Sunday, April 30, 2006

Baseball Post: 3-picks - San Francisco, Cincinnati, Phoenix

May 1
Jake Peavy (1-3) (SD) vs. Jamey Wright (2-1) (SF)
The NL West is the hardest one to call because it's a weak division just like it was last year. With the Colorado Rockies spending some time in first place through April we won't know much about this division until the NL East and NL Central teams take some shots at these clubs. The chances of the Padres to defend their title rests squarely on the shoulders of their ace pitcher Jake Peavy. His first month has not been encouraging for the friars. In nearly every comparison graph between Peavy and Jamey Wright they seem to have swapped places performance-wise this year.
update: final score - SD 10, SF 4 -- W - Jake Peavy, L - Jamey Wright
Wright lost this one with that big inning in the fourth as seven Padres came around to score. More than enough to determine the final outcome. Peavy had far fewer strikeouts than I would expect from him over 8 innings of work.
Jake Peavy: 8.0IP, 6H, 2R, 2ER, 1BB, 4SO, 0HR - W
Jamey Wright: 5.1IP, 10H, 10R, 8ER, 2BB, 2SO, 0HR - LMay 2
Sidney Ponson (3-0) (STL) vs. Bronson Arroyo (4-0) (CIN)
actual: Sidney Ponson (3-0) (STL) vs. Dave Williams (1-2) (CIN)
These are two starting pitchers off to a great start after switching over to the National League this year. Both are undefeated. Ponson has a much better defense working behind him and Arroyo has better numbers overall so this should be an even matchup.
update: final score - STL 2, CIN 3 -- W - Todd Coffey, L - Brian Falkenborg
At some point the scheduled starting pitcher Bronson Arroyo was moved up by a day. Both starters pitched well as this was a close game that came down to a walk-off single from Jose Valentin (pinch hitting even) to give the win to Cincinnati. Who are now off to an unbelievable 19-8 start that puts them in first place in the crowded NL Central. I really expected this team to be near the bottom. Though I suspect they will be like last year's Baltimore Orioles and do a long dive in the standings through the second half of the season.
Sidney Ponson: 6.0IP, 6H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 2SO, 2HR - ND
Dave Williams: 6.2IP, 8H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 2SO, 1HR - ND


May 3
Greg Maddux (5-0) (CHC) vs. Miguel Batista (2-1) (ARI)

Mad Dog has been phenomenal this year. Batista had that one 11-strikeout performance followed by inconsistency. Anything can happen, but the smart money's on Maddux in this one.
update: final score -CHC 1, ARI 5 -- W - Miguel Batista, L - Greg Maddux, SV - Jose Valverde
Anything really can happen. Batista defied the odds and beat mad dog with the help of an offense that is suddenly hot for the D-backs. I actually think that the D-backs have a better shot at the NL West title than they get credit for. (ERA and Win Probability graphing from Fangraphs)

Scale of the Day: G Dorian diminished 4 mapped to the Triative

GDorianDiminished4MappedToTheTriative

The G Dorian diminished 4 mapped to the Triative Scale.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Friday, April 28, 2006

Scale of the Day: G Pythagorean Dorian mapped to the Square-root-of-2

GPythagoreanDorianMappedToTheSquareRootOf2

The G Pythagorean Dorian mapped to the Square-root-of-2 Scale.

