[quickphilosophy] Re: My Book on Rhythm

  • From: wittrsl@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • To: quickphilosophy@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 02 Sep 2010 23:15:38 -0000

--- In quickphilosophy@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, "gabuddabout" <gabuddabout@...> wrote:
> Hi Walter,
> I'm writing a book whose title I want to be something like:  Rhythm: Listen 
> Do Write and Teach.  Or:  A Rhythm Listen:  Do, write, and Teach.  I don't 
> think the following works at all:  A Spoonful of Counting Helps the Notation 
> Go Down.
> I want to write a classic text focussing on rhythm only (players supply 
> pitches, chords, timbre, and technique) that combines ear training with a 
> metronome (just counting various groups (numbers) and subgroups (subdivisions 
> of numbers with conventional phonemes), playing what one learned to count 
> (whispered counting with accented whispers--goal being rhythmic feel without 
> counting after one digests the atomic 2-feels (The "Fab Four" 2-feels), then 
> being able to notate all the stuff one learned to play without reading 
> beforehand.
> The idea is simply that notation requires a system of counting that can be 
> carved off from notation such that one can teach just the counting with the 
> result that one learns all that notation will offer anyway.
> Later, it will be shown that Western notation is so full of nuance that it is 
> too cumbersome to get via just counting and inventing symbols for rests and 
> accents and accelerando and dynamics without just going into the real 
> notation.
> So it can be a book for absolute beginners to advanced musicians who would 
> maybe be able to teach as a result of reading the book, if they aren't 
> already able to teach as confidently as I think this book will allow.
> I will be noting things that may never have found a place in a book about 
> rhythm, including the idea that given 12 pitches and two possible sounds, 
> there are 144 possible atomic 2-feels.  Kinda makes music sound sexy, I 
> know....
> Also, for percussionists playing drumset and using four limbs, there are the 
> "Pristine Fifteen" possible limb combinations which exhaust all that such a 
> one will ever do--excluding voicings, especially all the voicings a Terry 
> Bozzio gets by having an entire chromatic scale of higher pitched drums on 
> his left along with a diatonic scale of drum pitches on his right.  Not to 
> mention all the foot pedals!  I'd like to have something like that--rather 
> than a drum pad in my apartment resting on a stack table atop four Collier's 
> Encyclopedias I can hit with my special slippers.  So I need cash.
> Now, knowing you like to tickle the ivories, I'm wondering if you'd like to 
> help me make some money by being the guy who prints out the notation elements 
> of the book.  What is probably going to go down is that I do this by myself 
> or with the help of somebody closer to home.  
> Finally, the book is not meant as a substitute for other method books.  It is 
> meant as a no-nonsense guide to being able to play and notate all from simple 
> ways to count while using a metronome in various ways.  So I'm hoping to have 
> a book that is both simple, unique and fairly comprehensive.  A classic.
> If you know of any music texts that approach this approach already, please 
> give me a head's up.  To tell the truth, I assumed that if I hadn't come 
> across one like it, it probably is not out there--but by "out there" is meant 
> "universally recognized as a killer book on rhythm that ties counting atomic 
> feels together with loads of playing possibilities with creative metronome 
> use along with notation in a very readable style that can flow from the tip 
> of my tongue as easy as I can write a long-winded sentence."
> Paul Creston's _Principles of Rhythm_ comes to mind; but I bet that hardly 
> many souls have even heard of it, much less read it.
> Thanks.
> Budd

Wow, sounds like a cool project.  I'm not really a pianist--I just used to 
improvise on synths some and write the occasional (usually somewhat aleatoric) 
piece.  I think Larry T.  actually plays piano .  I don't know the Creston 
book, and am rhythmically challenged myself. The only orchestration books I've 
looked at are by Gardner and Piston, I think.  But, though I studied with Karel 
Husa for awhile about 40 years ago, I never learned anything.

So, I'm afraid I can't be any help except to promise to buy a copy of your book 
after you publish it.  And I'll certainly make that promise!


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  • » [quickphilosophy] Re: My Book on Rhythm - wittrsl