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Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?

Marion 29 Jun 00 - 01:39 AM
Sorcha 29 Jun 00 - 02:21 AM
Escamillo 29 Jun 00 - 05:57 AM
GUEST,Ian 29 Jun 00 - 06:45 AM
Mbo 29 Jun 00 - 08:36 AM
Mark Clark 29 Jun 00 - 08:44 AM
Frankham 29 Jun 00 - 10:56 AM
McGrath of Harlow 29 Jun 00 - 11:22 AM
M. Ted (inactive) 29 Jun 00 - 11:46 AM
Mbo 29 Jun 00 - 11:55 AM
Crowhugger 29 Jun 00 - 12:13 PM
GUEST,T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 29 Jun 00 - 12:25 PM
Jon Freeman 29 Jun 00 - 12:25 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 29 Jun 00 - 03:41 PM
Sandy Paton 29 Jun 00 - 03:59 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 29 Jun 00 - 06:32 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 29 Jun 00 - 08:23 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 29 Jun 00 - 08:47 PM
Callie 30 Jun 00 - 12:05 AM
Fiddlin' Big Al 30 Jun 00 - 12:21 AM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 30 Jun 00 - 10:04 AM
Marion 30 Jun 00 - 10:34 AM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 30 Jun 00 - 11:21 AM
M. Ted (inactive) 30 Jun 00 - 02:31 PM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 30 Jun 00 - 02:56 PM
M. Ted (inactive) 30 Jun 00 - 04:54 PM
Dorrie 30 Jun 00 - 05:27 PM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 30 Jun 00 - 06:22 PM
GUEST,steve g 30 Jun 00 - 06:34 PM
GUEST,Mr. Smartypants 30 Jun 00 - 07:14 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 30 Jun 00 - 09:07 PM
Mark Cohen 01 Jul 00 - 09:32 PM
Callie 02 Jul 00 - 03:13 AM
M. Ted (inactive) 02 Jul 00 - 11:56 AM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 02 Jul 00 - 02:46 PM
GUEST,Mr. Smartypants 03 Jul 00 - 02:23 PM
GUEST,Okiemockbird 03 Jul 00 - 04:25 PM
T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird) 03 Jul 00 - 06:28 PM
Lucius 03 Jul 00 - 09:33 PM
Callie 03 Jul 00 - 10:38 PM
Mark Clark 04 Jul 00 - 01:54 AM
M. Ted (inactive) 05 Jul 00 - 01:13 PM
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Subject: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Marion
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 01:39 AM

A friend was telling me that it was once believed that the sound of a certain interval (he thought it might have been a minor sixth, but wasn't sure) would conjure up demons and so the use of this interval, whether melodic or harmonic, was forbidden by the Church.

Can anyone fill in the details?

Marion


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Sorcha
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 02:21 AM

Not exactly, but some violins strung with some strings (don't ask me for specifics) produce what are called "wolf tones", un asked for harmonics. Changing the strings is an option,or changing the pieces played is another, but sometimes wolf tones just don't go away. They seem to be inherent in the instrument at certain pitches. Maybe that is why it is called the Devil's Box. I have never experienced this, but I guess a lot of violin players have.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Escamillo
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 05:57 AM

(Wonderful excuse when the director realizes that we haven't studied our parts)! :))


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: GUEST,Ian
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 06:45 AM

As I understand it, the proper term for this is "diabolus in musica" and refers to a diminished fifth interval (ie three full tones from the root), also known as the devil's tritone. This an unpleasant sounding interval and was indeed forbidden back in medieval times, or at least frowned upon. Hope this helps.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Mbo
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 08:36 AM

Thanks for that, Ian! When you said "diabolus in musica" it all call rushing back, from my Music Theory class back in Fall '98. Believe me, that is one nasty sounding interval. As for wolf tones (not the revolutionary kind), I had heard from my violin teacher that when violin strings get old, or have a defect, they produce the wolf tone sound...I know from experience, I've had the wold tones many times. It usually is a nasty screeching sound when ever you play the string. He also said it is most common an experience among cello players.

--Mbo


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Mark Clark
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 08:44 AM

I thought they were a 70's lounge band. <g>

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Frankham
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 10:56 AM

The augmented fourth or the diminished fifth has a venerable history. Although it was outlawed by the early Church in early times, the tri-tone is used by modern composers and jazz artists. It's considered de rigeur in "bebop" for example in it's newer name called the flatted fifth. Stravinsky has employed it's uses many times and is acceptable in it's use in both augmented and diminished scales.

