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Re: What is the blues flat five?

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  • wallyesterpaulrus
    ... how much blues is actually played in just intonation? i actually missed an awesome opportunity to witness such a rarity in new york last friday :( but
    Message 1 of 22 , Jun 1, 2003
      --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, Aaron Wolf <backfromthesilo@y...>
      wrote:
      > Greetings. No time to introduce myself. I've been a
      > member of the list for a little while now. I have a
      > pretty good understanding of almost all the common
      > just intonation intervals, but I have never gotten a
      > clear understanding of one thing: the flat five.

      how much blues is actually played in just intonation? i actually
      missed an awesome opportunity to witness such a rarity in new york
      last friday :( but basically, we're in fairly speculative territory
      here, with few clear guidelines beyond experience and personal taste.

      > I understand that the Pythagorean 729/512 is not
      > really a flat five at all

      hmm . . . how about 1024/729?

      > and doesn't appear in the
      > most basic structures.

      how do you define "most basic structures"? this could be a topic for
      the tuning-math list . . .

      > The five limit 64/45 is obviously a useful note as an
      > upper leading tone to 4/3, but is it the note used in
      > a flat five chord?

      this is a strange question. i play both blues and jazz. can you
      clarify which chord exactly you mean? dizzy gillespie and others used
      the term "flat five chord" for certain sounds now commonly referred to
      by terms such as "lydian dominant scale" . . . and this is certainly a
      corner of jazz quite distant from the blues aspect . . .

      > I'd assume that 10/7 is a better flat five for
      > something that would really be heard as a chord

      i guess i need to know what all the notes are in this "something" you
      have in mind . . .

      > and
      > also since blues and jazz which use flat five chords
      > tend to have more 7-limit notes.

      hmm . . .

      > If that is correct, does that mean that 15/14 would be
      > needed for a flat five chord on the dominant?

      this seems like a very odd choice. either 21/20 or 33/32 would sound
      more consonant if your dominant is 3/2-15/8-9/8-21/16 (is it? you
      mentioned 7-limit above), and would resolve more incisively to the
      tonic to boot.

      > Is the flat five of a jazz flat five chord the same
      > note as the added flat five in the blues scale?

      i don't think so, unless 12-equal is being used.

      > Anyway, I'd like thoughts and comments on this.
      > Also, How come all the information I've seen out there
      > references 7/4 and 7/6 in blues but no mention of the
      > flat five?

      if you're really using 7/4 and 7/6 a lot, then 7/5 would be the
      natural choice for a flat five. but really the more common "blue
      notes" are more like 11/9 and 11/6, if you have to put ratios relative
      to the tonic on them.

      > Essentially, I wouldn't be sending this if
      > I could find the information elsewhere. Why isn't it
      > out there?

      looks like what is out there is largely *mis*information.
    • backfromthesilo
      Thanks so far for the comments, but they really aren t answering my question. I truly have explored the resources I ve seen online and elsewhere. Basically, I
      Message 2 of 22 , Jun 1, 2003
        Thanks so far for the comments, but they really aren't answering
        my question. I truly have explored the resources I've seen online
        and elsewhere.

        Basically, I understand the value of 64/45 in a 5-limit style.
        I also understand the complexities of relating to temperament
        and of the various possibilities for "tritone"

        But while there are various interesting notes that can be bluesy,
        pretty much everything I've seen agrees on calling 7/6 the blues
        third. And 7/4 is generally seen as the note for the blues 7th.
        And that sounds right to my ear. I have less of a sense of the
        blues flat five both intellectually and aurally.

        I have not used flat five chords too extensively, though I am
        familiar with the blues scale within temperament.

        I also know that the tuning is subtle and this is a subtle point.

        So to phrase the question more simply:
        Is there any consensus on 10/7 and its use in various styles?
        Does anyone claim that to be the blues flat five?

        I'm also wondering if anyone could give me specific situations
        that arise in music outside of the theoretical tuning-math circle
        which would call for or not call for 10/7. Some musical phrase
        written in equal temperament that would translate best to JI by
        use of 10/7...

        And I don't need to be convinced of the value of tempering things
        or of the other tritones, etc. etc. I'm not disregarding all
        possibilities, I just want to learn where 10/7 really fits in to things.