Baseball Post: 3-picks, Anaheim, Anaheim, New York

April 28
Freddy Garcia (3-1) (CHW) vs. Jeff Weaver (1-2) (LAA)
This will be the first time the White Sox come into Angel Stadium since knocking the Angels out of the post-season on their way to winning everything in 2005. There should be plenty of fans on hand with bitter memories of questionable umpire calls through that series. Freddy Garcia is a longtime favorite of mine and Weaver impressed me when I watched him shut out the Rockies in a complete game effort with the Dodgers last September. If Weaver brings that level of sharpness to this one it could have the makings of a pitching duel. This is one where I almost root for both sides.
update: final score - CHW 8, LAA 5 -- W - Freddy Garcia, L - Jeff Weaver
This was Garcia's 103rd career win in the majors as he became the Venezuelan pitcher with the most wins recorded in the big leagues. There was a lot of offense early from the White Sox in this one as they strung together a lot of hits in the 2nd and 3rd innings to chase Weaver out of this one. I tuned in right about the time Weaver fell apart and he just looked awful. It looked like his location and velocity were failing him. I hope he pulls it together and gets a little more consistent going forward.
Freddy Garcia: 6.0IP, 4H, 3R, 3ER, 4BB, 5SO, 1HR - W
Jeff Weaver: 2.1IP, 8H, 8R, 8ER, 2BB, 4SO, 1HR - LApril 29
Jose Contreras (3-0) (CHW) vs. Kelvim Escobar (3-1) (LAA)
Marking the first time in my "3-picks" series I pick two games in a row between the same two teams -- this one strikes me as an interesting matchup between two pitchers off to good starts this year. Contreras has become a tough pitcher to beat since leaving the Yankees and I suspect he'll continue to thrive with the southsiders for some time.
update: final score - CHW 2, LAA 1 -- W - Jose Contreras, L - Kelvim Escobar, SV - Bobby Jenks
I was impressed with Jose Contreras in this one. He's incredibly durable and his ability to change speeds and locations kept him effective through 8 and one-third. The Angel's hitters seemed particularly off balance and unable to make good contact all night. There were lots of swings way out in front or weak hits right at fielders. This could be a good year for Contreras if he can make so many elite hitters look this bad.
Jose Contreras: 8.1IP, 5H, 1R, 1ER, 1BB, 4SO, 0HR - W
Kelvim Escobar: 5.0IP, 3H, 1R, 1ER, 1BB, 3SO, 0HR - L
April 30
Gustavo Chacin (4-0) (TOR) vs. Mike Mussina (3-1) (NYY)
Chacin is quickly becoming my favorite starting pitcher this year. He was the beneficiary of a shakey Randy Johnson outing in Toronto in his last start and this time I'm definitely pulling for him to get the better of the Moose over at Yankee Stadium.
update: final score - TOR 1, NYY 4 -- W - Mike Mussina, L - Gustavo Chacin, SV - Mariano Rivera
Mike Mussina is off to a hot start this year. And over his career he's been an elite talent on the mound. He just seems to always be pitching for the "bad guys" as I've seen him work to devestating effect in the first game of the playoffs twice now. He seemed human last year as he struggled through the second and third time through the batting order. But this season he seems to have no such a trouble as he notches another win. Chacin pitched well in this one. He was just done in by a better performance that held his would-be run support way down.
Gustavo Chacin: 6.0IP, 6H, 2R, 2ER, 3BB, 6SO, 1HR - L
Mike Mussina: 6.0IP, 7H, 1R, 1ER, 2BB, 7SO, 0HR - W(Win Probability graphs from Fangraphs)

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Scale of the Day: G Dorian augmented 4

GDorianAugmented4

The G Dorian augmented 4 Scale as one would find it on any conventionally tuned, equal tempered instrument.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Scale of the Day: C Sharp Aeolian 1% wide

CSharpAeolian1PercentWide

The C Sharp Aeolian 1% wide Scale.

