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"Unpacking the Box" in Frescobaldi’s Ricercari of 1615 - Massimiliano Guido and Peter Schubert

I recently came across some links on renaissance composition/improvisation I'd like to share.
The following are didactic videos (divided into 3 parts) of two scholars, Guido and Schubert, taking the role of student and teacher respectively, and playing out a dialogue.

part 1:
part 2:
part 3:

ricercare by Frescobaldi similar to the one played in part 3:


An academic paper on contrapuntal improvisation at the keyboard in the same vein by Guido:

This paper goes over my head, personally, because of the antiquated music notation used, but I think the gist of it is that for improvisation, a fixed fingering is selected then transposed across intervals so that certain fingers always correspond to consonances, and certain fingers always correspond to dissonances. This way contrapuntal patterns are cemented in muscle memory.

Really need advice!

Okay, so there's an open evening for an exhibition coming up and I said that I would play piano during the event as sort of background music. I thought I had plenty of music, but after looking through my many folders I realised I didn't have as much as I thought I did. I want to find some easy ish pieces in a classical/elegant style, possibly similar to the music of einaudi and composers alike. If you have found any really good piano solos on musescore then please post the links below! They can be original compositions also if they are in that sort of style. If you can imagine someone playing it in the background them it will be great! Thank you! And I really really hope there are some! They don't have to be yours, just if you find some then please tell me.

Insider Tipp: Looking up this groups!

Hello dear MuseScore composer,

Sorry if that sounds odd, but I watch your activity on MuseScore for a long time with increasing interest. The answer is quite simple: You are the born talent. There's something in you and I noticed that quickly. Since I would like to make the group "Orchestra Glory to God", which I founded, a bit by Musescore internal PR here and there, I invite you into my group.

We are all different people, and yet the Christian mission, the Christian faith with which we want to make music, unites us.

I need people who use their scores / compositions to pick up the people to get in touch with them. Quiet music can be very useful in discussing the basis of this common foundation - which we call faith in Jesus Christ!

I look forward to your Feddback!

PS: Please allow me a hint: I am also the administrator of this group here: Praise to God - The international orchestra of the people who believes in God and trust in him.

If you can help me here, I would be very grateful to you!

Do you have broadcast quality recordings of your scores?

Though I've been a MS 'member' for more than 12 months, it's only just occurred to me that I am in a position to give radio airplay to some of your original scores. To do this, the performance must be with real instruments and a of sufficient quality to be broadcast (clean recording, well-balanced as between instruments, etc.). .

The radio station is in Melbourne, Australia, and I have a regular (weekly) breakfast program dedicated to 'classical' music. Presently, the program is a three-hour show. It is preferable that the work be between 3 -7 minutes long. Arrangements of modern scores (i.e. by living or recently deceased composers) cannot be played without permission of the copyright holder of the original work.

Whilst, I have broad tastes and exercise them over the duration of the program, consistently dissonant and/or dislocated pieces (like, e.g. Webern) are unlikely to be played. Like all radio stations, the content is expected to follow certain patterns, especially in the breakfast show (Prokofiev-like, is fine).

The radio station is not-for-profit and is subscriber and donation funded - it does not receive government assistance, therefore, while it has to accountable, through the Australasian Performing Right Association, the work will not be broadcast if a royalty is to be paid.

If you have a recording of your original score that you like to receive airplay, let me know.
You cannot send files through the MS email but after contact has been made, files can be sent one-to-one. If you have a CD recording, I can advise to where it should be sent.

I look forward to 'hearing' from you.

Over the last 4 weeks (22/10/16) I have broadcast music by MS composers - you could be next.

Odd Time Signature Advice

I don't know about you, but I used to have trouble with odd time signatures. Here's how I remedied that.

Adam Neely's bass lessons on youtube are amazing sources of knowledge about time signatures and theory in general, and that's where I learned how to experiment with odd signatures. However, just knowledge isn't exactly enough. You have to listen to some and feel the strange signature. A great band to listen to is TOOL (the one with Maynard James Keenan, etc. etc.), as MUCH of their music is in obscure time signatures. Once you get used to those songs, listen to math rock (a good band is Totorro, spelled exactly like the adorable fluff ball of the character from the movie/anime). Try playing a song on your instrument in odd time signatures, and build a new mental metronome to count that timing.

When you're writing in odd time signatures, avoid what Adam Neely calls the "clave" of the time signature. For instance, in 5/4, the "clave" is two dotted quarter notes, then two quarter notes. This is a common 5/4 rhythm, but it's a bit bland when used over and over again (it's used in the mission impossible theme song). There are thousands of rhythmic combination with even just eight notes, so you can pretty much subdivide it however you want to.

That's all the advice I have, if anyone else has some, the you can put it down in the comments, I guess.

Adam Young scores

Throughout 2016, Owl City's Adam Young has released one album a month to portray a significant event in human history. From the launch of Apollo 11 to Shackleton's expedition to Antarctica aboard The Endurance, the building of Mount Rushmore to the first plane flight across the Atlantic by Charles Lindbergh. And many more! Its a mix orchestral and electronic, driving and expressive. For any classical enthusiast as well as popular music fans, I am sure this marvelous set of music will amaze you!

From a culture that abbhors polyphony

Might be construed as slightly off-topic, but there is a recent (20th century) tradition in China of arranging folk songs for a large orchestra of traditional instruments, and some of this repertoire has been appearing on this site. I find it extremely interesting how the orchestral setting and triadic harmonies are clearly built on the western model, but the approach to counterpoint is completely different; parallel fifths abound, and the fourth is not treated as dissonant. It's not for want of qualifications either, as the arranger of the piece below was a career conductor and is regarded as a national treasure.