Category Archives: ECMania

Sound vs music

Dupa mai bine de un an, iata un nou post ECM-istic.

Gary Giddins*: …and the Sound?

Manfred Eicher**: Never forget that the Sound is not music. Music is using sound in organizing emotions in time. Music has no location.

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* Un american care nu intelege cum naiba un label ca ECM a putut avea succesul pe care (inca) il are fara sa fie in stare sa faca smart commercial decisions. “Incredible luck,” altfel nu se explica.

** Adevarul e ca aici nu pot fi de acord cu Maestrul. Pentru mine, sunetul vine pe primul loc. Cand ascult Bach & whatever, ascult sunetul descoperit de Bach…

P.S. Eicher l-a descoperit pe Arvo Pärt ascultand Radio Erevan. Hehe.

ECMania: Silentium est aureum

Un festival care va avea loc la Tallinn intre 11-13 februarie. Sub titlul Perfect Silence, la festival vor fi prezenti nu doar muzicieni de calibru – Vassilis Tsabropoulos, Norma Winstone… – ci si fondatorul minunatului label ECM, Manfred Eicher care, dupa prezentarea filmului Sounds and Silence va participa la un workshop dedicat ECM-ului si sunetului propus de acesta.

ECMania: Jarrett & Bach

[ECM New Series 1513/14]

Ascultand interpretarea oferita de Jarrett la suitele franceze a lui Bach mi-am adus instant aminte de un album exceptional, unu’ care se va afla etern in panoplia discografica a Lanternativei. Este vorba, evident, de Gorgoroth’s Destroyer (or About How to Philosophize with the Hammer) [1998]. Pentru exemplificare, vezi coperta mai sus. Bun.

Jarrett a esuat in a filosofa pe muzica lui Bach. A avut tot ce trebuie. Minus ciocanul.

P.S. Mi-ar place enorm sa aud o interpretare Gorgoroth la Bach.

ECMania: The Dowland Project

Ascultand discurile publicate de proiectul Dowland, which is

an attempt to re-discover the essence of renaissance song from the point of view of a modern performer

mi-am adus aminte de ce scria Herder cu ceva milenii in urma intr-una din carticelele sale numita, in orig., Fragmente über die neuere deutsche Literatur:

Oh accursed word “classical”! It has transformed Cicero for us into a classical school rhetorician, Virgil and Homer into classical poets, Caesar into a pedagogue, Livy into a phrasemonger. It has divided expression from thought, and thought from the event that has generated it…this word has become a wall between us and all true education which would have seen the ancients as living exemplars…this word has buried many a genius beneath a heap of words…crushed him under a millstone of a dead language…When a German poet is described as a second Horace…as a new Lucretius, a historian as a second Livy, that is nothing to be proud of; but it would be a great, rare, enviable glory for us if one could say about such writers: “this is how Horace, Cicero, Lucretius, Livy, would have written if they were writing about this topic, at this particular stage of culture, at this particular time, with this particular purpose, for this particular people, with its particular outlook and its own language”.

Firminus Caron – Kyrie Jesus:

Albumul poate fi DL de aici: Part. I & Part. II.

ECMania: Pérotin

[ECM New Series 1385]

Pérotin (sec. XII-XIII) a facut parte din École de Notre-Dame, care a influentat prin reprezentantii sai (multi ramasi necunoscuti) tot ce se putea influenta la nivel muzical, social, spiritual si filosofic la acea ora in Europa. Insa nu despre aceasta scoala in particular as dori sa scriu, ci despre relatia dintre polifonia liturgica, printre ai carei fondatori se afla si Pérotin, si ratiunea umana.

In articolul lui Catherine Oickstock, dedicat muzicii, din volumul Radical Orthodoxy, se afla un fragmentel foarte interesant referitor la relatia abia mentionata. Legatura dintre De Muzica a lui Augustin, Scotus Eriugena si Magister Leoninus – predecesorul lui Pérotin – devine evidenta:

N.B. Click pe imagine.

In 2005 Anna Maria Berger publica o carte numita Medieval music and the art of memory. Pérotin este mentionat de mai multe ori in volumul amintit, in relatie cu École de Notre-Dame:

Additional support for my hypothesis that much of the Notre Dame repertory was sung from memory, comes from the philosophical writings of the period. For Thomas Aquinas and Albertus Magnus trained memory becomes part of prudence, a moral necessity. Support for my hypothesis that much of the Notre Dame repertoire was transmitted orally can also be found in Craig Wright’s recent book Music and Ceremony at Notre Dame, 500-1500.

The written page would just function as a mnemonic aid for recalling both the general outline and details. In this case it is 297 not necessarily relevant whether the performers imagined the written page or actually saw it. If they had memorized the piece once with the help of the written page, they would always use it as a mnemonic device when singing by heart. In fact, the original notation brings out the modal patterns and the division into ordines in a much more convincing way than modern notation. With or without the page, the singers would categorize the piece with respect to modal patterns and ordines.

In trying to establish how oral transmission of a repertoire as complex as Notre Dame polyphony could have been achieved, I have found that modal theory shares a number of characteristics with mnemotechnics. We have seen that modal rhythm and didactic quantitative poetry rely on the same method for memorizing the material: repetitive patterns of longae and breves. The use of divisio is another trait which made its way from ars memorativa treatises to Notre Dame polyphony. Writing was necessary to preserve the repertory, to make it available in distant places, and to help the memory in the process of performance. And yet, modal notation was so ambiguous that it could do no more than trigger the memory of how the piece was supposed to be performed.

Veni creator spiritus:

Beata viscera:

ECMania: Eleni Karaindrou

…si spunea:

A few notes, a dance by the river,

A passing touch, a separation.

Hunted lives

And a century disappearing,

Covering poets’ dreams

With dust.

Asa cum puteti vedea mai jos, Eleni nu a publicat foarte multe albume la ECM. Dintre ele, marea majoritate reprezinta coloane sonore la superbele filme ale lui Theo Angelopoulos, intre solisti aflandu-se si cel putin doi romani: Maria Bildea (harfa) si Sergiu Nastasa (vioara). Daca ar fi sa-mi restrang, dureros, preferintele la doar doua compozitii ale minunatei femei, as alege Ulysse’s gaze si Trojan Women.

…si din nou rostea:

There is something beyond research and analysis, beyond the accumulation of knowledge and information, something beyond the understanding of a poetic text. And this element cannot be explained, it can only be illuminated.

_________________

Music for films [ECM 1429]: Part. I + Part. II + Part. III

The suspended step of the stork [ECM 1456]: Part. I + Part. II

Ulysse’s gaze [ECM New Series 1570]: Part. I + Part. II + Part. III

Eternity and a day [ECM New Series 1692]: Part. I + Part. II

Trojan Women [ECM New Series 1810]: Part. I + Part. II + Part. III

The weeping meadow [ECM New Series 1885]: Part. I + Part. II

Elegy of the uprooting [ECM New Series 1952/53]: Part. I + Part. II + Part. III + Part. IV

Dust of time [ECM New Series 2070]: Part. I + Part. II