Re: Examples

Subject: Re: Examples
From: Eliot Handelman (
Date: Wed Nov 23 2005 - 21:43:14 EST

Chantal Dumas wrote:

>It's a way to see from where to start a new work.
>To look at the past is not question of nostalgia but a way to apprehend
>the future.
>Also, to have access to some works I need to know on which door to

well, I was reflecting on this on the show this morning. I think
there's a musicological and a creative
distinction to be made.

I have an informal hypothesis that a giant collection of old german
folksongs, from ca. 15-18th
C (as far as I know) is genomic of later western classical music. There
are two ways in which
you could go about trying to make an argument. One is by collecting
examples of usage and
correlating them to later developments. This is like taking a 23rd
century composer and showing that
there was a trickle from the Beatles even though this composer had no
musicological pretensions and
therefore knew nothing of the fab four. We would want to know that the
Beatles invented the idea and
that there's a pattern of usage that we can trace continuously to the
23rd c. This is a kind of
musicological approach, applied to questions like who was the first 16th
c. composer to use "L'homme armé"
in a mass.

Here's a different approach. develop a serious theoretical model of the
genome, stick it in a simulator, and
let it generate music without any new input. Is the music going to
evolve, or are you going to
get endless variations of the same? We could apply this to any music.
What sort of new input is needed
to create a sense of "a new kind of music"?

Is this not like composing, or what composers do intuitively? That's a

For instance, I came to the conclusion yesterday that Schumann had a
highly differentiated theoretical model of music in his mind. I gathered
this by
reading his essay on Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique. At the same time,
Berlioz had new
input in his model whereas Schumann's new input, which brought elements
close to the surreal -- as carnevals,
mystical birds, or representations of children's minds -- were fading.

Just a few thoughts, without wishing to pursue any conclusions,

-- eliot

>--- Eliot Handelman <> a écrit :
>>Out of curiosity, what is the incentive to find "earliest examples"
>>-- eliot

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