Moral: One person's devil may be another's angel depending on the time.

Frank


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 11:22 AM

Wolfe Tone indeed - here's a link to a song about the fella

I'm now going to feel obliged to work the harmony into a song somewhere...


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 11:46 AM

Well, I thought I wouldn't have to say anything, and that this question would be sufficiently answered, and yet I must add to Frankham's answer--

When you talk about the tritone not being used, that isn't exactly right--it hadn't been much used, melodically, relative to the fundamental (That is to say, in a piece in the key of C, the melody seldom jumped from C to F#), however, the possibility was always there when a Lydian mode was being used.

Harmonically, the Tritone has been used regularly since the introduction of the diatonic, major/minor scale system, since it is a key element in the Dominant harmony--I the key of C, the G7 chord is really built around the Tritone, B-F, and the G7 chord is really also a diminished B chord-- B-D-F, with a G added.

Don't believe me? Try this--play a simple C chord in the open position-- X-3-2-O-1-O which is C-E-G-C-e, then play X-2-3-X-3-X which is B-F-D--does that sound devilish?


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Mbo
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 11:55 AM

Actually not! Alternate it with a C9, and you have a nice little Mozart-like accompaniament going on.

Like this:

E----------------------------------------------------
B--------3----------3------------3------------3------
G----------------------------------------------------
D-----3----3-----3-----3------2----3-------2------2--
A--2-----------2-----------3------------3------------
E----------------------------------------------------

Fun!

--Mbo


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Crowhugger
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 12:13 PM

M. Ted, I love it when you post in this kind of thread; you're saving me a noticeable sum of theory-lesson money.

The sound under discussion occurs often in barbershop, usually in a passing chord and sometimes to lead into a change of mood or key.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: GUEST,T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 12:25 PM

I have never seen any credible documentary evidence that the tritone was "outlawed". That doesn't mean the evidence doesn't exist, just that I haven't seen it. The proper evidence of something being "outlawed" would, of course, have to consist of citations to legal sources such as canon law, civil law, proclamations by rulers, or records of court proceedings.

This linke shows that some mediveal theorists considered the tritone useful in special circumstances.

T.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 12:25 PM

I also enjoy MTeds posts but they are sometimes a little above my head. Where do you stat with the chords and harmony thoery - any good web sites? I think it is time I educated myself a little.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 03:41 PM

T, I have wondered about this, as well. As I pointed out, the interval and the harmonies, certainly were used, and in a fundamental enough way to make me skeptical that it would be hard to make much of a case that it was ever systematically avoided, in the way that, say, parallel fifths were--

Mbo, you know the secret, which is that it is actually a lot easier to do this stuff than to explain it!

Jon, I wish I could steer you to something that is easy to work with. Most theory stuff is not very easy to understand, and doesn't get straight to what you need, or what is useful. I think that goes double for stuff you find on the Web.

I recommend buying a copy of "The Harvard Brief Dictionary of Music", and just thumbing through it. The explainations are clear, brief, and, when you find something you don't undertstand, just turn to another page for the explanation of that.

I have said this a lot lately, in one way or another, but when you wade through an explanation (or a series of them) and finally understand the theory, it turns out to be simple. It is just the explanation that is so hard to understand.

Anyway, feel free to ask anything you want here..between the lot of us, someone will come up with an answer.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 03:59 PM

I'm as ignorant of theory as anyone can be, but I always understood that it was the use of the Locrian mode (the scale produced by playing from B to B on only the white notes of a piano) that was banned in early church music. Have I been misinformed?

Sandy


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 06:32 PM

Yes, you have been misinformed. The Locrian mode didn't exist in early church modes, and in fact is a modern concept thatwas created to fill out the spectrum of modes. .Before anyone says anything about,"That's proof that it was banned!", I will also point out that the Ionian and Aeolian Modes, didn't exist, either, they were not introduced until the 16th century. There were four modes (or eight, if you count the relative dominant modes) Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian, and Mixolydian. The dominant modes were named thusly Hypodorian, Hypophrygian, Hypolydian, and Hypomixolydian.

Well, you may say that Hypophrygian would be the same as Locrian, and if you did, I would have to come and hit you, real hard, which I wouldn't want to do, so just don't go there;-)


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 08:23 PM

Of course, the scales of Gregorian chant permitted the B-flat, so the music implicitly had major and minor modes, though theorists didn't always treat them separately.

