Getting better

Listening to the theme from “Mission: Impossible” is a nice way to force 5/4 into your head at the point of a gun. It’s still slipping from time to time, though.

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Odd time signatures

… are a pain, but they are also fun. 5/4 is irritating me at the moment, because I can’t latch on easily. It’s getting better, but I just have to listen to it a bunch to get it in my ear.

Meh.

Still sort of meh this weekend. I’ve got two good aria intros, but nothing’s shaking loose on them. Have messed around a bit, and I’d like to work on “Confusa si miri,” but I can’t get it in gear. It’s in 3/8, and I’d love to move it into 3/4 and then split everything into 16th notes. That’ll give me 12 notes per measure, and then I can play with hemiolas, which are always good fun.

But … it’s not coming. I cannot think in 4-beat notes naturally. My brain insists on feeling triplets when I have to fan a beat out into multiple notes.

Maybe I can put it into 5/4 or something. I haven’t done that yet, an oddball time signature. I don’t know. I’m just in a bit of a turnout at the moment.

I was listening to the G Major prelude from book 1 of the WTC and thought it was a cute thing to play with, but then realized that I’d already done it with “Con raucio mormorio,” the last variation. *sigh* I’ll keep chewing on it.

Rum-pum-pum-pum-paaaaah!

Done the transcription of “Confusa si miri.” A fun one. Now, to listen to a bunch of Bach and Buxtehude preludes and see what rattles loose.

Here‘s what I’m working with — not the recitatif, just the intro which starts 27 seconds in. It’s so dramatic and fantastic, and heavy sounding. I’ll probably someday want to go back and do something with it again.

Oooh oooh *jumps up and down*

Ooh, a Buxtehude version of one of the next arias! Oooh oooh oooh …

*bounces up and down in chair while making hand gestures like Wallace when he talks about going to the moon to find cheese*

“I know! I’ll go where there’s Buxtehude!

In other words, here. All those crunchy preludes … This one looks like really fertile ground.

Update: You know what I should do — I should listen to all the preludes in the WTC. I like them better than the fugues anyhow, although that probably verges on heresy coming from a lover of classical music. I think there’s a part of me that never forgave him for putting them in the wrong order, although that might not have been him; I’m not enough of a Bach specialist to know. But if it had been me, I’d have put them in order of key signature, not tonic, and have advanced in order of the circle of fifths. C Major, then A minor, then G Major, then E minor, etc. This C Major, then C minor, followed by the D’s nonsense just drives me nuts.

I have the Zhu Xiao Mei CDs and like them well enough; I really should just reorder the stupid things in iTunes and listen in their proper order, that which is ordained in Nature and cozy for the universe, as opposed to this heathen way that causes the edges of the universe to creak and my eyelid to twitch.

Meh.

I’m working it out, but I’m just not sure there’s enough “there” there. I’ll keep hammering because I’m only partly through the initial transcription, and who knows what could turn up later.

But … I wouldn’t be surprised if for some reason, a whole lot of nothing turned up.

I’m hoping for surprise, though. I really want this project to be four (Senesino) aria intros, goddamn it.

Update: Imunna fart around a bit with “Vivi, tiranno” and see what happens, too.

Working out more chords

So at least this weekend, I worked out the chords to “Confusa si miri,” so that’s good. This one’s going to take a little mental marinating.

It’s vaguely similar to “Se fiera belva” in that there’s one engaging part where he runs in order through the triads in the key signature. Down instead of up, but it’s interesting. We’ll see what it turns up.

I’m also officially Not Going To Murder Myself™ over the Albéniz version of “Se fiera.” It’s making the nerves in my right elbow tingle, and I already have a ganglion cyst in my right wrist now. I am not a conservatory brat, and I’d rather have written the thing than be able to audition for Juilliard with it.

If it’s a choice between writing “Flowers for Algernon” or being able to type it without misspellings on stage in real time, I’ll take the former.

“Se fiera belva ha cinto” — Albéniz style

I would like more time in the woodshed on this one, a lot more. One measure in particular is always a monster. Nevertheless, this one was quite fun and a real merge of two very different styles. Think “Asturias” when you hear it, although the emotional feel is quite different since this is a fairly bright Major-key piece.

Probably “Confusa se miri” next but my brain is dangling shiny things in front of me in the shape of a ragtime “Non è si vago e bello,” so we’ll see whether I can herd it into the appropriate direction.

Quarter note is 50 fucking bpm

So that’s where I am with this pseudo-Asturias thing. 60 seems to be where the tires aren’t gripping the road anymore, and I want it around 70-ish, maybe a little more. This is going to be a long, boring slog.

And right on schedule, my brain insists on churning out a rag for “Non è si vago e bello” from Giulio Cesare. It wants a distraction, so it’s dangling shiny objects in front of me as a means of distracting me from making it fight for every stinking notch on the metronome. *sigh*