Sor head !

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BellyDoc
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Re: Sor head !

Post by BellyDoc » Fri Nov 03, 2017 12:45 am

I love number 15! There are little gifts from the master hidden within! Note that the first three measures, it's p-im, p-im, p-ima!!! (not p-pim!!!) although when that theme is repeated near the end, it IS p-pim!! (followed by p-ima!!). To my inspection, these are the first uses of "a" on the right hand in this opus.

There are little puzzles that I find in these pieces. For example, see that with the p-ima of the third measure, the thumb note is a dotted half, while in the 19th, when the same pattern returns, it's a dotted quarter note. Why? Little things like that make me think, because I'm going to assume that it's faithfully reproduced from the original and that it was purposeful. My conclusion is that not only is that note duration difference purposeful, but it relates to the p-ima vs. p-pim alluded to above.

My answer is that I believe he's demonstrating a difference in the technique of playing the same notes using the p-ima vs. p-pim technique. In the second instance, the thumb can be used to both strike the d and extinguish the b.

Sor's opus 60 is a work of genius in my view.
"If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants." -Sir Isaac Newton

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PeteJ
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Re: Sor head !

Post by PeteJ » Fri Nov 03, 2017 12:46 pm

PeteJ wrote:Mark - Your example is not clear. The bass part is indicated by the stem direction and perhaps Sor would have used his thumb for this (as would I) but this is because it is the bassline, not because the stem direction is an instruction.
Really? It's clear to me. If the stem direction is indicating the bass line can you explain why the low E and A do not have down-stems?
A misunderstanding. I'm saying that the stem-direction does not indicate fingering, just the part. Of course, Carulli is free to do it differently as long as he explains.
Did you not read Carulli's explicit direction? The extra (down) stem only indicates that the note should be played by the thumb. I'm sorry, but if you are translating his words in some other way then we are at an impasse.
Is this about that extract? It's up to Carulli. He had to explain because it's not normal use stems to indicate this.
As to Sor - if he was performing Carulli's little waltz I am sure that he would have used his thumb to execute those same notes with or without an instruction, but not because they constitute a bass-line - rather that they fall comfortably under that digit according to his technical principles as outlined in the quotes presented by Bellydoc.
Any normal player would play the bass line with their thumb even though two of the notes shown have no down stems. By your reckoning the low E and A would have to be played with the fingers. if I was told nothing else I'd assume the two inner notes with down-stems are part of the bassline, as the stems indicate, and also the low E and A.
In the end we will all take our own paths. I'll continue to involve my thumb for some secondary voices and accompaniment roles when performing Sor's works; it suits me well and I believe it to be the approach described by the man himself.
Fine. It seems like the correct approach to me.

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Mark Clifton-Gaultier
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Re: Sor head !

Post by Mark Clifton-Gaultier » Fri Nov 03, 2017 6:01 pm

PeteJ wrote:A misunderstanding. I'm saying that the stem-direction does not indicate fingering, just the part. Of course, Carulli is free to do it differently as long as he explains.
At the risk of extending this conversation way beyond it's worth ...

... that is exactly my point. Carulli is specifically using the stem direction to indicate right hand fingering.

At the time of publication (early 1800s) some guitar music was still being written in what we refer to as "violin notation" which leaves a certain amount of information to be inferred and then expressed by the interpreter. The notation conventions which one may assume and attempt to apply today simply did not exist then. Some further examples:

Here, all the notes with stems down are to be executed by the thumb.
larghetto_ex.a.png
Here too ...
larghetto_ex.b.png
... yet later, in the same work, we find a separated bass part but mostly with stems up; the word "pouce" in this case indicates the left hand thumb ...
larghetto_ex.c.png
... and in this example the stems down are to be executed by alternating thumb and index finger.
rondo_ex.a.png
In this extract from a well known study by Giuliani the stems down marked with a red dot indicate nothing but the use of an open string.
allegro_ex.a.png
That's just a few snippets from two composers at specific periods during their publishing careers. Clearly one cannot draw a general conclusion as to the use of stemming or what it may indicate as composers used it to communicate a variety of ideas. An extensive knowledge of the literature is the first requirement, after which an informed interpretation may be undertaken.
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PeteJ
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Re: Sor head !

Post by PeteJ » Sat Nov 04, 2017 2:04 pm

It seems we agree then. Stems down do not mean use the thumb. In the absence of composer notes the context and the part writing are what do that. Note that all these examples have just two parts but even so not all the down-stems use the thumb. In three parts the second part would also usually have down stems. As you say ...

"Clearly one cannot draw a general conclusion as to the use of stemming or what it may indicate as composers used it to communicate a variety of ideas."

Rasputin
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Re: Sor head !

Post by Rasputin » Sun Nov 05, 2017 3:12 pm

Just noticed something - contrasting the stemming of the first and last chords of the excerpt below, is it telling me to play the Bb of the last chord with c? I wouldn't have thought so but for this thread, but am now wondering.
Snippet.png
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Rasputin
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Re: Sor head !

Post by Rasputin » Sun Nov 05, 2017 3:15 pm

No, it's just because you wouldn't be able to see that the A was a crotchet otherwise.

Sorry, I'm very hung over...

PeteJ
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Re: Sor head !

Post by PeteJ » Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:46 pm

Rasputin - I don't know what you mean by 'c'.

Your example illustrates clearly the use of stem direction to show the independent movement of the parts.

Rasputin
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Re: Sor head !

Post by Rasputin » Tue Nov 07, 2017 1:15 pm

c = little finger (chiquito). The different duration of the A3 on beat 1 of bar 1 and the G3 on beat 1 of bar 2 is the reason for the different notation, I'm sure, and also prevents the A3 from being regarded as belonging to the same part as the quavers above, unlike the G3.

Edited - getting my 3s and 4s mixed up.

PeteJ
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Re: Sor head !

Post by PeteJ » Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:58 pm

Aha. I never knew c meant little finger.

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