Some further, slightly off-topic points: I think the Greek names weren't always used. Some authors, I think, used numbers, e.g. "modus primus", "modus deuterus", etc. And I think not all the music in the chant repertoire conforms strictly to the theoretical system.

I think the horizontal and vertical tritones were avoided, for the reasons mentioned by the theorists quoted by Margo Shulter: It's hard for some singers to sing (even three successive whole tones can be tricky--I know a choirmaster who had to rehearse his choir repeatedly on a passage with three successive whole-tones; some of the singers kept wanting to flatten the last one) and it has a distinctive sound which a music-writer might not want to introduce into the music.

T.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 29 Jun 00 - 08:47 PM

Also, the terms "authentic" and "plagal" were occasionally used, to differential between the fundamental and the dominant.

I think that you are right though, for practical reasons alone, the tritones weren't used much.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Callie
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 12:05 AM

Yes, tritones were definitely once banned. Flattening notes seem to get up some conservative societies' noses. The blues was once considered vulgar for similar reasons.

However, there are tritones used in at least two very popular songs that most people will know: "Maria" in West Side Story ("Ma-Ri" is the tri-tone) and also in the Simpsons theme song.

Callie


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Fiddlin' Big Al
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 12:21 AM

My old friend Crazy Ron always said he was looking for notes that could kill. Hope he didn't find them.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 10:04 AM

Callie, who "banned" tritones, and when ? I've never seen an authoritative document which proclaimed or presupposed a legal prohibition against tritones, (i.e, sing a tritone, go to jail) so if you know of one, I'd be greatly interested. T.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Marion
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 10:34 AM

Thanks for the info collected so far. What I'd like to know is what exactly the alleged connection between the devil and diminished fifths was. Was the sound of the interval the voice of the devil? Did playing the interval make the devil appear?

Marion


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 11:21 AM

Marion, if you followed the link I posted earlier, you saw that the "old proverb" is quoted by J. J. Fux in 1725: mi contra fa diabolus est in musica, that is in English, "mi against fa is the devil in music". This is the earliest reference to an interval called "diabolus" (and doesn't even mention the tritone explicitly) that Ms. Shulter was able to find at the time she wrote that note, and it is pretty late. The reference may not be to any demonic beings. Singers who found the interval hard to sing may simply have called it, jokingly, and "interval from hell". The "diabolus" may have no more significance than that.

If you read through this note by Ms. Shulter carefully, you'll find that, if you tune around a circle of Pythagorean fifths far enough, you find that the "circle" never closes, but at some point creates an interval called a "wolf fifth". Ms. Shulter wasn't able to find how far back the "wolf" designation went, either. (Our modern 12-equal scale is designed so that the circle of fifths will close exactly.)

T.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 02:31 PM

I personally think that the "devil's tone" is just a bit of music academic folklore--repeated as fact by instructors to eager and believing students who in turn repeated it--


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 02:56 PM

Like the "terrors of the year 1000" which seem never to have happened (though there might have been some local disturbances around the year 1030) or the 1754-ish "calendar riots" in Bristol, which seem never to have happened (though the calendar reform may have been an election issue, and there may have been election related violence in some places), or the Council of Nicea "setting" the rule for Easter (it didn't; as far as I can tell it merely stated that all the provinces should follow a uniform rule, without specifying what the rule would be). The idea of the "banned", "devil's tritone", as far as I can figure, contains a kernel of truth: the leap of a diminished 5th or augmented 4th was rare. Some music seems to use the B-flat to avoid having three successive whole tones. But I so far can't find any evidence of even a single prelate telling his choir "don't sing that interval or I'll excommunicate you". There may have been one, but I haven't found him yet.

T.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 04:54 PM

It would be more likely that the admonition against using it was in a treatise on musical theory. But there are many intervals that were not used at one point or another, and were specifically excluded in theoretical texts.

The interval of a major third was often avoided--(and still often should be--I still sometimes hear some of these folkie duets using a major third above, and it can curdle milk!) since in inversion, it is highly dissonant-- e-c is an augmented fifth--The second wasn't and isn't used much, except in Balkan music--sorry, I am running off topic--


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Dorrie
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 05:27 PM

i haven't read all of the above, but wished to share my knowledge with you, an augmented fifth, is the devils music, and in medieval times all songs even from the bible, were banned in church if they had the sound in, so bet someones already said this!


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 06:22 PM

M.Ted, I love the major 2nd, and make use of it at cadences and occasionally elsewhere.

