Re: tuning (was: surround sound encoding and DVD authoring (URL))

Subject: Re: tuning (was: surround sound encoding and DVD authoring (URL))
From: Phil Thomson (
Date: Tue May 24 2005 - 21:13:09 EDT

Unfortunately, tuning and mathematics are pretty intimately linked, so
it's unavoidable to get some math stuff in with the tuning stuff.
However, I find Harry Partch's _Genesis of a Music_ to a be a
wonderfully readable history of intonation which successfully
harmonizes "Western" music history with examples from "Eastern" music
and shows that they're not really so different after all in their
aesthetic bedrocks. There's obviously not many contemporary examples,
but it's a great introduction to Partch's own tuning theory and
practice. On a technical level, I've heard good things about _The Just
Intonation Primer_ as a concise introduction. The journal _1/1_ might
also be a good source to browse if you can find a catalogue somewhere.
The Just Intonation network ( has other books
and recordings you may find useful. There used to be a tuning group on
Yahoo! but I don't know if it's still there, as Yahoo! has a habit of
randomly deleting things. These are not particularly imaginative
examples and maybe you've already heard of some of these or surpassed
them. I've seen or read a few other sources, but I won't mention them
because they're more technical in nature and not always so

Xenomelophiliacally yours,


On 5/24/05, <> wrote:
> Howdy Ya'll,
> I was wondering if anybody is aware of a good book dedicated solely to the
> realm of tuning. Something not too mathematical that preferably includes 20th
> century examples like Harry Partch, LaMonte Young. Sort of like a "Tuning for
> Dummies" (second edition-now including examples from the 20th century). Any
> info would be very much appreciated. Thanx much.
> John M.R. Roberts

Phil Thomson, BFA, MFA

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