What is music?

Talk about things that are not necessarily related to music or the guitar.
Rasputin
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Re: What is music?

Post by Rasputin » Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:41 pm

AndreiKrylov wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:32 pm
If Music is something which consist from "perfectly measured chords" why many of us including me - do not like perfectly sounding computers which could make "precise music"?
I would guess that most of us hate the MIDI sound, most of the time. For me the interesting question is whether what is missing is itself mathematical in nature. Andrew Fryer was suggesting above (I'm paraphrasing but hopefully I got his drift) that the maths might just be a kind of carrier, with the actual signal being non-mathematical. That's also possible, I acknowledge, but I don't think the fact that computers produce such hateful sounds settles the question either way.

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AndreiKrylov
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Re: What is music?

Post by AndreiKrylov » Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:11 pm

Rasputin wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:41 pm
AndreiKrylov wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:32 pm
If Music is something which consist from "perfectly measured chords" why many of us including me - do not like perfectly sounding computers which could make "precise music"?
I would guess that most of us hate the MIDI sound, most of the time. For me the interesting question is whether what is missing is itself mathematical in nature. Andrew Fryer was suggesting above (I'm paraphrasing but hopefully I got his drift) that the maths might just be a kind of carrier, with the actual signal being non-mathematical. That's also possible, I acknowledge, but I don't think the fact that computers produce such hateful sounds settles the question either way.
Computers are just examples of "perfect tonal music" ...
I took a brief look at Scruton ideas about this subject and it seems to me that he dwells mostly in European Music with certain tonal structure and her historical and cultural periods. Yet a lot of music in our world do not follow european path.
Both in tonal and in structural ways.
And rhythm is not necessary part of Music either.
Music could be "a-rhythmical" and beautiful and exciting and extremely "rhythmical" and organized but yet completely empty and boring...
I'd better speak by music...Please listen Andrei Krylov at Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music, Amazon Prime etc. Thanks!

ddray
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Re: What is music?

Post by ddray » Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:17 pm

AndreiKrylov wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:32 pm
wow! what a discussion!
mathematics... or mix of it with ...?
Music is a reflection of us an our life but - Is our life mathematics?
Isn't it a total absurd, full of irrational ideas, events and history?
And why we are talking about "chord" here?
What chord? In what tonal system?
Standard Tonal? Microtonal or any other?
If Music is something which consist from "perfectly measured chords" ...
I didn't say anything about "perfectly measured". I said "correct and mathematically measurable".
AndreiKrylov wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:11 pm
Music could be "a-rhythmical" and beautiful and exciting ...
Such music would simply "be" and bear fewer marks of being "created" or "fashioned"; and would probably attract just enough attention for one performance before it becomes just an artifact for uni faculty to look over. Which would you rather have on a desert island: the complete works of Bach or the combined complete works of John Cage and György Ligeti?
For me the interesting question is whether what is missing is itself mathematical in nature.
The irregularities of the Parthenon.
Last edited by ddray on Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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AndreiKrylov
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Re: What is music?

Post by AndreiKrylov » Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:35 pm

ddray wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:17 pm
AndreiKrylov wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:32 pm
wow! what a discussion!
mathematics... or mix of it with ...?
Music is a reflection of us an our life but - Is our life mathematics?
Isn't it a total absurd, full of irrational ideas, events and history?
And why we are talking about "chord" here?
What chord? In what tonal system?
Standard Tonal? Microtonal or any other?
If Music is something which consist from "perfectly measured chords" ...
I didn't say anything about "perfectly measured". I said "correct and mathematically measurable".
For me the interesting question is whether what is missing is itself mathematical in nature.
The irregularities of the Parthenon.
Yes, everything could be correctly measured, but does it mean that if one will play certain music one way and another in different way - does it mean that one of players is wrong? yet they both could sound great or... very bad..
or one bad and another good for one listener and absolutely opposite for another ...
Music is very personal thing it is also exist in cultural, historical, physical, age and health conditional, cosmic, and many other contexts, spaces, levels at the same time...
Some of those spaces and levels could be great influence for perception of music and could drastically change this perception at any given moment...
And there is no same moment and same condition for different or even same person at any time in our short paths on Earth.
And music exists in those moments which are constantly changing and which constantly changing the music itself too...
I'd better speak by music...Please listen Andrei Krylov at Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music, Amazon Prime etc. Thanks!

ddray
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Re: What is music?

