Category: Research

Why doesn’t C sound like D?

I’m talking about keys of course – not the notes themselves! We all have favourite scales and keys. My current ones seem to have tonic notes between C and E flat. Why is that? Why, when we tend to use an equally tempered scale, does one scale sound differently to us than another? There are…
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Building Blocks – Excerpts

Building Blocks is one of those pieces that, although destined as part of a suite of works, could easily work as a stand alone unit. When I couldn’t stop hearing the beginnings of Building Blocks in my head, I knew I had to get working on it. In previous posts I have written about my…
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After D: What about the other keys?

My last post was all about D major and D minor – and why, out of the most popular keys, it appeared to be the most popular of all (see my survey results post for the results of my key signature survey). D had EQ frequency ratios closest to those of JI for the perfect…
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There’s something about D major/minor..

A couple of weeks ago, I posted my survey results about key signatures, sharps and flats. The data drew me to the conclusion that there’s something special about both D major and minor that draws us to them. Armed with this theory, I sought to investigate. For a long time, I’ve suspected that the reason…
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Some structural thoughts

Thank you for the interesting thoughts on my sharps and flats research. I am currently in the midst of the next phase: trying to work out why D major and minor (and D dorian?) are the most popular scales. Hopefully it won’t be too long until I share more of my thoughts and findings with…
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Sharps and flats; Survey results

A brief introduction Musicians encounter key signatures constantly, yet it’s a staple of music that we rarely think much of, over and above the accidentals we must remember throughout the piece in question. We take them for granted, and each tend to gravitate towards certain keys in our various musicals roles. I’ve had many discussions…
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Sharps or flats?

A couple of days ago, I was transcribing some piano parts for a client. After submitting the final files, I was told that the client always thought of a certain piece as a ‘flat’ piece, and could I write it as such? (I’d written it in an equivalent sharp key)Interestingly, as soon as I received…
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All in the mind – The role of auralisation within the compositonal process of Sibelius generation composers – abstract

While the concept of imagining music is well established, the term auralisation has not been previously used to describe the process. Although auralisation was a key compositional tool for composers throughout history, technological advances have resulted in software which can notate and play back a version of the score. Consequently, there is a strong possibility…
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