Dorrie, when and where and by whom was the tritone "banned" ? When, earlier than the documented case in 1725 (see above) was the tritone, or the "mi contra fa", called "diabolus" ? We really would be interested to know if you can cite to a medieval document as evidence.

T.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: GUEST,steve g
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 06:34 PM

In medieval times, I believe that thirds were refered to as the devil's triad.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: GUEST,Mr. Smartypants
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 07:14 PM

That's right, Steve! Thirds were referred to as "devil's triad", while seconds were merely "sloppy".

Fifths, inexplicably, were referred to as "the devil's birdbath", and fourths were variously designated as strong, weak, electromagnetic, and gravity. Sixths and sevenths were known as "the devil's sixths" and "the devils's sevenths", respectively, apparently due to the general paucity of imagination preceeding the renaissance.

Hope this helps!!!


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 30 Jun 00 - 09:07 PM

Isn't the Mudcat great ? Where else could we learn that 4ths in the middle ages were known as "strong, weak, electromagnetic, and gravitational" ?

M.Ted, I think you're right about treatises in the sense that the vertical augmented 4th and diminished 5th would have been classified as dissonances, not as consonances.

But when folks repeat the tale that the tritone was "banned" or "outlawed", or associated with devils, I think they are stating something more than that the tritone was considered dissonant. As I interpret, they seem to mean that someone would have been dismissed from his post, or jailed, or excommunicated, for using a horizontal or vertical tritone at all, not that he would have been considered an inept musician for using a dissonance at a point in the music when he should have used a consonance.

T[àskëmus]


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Mark Cohen
Date: 01 Jul 00 - 09:32 PM

Smartypants, that was brilliant. Though you should see a speech therapist about that lisp.

Aloha,
Mark


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Callie
Date: 02 Jul 00 - 03:13 AM

Okie, I am convinced that the tritone was banned by the Church. I cannot think back to how I learned this, but I will check with Critter, who is an Early Music-ologist. He is bound to tell me where to look.

It was something to do with the way the scale was divided up, and had to do with measurements and physics rather than the wierdness of the sound (from memory).

Check back here tomorrow - I hope to have the answer from the Critter's Mouth then.

Callie


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 02 Jul 00 - 11:56 AM

I'll be interested in seeing what Critter has to add, if anything. Meanwhile, I want to point of the extreme vaguenes of this assertion.

We have a tendency to compress places and times in the past, sometimes even to a single point--In this discussion people have used the terms "Medeval" and "Middle Ages", and those terms can cover anywhere from about the 9th Century to the 15th. Times as remote from each other as say, our time and the time of the Crusades.

People tend to to lump the differing musics of that great span of time together as well, music that spanned from unaccompanied voices, reed whistles and single stringed instruments, to orchestras with music and instruments more complex that those that we use today.

We even forget that, in the same times, the music from, say Flemish composers, might be totally unknown in Italy.

We live in a time of mass culture and standardization, and it is hard for us to understand that this is a recent innovation. In the past, when there was a decree that, say, the robes of the Virgin Mary should only be a certain color of blue, it must be remembered that that may have only been enforced in a certain city, for a certain number of weeks, months, or possibly years.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 02 Jul 00 - 02:46 PM

If it was "outlawed", the two 14th century authors quoted by Ms. Schulter in the link posted above (which I duplicate here for convenience), Jacobus of Liege and Johannes Boen, hadn't heard of any such law. Jacobus of Liege says that the tritone is hard to sing and rare (he says the same of the dimished 5th). Johannes Boen says that the vertical tritone is a "consonance under special circumstances."

T.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: GUEST,Mr. Smartypants
Date: 03 Jul 00 - 02:23 PM

ok, I'm sticking with the nickname, since I started with it. But this isn't a comical post (not intentionally, anyway).

I think it's a mnemonic for medieval composition students, think about it:

Mi contra fa est diabolus in musica

It's a rhyme, not an edict.

Anyone else reminded of "A Canticle For Leibowitz" while reading this thread?


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: GUEST,Okiemockbird
Date: 03 Jul 00 - 04:25 PM

Bonaventura da Brescia seems to dislike the tritone. In his Brevis collectio artis musicae he writes:

ipse tritonus est principium, medius et finis omnium dissonantiarum (the tritone is the beginning, middle and end of all dissonances)

and:

tritonus est trium tonorum, quod est contra proprietatem naturae (a tritone [consists] of three tones, which is against the proper way [or perhaps "property", inherent quality] of nature).

But in my quick scan of his book so far I haven't found any mention of a legal prohibition.

