Ill tempered

Tuning can be a source of some curmudgeonliness on the part of both players and listeners (‘he always plays sharp!’ …‘Who’s got the third? Hmmm – it could be a bit brighter, couldn’t it?’ …‘the intonation in that Allegro was distinctly iffy’, etc.)

So, how does tuning work? Is it fixed for every note? What does Bach mean by ‘Well-tempered’? These and other arcane musical mysteries (and a good deal of prelude and fugue, of course) will be the subjects of discussion this Wednesday.

Course materials:

Here are some visual and audio aids for the second prelude and fugue in c minor  (if you want to access them off-line, they can be downloaded from the box on the right):

Prelude c minor chords

Fugue in c: subject

Fugue c plan

… and below  (in case you missed them last week) to help deal with intervals, modulations, etc., are more general items that most of you will have seen before:


Cycle of 5ths

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