Pages 16-25

We have still not begun any exercises for the saxophone. The section, “Rudiments of Music”, covers the basic names of notes and rhythms and advances to performing mordents in just nine pages.
In his introduction Paul de Ville says “Before the student can commence to play any instrument it is necessary that he should be acquainted with the rudiments of musical Notation. THIS STATEMENT IS A BIG LIE!!!! Not being acquainted with “the rudiments of musical Notation” hasn’t inhibited Charlie Daniel’s ability to play the fiddle. Ray Charles wasn’t much of a sight reader, and I wonder if the Suzuki approach should be chucked away in light of de Ville’s statement.
But, having a clear explanation of notation and a reference and is very useful. Most of de Ville’s information is accurate but with a few holes. For example he explains dotted notes by using ties but he never explains what a tie is.
I have never actually read the text to this section until today. It doesn’t fit contemporary styles of writing instructional material but is more in the style of a Charles Dickens’ novel. He writes, “A scale may be formed on any note, but in order to produce semitones it may be required to employ certain characters, which raise degrees, of any note in the scale” I think he trying to say that a # raises a note by a half step.
This is a good one, ”When C is taken as 1, the scale or key is said to be in its natural position. As 1 is the basis of the scale, the foundation on which it rests, so the letter which is taken for this sound is called the Key-note.” I think he means C is tonic in the key of C.
Or “It has been stated that the tonal difference between two notes on adjacent degrees of the staff is not always the same, likewise intervals of a third, fourth etc. vary as to tonal content.” I have no idea what he is talking about.
All his texts are difficult and probably impossible for the beginner to understand. The section on scales is limited to major, minor and chromatic. The section on meters doesn’t include odd or mixed meters and I disagree with his interruption of the gruppetto.
As always I enjoy your comments.
Neal Ramsay

Published in: on September 23, 2009 at 9:41 am  Leave a Comment  

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