Baseball Post: 3-picks - Chicago (northside), Cleveland, Kansas City

April 25
Dontrelle Willis (1-0) (FLA) vs. Sean Marshall (1-0) (CHC)
Dontrelle probably won't win 22 games again this year. But he'll probably pitch just as well despite the poor defense and run support working behind him. And this could be where win #2 comes in as he takes on the rookie Sean Marshall against a struggling Chicago Cubs. (Well... they struggle when anyone other than Mad Dog gets the start.)
update: final score - FLA 1, CHC 3 -- W - Sean Marshall, L - Dontrelle Willis, SV - Ryan Dempster
This one was a pitching duel. And at Wriggley field that means both starters were exceptional. Marshall picked up the win on just his third major league start of his career as the "reconstituted" version of the Marlins of '06 couldn't put up the run support to make Willis's efforts stand up.
Dontrelle Willis: 7.0IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 3BB, 6SO, 0HR - L
Sean Marshall: 7.0IP, 2H, 0R, 0ER, 2BB, 7SO, 0HR - W
April 26
Tim Wakefield (1-3) (BOS) vs. Cliff Lee (1-1) (CLE)
The old knuckleballer for the Red Sox takes on last year's 18-game winner. I think Lee has the potential to be Cy Young material this year if he continues his current rate of 7.4 strikeouts per 9-innings pitched. I'd also like to see Victor Martinez hit one of those knuckleball pitches. He was 2-for-3 against Wakefield last year with a homerun, a double and a strikeout.
update: final score - BOS 1, CLE 7 -- W - Cliff Lee, L - Tim Wakefield
Well, Victor Martinez did go 2-for-3 and drew a walk. But hit hitting the knuckleball wasn't as productive as scoring from third on a passed ball and later advancing to third on another passed ball. With all that unpredictable movement in the knuckler there will be a lot of pitches that get past the catcher and there were four of those in this one. But it was the fastball that Wakefield tried to get past Jhonny Peralta that did all the damage needed with a 3-run home run in the bottom of the first to put Cleveland on top for the duration. Lee was outstanding on the mound. He's emerging as one to keep an eye on this year.
Tim Wakefield: 5.2IP, 5H, 5R, 3ER, 4BB, 3SO, 1HR - L
Cliff Lee: 6.0IP, 4H, 1R, 1ER, 4BB, 7SO, 1HR - WApril 27
Johan Santana (0-3) (MIN) vs. Mark Redman (KC)
With only 6 games scheduled today it's a good time to head over to Kansas City to see just how terrible this year's Royals team really is. I remember seeing Mark Redman pitch with Oakland back in 2004 and he seemed to have pretty good stuff. But his 5-15 record with the Pirates last year sounds like KC material to me. Santana is still looking for his first win and it should be coming at the Royal's expense in this one. After all, the Twinkies can't keep on losing to every team within their own division all season long.
update: final score - MIN 7, KC 3 -- W - Johan Santana, L - Mark Redman
How bad is Kansas City? Well, when the former Cy Young pitcher from Minnesota blows into town with a full range of pitches and an ability to change speeds these teams just aren't competing at the same level. A 5-run frame at the top of the second inning sent Redman packing after just 1 and two-thirds and provided all the support needed to determine the outcome of the game. Santana had 10 strikeouts while 5 Royals pitcher combined for just 3 K's. That's terrible. Royals pitching also issued 7 free passes compared to just one by the Twins. And KC's defense allowed an extra inning's worth of outs with 3 errors. KC is 5-15 and they'll be lucky if they win more than 42 games this year.
Johan Santana: 8.0IP, 7H, 3R, 3ER, 1BB, 10SO, 1HR - W
Mark Redman: 1.2IP, 6H, 5R, 5ER, 3BB, 0SO, 0HR - L(Win Probability graphs by Fangraphs)

Monday, April 24, 2006

Scale of the Day: C Sharp Aeolian mapped to the Triative

CSharpAeolianMappedToTheTriative

The C Sharp Aeolian mapped to the Triative Scale.

Hearing Meaning & Mystery at the Bakery

Dave Douglas has a hot quintet touring the West Coast right now. I just caught their last two sets at the Jazz Bakery and their next stop is the great Yoshi's in Jack London Square in Oakland, CA. They're featuring outstanding new material from the just released Meaning and Mystery available online at Douglas's own Greeleaf label. They're also playing a healthy dose of material from both Strange Liberation and The Infinite as well. It's a mix of stellar composition combined with immensly creative improvisers with unbelievable chemistry.

Dave Douglas - trumpet
Donny McCaslin - sax
Uri Caine - Rhodes electric piano
James Genus - bass
Clarence Penn - drums

I can hear several decades of jazz tradition being respectfully refracted through the sound of this group. And these guys have a lot of fun drawing upon so much tradition and aren't afraid to change things up with rapid-fire transitions if need be. Or they'll also linger for a while on some beautiful textures as well. This is jazz with deep roots and a progressive edge. The bell-like timbres of the electric piano adds a great color to the overall sound. I was also struck by the rhythmic precision, intervallic leaps and spare multiphonic tones of McCaslin this evening. I'd be curious to hear what he could do in an extended solo setting where he could draw out the extremes of his sound. Clarence Penn also impressed me with his dynamic range. He's incorporated a wood block on his kit and it never popped out with that cutting sound or felt out of place.

The continuity between through-composed and improvised material is exceptional - as it often is with Dave Douglas multiple ensemble projects. With the quintet, the line delineating one from another is more obvious than with most of his other groups. But it's still a vastly satisfying blend.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Scale of the Day: C Sharp Aeolian diminished 4 mapped to the Square-root-of-2

CSharpAeolianDiminished4MappedToTheSquareRootOf2

The C Sharp Aeolian diminished 4 mapped to the Square-root-of-2 Scale.

