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​This shouldn't be a fight, as it seems (to me anyway) that the printed
score cannot be, nor has it ever been intended to be, the end point. There
are so many ways to speak even a single English sentence such as this one.
Think: An American accent, an Oxford accent, a Cockney one, a Scots one and
so on. How can a composer put that stuff into any score?

Mahler tried, Mahler tried!

clark

On Sun, Apr 5, 2015 at 4:20 PM, L. Hunter Kevil <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Not to start  a fight, I never got very far into Schuller's rather dogmatic
> book years ago, given my doubts about the 'precision' of a score, no matter
> how detailed. He seems to have taken as gospel Toscanini's quip about not
> needing a performance tradition for Beethoven since he had the score.
>
> I am now reading the book, Off the Record, by Neal Peres da Costa
> (recommended.) He is very convincing that the piano scores of 19th century
> composers do not give the full story on how to play their pieces.
> Unannotated expressive devices such as playing one hand before the other,
> arpeggiation, rubato, dotting, speeding u[p& slowing down, were all assumed
> by many composers and their performers. Testimony from a recording of
> Brahms playing his music and from his students shows that Brahms played in
> a manner that would disqualify him from entering Julliard today. Listen to
> the rather fascinating Arbiter CD, Behind the Notes: Brahms performed by
> colleagues and pupils. There is also evidence of Brahms's 'Wagnerian'
> tendencies as a conductor.
>
> Hunter Kevil
>
> On Sun, Apr 5, 2015 at 11:05 AM, Carl Pultz <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
> > Here's some more from Gunther Schuller and his advocacy for the score:
> >
> > "The difficulty in this discussion lies in the fact that no human being,
> > no artist, no conductor can ever be totally objective in
> > artistic/interpretive matters, or - to put it another way - can ever
> avoid
> > being subjective to some extent. Clearly, the argument generally mounted
> by
> > the opponents of textual fidelity - to wit, that someone is too
> 'objective'
> > in his performance, too cold, too intellectual, too inexpressive, too
> > reliant on the score - is itself false and specious, because even that
> > alleged 'objectivity' is bound to incorporate a great or lesser degree of
> > subjectivity....
> >
> > "We are, after all, what we are; and conductors are what they are. No
> > conductor is purposely bad or purposely good. Every conductor is trying
> to
> > evolve out of his talents the highest and most personal expression.
> > Unfortunately, this often fails because (a) there is among conductor's
> > views of themselves a sizable gap between perception and reality, that
> is ,
> > between their perception of themselves and the reality as seen by others;
> > and (b) conductors now increasingly try 'to be different' in order to
> carve
> > out for themselves some special career niche....
> >
> > "This alarming trend can best be seen and heard in recordings...in that
> > conductors, battling it out in the fiercely competitive recording market,
> > have now learned that they will stand out, will be reviewed and discussed
> > more readily, and will thus attract more attention the more they can
> > interpret a work differently from the several dozen recordings of it that
> > are already in the market place. This has become more than a trend in
> > recent years; it has become an obsession and a specific skill, eagerly
> > supported by managers and, of course, most record companies. At that
> point
> > the composer's score becomes, alas, a total irrelevance, an annoying
> > burden. In this perverse view of things, the music becomes fair game to
> be
> > exploited for whatever career gains it can provide. Beyond the immediate
> > negative effects of specific personal mis-, under-, or
> over-interpretations
> > by these conductors, there is an unfortunate cumulative effect as well:
> the
> > varied distinctive qualities and characteristics of the great symphonic
> > masterpieces are submerged in one generalized, (ironically)
> depersonalized,
> > generic, amorphous, androgynous performance style. Instead of the
> > personality of the composer - and the true personal and special essence
> of
> > the work in question - we get the personality of the conductor."
> >
> > That was published in 1997. The record companies are not so influential
> > now. These days it looks like the same marketing is deployed more broadly
> > to 'save classical music.'
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List [mailto:
> > [log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Tom Fine
> > Sent: Sunday, April 05, 2015 10:41 AM
> > To: [log in to unmask]
> > Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] SACD "surprise"
> >
> > I'll say this about Boulez -- I love that he's so polarizing! Good for
> > him! A big part of my disinterest in most orchestras and conductors today
> > is that they either try to be everything to everyone, or they pander to
> try
> > and "get the kids interested," or they are stuck in the mud of
> > over-caution. None of that is interesting. Boulez is different and
> > controversial. I like some of his recordings, do not like others. I even
> > like that he's played the Legend card in France to amass a big pile of
> > state funding for classical music (who has the power to do that here?).
> The
> > very things that David Lewis mentioned -- the "ice cold" interpretations,
> > the super-precision to certain scores, are liable to totally turn off
> > American fans who, for instance, loved the Bernstein approach to music.
