Recommended Posts

Modern hornlines work on dynamics a lot, and so the very soft parts, and especially the Fp’s and crescendos, and all variations give dramatic impact, and earn effect points.

(full disclosure, I can hardly think long on anything without “looking it up”.  So thinking about sound, I find a nice list of attributes, or elements …)

It starts with pitch and duration, easy enough.

Then you have loudness and timbre.  Next, sonic texture relates to the number of sound sources and the interaction between them. 

Spatial location represents the cognitive placement of a sound in an environmental context; including the placement of a sound on both the horizontal and vertical plane, the distance from the sound source and the characteristics of the sonic environment.   (see where I am going?)

Noise is a term often used to refer to an unwanted sound.  (ouch)

Soundscape – the component of the acoustic environment that can be perceived by humans.

If a tree falls in the forest … no not going there.  But who has played a horn outside?  (oh yeah this is the drum corps crowd, no problem).  I mean say alone in woods, or at the shore (Chet Baker, LOL), in a park, or even at an empty stadium.   A single quiet horn can be heard quite far away, and quite well, and can be impactful.  Many solos in drum corps have been rather soft, or even backfield, with dynamics, and heard and appreciated quite well, by appreciative, respectful crowds. 

I am holding out that we don’t race to amplification of horns.  It alters many of the attributes:  loudness for sure, timbre, spatial location, sonic texture, soundscape, and adds NOISE.  Pitch and duration maybe survive!  The rest is up for grabs, altered, and even with a great sound system, those pure horns acoustically are far more enjoyable to listen to.  OK, maybe we mic’ up a jazz trumpet with Harmon mute.   Big stadium, or arena show is different with 20-40,000 screaming maniacs; or just when competing with electric guitars and keyboards and way mic’d up drums, OK it calls for another approach, granted.  Yes, there is the escalation of amplification, e.g. if new Marshall stack, then bass player needs the Acoustic 18” reflex cabinet.  LOL

(Another contest is coming - let's get some fresh perception on the trend)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Again, I have no disappointment that soloists and small ensembles can now be amplified. I've come to like this ability, and believe it adds to my appreciation of the performer's talent. When someone really masters their solo part, I enjoy hearing their personal contribution in its entirety. But, I caution against EXPANDING the newer electronic benefits to become a new, and artificial, division that shares equal prominence in the show.

As to sound, I'd like to maintain the dominance of natural acoustic BRASS and PERCUSSION.  I've already felt an emergence of BRASS, PERCUSSION, and ORGAN MUSIC. That's disheartening to any fan over the age of 30!

Are limitations to electronic enhancement in DCA clearly spelled out? More importantly, are the guidelines actually enforced?

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎7‎/‎14‎/‎2017 at 6:49 PM, trptmagnet said:

Modern hornlines work on dynamics a lot, and so the very soft parts, and especially the Fp’s and crescendos, and all variations give dramatic impact, and earn effect points.

(full disclosure, I can hardly think long on anything without “looking it up”.  So thinking about sound, I find a nice list of attributes, or elements …)

It starts with pitch and duration, easy enough.

Then you have loudness and timbre.  Next, sonic texture relates to the number of sound sources and the interaction between them. 

Spatial location represents the cognitive placement of a sound in an environmental context; including the placement of a sound on both the horizontal and vertical plane, the distance from the sound source and the characteristics of the sonic environment.   (see where I am going?)

Noise is a term often used to refer to an unwanted sound.  (ouch)

Soundscape – the component of the acoustic environment that can be perceived by humans.

If a tree falls in the forest … no not going there.  But who has played a horn outside?  (oh yeah this is the drum corps crowd, no problem).  I mean say alone in woods, or at the shore (Chet Baker, LOL), in a park, or even at an empty stadium.   A single quiet horn can be heard quite far away, and quite well, and can be impactful.  Many solos in drum corps have been rather soft, or even backfield, with dynamics, and heard and appreciated quite well, by appreciative, respectful crowds. 

I am holding out that we don’t race to amplification of horns.  It alters many of the attributes:  loudness for sure, timbre, spatial location, sonic texture, soundscape, and adds NOISE.  Pitch and duration maybe survive!  The rest is up for grabs, altered, and even with a great sound system, those pure horns acoustically are far more enjoyable to listen to.  OK, maybe we mic’ up a jazz trumpet with Harmon mute.   Big stadium, or arena show is different with 20-40,000 screaming maniacs; or just when competing with electric guitars and keyboards and way mic’d up drums, OK it calls for another approach, granted.  Yes, there is the escalation of amplification, e.g. if new Marshall stack, then bass player needs the Acoustic 18” reflex cabinet.  LOL

(Another contest is coming - let's get some fresh perception on the trend)

Well, I'll be Dorisi ... didn't you used to sell pots and pans in college?    LOL

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(off topic) Andy, Andy, If you check my previous posts, there are 3 with pots and pans (Skyliners love that story!), and the one Jan 17, 2013 recounts Richie W reminding me that Pepe actually jumped on the 6 quart pot at the HoJo, and crushed it!

You know a woman came up to me at a club recently and said, do you remember that you sold me those pots and pans!   Crazy, it was a good value purchase though. 

Let's reminisce all of this in 2 years, assuming we all make it - we can celebrate 50 years since that Pepe story, selling pots and pans and marching with the Skyliners in summer of ’69.

(on topic) any more amplification observations?   I'm OK to leave that topic quiet for now, moving on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your post was great! These concepts have been around for decades, just that there weren't any terms attached to them as there are now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.