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Yet Another Button Diagram For The Ec Treble


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#1 Don Taylor

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 08:18 PM

I don't know if anyone else might find this useful, but here is the .pdf file of a button diagram that I developed to help me find my way around an EC treble.

PDF 48 button V2

It has two features:

1) It tries to show the location of each button as a note on the staff (some other button diagrams already show this so this is not novel).

2) It can be used to work out the interval between buttons on the concertina or to find a specific interval from a button.

On the left hand side of each button is a number starting at 0 for the lowest note (low G) incrementing by 1 for each semi-tone up to 41 for the highest note (high C). To work out the interval between two notes you subtract the smaller number from the larger number and then look up the difference in the Table of Intervals on the diagram.

For example, E6 to B5 is 33-28 = 5 which is a perfect 4th.

Conversely, to find an interval up/down from a button you add/subtract the number in the interval table to the number alongside the note.

For example, the minor 6th down from D5 is 19-8=11 which is the number alongside F#

I offer this with some trepidation as I may have messed up my music theory. If it is wrong, or has mistakes then please let me know and I will try to correct them.  If you have suggestions for a better way to present the information then I would welcome that too.

I drew this diagram with Inkscape, an open source vector drawing program. Here is the .svg file that Inkscape uses. If you download this file then you can edit the diagram yourself if you wish.

 

SVG 48 button V2

 

(If the .pdf file does not display well in your PDF viewer then try another viewer if you can, or just click on the SVG link above to display the diagram inside your browser).



#2 Anglo-Irishman

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 07:14 AM

Hi, sjm,

 

Cool! I don't play the EC, but it looks as if this would be a great help to me if I wanted to learn it.

 

I wonder if I could work out something similar for the Crane duet. The intervals and numbered buttons probably would be transferable, but I don't know about the graphic representation on the stave. Your effort demonstrates that the EC is so designed that standard notation is tablature for it, which is not true of the Crane!

 

Cheers,

John



#3 Geoff Wooff

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 07:45 AM

One or two problems with nomenclature SJM;

Major Second and Minor Second are the same thing in Equal Temperament = whole tone A to B or B to C# etc.

Major and Minor Seconds can be different in other tempéraments.

A Semi tone is not a Minor Second.

However, it looks quite usefull, perhaps it dépends on how your mind works and I am sure that by devising this chart you have imprinted the détails of the keyboard further into your memory which is all a good thing :)


Edited by Geoff Wooff, 08 May 2013 - 07:51 AM.


#4 JimLucas

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 08:16 AM

One or two problems with nomenclature SJM;

Major Second and Minor Second are the same thing in Equal Temperament = a whole tone A to B or B to C# etc.

Major and Minor Seconds can be different in other temperaments

A Semi tone is not a Minor Second.

 
Geoff, do they teach different things in different countries?  It's always been my understanding that a "minor second" is a "half step" = "semitone".
 
Your post suggests to me that you may think a "minor second" is the interval between the first and second notes of a "minor scale" -- a concept which I haven't previously encountered, -- though maybe not, as I can't see how that would differ in different temperaments.  (The ratios defined by different semitone intervals in the scale will differ in un-equal temperaments, but not the number of "semitones" comprising any particular named interval, such as "minor second" or "diminished fifth".)



#5 Geoff Wooff

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 10:05 AM

Jim,

I am not sure what 'they' teach in various countries and I cannot ever remember covering this subject during my musical education, which is still  on going, of course however, I think it is  normal for a semitone to be called just that and a whole tone interval to be called a Second.

 

Some sources just refer to aTone or a Semi-Tone but a Major Tone and a Minor Tone can be different in some tuning systems although the Tempéraments used for Concertinas would have mostly equal tone divisions except at the enhamonic points .

 

I use two different    'Seconds'  in reference to the second note of my  "scale of perfect intervals" that I construct for the melody pipe of the Uilleann pipes that I make  ( that is my working life).... So I try to provide an interval between the first note (the Drone pitch) of  204 cents  which gives a Perfect Major Second... then also by cross fingering it is possible to reduce this to 182.5 cents to provide a Perfect Minor Second.

