Re: CIMESP-Results Fwd:

Subject: Re: CIMESP-Results Fwd:
From: Eliot Handelman (
Date: Fri Nov 04 2005 - 18:50:59 EST

Morgan Sutherland wrote:

>Yes, I once read an article about the balance between unpredictability
>and predictability in a piece. Predictability gives the listener a
>"reward" for guessing what comes next while unpredictability grants a
>surprise. A "good" piece is categorized by a perfect balance suited
>for the listener.
Well, that's an old theory, but I think it's wrong. The problem is that
we listen to
pieces we like over and over again and still like them. I know the bach
a- violin
concerto pretty well -- I first heard it as a kid an it inspired me to
take up the violin.
I've done a ton of computer analysis of it and discovered many things
about it. I just
listened to it the other day and I felt "jeez -- this performance is way
too fast." I still
get a tremendous kick out of the piece.

So the goodness can't be that I can predict what's happening or not,
since I can actually predict
everything that happens, assuming I've noticed it before. There must be a
different explanation.

We don't like things because there's any "balance of predict. etc" --
there are 4 note tunes we like. There are
certain chord progressions everybody seems to like because they sound
dramtic and powerful. The qualities
we like are clearly found at a very local level.

Now I'm going to get on my anti-reductionistic horse, but I'd better
sign off for now.

-- eliot

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