mudcat.org: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafeawe

Post to this Thread - Printer Friendly - Home
Page: [1] [2] [3]


Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer

Related threads:
Relative Minor Key signatures? (57)
Tech Talk: Modes and Scales Again (117)
Musical Modes...Anyone Understand? (75)
Transposing Chords and Keys (37)
More About Modes (70)
modes tutorial update (17)
The Naming of Modes (38)
Is the tempered scale overrated? (56)
Modal Music - How to tell? (98)
Modes vs Scales (47)
a mnemonic for the modes (106)
Music Theory Mavens: D down to C, etc.? (28)
15 Keys, 3 are duplicates. When Used??? (19)
Who Named the Modes? (49)
What is a key, anyway? (31)
Why Keys? (53)
Modes? (56)
singing in key of G (17)


Jack Campin 11 Jul 18 - 04:53 AM
GUEST,Pseudonymous 11 Jul 18 - 04:58 AM
Jack Campin 11 Jul 18 - 06:18 AM
KarenH 11 Jul 18 - 06:36 AM
Stanron 11 Jul 18 - 09:12 AM
Stanron 11 Jul 18 - 09:20 AM
Jack Campin 11 Jul 18 - 09:27 AM
Stanron 11 Jul 18 - 09:48 AM
Jack Campin 11 Jul 18 - 09:57 AM
Stanron 11 Jul 18 - 10:29 AM
GUEST,Brian Peters 11 Jul 18 - 10:46 AM
Jack Campin 18 Jul 18 - 05:12 AM
GUEST,Pseudonymous 21 Jul 18 - 08:24 AM
Jack Campin 21 Jul 18 - 08:29 AM
GUEST,Tootler 21 Jul 18 - 10:14 AM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:








Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: Jack Campin
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 04:53 AM

If leeneia's dulcimer is a fretted mountain type, she'll be using modal reasoning all the time. With a dulcimer tuned to 2 sharps, you can play in:

D major
E dorian
G lydian/major hexatonic
F# minor/phrygian hexatonic
A mixolydian
B minor

all of which are common modes in Anglo-American folksong. You don't need to know you're doing this if you're playing solo, but for playing with others a common language really helps.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: GUEST,Pseudonymous
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 04:58 AM

Never heard of a portative organ! Where can I find out more?

I think I want one! (MAD strikes again: Musicalinstrument Acquisition Disease) :(


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: Jack Campin
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 06:18 AM

The two leading portative organ players these days seem to be Catalina Vicens and Christophe Deslignes. Both pretty easy to find on the web. Vicens posts a lot on FB. Deslignes has a superb 3-CD set, each covering music of a different period - I saw him once at a house concert where he described the technique involved, it's a lot more subtle than you'd think.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: KarenH
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 06:36 AM

Thank you, Jack.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: Stanron
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 09:12 AM

I think that GUEST Ripov in the 10 Jul 18 - 07:32 PM posting hit the nail with 'medieval nine pipe portative organ'. Such primitive instruments were limited to specific notes and modes are a result of that kind of limitation.

Few modern instruments are so limited. Fretted instruments such as the lute, and today the guitar, were never limited in such a way. Unfretted instruments like the viol family and the human voice, of course, were never so limited as well. I find it difficult to believe that 'vulgar' music always kept to such arbitrary rules.

In retrospect it seems that Modes were an attempt to rationalise technical imperfections. Such rationalisation is not necessary today.

So why are Modes still a source of anxiety today?

I blame it on jazz and higher education.

Round about the time when jazz went from 'good time music' to 'a pain in the ears' it flirted with modes. I'm guessing that it flirted with one or two of them only. That in itself would not have resulted in the current concern about the subject.

It has always struck me as amusing that Universities teaching 'Popular Music' include jazz in their curriculum. Sometimes as a mandatory subject. A problem for Universities teaching Popular Music is what to teach students who may well be more talented that their teachers. Modes and jazz will do nicely.

The fact that students would benefit more from playing in front of audiences than playing in front of teachers would not benefit a profession from which I am now safely retired.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: Stanron
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 09:20 AM

I forgot to add that when I make decisions on what to play, those decisions are based on sounds, not theoretical ideas. The 'sound' process is so much faster.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: Jack Campin
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 09:27 AM

'medieval nine pipe portative organ'.

Almost all the ones we know about had far more pipes than that, though usually only one chromatic note (B flat), if any.

Bagpipes typically have nine available notes. The Highland pipe repertoire alone has something like 20,000 pieces. If you play an instrument like that you don't see a limitation.


Such primitive instruments were limited to specific notes and modes are a result of that kind of limitation.

Which is why modal thinking of some sort is used by almost all players of the commonest instrument in history, the diatonic harmonica. Every time you do a "position shift" or play "cross" you're using a modal concept.

Modes are very much a living idea.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: Stanron
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 09:48 AM

Jack Campin wrote: If you play an instrument like that you don't see a limitation.


If you play with someone who plays an instrument like that you do. I spent several years playing tunes with a Northumbrian Small Pipes player. There were quite a few tunes he could not play. The instrument is virtually locked into playing F# as G although that is not related to modes.

The modal nature of the music pipes produce is not something I would label as an idea. There is no thought required. That is just what they are able to play.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: Jack Campin
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 09:57 AM

I forgot to add that when I make decisions on what to play, those decisions are based on sounds, not theoretical ideas. The 'sound' process is so much faster.

But if someone else is playing with you, can you tell a diatonic moothie player which instrument to reach for, or a harpist which levers to flip?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: Stanron
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 10:29 AM

With the caveat that we are getting way off topic here, I could tell them what key I play in, if I change key perhaps, but I may not mention that F#s occasionally become F natural or that D becomes D# every now and then. I would expect them to deal with the deficiencies of their own instruments. Talking about music is a distinct second best to playing it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: GUEST,Brian Peters
Date: 11 Jul 18 - 10:46 AM

'While actually playing music it just isn't important that "Old Joe Clark" is mixolydian and "Douce Dame Jolie" is dorian. You just learn the song.'

But it might save a few Dissonances if the the musicians in the session were able to say, "Old Joe Clark? The mixolydian or the dorian version?"

As Jack said, this stuff can be useful as a means of communication. Several good posts here, thanks Jack, and as a melodeon player I second what you said about moothies and modes.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: Jack Campin
Date: 18 Jul 18 - 05:12 AM

For Pseudonymous - Catalina Vicens just posted a link to this:

Christophe Deslignes documentary on the portative organ


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: GUEST,Pseudonymous
Date: 21 Jul 18 - 08:24 AM

Thanks, Jack, or should I say 'Merci'. You learn all sorts on this site. I was looking at your web site material on modes and pentatonic modes, but I don't have or even begin to understand 'abc'.

I gather 'moothie' is mouth organ. Took me a while to click on, not being Scottish.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: Jack Campin
Date: 21 Jul 18 - 08:29 AM

I have links to a few ABC converter sites on my homepage - you just need to copy and paste.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Modes for Mudcatters: A Synthesis Primer
From: GUEST,Tootler
Date: 21 Jul 18 - 10:14 AM

Jack Campin wrote: If you play an instrument like that you don't see a limitation.

That's not entirely true. You are aware of the limitations but you look for workarounds.

However, as it happens there is a massive repertoire of tunes that can be played on a diatonic instrument. Even if the tunes sometimes have accidentals you don't have available there are often workarounds. Especially if playing with others.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 8 March 5:36 AM EST

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.