> > There's nothing wrong with that! Alternative and even opposite approaches
> > to music are great, and so is debate about it. What's not great is
> > un-original thinking, over-caution and working so hard to be "inclusive"
> > that one never plants their foot on decisive lines. Be bold or be bored!
> >
> > -- Tom Fine
> >
> > ----- Original Message -----
> > From: "Carl Pultz" <[log in to unmask]>
> > To: <[log in to unmask]>
> > Sent: Sunday, April 05, 2015 10:21 AM
> > Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] SACD "surprise"
> >
> >
> > > BTW, the DAC2 is a substantial improvement on the DAC1, various
> versions
> > of which I've owned since
> > > it came out over ten years ago. Even the analog path is better. Still,
> I
> > hear a difference with it
> > > between Toslink and coax from the same Redbook source. Always have. I
> > know, I know.... The async
> > > USB is also audibly better than with the standard driver, whatever the
> > data rate. It was such an
> > > impressive upgrade that I splurged on their new amp. It replaces a
> > Bryston, which is no toy. The
> > > combo is highly revealing, yet not annoyingly so, as there often is a
> > tradeoff between
> > > transparency and musicality. I find it correct for whichever hat I'm
> > wearing, mixer or
> > > music-lover.
> > >
> > > Another aside, regarding Boulez. I don't dismiss the work of such a
> > sophisticated and accomplished
> > > musician, who has gained the respect of some of the most demanding
> > orchestras out there. It can be
> > > instructive to hear his way with music. His old Debussy series was
> > praised for its objectivity and
> > > scrupulous attention to detail, and is still valuable for it. Similarly
> > his Mahler, yet it needn't
> > > displace Barbirolli, et al. Just as with audio arts, there is no one
> > correct way, and we don't
> > > always see the value in something until time gives us perspective.
> > >
> > > -----Original Message-----
> > > From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List [mailto:
> > [log in to unmask]] On Behalf
> > > Of Tom Fine
> > > Sent: Sunday, April 05, 2015 8:49 AM
> > > To: [log in to unmask]
> > > Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] SACD "surprise"
> > >
> > > Hi John:
> > >
> > > I think what you're hearing with 96k is the 24-bit word length. I am
> not
> > convinced that the
> > > super-high sampling rates capture anything audible above what 44.1 or
> > 48k capture, but I do think
> > > that the Nyquist filtering and other factors make the audible top end
> > sound better. However, many
> > > DACs up-sample 44.1k before filtering and converting anyway. For
> > instance, the Benchmark design,
> > > of which there are many variants, up-samples everything to three
> hundred
> > and something kiloHertz,
> > > re-clocking so as to strip out jitter, then converts to analog.
> > >
> > > Here's a "white paper" about Benchmark's DAC1 approach:
> > >
> >
> http://benchmarkmedia.com/blogs/white-papers/13127453-asynchronous-upsampling-to-110-khz
> > >
> > > For the DAC2 series, the describe the "improved" system this way:
> > > -------------------------------------------
> > > UltraLock2™ Jitter Attenuation System
> > >
> > > UltraLock2™ is an improved version of the UltraLock™ system used in the
> > DAC1 and ADC1 product
> > > families. DSP processing is 32-bits, DSP headroom is 3.5 dB, sample
> rate
> > is 211 kHz, and
> > > jitter-induced distortion and noise is at least 140 dB below the level
> > of the music - well below
> > > the threshold of hearing. Benchmark's UltraLock2™ system eliminates all
> > audible jitter artifacts.
> > > ---------------------------------------------
> > >
> > > Up-sampling and over-sampling DAC designs have been around for a long
> > time, but I do think modern
> > > designs are more sophisticated in how they strip out jitter from the
> > source. The consumer high-end
> > > designers first got the jitter-rejection religion, especially when they
> > started recognizing
> > > consumer demand for USB interfaces (USB is notorious for jitter due to
> > inconsistent clocking built
> > > into typical computer CPUs). Companies like Benchmark and Mytek and
> > Lynx, which have feet in both
> > > consumer and pro audio, have put out well-reviewed and good-sounding,
> to
> > my ears, jitter-rejecting
> > > products in recent times. The other focus where I think some strides
> > have been made recently is
> > > the analog stage after conversion, there are some super-quiet and
> > near-transparent designs out
> > > there now. A modern digital system should operate so quietly that it
> > essentially has no audible
> > > noise floor in even a quiet real-world room.
> > >
> > > A simple test would be to convert some well-known analog material at
> > 96/16 and 48/16 and see if
> > > you hear a difference. Then 96/24 and 48/24, and then compare the
> > 24-bits to the 16-bits. I think
> > > that's where you'll hear the differences.
> > >
> > > To my ears, 24-bit makes a difference, especially with "air and space"
> > in something like an
> > > orchestral recording. Just transferring in 24-bit makes a difference,
> if
> > you've got a good
> > > dither-down conversion system to get to a CD master.
