Thursday, December 29, 2005

Now We Know Why Jimi Hendrix Was First A Violist

Been thinking about the unique nature of music as an academic field: in that in Performance and Composition, research really is what you hear. The ideas, the connections, the statements that in almost any other branch would be in the form of documentation, statistics, survey methodology, double-blind testing and so forth comes down to the moment of sound actualization. Quite something. Of course, in previous times compositions could be judged directly from score reading instead of having to hear it played - just as Clara Schumann when she complimented Brahms on his second sextet.

Of course, essentially research has to lead to something practical - pharmacy leads to new medications, education to new teaching tools. But rarely does the end product depend so much on the moment of it actually being actualized - not even the painted or sculpted arts. For most of us it's putting in 110% knowing that the concert day will lead to some sort of drop in quality or accuracy - for the rare few, the excitement of the stage actually adds 10%. For some chamber music eases stage burden - but then the thing about it is that you can also only save the ensemble so much in difficult situations.

What most non-musicians might not know is that many of us are on drugs. (You're going, yeah, no duh, but I'm actually talking about prescription drugs, whoo hoo!) They're called beta blockers and they basically lower your heart rate so that nervousness (which remains) doesn't lead to physical symptoms. I tried them once. Unfortunately for me, I naturally have an unnaturally low heart rate to begin with, so the effect was that everybody thought I was utterly pale and going to collapse. Or thought that I had mistaken the date of Halloween but the ghost impression was very good indeed. Or, are you advertising for Johnson's Baby Powder?

Putih hantu, bantu pulih. Bedak? Kata, "Tidak!"

Just kidding. We're talking about drugs ok. Please don't sue me. Or toilet paper my house. Not my house summore, my parents' wan, I'm violist, very poor wan. No trick, no treat ok, unless you want some chocolate that's expired by only a couple of years. Ok, 7, still not like from the funky 80's. Still boleh makan, just tambah baby powder tampok.

And if you believe that, you have a career as a violist.

In other news one may find it interesting that there is actually a World Fertilizer Congress, website at this link. I find it interesting to see the cool and breezy pictures right next to "Hot News!"

Also, I've had a weird dream about playing on an instrument that seems to be a combo of the Indian sitar and the Chinese er-hu. I haven't decided whether it should be called a situ or a erar.

Dan di situ ada punya error, perhaps.

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