Baseball Post: 3 Picks - Chicago (southside), St. Louis, Houston

April 22
Brad Radke (2-1) (MIN) vs. Freddy Garcia (2-1) (CWS)
An AL Central contest hosted by the defending World Champions. Now that Freddy Garcia has a couple of wins after his disastrous debut it remains to be seen if the great velocity on his fastball will be there consistently. I'll be cheering for Garcia at this one even though it's hard not to be a Twins fan after reading some side-splittingly funny posts from Batgirl.
update: final score - MIN 2, CHW 9 -- W - Freddy Garcia, L - Brad Radke
Garcia looked sharp one as he pitched deep in this one. There were plenty of balls in play as there was a grand total of 9 strikeouts (out of 51 outs recorded). The offense that really mattered was Jermain Dye's 3-run homer in the first inning to give the White Sox a lead that held through the rest of the game. I hope that signals the end of Dye's slow start on the season.
Brad Radke: 5.0IP, 10H, 6R, 6ER, 2BB, 3SO, 1HR - L
Freddy Garcia: 6.2IP, 7H, 2R, 2ER, 1BB, 3SO, 1HR - W


April 23
Greg Maddux (3-0) (CHC) vs. Jason Marquis (3-0) (STL)
Mad-Dog was outstanding in his last start against the Dodgers. Now he leads the Cubs against their long standing rival in Missouri against a pitcher who is also undefeated.
update: final score - CHC 7, STL 3 -- W - Greg Maddux, L - Jason Marquis
This one was all Maddux as he pitched 7 scoreless innings and even picked up a hit of his own and scored a run. That's pretty good for a guy who just turned 40 earlier this month. This performance pushed his ERA down to 0.99 for his first four starts of the season. He continues to be one of the best pitchers of the live ball era.
Greg Maddux: 7.0IP, 5H, 0R, 0ER, 1BB, 4SO, 0HR - W
Jason Marquis: 6.0IP, 7H, 7R, 4ER, 2BB, 2SO, 2HR - L

April 24
Derek Lowe (1-1) (LAD) vs. Andy Pettitte (1-3) (HOU)
Pettitte is 1-3? Could that be a result of that horrible Astro's run support? Will Lowe beat Houston? Let's hope so.
update: final score - LAD 6, HOU 2 -- W - Takashi Saito, L - Brad Lidge (blown save), SV - Danys Baez
Both starters pitched well in this one as each allowed just one run in seven innings. But the real drama came in the top of the ninth as Brad Lidge gave up a grand slam to Nomar Garciaparra to pick up the loss and a blown save. (Lidge is a recent addition to my fantasy team, so the blown save would be troubling if Danys Baez wasn't also on my roster. I was going to get that stat one way or the other in this one). The Astros lose it. There is much rejoicing at HurdAudio.
Derek Lowe: 7.0IP, 4H, 1R, 1ER, 2BB, 2SO, 0HR - ND
Andy Pettitte: 7.0IP, 1H, 1R, 1ER, 3BB, 5SO, 1HR - ND

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Scale of the Day: C Sharp Pythagorean Aeolian

CSharpPythagoreanAeolian

The C Sharp Pythagorean Aeolian Scale.

Baseball Post: 3 picks - Cincinnati, Minneapolis, Milwaukee

April 19
Dontrelle Willis (1-0) (FLA) vs. Aaron Harang (2-1) (CIN)
Dontrelle Willis continues to be the most compelling starting pitcher in the National League even if the team working behind him is mired in that dreaded "rebuilding" mode. He's taken his team's unfortunate predicament in stride and comes off as a role model for how professional athletes should conduct themselves both on and off the field.
(Meanwhile... I wonder if film director Penny Marshall will be on hand at the Dodgers game in LA to watch Marshall (CHC) vs. Penny (LAD)...)
update: final score - FLA 8, CIN 9 -- W - Todd Coffey, L - Todd Wellemeyer
What a difference a year makes. This is not a game that the 2005 Marlins would have lost. By the same token, this is not a game that the 2005 Reds would have won either. Dontrelle Willis pitched well and left with an 8-4 lead after six innings of work. And on just about any other team in the majors he would have won this one. But this mix of rookies and unknowns (and painfully knowns) working behind him gave Cincinnati an extra inning's worth of outs with 3 errors and that was enough for a walk-off victory at the Great American Ballpark.
Dontrelle Willis: 6.0IP, 6H, 4R, 4ER, 4BB, 6SO, 0HR - ND
Aaron Harang: 4.0IP, 9H, 5R, 5ER, 1BB, 5SO, 3HR - ND

