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Piano Musings

Steinway Model D

 

 

usical arts, particularly materials and opinions related to the piano, are discussed in this section of the website.

Steinway Model D

David Yost, http://yost.com/art/steinway/

 

My Favorite Piano Recordings

Here is a list of my favorite piano CD's, all classical at the moment.

A Graphical Representation of Chord Progressions in Common Practice

Since I am more visually oriented, I converted the typical textual descriptions of the rules of chord progressions in traditional harmony into a graphical format.  This link will appear soon...

One Man's Epic Quest for a 3-D Photograph of Frederic Chopin (without leaving his family room)

Coming soon is the story of my efforts to combine what I found to be very slightly different photographs of Chopin into a stereo photograph--for the first time ever--and my final result for your appraisal.

Music Imponderables

There are several musical questions that I simply don't know the answer to, despite searching through online and a limited number of print sources.  If anyone knows the answers to these, please let me know and I'll post them with attribution for all to see.

1.  Why does everyone in the world play the beginning of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony incorrectly?   It can't just be me.  Can it??  8^)

Here's the beginning of the Fifth Symphony, showing the initial, famous motif:

Beethoven 5th Symphony Intro

Note that the three eighth-notes are not a triplet--there would have to be a little "3" over the connecting bar. This "3" is missing on all sheet music I've seen for this piece.  So instead of "da da da DUM" it should be "da DA da DUM."  In fact, that's how this motif is played throughout the entire first movement, over and over, except for when the section above re-appears.

Now here's the first theme that follows the above, showing the same motif everywhere but simply smoothed out over the phrase:

Beethoven 5th Symphony First Theme

You see the same little motives, again without triplet notation, but no one in their right mind would play them as "da da da DUM".  So why is it played that way at the beginning?

Click here to hear how everyone plays these.  Note how "da DA da DUM" is played everywhere except for the initial little motif.

2.  Why in the world do the two staffs of piano music (treble clef and bass clef) assign the same notes in their respective octaves to different lines/spaces?   Instead of a single line (Middle C) sitting between the two staffs, why not have two lines (Middle A and Middle C)--then every note in the bass clef would lie on the same line/space as the corresponding note in the treble clef, eliminating a major stumbling block for piano students everywhere.

3.  Why are classical piano CD's so quiet?  Why are classical music stations so quiet?  You have to be careful changing from these to non-classical CD's or stations or you can damage your speakers or eardrums.

4.  More coming...

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