Post by ddray » Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:40 pm

AndreiKrylov wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:35 pm
ddray wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:17 pm
AndreiKrylov wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:32 pm
wow! what a discussion!
mathematics... or mix of it with ...?
Music is a reflection of us an our life but - Is our life mathematics?
Isn't it a total absurd, full of irrational ideas, events and history?
And why we are talking about "chord" here?
What chord? In what tonal system?
Standard Tonal? Microtonal or any other?
If Music is something which consist from "perfectly measured chords" ...
I didn't say anything about "perfectly measured". I said "correct and mathematically measurable".
For me the interesting question is whether what is missing is itself mathematical in nature.
The irregularities of the Parthenon.
Yes, everything could be correctly measured, but does it mean that if one will play certain music one way and another in different way - does it mean that one of players is wrong?
Well it depends. My guitar playing is (unfortunately) very different from that of John Williams. It doesn't mean mine is as valid.

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AndreiKrylov
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Re: What is music?

Post by AndreiKrylov » Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:50 pm

well, I do not know how your guitar is playing, but is John Williams constant phenomenon? Is he playing forever the same? Did he play the same way when he was 3 years old? Is he going to play the same when he would be 100? Is he playing the same if he will be in perfect health and when he is sick? Will he play the same in case of physical or psychological trauma? Which JW you compare with yourself? Which yourself you compare with JW?
Your statement is relative to certain conditions which constantly evolving, therefore your statement... is not valid :)
I mean it is quite possible that measured in certain moments of time your guitar could play better than JW...
I'd better speak by music...Please listen Andrei Krylov at Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music, Amazon Prime etc. Thanks!

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kertsopoulos
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Re: What is music?

Post by kertsopoulos » Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:00 pm

One might argue that math within music makes the concrete foundation of music itself, the inside or outside ingredients that add up to make the final cake: "Music to be heard". So, the final cake is the music we tend to talk about with the absurd and abstract musical forms and the math "within it or outside of it", are the concrete, the countable, the understandable ingredients that are responsible for the formation of the musical forms. However, there is nothing more abstract than mathematics. What is a number? A number that defines anything and everything: one (1) as a number can be a universe, an orange, a human, a chair, anything and everything that can be conceived as one and zero (0) is for the babylonian priests that introduced it in mathematics the expression of the "least infinite" and simultaneously the "most infinite". So, there is nothing more abstract than mathematics if one reads well the philosophical explanations of Russel and the work of Riemann and Godel, so, the absurd and mysterious music in all its mathematical expressions uses extremely abstract ingredients by all scientific means and this can be one reason by itself: why music remains always mysterious, absurd and abstract. Of course, Schopenhauer regards music the superior of the arts but Hegel regards poetry the superior. It is irrelevant to ask who is right, it is most important to study each ones' philosophical system and enter each philosopher's vision of the "thing in itself" to realize that in each one's vision, each one has a "point in itself". However, the discrepancy lies in the fact that philosophy helps one to "ask the correct question for each situation" and then find the answer that suits one best, philosophy as defined by Socrates: "is not supposed to give any answer, only prepare one to make the correct question". Of course, according to the English philosopher John Locke, philosophy is supposed to provide answers. One takes whatever one wishes but math remains in all cases the more abstract of all sciences and if for the ancient Greeks the superior of sciences was regarded to be music, than math is even more abstract as a science than music itself. One could even make one of the seemingly correct questions:"...could there be more mystery lying in math than in music itself"?

ddray
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Re: What is music?

Post by ddray » Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:07 pm

kertsopoulos wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:00 pm
One could even make one of the seemingly correct questions:"...could there be more mystery lying in math than in music itself"?
Oh absolutely. I'm not implying that we know or even *can* know the answers. As a religious person (but not an obscurantist) I'm quite at home with the "mysterious" and accepting the limitations of our understanding.

Rasputin
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Re: What is music?

Post by Rasputin » Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:20 pm

AndreiKrylov wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:11 pm
Computers are just examples of "perfect tonal music" ...
But that's just it - they're far from perfect. What orchestra, playing a tonal piece, would aim for the computer sound?
I took a brief look at Scruton ideas about this subject and it seems to me that he dwells mostly in European Music with certain tonal structure and her historical and cultural periods. Yet a lot of music in our world do not follow european path.
Both in tonal and in structural ways.
Yes, that's true. I think it's a shame that Scruton ends up with such a narrow theory and that he sneers at so much music. It doesn't follow though that none of his thinking applies to music generally. When he makes the distinction between sound and tone and claims that musical experience is based on metaphor, that is at the beginning of the chain of reasoning, long before the theories gets narrowed to Western art music of the last 300 years or so.
And rhythm is not necessary part of Music either.
Music could be "a-rhythmical" and beautiful and exciting and extremely "rhythmical" and organized but yet completely empty and boring...
I agree. Music is a world of possibilities - you don't have to use all of its dimensions all of the time. When rhythm is present, though, it is clearly an element of the music - so it is interesting if it has a mathematical structure. This would have to extend to all of rhythm, including rubato and those details of timing that are not exactly rubato but serve to group some notes together and set them apart from others.