        Aaron

        --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, "Gene Ward Smith"
        <gwsmith@s...> wrote:
        > --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, Aaron Wolf
        <backfromthesilo@y...> wrote:
        >
        > > The five limit 64/45 is obviously a useful note as an
        > > upper leading tone to 4/3, but is it the note used in
        > > a flat five chord?
        >
        > If you are in a system where 225/224 is tempered out, then
        64/45 and
        > 10/7 are the same. Otherwise, I guess it is up to you to play
        whatever
        > note suits you.
      • wallyesterpaulrus
        ... one example would be a chord like 1/1:8/7:10/7:12/7, which might be your preferred rendition of the middle chord in a I-II/I-I progression, depending on
        Message 3 of 22 , Jun 1, 2003
          --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, "backfromthesilo"
          <backfromthesilo@y...> wrote:

          > I'm also wondering if anyone could give me specific situations
          > that arise in music outside of the theoretical tuning-math circle
          > which would call for or not call for 10/7. Some musical phrase
          > written in equal temperament that would translate best to JI by
          > use of 10/7...

          one example would be a chord like 1/1:8/7:10/7:12/7, which might be
          your preferred rendition of the middle chord in a I-II/I-I
          progression, depending on the voicings used. on the utonal side of
          things, which harry partch rather liked, you have chords like
          1/1:5/4:10/7:5/3, which in 12-equal is a chord traditionally used to
          set up a modulation to the iii. note that, if tuned to 5/4, the root
          of iii is then a common overtone of all four notes in the chord used
          to set up the modulation to it . . .
        • Gene Ward Smith
          ... A 7-limit JI scale containing 7/4 and 7/6 is normally better off using 7/5, not 10/7, if it needs to choose between them. Having started down the path of
          Message 4 of 22 , Jun 1, 2003
            --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, "backfromthesilo"
            <backfromthesilo@y...> wrote:

            > But while there are various interesting notes that can be bluesy,
            > pretty much everything I've seen agrees on calling 7/6 the blues
            > third. And 7/4 is generally seen as the note for the blues 7th.
            > And that sounds right to my ear. I have less of a sense of the
            > blues flat five both intellectually and aurally.

            A 7-limit JI scale containing 7/4 and 7/6 is normally better off using
            7/5, not 10/7, if it needs to choose between them. Having started down
            the path of 7's in the numerator, you keep at it in order to maximize
            consonance; in the same way, you are likely to want a 21/20 rather
            than a 15/14.
          • klaus schmirler
            ... Not that I have an answer; this is just to loosen up the other convictions: there are as many or more sources that place the blues third and seventh
            Message 5 of 22 , Jun 1, 2003
              backfromthesilo wrote:

              > But while there are various interesting notes that can be bluesy,
              > pretty much everything I've seen agrees on calling 7/6 the blues
              > third. And 7/4 is generally seen as the note for the blues 7th.
              > And that sounds right to my ear. I have less of a sense of the
              > blues flat five both intellectually and aurally.

              Not that I have an answer; this is just to loosen up the other
              convictions: there are as many or more sources that place the blues
              third and seventh _between_ their major and minor 5-limit counterparts
              and not below them.
              I used the 7-limit intonation, and i made the flat fifth a 7/5. Also,
              my practice has no bearing whatsoever on actual blues practice. I hope
              it was rightfully informed from many jazz horn players. And this is
              possibly a modern conception, and the inbetweenies are older (note
              e.g. the singing of Jelly Roll Morton or the many many guitarists
              bending up the minor intervals for blue notes).

              klaus
            • Christopher Bailey
              Love the 49/48 comma twixt 7/4 and 12/7 1/1:8/7:10/7:12/7 and 4:5:6:7 ... ***From: Christopher Bailey****************** http://music.columbia.edu/~chris
              Message 6 of 22 , Jun 1, 2003
                Love the 49/48 comma 'twixt 7/4 and 12/7
                1/1:8/7:10/7:12/7 and 4:5:6:7