April 20
Bartolo Colon (0-2) (LAA) vs. Scott Baker (1-1) (MIN)
actual: Hector Carrasco (LAA) vs. Scott Baker (1-1) (MIN)
Last year's AL Cy Young Award winner takes to the Metrodome in Minneapolis looking for his first win of the season. Baker appeared in only 10 games last season -his first in the majors - and came away with a 3-3 record. If he can win 13 this year they'll call it a "Baker's Dozen" for sure.
update: final score - LAA 6, MIN 4 -- W - Kevin Gregg, L - Jesse Crain, SV - Francisco Rodriguez
Bartolo Colon was placed on the DL shortly before this game as longtime journeyman starter Hector Carrasco went to work on this one and only lasted 3 innings after giving up 3 earned runs. I suspect that Colon is still struggling with the injuries and soreness that sidelined him this past postseason as he really hasn't been himself for some time now. I hope he recovers soon. The Angel's offense was able to pick this one up despite the shakey pitching at the start of this one. And K-Rod seemed to have no ill-effects from his blown save just one day earlier.
Hector Carrasco: 3.0IP, 4H, 3R, 3ER, 3BB, 4SO, 0HR - ND
Scott Baker: 5.0IP, 6H, 4R, 2ER, 2BB, 2SO, 0HR - ND

April 21
Bronson Arroyo (2-0) (CIN) vs. Ben Sheets (0-1) (MIL)
I've managed to pick all 3 of Bronson Arroyo's first three starts of the year. He is the pitching story for April and all eyes will be on his prowess at the plate as he looks for career homer #3. And after that 81-81 record last year Milwaukee Brewer fans are actually expecting a winning season this year. They do have several players I'd like to see and Ben Sheets is one starter I wouldn't want to miss.
update: final score - CIN 3, MIL 2 -- W - Bronson Arroyo, L - Ben Sheets, SV - David Weathers
This is more like it. A pitching duel as both starters went deep with plenty of strikeouts in a game that was over in just 2 hours and 17 minutes. The change of teams and leagues seems to have rejuvinated Arroyo's pitching career even if he didn't go yard for the third time in as many starts.
Bronson Arroyo: 8.0IP, 6H, 1R, 1ER, 2BB, 8SO, 1HR - W
Ben Sheets: 7.0IP, 6H, 2R, 2ER, 0BB, 10SO, 0HR - L

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Scale of the Day: A Sharp Phrygian diminished 4

ASharpPhrygianDiminished4

The A Sharp Phrygian diminished 4 Scale as one would find it on any conventionally tuned, equal tempered instrument.

Baseball Post: 3 picks - Boston, Phoenix, Toronto

April 16
Jarrod Washburn (1-1) (SEA) vs. Josh Beckett (2-0) (BOS)
Washburn was a bit of an under rated presence in the Angel's rotation last year with his 3.20 ERA in 29 starts. He's a Mariner now and I'm curious to see how he helps them out at Fenway Park - a place that's always been a tough stop for the M's. Beckett is also with a new team as the Red Sox benefited from the Florida Marlin fire sale this past off-season. I'm curious to see how he takes to American League hitters and the green monster. On paper these two pitchers appear to be well matched.
update: final score - SEA 2, BOS 3 -- W - Josh Beckett, L - Jarrod Washburn, SV - Jonathan Papelbon
The M's just never seem to catch much of a break at Fenway. This time around there was a bad call in the first inning that allowed a run to score for Boston and the wind seemed to be a factor in some odd plays as well. But there are still some questions about Washburn's control that will need to be resolved over the next few starts. It sounds like his fastball isn't really hitting the target with consistency. I'll have to take a look at some footage to see if Johjima is moving around more than usual. Beckett, however, also had the wind to contend with and managed to be pretty sharp as he takes his record to 3-0.
Jarrod Washburn: 6.0IP, 3H, 3R, 2ER, 4BB, 5SO, 0HR - L
Josh Beckett: 7.0IP, 6H, 2R, 1ER, 1BB, 5SO, 0HR - W

April 17
Matt Morris (2-0) (SFG) vs. Miguel Batista (1-0) (ARI)
actual: Jeff Fassero (1-0) (SFG) vs. Miguel Batista (1-0) (ARI)
After spending 2005 as a closer for the Toronto Blue Jays, Miguel Batista returned to the Arizona Diamondbacks and struck out 11 Rockies in his first start. Was that the start of a career year for Batista? We'll have to see how he fares against the Giants. Morris was part of that great Cardinals rotation last year and he's already started out with a pair of wins for San Francisco.
update: final score - SFG 10, ARI 9 -- W - Steve Kline, L - Jose Valverde, SV - Tim Worrell
I remember Jeff Fassero as the only pitcher to record a win in the Mariner's ill-fated 1997 postseason. The only thing holding off the Baltimore Orioles from a clean sweep in the first round. At which point the chorus of Mariner fans will drown me out with the mantra: "we will never again discuss the 1997 postseason. It never happened." Fassero has pitched for 9 teams over the past 15 years. Tonight was not his best night. This was an ugly game all around and it pretty well sums up the overall attractiveness of the National League West division. Fassero didn't even pitch the minimum 5 innings for a win and there were just too many runs scored for a quality start on either side. It was a sacrifice fly in the top of the ninth by Steve Finley to score Ray Durham that led to a merciful end to this train wreck of a game.
Jeff Fassero: 4.0IP, 7H, 4R, 4ER, 2BB, 2SO, 2HR - ND
Miguel Batista: 5.0IP, 11H, 7R, 6ER, 2BB, 6SO, 0HR - ND