> > >
> > > -- Tom Fine
> > >
> > > ----- Original Message -----
> > > From: "John Haley" <[log in to unmask]>
> > > To: <[log in to unmask]>
> > > Sent: Sunday, April 05, 2015 2:44 AM
> > > Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] SACD "surprise"
> > >
> > >
> > >> CORRECTION.  When I said "catching a whole octave above 48 kHz in
> > >> frequency," I meant "catching a whole octave in frequency above what
> is
> > >> captured by a 48 kHz sampling rate."  Sorry about that.
> > >>
> > >> Best,
> > >> John
> > >>
> > >>
> > >> On Sun, Apr 5, 2015 at 2:38 AM, John Haley <[log in to unmask]>
> wrote:
> > >>
> > >>> Thanks for posting the NY Times Boulez article, Tom, which could have
> > been
> > >>> entitled "A bunch of famous musicians sitting around kissing up to
> > Pierre
> > >>> Boulez."  They remark how "influential" (i.e, famous) he is.  That he
> > is.
> > >>> Does that make him a great conductor? Nope.  I loved the Gunther
> > Schiller
> > >>> quote.  Obviously, Boulez has occasionally succeeded with a piece of
> > >>> music.  Like they say, even a stopped clock is right twice a day.
> And
> > many
> > >>> great orchestras could occasionally deliver a great performance even
> > while
> > >>> ignoring a monkey on the podium.
> > >>>
> > >>> If DGG digital recordings had max resolution of 48 kHz, as you know
> > that
> > >>> is not an appreciable difference from 44.1 kHz.  The difference in
> > >>> frequencies (pitches) those sampling rates will capture is the
> > difference
> > >>> between 22,500 and 24,000 Hz.  Way up there, that is a difference of
> > only a
> > >>> note or two (think extended piano keyboard).  I have never been able
> to
> > >>> hear the slightest difference between a recording at 44.1 kHz and one
> > at 48
> > >>> kHz.  Recording at 96 kHz is a whole 'nother thing, catching a whole
> > octave
> > >>> above 48 kHz in frequency, but also seemingly able to capture more
> > detail
> > >>> based on double the number of samples.  Or maybe I should say capture
> > the
> > >>> detail with greater accuracy.
> > >>>
> > >>> Since we routinely make hi-def dubs (at least 96/24) from analog
> master
> > >>> tapes these days that can sound really great, I have to wonder if,
> all
> > else
> > >>> being equal, those results will outshine an original digital
> recording
> > made
> > >>> at only 48 kHz.
> > >>>
> > >>> I am another one who has never felt that your average DGG orchestral
> > >>> recording captured a lot of the sheer excitement of the sound of a
> > great
> > >>> symphony orchestra.
> > >>>
> > >>> Best,
> > >>> John
> > >>>
> > >>>
> > >>> On Sat, Apr 4, 2015 at 8:21 PM, Tom Fine <
> [log in to unmask]>
> > >>> wrote:
> > >>>
> > >>>> Hi Mark:
> > >>>>
> > >>>> So from what you're saying, I gather that the maximum resolution of
> > that
> > >>>> Boulez/CSO master would be 48/24?
> > >>>>
> > >>>> -- Tom Fine
> > >>>>
> > >>>> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Mark Donahue" <
> > [log in to unmask]
> > >>>> >
> > >>>> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> > >>>> Sent: Saturday, April 04, 2015 6:13 PM
> > >>>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] SACD "surprise"
> > >>>>
> > >>>>
> > >>>>  On Sat, Apr 4, 2015 at 10:31 AM, Tom Fine <
> > [log in to unmask]>
> > >>>>> wrote:
> > >>>>>
> > >>>>>  I can't recall if it was Yamaha or Studer digital consoles, but I
> > think
> > >>>>>> you are correct in your descriptions of "4D". being a true DDD
> > system in
> > >>>>>> that the last time anything was analog was when the mic plugged
> > into the
> > >>>>>> console and the mic preamp went to a ADC.
> > >>>>>>
> > >>>>>
> > >>>>>
> > >>>>> Tom,
> > >>>>> The DG 4D system was comprised of a stagebox containing custom
> > remote mic
> > >>>>> preamps and Yamaha converters that connected digitally at 24
> > >>>>> bits/44.1/48k
> > >>>>> to an RTW bit splitter that allowed them to record 24 bit 16 track
> > on a
> > >>>>> Sony3324. The signal was also distributed to the input of a pair of
> > >>>>> Yamaha
> > >>>>> DMC-1000 digital consoles.  The normal orchestral kit that I would
> > see
> > >>>>> here
> > >>>>> in the states was a pair or three stage boxes with a pair of
> > machines for
> > >>>>> 32 track recording. It was basically modular and could be scaled
> for
> > the
> > >>>>> job.
> > >>>>> All the best,
> > >>>>> -mark
> > >>>>>
> > >>>>>
> > >>>>>
> > >>>
> > >>
> > >>
> > >
> > >
> >
>