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Now there is a universal consensus between the bands and musicians who play it that this in the key of A flat. But the sample played more or less in G. This is a semitone lower; it also happens to be a key that was used quite often in this period, indeed more often then than now. This played more or less in the key of E. This is almost certainly how the problem first began. See Supplementary Comment below. As the relationship between groove speed and pitch is linear if we double the speed, we increase the pitch by one octave , we can easily establish the speed of the cutting turntable that day in However, we still have three sides to consider.

In fact, if this were the true key, the opening verse should actually be designated C sharp minor. Moreover, the author has played this very appealing and much-neglected tune on a number of occasions, when those were the keys employed, and which have universally been accepted for this piece for many years. Such a thing is highly implausible, and although the chorus is in the key of G, everything is much better when the performance is re-pitched up a semitone.

Then, the chorus is in the common key of A flat, preceded by its familiar relative minor, F minor. These are much more likely keys. But that is a mere detail. We are guilty, perhaps, of using a sledgehammer to crack a walnut…. For example, re-examining the end sections of the first and last sides of the session, we find that a pitch increase of nearly six per cent, rather than five, is necessary to restore them to the correct key.

Cornet Chop Suey

This means that, during the course of cutting the side, the lathe actually increased its speed. This is easily accounted for. The lathe should have kept exactly the same speed throughout, of course. But, if there were any deficiency in the torque applied to drive the turntable, we would expect it to be slower near the beginning of the side, when the drag of the stylus cutting the groove in the wax would be appreciably greater due to the high groove velocity.

Near the end of the disc, the groove velocity is much less, and so is the drag from the cutting stylus… thus, the turntable is able to speed up somewhat. This speed change during the cutting of the discs is consistent for all six sides. Therefore, on this session of 26th February , we suggest that:. The first is in the true key of F; the second in the false key of E flat.

Of course, it may be that you prefer the slower E flat version. This is perfectly acceptable. It would be tedious indeed, if, before playing a record, we had to have a Great Inquest into its exact pitch. So everything has its place!

Cornet Chop Suey coming to jazz fest – Penticton Western News

Supplementary Comments. To be fair, much of the above already seemed obvious.

But, this was not sufficient to indicate that his original rendition must also have been in that key. Now although ARC usually made very creditable custom dubbings of material in their archives, in this case for once they did not. This is exceptionally misleading, and must have started the whole puzzle. As a matter of fact, correct pitching of 78 transfers was a much-neglected topic until quite recently. In the early days of the Jazz Revival, its proponents were very long on enthusiasm, but understandably rather short on experience and technical know-how.

Cyr who it is. Still, the record did come out, and people heard it and loved it, which was the main thing. It bears the master number P They already had P, which had only been made just a little while before. So, naturally, they used it on U. Columbia Shipping cost cannot be calculated. Please enter a valid ZIP Code. Shipping to: Worldwide.

Cornet Chop Suey

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See appendix 2. As for other countries, and other styles of music, and indeed those artists and ensembles in the U. Perhaps they will be able to derive some simple tests to help ensure correct pitching of old 78 recordings of e. Once in the key of E flat; and also in the key of F. This was because, in the opinion of the compilers of the set, there was still no general consensus on which key it was in. To include it, therefore, in both keys was certainly very commendable. But I was puzzled that a record could be attributed to two keys so much as a tone apart.

Not merely a semitone, but a whole tone: really a very large interval! In theory at least, it should have been fairly easy to decide which was the true one. At least, I assume that this is what they did. If my assumption is correct, then I have to say that that approach might at times be deceptive. They could play anything they mentally conceived… and usually did so.

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Cornet Chop Suey - Remastered

If — as I suspect — they along with most other top musicians did this, they were rather in advance of their time. They did not need to read treatises on the psychology of musicianship, the bulk of which have proliferated in the last 50 years. They just did it anyway. Louis, from his first startling appearances on disc in , was manifestly a very special case. Both fingerings, I found, were pretty equally plausible.

It is one of six titles that were recorded at a single session in Chicago on 26th February A very important session indeed, as no less than 4 of the sides became classic Jazz standards. The obvious thing to do was look at the keys of the other 5 sides on the session, and check for anomalies. There was clearly something curious going on, as there had never been, to our knowledge, any question or dispute about the pitch of these other sides.

In order to check the keys of the performances it was essential to have access to original master pressings. These, of course, are exact replicas of the wax blank on which the record was cut. They bring us, in one single step, right into that studio in Chicago, and to the cutting lathe on which they were made.

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The use of any other version, e. Happily, these classic sides were widely re-issued on 78s in the late s and s. These sold well and are not scarce.

Best of all, four of them were pressed from the original masters. This gave us 4 opportunities to check the speed of the cutting lathe. What speed did it run at? Was the speed consistent throughout the side? Was the speed consistent throughout the session? The original work on the problem was done a couple of years ago. Much valuable help and advice was given by members of the l Internet discussion group.

It allowed the provisional conclusions to be made, as given below. Now we could investigate all 6 sides at the same time, much increasing the reliability of the findings. Naturally, all the 6 sides needed to have been transferred at exactly the same speed before we could begin the investigation. For many years, the only convenient and reliable way of checking the speed of a turntable was by a stroboscope. Typically, these take the form of a disc with a certain number of radial bars, like the spokes of a wheel.

To design a stroboscope, we must take into account the frequency of the AC supply. You can only have, say, 64 bars on your disc, or 65 bars… you cannot have and-a-half bars!