April 18
Randy Johnson (2-1) (NYY) vs. Gustavo Chacin (2-0) (TOR)
This is a match of southpaws at opposite ends of their respective careers. The Big Unit has done it all in 18+ years as a pitcher: 5 Cy Young awards spanning both leagues, 10-time All-Star, a World Series ring and World Series MVP award, 9 time strikeout leader and one perfect game all under his belt as he closes out his career in pinstripes. I think Chacin has many of these same accomplishments ahead of him if he stays on his current trajectory. This will be only his 37th career big league start. And unlike the Big Unit, Chacin has his own cologne.
update: final score - NYY 5, TOR 10 -- W - Gustavo Chacin, L - Randy Johnson
This one turned out to be a bit of a slugfest as neither of these starters were sharp early on. Chacin gave up 4 runs and 2 homers in the first inning before settling down to pick up a win on Johnson's uncharacteristcally poor start. It sounds like the all-star's control wasn't working for him and he was pulled early. Toronto has some good pitching this year and I hope they put a good scare into the Yankees more than once from now to October.
Randy Johnson: 3.1IP, 9H, 7R, 7ER, 2BB, 2SO, 2HR - L
Gustavo Chacin: 6.0IP, 7H, 5R, 5ER, 3BB, 1SO, 2HR - W

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Scale of the Day: G Locrian

GLocrian

The G Locrian Scale as one would find it on any conventionally tuned, equal tempered instrument.

Some Easter Listening Suggestions

With the shift to the sunny side of the Vernal Equinox (for those of us in the northern hemisphere) comes the occasion of spring and the Easter reflections on rebirth, resurrection and renewal. Every year around this time I try to put on a few works of music that either directly or indirectly relate to the spiritual expressions that expanding daylight hours provoke.

Passio by Arvo Part. This is an incredibly beautiful recording performed by the Hilliard Ensemble (bathed in rich ECM-flavored reverb). The text is an account of the resurrection story from the New Testament that unfolds in choral splendor for just over an hour. As an expression of devotion and love this work hints at intimidating depths of faith.

Requiem, op. 5 by Hector Berlioz. I first heard this work on an Easter Sunday as an undergraduate student and it has stuck with me ever since.

Mary Lou's Mass by Mary Lou Williams. Solemn devotion that swings.

Angel Song by Kenny Wheeler. With Kenny Wheeler on trumpet and flugelhorn, Lee Konitz on alto saxophone, Bill Frisell on guitar and Dave Holland on acoustic bass. This is a great quartet of musicians who each musically mean a great deal to me individually coming together to realize an inspired set of compositions by Wheeler.

Chrysalid Requiem by Toby Twining. Sacred prose set with incredible harmonic range. There's plenty for open ears to drink in with this one.

A Love Supreme by John Coltrane. Possibly the most sacred work of them all.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Scale of the Day: F 11, Square-root-of-2, Construct #1 - Lydian Mode

F11SquareRootOf2ConstructNo1LydianMode

The F 11, Square-root-of-2, Construct #1 - Lydian Mode - Scale. This "simple" scale features an exquisitely beautiful 'dissonance' with a what sounds like a major seventh just over a quarter-tone sharp beating against that octave and nothing else. (Here it's actually spelled out as an octave that is 48.68 cents flat.) The 11/8 "tritone" is added to the 600-cent Square-root-of-2 "tritone" and falls just short of a full octave.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Scale of the Day: E 3, 5, Construct #1 - Lydian Mode - in Square-root-of-2-space

E5-3ConstructNo1LydianModeInSquareRootOf2Space


The E 3, 5, Construct #1 - Lydian Mode - in Square-root-of-2-space Scale.