                >Message: 12
                > Date: Sun, 01 Jun 2003 07:46:32 -0000
                > From: "wallyesterpaulrus" <wallyesterpaulrus@...>
                >Subject: Re: What is the blues flat five?
                >
                >--- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, "backfromthesilo"
                <backfromthesilo@y...> wrote:
                >
                > I'm also wondering if anyone could give me specific situations
                > that arise in music outside of the theoretical tuning-math circle
                > which would call for or not call for 10/7. Some musical phrase
                > written in equal temperament that would translate best to JI by
                > use of 10/7...
                >
                >one example would be a chord like 1/1:8/7:10/7:12/7, which might be
                >your preferred rendition of the middle chord in a I-II/I-I
                >progression, depending on the voicings used. on the utonal side of
                >things, which harry partch rather liked, you have chords like
                >1/1:5/4:10/7:5/3, which in 12-equal is a chord traditionally used to
                >set up a modulation to the iii. note that, if tuned to 5/4, the root
                >of iii is then a common overtone of all four notes in the chord used
                >to set up the modulation to it . . .
                >




                ***From: Christopher Bailey******************

                http://music.columbia.edu/~chris

                **********************************************
              • David Beardsley
                ... From: wallyesterpaulrus ... How would you know it was an awesome opportunity if you were not there? * David Beardsley *
                Message 7 of 22 , Jun 1, 2003
                  ----- Original Message -----
                  From: "wallyesterpaulrus" <wallyesterpaulrus@...>

                  > how much blues is actually played in just intonation? i actually
                  > missed an awesome opportunity to witness such a rarity in new york
                  > last friday :( but basically, we're in fairly speculative territory
                  > here, with few clear guidelines beyond experience and personal taste.

                  How would you know it was an awesome opportunity if you
                  were not there?


                  * David Beardsley
                  * microtonal guitar
                  * http://biink.com/db
                • David Beardsley
                  ... From: David Beardsley ... Never mind. I see you already answered my question. * David Beardsley * microtonal guitar * http://biink.com/db
                  Message 8 of 22 , Jun 1, 2003
                    ----- Original Message -----
                    From: "David Beardsley" <db@...>

                    > ----- Original Message -----
                    > From: "wallyesterpaulrus" <wallyesterpaulrus@...>
                    >
                    > > how much blues is actually played in just intonation? i actually
                    > > missed an awesome opportunity to witness such a rarity in new york
                    > > last friday :( but basically, we're in fairly speculative territory
                    > > here, with few clear guidelines beyond experience and personal taste.
                    >
                    > How would you know it was an awesome opportunity if you
                    > were not there?

                    Never mind. I see you already answered my question.


                    * David Beardsley
                    * microtonal guitar
                    * http://biink.com/db
                  • jsnelsonone
                    This interval is at least theoretically unstateable as a whole number integer fraction; it is the middle of the octave towards which integer ratios build.
                    Message 9 of 22 , Jun 2, 2003
                      This interval is at least theoretically unstateable as a whole number
                      integer fraction; it is the middle of the octave towards which
                      integer ratios build.
                      Clearly there can be no whole number integer ratio such that (N1/N2)
                      (N1/N2)= 2, as the square root of 2 is irrational.
                      Don't know what this has to do with intervals in the Blues, but I
                      thought you might be interested.

                      All the best
                      John S
                    • wallyesterpaulrus
                      ... york ... territory ... taste. ... because jon catler was involved. should i have said i missed a rare opportunity to witness such an awesomeness ?
                      Message 10 of 22 , Jun 2, 2003
                        --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, David Beardsley <db@b...> wrote:
                        > ----- Original Message -----
                        > From: "wallyesterpaulrus" <wallyesterpaulrus@y...>
                        >
                        > > how much blues is actually played in just intonation? i actually
                        > > missed an awesome opportunity to witness such a rarity in new
                        york
                        > > last friday :( but basically, we're in fairly speculative
                        territory
                        > > here, with few clear guidelines beyond experience and personal
                        taste.
                        >
                        > How would you know it was an awesome opportunity if you
                        > were not there?

