Friday, September 09, 2005

Scale of the Day: G Pythagorean Ionian

The G Pythagorean Ionian Scale. This scale brings Harry Partch to mind a couple of different ways for me. G natural was his 1/1 (I prefer note use a simple '1' to denote the same concept/numerical value of the tonic/unison). It also brings to mind Partch's lament about "creeping Pythagoreanism" leading to stagnation in western harmonic theory.

I've been listening to Partch's 17 Lyrics of Li Po a fair bit lately. They are the earliest compositions of his that remain (he destroyed his earlier works) and they clearly establish his stylistic approach to text, vocals and intonation in a manner that carried throughout the rest of his creative output. He began writing the 17 Lyrics of Li Po in New Orleans. A city that will be mourned for some time to come.

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