Baseball Post: 3 picks - National League Aces

April 13
Doug Davis (MIL) vs. Jeff Suppan (0-1) (STL)
This is the final game of the inaugural series at St. Louis' gorgeous new ballpark. Doug Davis put together 208 strikeouts last year with a .500 record and shows a lot of promise. But the big draw for watching Brewer's games is that phenomenal closer - Derrick Turnbow. I'm hoping that guy turns in 50+ saves this year.
update: final score - MIL 4, STL 3 (11 innings) -- W Jorge De La Rosa, L - Jason Isringhausen, SV - Derrick Turnbow
This was the game of the day by any standard. It's good to see Turnbow picking up his fifth save of this young season but the story of this extra innings affair is clearly Carlos Lee as he pretty much won it single handedly with a wall climb to rob a would-be walk-off 2-run homer off the bat of Juan Encarnacion in the bottom of the 10th and then led off the top of the 11th with the home run that determined the outcome of the game. I'm trying to remember why I didn't put Lee on my fantasy team.
Doug Davis: 6.0IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 1BB, 4SO, 0HR - ND
Jeff Suppan: 6.0IP, 5H, 3R, 1ER, 2BB, 2SO, 0HR - ND

April 14
Jason Schmidt (0-1) (SFG) vs. Brad Penny (2-0) (LAD)
actual: Jamey Wright (1-0) (SFG) vs. Brad Penny (2-0) (LAD)
The old Giants/Dodgers rivalry renews itself in Los Angeles this year with a couple of big game pitchers. Both these guys have some postseason pitching experience that I remember well. In particular I remember Penny's wins against the Yankees back in the 2003 World Series when he was a Marlin. Schmidt was also a winner in his World Series appearance in 2002 even though the Angels ultimately took that series.
update: final score - SFG 2, LAD 1 -- W - Jamey Wright, L - Hong-Chih Kuo, SV - Tim Worrell
After a rain delay to start the game it was Wright that actually took to the mound for the Giants as a pitching duel ensued. Randy Winn supplied one home run for San Francisco and Jeff Kent balanced it with a homer for Los Angeles. But in the end it was a sacrifice fly off the bat of Ray Durham that allowed Omar Vizquel to score the winning run for the Giants at the top of the ninth.
Jamey Wright: 8.0IP, 5H, 1R, 1ER, 2BB, 5SO, 1HR - W
Brad Penny: 6.0IP, 2H, 1R, 1ER, 0BB, 4SO, 1HR - ND

April 15
Jake Peavy (1-1) (SD) vs. John Smoltz (0-1) (ATL)
Peavy was rocked by the Colorado Rockies (and some bad defense working behind him) in his last start on April 9. The Padres need this ace to get back to his dominating form. When he's on he's electric and incredible to watch. And Smoltz is still tough in the tail end of his Hall of Fame caliber career.
update: final score - SD 0, ATL 2 -- W - John Smoltz, L - Jake Peavy
This will be a long, long season if the Padres don't provide some kind of run support for their ace pitcher. This was a good, old fashioned pitcher's duel and complete game shutout performances tend to win games and that's what Smoltz delivered to get the better end of this short, well-pitched game.
Jake Peavy: 7.0IP, 4H, 2R, 2ER, 2BB, 8SO, 1HR - L
John Smoltz: 9.0IP, 4H, 0R, 0ER, 2BB, 4SO, 0HR - W

Monday, April 10, 2006

Scale of the Day: E Flat Whole-tone 2% wide

EFlatWholeTone2PercentWide

The E Flat Whole-tone 2% wide Scale.

Baseball Post: 3 Picks - From The Chief to a Rumble at RFK

April 10
Freddy Garcia (0-1) (CHW) vs. Jeremy Bonderman (1-0) (DET)
Garcia impressed me back during his Seattle days. His last start on April 4 was just terrible and a far cry from his performance in game 4 of the World Series this past October. Bonderman put together his first winning season of his career last year (14-13) after debuting with that miserable '03 Tigers club with a 6-19 record.
update: final score - CHW 5, DET 3 -- W - Freddy Garcia, L - Jeremy Bonderman, SV - Bobby Jenks
Garcia managed to get the velocity on his fastball back for this one and the win pushed him into triple digits with career win number 100. I hope this is the Freddy Garcia that will show up for every fifth start for the White Sox. Comerica Park sounds like a big, spacious field where hitters really have to earn their home runs.
Freddy Garcia: 6.0IP, 5H, 3R, 3ER, 2BB, 5SO, 1HR - W
Jeremy Bonderman: 7.0IP, 6R, 4R, 4ER, 2BB, 8SO, 1HR - L

