This is the final music posting – at least for a while. I have managed to catch up on the music postings and equilibrium is restored in my life! Hopefully the stories will return tomorrow if I can think of one!
Here are a couple of mazurkas. A mazurka is a Polish dance in triple meter, fairly lively, with the accent on the second or third beat.
The most famous mazurkas are Chopin’s – at least until now!
Mazurka 1 – audio HERE; sheet music HERE Mazurka 2 – audio HERE; sheet music HERE
Here is a piano sonata in 3 movements. It is “serial music” – a 20th century style – so it might not be to everyone’s taste! After today there’s only one more music posting – tomorrow – at least for now.
1st Movement – audio HERE; sheet music HERE 2nd Movement – audio HERE; sheet music HERE 3rd Movement – audio HERE; sheet music HERE
There will be music postings for today and the two days that follow, and then we will be back to normal!
Here are four waltzes (almost) for piano. A couple of them have been posted here before in a different context, e.g. “His first waltz” was part of “Little Suite 2 with fifteen sketches”.
They’re “almost” waltzes because the third one would require two and a half legs to dance to.
Here then are “Four little almost waltzes”:
1. The night’s still young – audio HERE; sheet music HERE 2. His first waltz – audio HERE; sheet music HERE 3. Almost a waltz – audio HERE; sheet music HERE 4. The wallflower – audio HERE; sheet music HERE
Sheila von Clavichord was a fabulous concert pianist. She was also a fabulous violinist, although piano was her forte. Her concert tickets always sold out within hours of the booking office opening. The catch was that no one knew when they bought a ticket which of the two instruments she would play. She never played both at the same concert; it was either piano or violin for the whole evening.
Mr. Grant Officer was fortunate enough to lay his hands on a ticket. He turned up to the concert venue with a great deal of anticipation. Would she play violin or piano? The venue filled. The doors were shut. The concert began.
Sheila von Clavichord had barely intoned the second chord of Rachmaninoff’s Prelude in C Sharp Minor when the piano lid crashed down onto her fingers. As the review in the paper the next morning said: She can put the lid on her career. That’ll teach the silly person not to have chosen to play the violin.
These nine pieces for the piano are based on Anglican psalm chants. I have an Anglican Psalter with 242 chants – goodness knows where I got it from! – and each of these piano pieces is based on one or two chants from the psalter chosen at random. I hope I don’t get sent to hell for wrecking the chants! I can’t remember which chant I used for what as I’m totally disorganized and and have long abandoned any semblance of organization.
At first, since they were based on something religious, I called them after the monastic Liturgy of the Hours: Matins, Lauds, Vespers, Compline, etc. There were eight traditional prayer times, and then I wrote another piece and there were 9 pieces and only 8 liturgical prayer Hours! So I thought what the heck and named them after the hours of the day. The pieces really having nothing to do with the hours of the day and nothing to do with the Liturgy of the Hours, but things have to have some order!
I was pretty familiar with the Anglican chants as when I was a “monk” and everything changed from Latin to English we didn’t have much in the way of music to sing the Liturgy of the Hours (aka Divine Office) in English so we “pinched” the music from the Anglicans! Anyway, all I know now is that these 9 piano pieces have absolutely nothing to do with the hours of the day, nothing to do with the monastic Liturgy of the Hours, and nothing to do with the Anglican psalmody except I started out by stealing the psalmodies’ harmonies!
Here are three Etudes for piano. Basically an Etude is an exercise for improving on a specific skill in playing a specific instrument, but people like Chopin managed to turn them into pieces good enough to play in a concert.
Most will be familiar (at least in name) with Major and Minor Scales. But there are lots of other scales besides those. Some are called Modes, but are basically the same thing as a scale. Modal Music was the music of the Ancient Greeks and of the Early Church.
Here are seven pieces for piano each based on a different mode. The pieces are named after the names of each mode used.
The fourth piece here – called after the Locrian Mode – is one that some advise never to use as it’s very dissonant. I couldn’t resist, but “cheated” a tiny bit by adding a few non-modal notes!
1. Dorian: The audio HERE, and the sheet music HERE. 2. Ionian: The audio HERE, and the sheet music HERE. 3. Lydian: The audio HERE, and the sheet music HERE. 4. Locrian: The audio HERE, and the sheet music HERE. 5. Mixolydian: The audio HERE, and the sheet music HERE. 6. Aeolian: The audio HERE, and the sheet music HERE. 7. Phrygian The audio HERE, and the sheet music HERE.