination of the two; and that the insights gained by the one may be able to subtly enhance the other.

Take the example of the pudding.  I taste it, it's yummy, I love it, I move on.  That's a perfectly valid response.  Yet there are also the sort of folk who enjoy dabbling in the kitchen, who like reading cookbooks and watching cooking shows on TV, or are fascinated by the scientific side of cooking (what exactly gives the pudding that specific consistency or taste, and how can that be manipulated to various effects).  Will any of that make me like a dish that I tasted and said "yuck,"?  No.  But, if I understand that the deep chocolate taste of the pudding that I so love is actually created by the way the chocolate powder is married with a bit of salt and vanilla, and the way that it's whipped, and that using a particular type of chocolate powder with a certain percentage of cocoa can alter these effects... knowing those things may actually alter the way I taste it next time, by highlighting certain subtle elements that I never noticed before, and by allowing me to better see the overall impact of the various ingredients in harmony in the finished pudding.   

Obviously the metaphor is inexact, but I think the logic holds in many arts, including music -- a knowledge of HIP performing practice won't make me like Hogwood's Haydn -- but if I already like it, such knowledge may well lead me to like it even more on future listenings.  And if I don't like it, at the very least it might provide some clues to help me understand why I don't like it, and that self-knowledge can be useful as well.  Or it might not, depending on how strong the initial aesthetic reaction is.

Anyway, now I've made myself hungry, and still an hour till lunch... :(
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And his affections dark as Erebus.
Let no such man be trusted.

-- William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice

Offline Ken B

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15392 on: October 10, 2019, 07:52:13 AM »
Time for a Cato Grammar Grumble interruption.

The proof is not IN the pudding. That would be a gooey mess. The proof is OF the pudding. Is the pudding good? You learn by eating it. The phrase is, “the proof of the pudding is in the eating.”
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Offline SurprisedByBeauty

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15393 on: October 10, 2019, 08:44:58 AM »
Time for a Cato Grammar Grumble interruption.

The proof is not IN the pudding. That would be a gooey mess. The proof is OF the pudding. Is the pudding good? You learn by eating it. The phrase is, “the proof of the pudding is in the eating.”

Thank you.  ;D

Online Mandryka

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15394 on: October 10, 2019, 11:20:43 AM »
Time for a Cato Grammar Grumble interruption.

The proof is not IN the pudding. That would be a gooey mess. The proof is OF the pudding. Is the pudding good? You learn by eating it. The phrase is, “the proof of the pudding is in the eating.”


If anyone is reading this who doesn't speak English then be warned, it is The proof is IN the pudding, and if you say OF people will just think you don't speak the language. The proof is OF the pudding may be, like, from Shakespeare's time or something -- I've never heard it before.

Here's chapter and verse

https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=the%20proof%20is%20in%20the%20pudding

« Last Edit: October 10, 2019, 11:24:07 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Ken B

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15395 on: October 10, 2019, 11:31:38 AM »

If anyone is reading this who doesn't speak English then be warned, it is The proof is IN the pudding, and if you say OF people will just think you don't speak the language. The proof is OF the pudding may be, like, from Shakespeare's time or something -- I've never heard it before.

Here's chapter and verse

https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=the%20proof%20is%20in%20the%20pudding

From Mandryka's link
Quote
the proof is in the pudding
A phrase that, when uttered, instantly identifies the speaker as being incredibly stupid and illiterate.

I think that's harsh, but if you insist ...
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Offline Florestan

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15396 on: October 10, 2019, 12:06:49 PM »
https://www.merriam-webster.com/words-at-play/origin-of-the-proof-is-in-the-pudding-meaning

There is a word to explain the oddity of the expression "the proof is in the pudding": idiom, which refers to an expression in which the meanings of its individual words considered together make no lexical sense but to native speakers make perfect sense, oddly because of frequent misinterpretation or mishearing of the expression leading to its acceptance. In this case, the expression "the proof is in the pudding," as well as "the proof in the pudding" and "the proof of the pudding," is a version of the proverbial "the proof of the pudding is in the eating (or tasting)"—all of which have become established in the language through frequent servings

I compose music because I must give expression to my feelings, just as I talk because I must give utterance to my thoughts. --- Rachmaninoff

Online Madiel

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15397 on: October 10, 2019, 01:08:13 PM »
Merriam Webster is a valid source.

The urban dictionary is basically asking social media to comment.
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Online Madiel

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15398 on: October 10, 2019, 01:17:36 PM »
To continue with the eating analogy, though, the fact is that no one just randomly chomps on food, either likes or dislikes it, and then moves on to the next thing.

People make choices of their food based on their previous food experiences. The purposes of those choices is to increase the chances that the next thing they eat will be pleasurable to eat.

And people cannot make use of the data they’ve gathered about which food experiences they liked without some kind of analysis of the patterns of what was nice to eat and what was not.

So too, Florestan, with your music choices. Whether you are conscious of it or not, you ARE making assessments of not only what music you liked, but why, and this is informing what you listen to next.

Otherwise you would be pressing shuffle on the world’s entire music library, not choosing genres, not choosing time periods, not choosing composers. The fact that you have parameters and boundaries, WITHIN which you might be happy to try pretty much anything, is a creation of an intellectual process that set those parameters and boundaries.
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Offline mc ukrneal

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Re: Recordings That You Are Considering
« Reply #15399 on: October 10, 2019, 11:37:15 PM »
I was going to comment, but then I kept reading about food and I got hungry and with chocolate croissants nearby, I will eat those first! Maybe after I am sated and energized, I will remember this is a thread about recordings you are considering and not Cato's Grammar thread. Perhaps further discussion of pudding could continue there to make this a non-caloric thread again! :)
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