                        because jon catler was involved. should i have said "i missed a rare
                        opportunity to witness such an awesomeness"?
                      • jacques dudon
                        ... Do you mean it gives you the blues because you re half way between the beginning and the end ? And another metaphysical question, when you play two tones,
                        Message 11 of 22 , Jun 2, 2003
                          jsnelsonone a écrit :

                          > This interval is at least theoretically unstateable as a whole number
                          > integer fraction; it is the middle of the octave towards which
                          > integer ratios build.
                          > Clearly there can be no whole number integer ratio such that (N1/N2)
                          > (N1/N2)= 2, as the square root of 2 is irrational.
                          > Don't know what this has to do with intervals in the Blues, but I
                          > thought you might be interested.

                          Do you mean it gives you the blues because you're half way between
                          the beginning and the end ?
                          And another metaphysical question, when you play two tones, the second
                          of frequency (square root of 2) times the first, where do you place the tonic ?
                        • wallyesterpaulrus
                          ... second ... the tonic ? in many if not most situations, i find the most likely tonic is about a major third below the lower tone. in unusually sensitive
                          Message 12 of 22 , Jun 2, 2003
                            --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, jacques dudon <aeh@f...> wrote:

                            > And another metaphysical question, when you play two tones, the
                            second
                            > of frequency (square root of 2) times the first, where do you place
                            the tonic ?

                            in many if not most situations, i find the most likely tonic is about
                            a major third below the lower tone. in unusually sensitive
                            situations, such as where combinational tones are produced, i'll hear
                            the tonic more at a fifth below the lower tone. but there is always
                            some ambiguity. observations such as these led me to develop harmonic
                            entropy theory:

                            http://sonic-arts.org/dict/harmentr.htm

                            http://groups.yahoo.com/group/harmonic_entropy/
                          • francois_laferriere
                            ... I do not have extensive musical practice, but in my mind, 10/7 suggest strongly a JI 7th dominant chord in simplest possible ratio 7:(8):10:(12), in fact
                            Message 13 of 22 , Jun 3, 2003
                              > --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, Aaron Wolf <backfromthesilo@y...>
                              > wrote:

                              > > I'd assume that 10/7 is a better flat five for
                              > > something that would really be heard as a chord

                              I do not have extensive musical practice, but in my mind, 10/7 suggest
                              strongly a JI 7th dominant chord in simplest possible ratio
                              7:(8):10:(12), in fact an inversion of (4):5:(6):7. This form
                              is not uncommon (i think) in western music when a smooth JI dominant
                              7th chord is aimed at (even though classical western music seems to
                              have a problem with the 7th harmonic)

                              > Anyway, I'd like thoughts and comments on this.
                              > Also, How come all the information I've seen out there
                              > references 7/4 and 7/6 in blues but no mention of the
                              > flat five?

                              In my mind 7/4 (inversion of 8/7) and 7/6 are more suggestive of some
                              african scales where basic chord 6:7:8 is based on the superparticular
                              division of the forth instead of the western 4:5:6 which is based on
                              the superparticular division of the fifth. Those interval are more
                              foreing to western tradition

                              yours truly

                              François Laferrière
                            • jsnelsonone
                              Harmonic Entropy is a new concept to me but seems very useful. Unfortunately the Dictionary link page appears to be missing a chart. Thanks for the info John S
                              Message 14 of 22 , Jun 3, 2003
                                Harmonic Entropy is a new concept to me but seems very useful.
                                Unfortunately the Dictionary link page appears to be missing a chart.

                                Thanks for the info

                                John S
                              • jsnelsonone
                                Try this http://sonic-arts.org/td/entropy.htm. A graph speaks a thousend numbers. John S
                                Message 15 of 22 , Jun 3, 2003
                                  Try this http://sonic-arts.org/td/entropy.htm. A graph speaks a
                                  thousend numbers.
                                  John S
                                • jsnelsonone
                                  Try this http://sonic-arts.org/td/entropy.htm A graph paints a thousend numbers. John S
                                  Message 16 of 22 , Jun 3, 2003
                                    Try this http://sonic-arts.org/td/entropy.htm
                                    A graph paints a thousend numbers.
                                    John S
                                  • wallyesterpaulrus
                                    ... suggest ... this isn t clear. aaron was asking about the *pitch* 10/7 as part of a scale rooted on 1/1. so do you mean 10/7 as part of a 1/1:8/7:10/7:12/7
                                    Message 17 of 22 , Jun 3, 2003
                                      --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, "francois_laferriere"
                                      <francois.laferriere@o...> wrote:
                                      > > --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, Aaron Wolf <backfromthesilo@y...>
                                      > > wrote:
                                      >
                                      > > > I'd assume that 10/7 is a better flat five for
                                      > > > something that would really be heard as a chord
                                      >
                                      > I do not have extensive musical practice, but in my mind, 10/7
                                      suggest
                                      > strongly a JI 7th dominant chord in simplest possible ratio
                                      > 7:(8):10:(12), in fact an inversion of (4):5:(6):7.