Of course when using a scale of perfect intervals (some call it Just Intonation although some published figures  under this name do not totally agree with my findings)  the gaps between all the other tones will vary as dictated by the nature of the  harmonic serries.

 

Of couse we could be looking at this from very different perspectives...  using the words major and minor to signify larger and smaller intervals... but there is always a problem when the same words are used to mean two somewhat  different things within the same subject. :mellow:


Edited by Geoff Wooff, 08 May 2013 - 11:12 AM.


#6 Don Taylor

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 01:51 PM

Geoff:

 

Assuming equal temperament:

 

What term should I use for what I am calling a minor second in the diagram?  Say the interval from G to G#.

 

And I should just use the term 'Second' for what I am now calling a major second? Say the interval from G to A.

 

The terminology that I used seems to be in very common usage on music theory sites on the Internet - at least for simple theory explanations. 

 

Wikipedia certainly delves into much more subtle distinctions between tone qualities, but I did not think those distinctions would be useful for the concertina - at least not on a one page cheat sheet.

 

Regards,

 

Don.



#7 Geoff Wooff

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 03:16 PM

Don,

how about  , just to be logical  , G to G# ought to be  a 1st, Making G to A   a 2nd, G to Bb a minor 3rd and G to B a major 3rd.... etc etc.

 

Perhaps I would use the terms Semitone, Tone,minor Third,major Third, etc.

 

Is the  common usage on music theory sites written by people who would not understand the concepts that I am writting of? If a person who has only ever dealt with theory on an Equal Temperament level is using the terms Major and Minor to suggest large and small intervals and is that not confusing in the context of Major and Minor keys ?

 

I have opened one book here that gives a table of intervals and it gives many of the names that you have in your chart but it starts with Minor semitone, then Major Semitone, Minor Tone, Major Tone... and gets more complicated  than we need to dicuss here because it a book on various tuning systems.

 

Perhaps you have a good reason for using the terms that you have, from a chordal make-up perspective ?? In the end does it matter what we call things as long as it makes sense and is for the greater good ?


Edited by Geoff Wooff, 08 May 2013 - 03:17 PM.


#8 Wolf Molkentin

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 04:04 PM

Apart from tuning/temperament that Geoff is referring to there are two (functionally) different sorts of a "semitones" according to music theory: the diatonic and the chromatic semitone; the former making up one of the two semitone steps within any given diatonic scale, i.e. E/F and B/C in c-maj, a-min (nat.), d-dor, g-mix a.s.f.; whereas the latter (the chromatic semitone) means any alteration of that scale by the use of flats resp. sharps (i.e. F/F#, B/Bb a.s.f.).

 

A closer look on this will reveal the correlation of the two aspects (as I just found out), because in meantone temperament the "chromatic" semitone seems to usually be smaller than its "diatonic" counterpart. Only the (larger) diatonic semitone may be called "minor second", whereas the (smaller) chromatic semitone  (i.e. chromatik alteration of a modal scale) is called "augmented unison".

 

Thus the step from G to G# would have to be called a (-n augmented) 1st, as Geoff suggested, whereas the minor second wouldn't appear at all in relation to the root of a (-n unaltered) diatonic scale (but of course as step from B to C and from F# to G within that scale).



#9 Wolf Molkentin

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 04:23 PM

P.S.: Taking the subject back to your chart I'd support Geoff's suggestion of using the terms "Semitone" and "Tone" for intervals smaller than a (minor) third, just because you would have to know the (diatonic) context in order to determine whether it is about a minor second or an augmented first.



#10 Don Taylor

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 05:50 PM

Perhaps you have a good reason for using the terms that you have, from a chordal make-up perspective ?? In the end does it matter what we call things as long as it makes sense and is for the greater good ?