T.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)
Date: 03 Jul 00 - 06:28 PM

Another source for evidence of a "ban" would be penitential manuals. If some manuals direct the confessor to ask a singer "did you ever sing b-natural when you should have sung b-flat ?" then that would suggest that some clergy at least wished the tritone would be "banned". It would also suggest, of course, that they weren't getting their wish.

T.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Lucius
Date: 03 Jul 00 - 09:33 PM

Heck, you can argue that the perfect fifth was banned at one point, or the use of Cantus Firmus. I manage to ruffle feathers when I play traditional English tunes on my electric guitar. I can think of no better harmony text than Gradus an Parnassus (Joseph Fux), and M.Ted, if you see this, I bet that you have a copy on your shelf. Of course, he doesn't mention Musica Ficta.

Lucius

PS: M.Ted, you postings are delightful and well considered. Thanks for reminding us about the dominant seventh.


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Callie
Date: 03 Jul 00 - 10:38 PM

ok folks. I have just spoken to the Critter who is writing an academic thesis on Musica Ficta in the 15th century. Here is what the wise one has to say:

Tritones were not banned, they were just considered unsingable in the 15-16th centuries and unpleasant sounding. By whom? By music theorists who wrote about this stuff. A compendium on the subject called "Musica Ficta" edited by Karol Berger should be easily obtainable.

Musica Ficta is "false music" - music that did not fall within the set of rules as stated by Guido of Orezzo as "MUsica Recta" (not music of the arse, but in fact "Real Music"). The Critter is examining the phenomenom of inserting unwritten accidentals in "Musica Ficta". So, if a single line of music involved singing the interval F to B (which is a tritone), the B would automatically be flattened, even though it was unwritten. The same was also true of two and three part harmony stuff if a tritone appeared in the vertical harmony.

However, tritones were more acceptable in 4 part harmony as long as they resolved on a more 'melodic' cadence.

Somewhere along the line, someone must have mis-interpreted the theorists and the interval was believed to be satanic.

Hope this helps. Berger will provide much more detailed info for those folk really interested.

Cheers Callie (who will never need to sing a tritone in Church - just for the hell of it - again)


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: Mark Clark
Date: 04 Jul 00 - 01:54 AM

I have no background whatever in the history of music and therefore no factual material to add. I do, however, have a question for the truly scholarly historians among you.

Up until the time of the Great Schism (nominally 1054) most Christian Liturgical music was sung in the Byzantine "tones" and the chants commonly used notes that are not only strange to the modern western ear but included notes that are "in the cracks" on a piano. Do you think it possible that following the Great Schism, the Western Church made rules against the tones and chants of the Eastern Church? Many of the "Devil tones" people have contributed here are commonly found in Eastern music.

Just a suggestion.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Anyone heard of 'devil tones'?
From: M. Ted (inactive)
Date: 05 Jul 00 - 01:13 PM

Lucius.

As you can tell from Callie's last and most informative post, we all take turns at playing Aloysius and Josephus here--You are right, though I thought someone had snatched it, I went and took a look, and, "Gradus ad Parnassum" is in fact there, next to Rameau, who I actually have spent more time with lately--

For those of you who don't know, "Gradus ad Parnassum" is pretty much a dialogue between a teacher and his student concerning the art of composing multipart music, specifically, fugue--It was written about 1725, but it is eerily reminiscent of an internet discussion thread on music theory and practice--

It is kind of and interesting coincidence, but I have also been working a bit lately with"English "Traditional" melodies on guitar--many of them were probably written in the time leading up to Fux. The guitar probably evolved into the instrument that we know today in order to facilitate the playing of compositions these sort of melodies. So you are probably more on target, conceptually, with what you are doing than the people whose feathers you have ruffled.(Incidentally, listening to many contemporary, folk, and traditional performers, it has seemed to me, more than once, that there is some sort of rule against Cantus Firmus today)

Mark--An interesting idea, especially in view of the fact that those kind of differences were often significant in the development of many customs and folkways in the areas where the divisions of the Church came into contact--the only thing is that, it is turning out that there is no evidence that the Western Church ever did ban the diminished fifth--

For those who want to try to sing this interval that we have talked about, the simplest thing to do is to sing the little 4-note clarion call at the beginning of the theme to "The Jetsons"--"MEET GEORGE JETSON", and then drop out the "George" and "Son" and just sing the interval "MEET-JET" which is 1-#4 or 1-b5. Not so "natural" is it?


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Mudcat time: 20 October 7:51 AM EDT

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