The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #158878   Message #3761437
Posted By: Pamela R
29-Dec-15 - 01:27 AM
Thread Name: folk process: tune evolution?
Subject: RE: folk process: tune evolution?
(now that the holidays are over, I'm back to full time work and I can only check in occasionally, so if I don't respond quickly that is why.)

RE circus: interesting, I'll read up.

RE hymnody: offhand I would think church music would be part of the "scholarly" tradition as opposed to oral/folk tradition, yet clearly many "folk" would be exposed to hymns aurally so it's relevant to consider. Vaguely related to this point, I'm told that in hymnals texts are codified by their syllabic structure (8:6:8:6, etc) and tunes likewise, such that any text of a given pattern can be sung to any tune of the like pattern. Which seems a very interesting case to examine regarding the fluidity of tunes being adapted to disparate texts.

RE algorithms trained on Bach to produce "generative models": yes this is one kind of A.I. that is well developed in my scientific discipline, and is considered a strong test of a model (kind of a Turing Test: can the algorithm make a tune that you would mistake for a real traditional tune?).

RE "those who could read customarily read aloud to those who could not.": good point. which reminds me, it's noted that until fairly recently silent reading was rare, and when reading meant reading aloud there was a greater focus on the auditory quality of the text (cadence, alliteration, rhyme, etc).

RE Shenkerian Analysis: I had not heard of that. Sounds very relevant, I'll read up.

RE DNA analysis: this is exactly the type of algorithm I have some expertise in, and was imagining in my speculative fancy; it is true that one needs a substantial data set to get any traction. But large data sets may be available. And the fewer constraints imposed on the tune (e.g., if you don't demand a tempered scale or a strict time signature), the more data you'll need to adequately sample the larger space of possibilities.

Glad to have access to so many well-informed and thoughtful minds!