 

Geoff:

A few months ago I decided that I needed to understand intervals and I tried various 'interval training' programs that exist on the web, or are available for portable devices. They all use the terminology that I used in the chart. Further reading of simple music theory web-sites and simple music theory books did not contradict the terminology. So I used that terminology. If it matters, I think all of these sources were keyboard oriented.

That is all. I have no skin in the game other than I needed a name. I am happy to change the chart.

 

This is just my supposition:  Maybe the terminology I used evolved simply to try to provide some symmetry to interval names.  A major 6th is an inverted minor 3rd so maybe someone decided that saying a major 7th is an inverted semitone was odd and that, by extension, the small intervals should have similar names as the other intervals.  I am not arguing for this, or trying to justify it as I am very much in above my pay grade here.

 

Actually, it was some of your posts (and David B's) that got me thinking about intervals and how to find them on an EC - so it is your fault that I made this chart :)

 

BES:

 

I am going to have to think (and read) a lot about what you wrote - this is all very new territory for me.

 

Edited:  Ok, I have reread your post and, while I don't understand much of what you say, I think that I am labelling the chromatic scale, not a diatonic scale.

 

Don.


Edited by sjm, 08 May 2013 - 07:26 PM.


#11 Geoff Wooff

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 01:26 AM

Don,

I agree that this can all be confusing and I certainly do not wish to make it more so.

 

The idea of a chart showing the buttons laid out across the music Stave is of great use to the sheet music reader and to be able to print it out  at a large enough size and have it pinned on you wall is a fine idea.

 

Adding and subtracting numbers to arrive at intervals I suppose will have some use too , perhaps mostly on the theory side of things, and what names you then ascribe to those intervals can be dependant upon which direction you are coming from, up or down, or from and with other intervals, major and minor.

 

I prefer to let my fingers explore and learn the sounds of the intervals and how to combine them, seperating this from the conscious thought process of adding numbers or thinking of the names of chords.... but each to their own.

 

If you can find some plausible reason why all these theory texts use 'minor second' instead of 'semitone' then that would be interesting.. I just feel that my suggestion would result in less confusion.... maybe I am wrong.

 

Best regards and sorry if I have caused you any upset... just trying to be helpfull,

Geoff.



#12 Wolf Molkentin

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 02:48 AM

 Ok, I have reread your post and, while I don't understand much of what you say, I think that I am labelling the chromatic scale, not a diatonic scale.

 

Even if you're dealing with more complex chording it will firstly be about expanded usage of diatonic scales (with sixth, seventh, nineth, just as they fit in that given scale). All the more: the naming of intervals originate from their occurrences within diatonic scales (i.e. the "modes"). Otherwise we would have intervals from 1 to 13, which would be truly chromatic.

 

As far as you don't conflict with conventions you may unproblematically make use of those names within a chromatic concept as well. This seems to be the case with all the intervalls form a (minor) third upwards. But the situation is different with the seconds, as has been pointed out here.

 

Of course you are at liberty to create new conventions, but I wouldn't do this without (as Geoff said) some plausible "theoretical" reason. Otherwise I wouldn't find it that bad just quitting the concept of major/minor intervals where it comes to the basic elements of so many ("western") scales (be they diatonic, 12-tone-chromatic, whole-tone or whatever; admittedly with the exception of pentatonic, harmonic minor and its derivats including related "Balkan" scales, where some thirds are applied).

 

Nevertheless I find your project both useful and interesting (and it has led to this discussion too).

 

Best wishes - Wolf


Edited by blue eyed sailor, 09 May 2013 - 04:10 AM.


#13 Wolf Molkentin

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 09:48 AM

My (rough) take on "Apley House" is available for (if you would be so kind) further discussion. Since the idea of playing and recording it originates from the "Hayden Videos" thread and a fellow concertinist has recently referred to just this tune, I posted the link overthere too.

 

Regarding "Teaching and Learning" it might demonstrate my personal approach within the field of tradition-conscious diversity.

 

Edit: My apologies for having posted this in the wrong place - it doesn't belong here.

