Showing posts from August, 2015

The Danger of Too Much Information

This is a companion piece to last week's blog, The Myth of 432Hz Tuning. Today, we are inundated with  more information than we can possibly handle. With the advent of the World Wide Web, we now have an almost unlimited resource of information at our fingertips. And this resource keeps growing exponentially. We are literally buried in information. The problem is, a lot of that information is wrong/false/erroneous/made up and even just outright lies. It used to be we got most of our information from books. We would either go to a book store, or a library, and get the books we needed to learn about what we were interested in. The great thing about books in the past is, they had to come from publishers who did their best to make sure everything was correct and factual. Publishers had a reputation to keep, so they could not afford to willfully release anything that could be seen as misleading or false. If you couldn't believe one book from a publisher, then could you beli

The Myth of 432Hz Tuning

There has been a lot of focus recently on how A=432Hz is some sort of magical, mystical, natural tuning that we need to get back to.   Here is a link to some of the expert articles that speak at length about the virtues of 432Hz. Please read them before continuing: Here is Why You Should Consider Converting Your Music To A=432Hz Here is another article:  What is 432 Hz tuning? Ok, now that you've read those, let's take a look at some ideas about tuning. Tuning has been all over the place throughout history, and even today. I listen to a lot of Gong/Gamelan music, and the instrument makers over in Asia don't tune to any one universal tuning. They have family tunings , which are tunings that have been handed down by the instrument makers families for generations. Now this means that in an ensemble, like a Gamelan, the whole ensemble of instruments is made and tuned together to be played as a family. Thus you can not use another Gong makers instruments in the en

The Importance of Pitch Awareness

I play my Gongs/Bowls/Bells in various musical situations. I do Meditation Sessions, solo concerts, and I also work in improvisational groups. In all situations, I have found it extremely important to know the sounds/pitches that my instruments can create, and to know how to produce those sounds/pitches whenever I want/need them. For the most part, none of my instruments are tuned to specific notes of the western 12-note scale. That is to say, to notes based on an A=440 or 442 tuning. But this doesn't mean that I don't have notes/pitches, as all of my instruments are capable of producing specific notes. It's just that those notes might be flat or sharp from Western tuning, or they may be right on. For most musicians, learning your notes and how to produce them is an easy thing. The piano has 88 keys all laid out in order and is easily learned as to which key produces which note. The same for a guitar's strings and frets. You can easily learn the fingerings for woodw