Baroque Improvisation

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  1. Conway
    Member

    Im looking to understand better how people like Bach improvised. Im gripping at straws to understand here, but it seems most modern improvisation is based on chord progressions. Im curious as to how it was done in Baroque and similar times? Is it counterpoint? chord progressions, as well? Key or mode centered?

    What is the approach and where can I learn more about it?

  2. jorgemg1984
    Member

    [+] Embed the video | Video DownloadGet the Flash Videos

  3. Conway
    Member

    how did I not find this with the title being what it is and it being Ted Greene and it being from Steve Heberman? Oh well, thanks for the link!

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  4. I think I may have followed a similar mikes masterclass path to get reminded that Ted Greene has a site!

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  5. jorgemg1984
    Member

    Ted Green is THE MAN :)

  6. Joel
    Member

    The same. Chord progressions, chord tones and passing notes. If you'd like to try their exercises, track down some baroque 'divisions'. Scalar exercises very similar to be-bop etc.

    At that point in time, if you couldn't improvise you were considered a 'lesser musician'. Some musicians today leave out the improvisation passages in baroque music, which is the equivalent of playing a tune and when it comes to the solo the front line lays out and you're only left with the changes... Of course there are many great western classical improvisers.

  7. Conway
    Member

    awesome. thank you, Ill look divisions up, for sure.

    do you have any recommendations of western classical improvisers to look up?

  8. Joel
    Member

    There's an english composer who writes a lot for improvisation, as well as scores which combine written and improvised material.

    (There is some improvisation on the cor anglais part in this one)

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    (An improvising orchestra)

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    (The mother-lode - Peter's club where his own group of top classical and a few jazz musicians play)

    http://www.clubinegales.com

    (Wiegold explaining his methods)

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    (An improvising baroque pianist)

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    In terms of people improvising, I remember meeting Paula Chateauneuf and her being very authoritative on the subject of baroque, and a well respected player.

  9. Conway
    Member

    jeepers man! thanks for the gold. Ill be diggn in to this asap!

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  10. Joel
    Member

    No probs, hope you like it.

  11. jseaberry
    Member

    You might like this; I sure did!

    http://goo.gl/9lQaI

  12. wow . i enjoyed that a lot. sorry to be a downer but i wasnt that impressed with the pianist from cal state's improvisation... perhaps if he hadnt introduced the improvisation with an attempt at alligning himself with mozart et al it would have been easier to swallow. it was pleasant and not bad at all, but for someone like myself ( who does not claim to be super versed in counterpoint or the stylistic ornamentaions of that era and aesthetic) i was underwhelmed by this " improvisation " through what seemed to be a back cycling autumn leaves type motion. the pedal work felt to heavy on the gas at times and i felt like i was in a hotel lobby.
    again , i know my downer critiques are not the point. executing these things on guitar is difficult and truly improvising motifs and generating coherent logical responses to an exposition is totally on another level and i find extremely difficult to sustain without reverting to certain devices that are known. however, from an educator and pianist i expected more than nice trilling if the subject were to be contrapunctal improvisation.

  13. Conway
    Member

    I dont think of improvisation as being impressive as much as I do a moment in time where this thing happened. Thats the beauty of improv, not how you would have done it or wish they would have done it. Its the culmination of everything in that moment and that takes on different things at different moments. Im bored shitless with people wanting to be impressed. Thats not a direct feeling toward you, but to that sentiment which I deal with constantly.

    With that belief perhaps I shouldnt be living in Nashville where everything is about being impressive.

    We need more experiences and less projections.

  14. impressed in the sense of making that much of an impression. i clearly acknowledged that my statements of criticism were tangential. i didnt suggest what he could have done. clearly, you dig it. if you are going to fluff yourself up and tell me you are carrying the torch of mozart and hadyn ( which he was doing ) and you are teaching at a university level and you are playing the piano you've primed me to be more "impressed" ( now in the wow sense ) than bored shitless , frankly. again, its hard to do this on guitar in a way that is honest and produces ( for lack of a better term ) " other types of moments that carry a quality that i am currently into yet reserving the right to change my mind in the future and perhaps be open or closed to the idea of being into at another juncture" type of thing.i just didnt dig it. it feels silly to consider backpedaling or censoring myself on account of offending for merely not sharing the same opinion.

  15. after your redacted post i see what youre saying and if youre active in the scene wherever than its hard to not feel those pressures. i agree, experience is it and the other stuff is rounding to the nearest it. i have nothing to gain or lose. i no longer teach guitar, i barely play out, i have a kid and work a coffee job. i feel somewhat impotent and pointless with my music stuff. this defintely influences how i view things: i get bitter and see some stuff getting notoriety that i really think is shit. then there is taste generally for me:i get into things and burn out on things and suddenly things i refused to give the time of day start interesting me. the time management and the pickiness influence the statements. i dig what you say about experiences: always after exiting a museum even if i dont dig the art , on the walk back i am open to being moved by ordinary objects and looking at or for their contexts

  16. Conway
    Member

    well I wasnt offended and actually wasnt overtly moved by it either, even though I enjoyed it, but Im not the point of his art. I just dont think everything has to be reactive, I think it can just be.

    I love your museum angle. I may not understand many pieces of art but that just allows me to understand that perhaps I dont see something that is theirs and it allows me to learn or question or at least ... experience someone elses life and that can be every bit of the point as the design, paint, colors.

    Hey, for me at least. :)

  17. Joel
    Member

    Well, I must admit that pianist is not the best example of baroque improvisation. For a start it's far too romantic, better just to listen to some good recordings (Paula Chateauneuf etc.).

    Funnily enough I recently had a gig with Peter's group, with a guest counter-tenor singing. Lots of baroque improvisation there.


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