April 11
Bronson Arroyo (1-0) (CIN) vs. Glendon Rusch (0-1) (CHC)
This is a rematch from the April 5 game that featured these same starters. This time played at Wriggley Field -- another hitter friendly park so Arroyo will have a shot to hit his second career homerun in as many games.
update: final score - CIN 9, CHC 2 -- W - Bronson Arroyo, L - Glendon Rusch
I was kidding when I suggested that Arroyo would belt another homer. But he went ahead and knocked another one. Glendon Rusch is probably looking forward to matching up against somebody else next week (so he can quit being Arroyo's batting practice pitcher). If Arroyo manages to keep pace with his teammate Ken Griffey Jr. (also with 2 home runs so far this year, but a lot more plate appearances) like this or starts hitting them out of big parks like Petco Park or Dodger Stadium then I'll go ahead and pronounce this the worst trade by the Boston Red Sox since they traded the Bambino to New York. Even more impressive than his hitting (and the great run support capped off by a grand slam from Edwin Encarnacion) is Arroyo's work from the mound. 7 scoreless innings against a good hitting club. Impressive.
Bronson Arroyo: 7.0IP, 6H, 0R, 0ER, 0BB, 4SO, 0HR - W
Glendon Rusch: 5.0IP, 5H, 4R, 4ER, 1BB, 4SO, 4HR - L

April 12
Pedro Martinez (1-0) (NYM) vs. Tony Armas (0-1) (WSN)
After all the fireworks from Martinez's last start against these Nationals last April 6 who wouldn't want to see the sequel played out at RFK Stadium? There's also the chance to see if Pedro's control is any sharper this time around or if he'll have to continue to rely on pure intimidation.
update: final score - NYM 3, WAS 1 -- W - Pedro Martinez, L - Tony Armas, SV - Billy Wagner
The "rumble at RFK" never came to fruition. Perhaps all that negative energy was spent on the boo's lavished upon the ceremonial first pitch a couple of days ago. Martinez seems to have his control back . Though 3 strikeouts seems low by Pedro standards. But he did pitch deep into this one and wiggle out of a bases loaded jam in the sixth inning. This was a low scoring duel - just the way I like 'em.
Pedro Martinez: 7.0IP, 3H, 1R, 1ER, 1BB, 3SO, 1HR - W
Tony Armas: 6.0IP, 8H, 2R, 2ER, 1BB, 4SO, 0HR - L

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Scale of the Day: E Flat Whole-tone mapped to the 3/2

EFlatWholeToneMappedToThe3-2

The E Flat Whole-tone mapped to the 3/2 Scale.

Melodic Study: Melody #3 - Transposition and 7-limit Just Intonation

In a continuing sequence of posts examining various manipulations of melodic lines I would like to introduce a third melodic subject:
Melody_3
Example 1: Melody 3 ("Contrarian Blues")

This is a straight 12-bar blues in "F" that I've been playing around with.

Transposition


Transposition is the operation of raising or lowering each pitch in a melodic sequence by a fixed interval. For example, if we transpose up by a perfect fourth we end up with a blues in "B Flat."

Melody_3Transpose_1
Example 2: Melody #3 Transposed up by a perfect fourth.

7-limit Just Intonation

Idiomatically, the blues suggests 7-limit just intonation to my ears. Largely because of that flat (by almost a third of a "regular" semitone) 7/4 minor seventh degree that is such a big part of that "bluesy" sound. One possible 7-limit realization of this melody might look like this:
Melody_3_in7-limitJust
Example 3: Melody 3 in 7-limit Just Intonation.

Using the prime factors of 3, 5 and 7 to tune a melody opens up some interesting possibilities that become apparent in the last 5 bars of this blues example. The "F natural" appears as the 1 (tonic) and as a 63/32 (-27.26 cents flat). The "D natural" major sixth also appears with a couple of alternate tunings within the same passage working as a 5/3 or 27/16. I particularly like the modulation that appears in bars 7 and 11 where the D is a 5/3 in the bass part just ahead of the 27/16 in the treble. Other multiple tunings are the 5/4 and 81/64 major thirds (A natural), 3/2 and 189/128 perfect fifths (C natural) and 243/128 and 15/8 major sevenths (E natural).

The reason for multiple tunings for these intervals is harmonic context. As this blues makes its modulation for the vi-ii-V-I from bars 8 - 11 the intonation of the scale parts will reflect the gravitational pull of each new tonic. For example, the 63/32 F natural is the 7/4 of the 9/8 G natural (9/8 * 7/4 = 63/32). The 27/16 D natural is meant to sound as the 3/2 perfect fifth away from the 9/8 G natural (9/8 * 3/2 = 27/16) as opposed to the 5/3 major sixth that sounds when F natural (1) is the tonic.

For the next melodic study post I'll take a look at Just Transposition and Retrograde Melody from the atonal Melody #2.