                                      this isn't clear. aaron was asking about the *pitch* 10/7 as part of
                                      a scale rooted on 1/1. so do you mean 10/7 as part of a
                                      1/1:8/7:10/7:12/7 chord? or what?
                                    • jacques dudon
                                      ... I hear 1/1 *and* square root of 2 myself. This was rather a joke in my sense, because whatever you hear, you might be able to hear as well in the
                                      Message 18 of 22 , Jun 3, 2003
                                        wallyesterpaulrus a écrit :

                                        > --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, jacques dudon <aeh@f...> wrote:
                                        >
                                        > > And another metaphysical question, when you play two tones, the second
                                        > > of frequency (square root of 2) times the first, where do you place the tonic ?
                                        >
                                        > in many if not most situations, i find the most likely tonic is about
                                        > a major third below the lower tone. in unusually sensitive
                                        > situations, such as where combinational tones are produced, i'll hear
                                        > the tonic more at a fifth below the lower tone.

                                        I hear 1/1 *and* square root of 2 myself. This was rather a joke in my sense,
                                        because whatever you hear, you might be able to hear as well
                                        in the transposition by square root of 2, so always two solutions.
                                        But your answer is very interesting, a major third below the lower tone
                                        it seems that 7/5 is not far, while the fifth below sounds more like 17/12,
                                        closer to the half octave, which generates a 5/12 that suggests a 1/6...
                                        while 17/12's second order difference tone generates a very coherent 7/24
                                        that also suggests the same harmony... good subject of study for harmonic
                                        entropy ??

                                        > but there is always
                                        > some ambiguity. observations such as these led me to develop harmonic
                                        > entropy theory:
                                        >
                                        > http://sonic-arts.org/dict/harmentr.htm
                                        > http://groups.yahoo.com/group/harmonic_entropy/
                                      • francois_laferriere
                                        ... ohhhh! I missed the point that Aaron was taking about 10/7 as part of a scale (in melodic context?)... you are right, that is different ... Yes that is
                                        Message 19 of 22 , Jun 4, 2003
                                          --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, "wallyesterpaulrus"
                                          <wallyesterpaulrus@y...> wrote:
                                          > --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, "francois_laferriere"
                                          > <francois.laferriere@o...> wrote:
                                          > > > --- In tuning@yahoogroups.com, Aaron Wolf <backfromthesilo@y...>
                                          > > > wrote:
                                          > >
                                          > > > > I'd assume that 10/7 is a better flat five for
                                          > > > > something that would really be heard as a chord
                                          > >
                                          > > I do not have extensive musical practice, but in my mind, 10/7
                                          > suggest
                                          > > strongly a JI 7th dominant chord in simplest possible ratio
                                          > > 7:(8):10:(12), in fact an inversion of (4):5:(6):7.
                                          >
                                          > this isn't clear. aaron was asking about the *pitch* 10/7 as part of
                                          > a scale rooted on 1/1.

                                          ohhhh! I missed the point that Aaron was taking about 10/7 as part of
                                          a scale (in melodic context?)... you are right, that is different

                                          > so do you mean 10/7 as part of a
                                          > 1/1:8/7:10/7:12/7 chord? or what?

                                          Yes that is what I meant (the number in parenthesis are the "missing"
                                          notes suggested by the 10/7 dyad). My problem is that I am grossly
                                          ignorant of the function of the flat fifth interval in blues.
                                          Otherwise would have suggested something more clever (or even more
                                          cleverly, I would have remained silent :-))

                                          yours truly

                                          François Laferrière
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