The trouble is that when one person says that music is mathematical other people hear "music is black and white" or "rhythm is what metronomes produce", when that is not what is being claimed at all. Take this:
AndreiKrylov wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:35 pm
Yes, everything could be correctly measured, but does it mean that if one will play certain music one way and another in different way - does it mean that one of players is wrong? yet they both could sound great or... very bad..
or one bad and another good for one listener and absolutely opposite for another ...
No, it doesn't mean that all. There may be a thousand ways of doing it right and a million ways of doing it wrong - what an explanation of the structure of music should so is to explain why a particular way falls into one category and not the other, and why this particular difference in playing has this particular effect on the music.
kertsopoulos wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:00 pm
One could even make one of the seemingly correct questions:"...could there be more mystery lying in math than in music itself"?
Yes quite, and yet the standard reaction to any suggestion that something has a mathematical basis is that it could not possibly be a source of mystery or curiosity or wonder or awe but be something dull and clunky and practical.

ddray
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Re: What is music?

Post by ddray » Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:39 pm

AndreiKrylov wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 7:50 pm
well, I do not know how your guitar is playing, but is John Williams constant phenomenon? Is he playing forever the same? Did he play the same way when he was 3 years old? Is he going to play the same when he would be 100? Is he playing the same if he will be in perfect health and when he is sick? Will he play the same in case of physical or psychological trauma? Which JW you compare with yourself? Which yourself you compare with JW?
Your statement is relative to certain conditions which constantly evolving, therefore your statement... is not valid :)
I mean it is quite possible that measured in certain moments of time your guitar could play better than JW...
:lol: Believe me, Williams on his absolute worst day can play better than I can. If you heard me you'd know what i mean and you'd agree. :D I'm just saying there are standards we use for comparison.

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kertsopoulos
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Re: What is music?

Post by kertsopoulos » Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:00 pm

In my book «Space-Time Theory» The Philosophy of Space-Time published in 2009 in the Greek language I close my preface with the following new Space-Time principle. It might be relevant in the discussion.

• The principle of knowledge – ignorance

If even for an instance, we succeeded to know - conceive everything there is, all the concepts that are associated with the possibility given to us by the causal knowledge, like those of quality, of quantity, of measure, of size, of depth, of perspective and many more alike will be transformed to the point of losing completely their value, because the meaning with which we know them and also use them is indissolubly correlated with the dialectic representation of knowledge - ignorance. So, in the hypothetical circumstance in which we would have conquered all the knowledge, we would be in the position to determine everything with completeness, we would not waver between two things or circumstances, and there would be no need for us to possess cognition - conception for what we are, because the cognition is the specific cognitive position taken by man as a subject, in relation to the possibilities, the manifestations and the parameters that are contained in his knowledge-ignorance.
IGNORANCE-KNOWLEDGE PRINCIPLE.jpg


In order for us to conceive whatever we know, it is necessary for us to be ignorant of some or even all of the others and to have an awareness of this condition. If then, we conquered all the knowledge; we would lose one of the most precious values offered by this life, the possibility of free choice. This though, is never going to happen, at any rate as long as we live in correlation with nature, because the structure of knowledge – ignorance is concealed within the very own nature of man. So, the knowledge – ignorance is a continuously developing intellectual structure within the very nature of man and as a coincidence of opposition cancels the contradiction that occurs between the ignorance as a position and the knowledge as an opposition (see Diagram 1). For the human mind knowledge – ignorance is an inviolable principle, which gives to the human being the possibility of free thinking.
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chiral3
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Re: What is music?

Post by chiral3 » Sat Jun 17, 2017 2:24 pm

Interesting article in the Review section os the Wall Street Journal today.

"The universe is random—but our brains don't agree. Robert M. Sapolsky on how we look for a beat amid the cacophony of it all."
A tree falls the way it leans. - The Lorax

ddray
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Re: What is music?

Post by ddray » Sat Jun 17, 2017 4:38 pm

chiral3 wrote:
Sat Jun 17, 2017 2:24 pm
Interesting article in the Review section os the Wall Street Journal today.

"The universe is random—but our brains don't agree. Robert M. Sapolsky on how we look for a beat amid the cacophony of it all."
That sounds interesting, but first we'd have to define "random". Eventually this is going to lead us into discussions which aren't allowed on the forum. It's inspired me though to look more into the work of Kurt Gödel. As much as I can anyway with my undergraduate math.

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