 

Apart from the above-mentioned "Hayden" discussion it was meant for just another "teaching and learning" thread. I must have been confused in the aftermath of that enervating recording process...  :)


Edited by blue eyed sailor, 10 May 2013 - 12:48 AM.


#14 Don Taylor

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 03:49 PM

Wolf and Geoff:

 

This Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia....nterval_(music)

 

discusses interval names and includes all, and more, of the naming conventions that have been discussed in this thread. 

 

In particular, the table in the section "Main Intervals" - and hover your mouse over the [6] and [7] superscripts, and the table in the section "Alternative interval naming conventions" which is much further down the page.

 

There is lots more discussion of course, including the Latin naming conventions.

 

Geoff, you have not caused me any upset - on the contrary you have helped me to understand a little more than I did before, I think that this is good.

 

As to the reason why I did this.  Well there have been discussions about harmonizing on the EC that say things like major thirds sound bad, or play a sixth below the melody note.  I came to music recently and have no intuitive feel for these things.  I needed a road map to understand what you folks are talking about.  These discussions feel as if they are important.  I hear what you guys are playing and I want to understand the principles behind what you are doing as I doubt that I will be able to intuit the techniques any time soon.

 

Don.

 

 

'My name is Alice, but —'

 

'It's a stupid name enough!' Humpty Dumpty interrupted impatiently. 'What does it mean?'

 

'Must a name mean something?' Alice asked doubtfully.

 

'Of course it must,' Humpty Dumpty said with a short laugh: 'my name means the shape I am — and a good handsome shape it is, too. With a name like yours, you might be any shape, almost.'

 

-- Lewis Carroll



#15 Wolf Molkentin

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 04:02 PM

As to the reason why I did this.  Well there have been discussions about harmonizing on the EC that say things like major thirds sound bad, or play a sixth below the melody note.  I came to music recently and have no intuitive feel for these things.  I needed a road map to understand what you folks are talking about.  These discussions feel as if they are important.  I hear what you guys are playing and I want to understand the principles behind what you are doing as I doubt that I will be able to intuit the techniques any time soon.

 

From my personal experience it's a matter of mutual reinforcement: Certain knowledge in music theory will transmit into intuitive playing, whereas playing practice will ease the understanding of related theoretical concepts. To get the whole process going your chart seems quite usefull. You will get familiar with the sound of, for instance, a sixth below the melody a.s.f., but for a start you have enabled yourself to find it. Just carry on!



#16 David Barnert

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 05:58 PM

A little late to this (I've been off c.net for a few days), but I have to chime in that I agree with Jim (and others), above. I have never heard the expression "minor 2nd" mean anything other than the interval between two successive notes in a scale that are separated by a half-step.

 

That is:

 

E-F is a minor 2nd

F-F# is not (let's not worry right now about what to call it).

F#-G is a minor 2nd

G-Ab is a minor 2nd

Ab-A is not.

 

All of the above are half-steps.

All of the above are semitones.

 

All of this should be true in equal temperament or other temperaments, although in other temperaments the actual sizes of the differently named semitones will vary.



#17 Ransom

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 08:10 PM

A little late to this (I've been off c.net for a few days), but I have to chime in that I agree with Jim (and others), above. I have never heard the expression "minor 2nd" mean anything other than the interval between two successive notes in a scale that are separated by a half-step.
 
That is:
 
E-F is a minor 2nd
F-F# is not (let's not worry right now about what to call it).


So D-D# isn't,
but D-Eb is, eh?

Interesting! Especially in equal temperament.

#18 David Barnert

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 08:52 PM

So D-D# isn't,but D-Eb is, eh?Interesting! Especially in equal temperament.

That is correct. Intervals are named by how many scale steps they involve. Just as C-Eb is a minor 3rd but C-D# is an augmented 2nd. To be any kind of a 2nd, an interval needs to contain notes named by two adjacent letters (and of course, we all know that G and A are adjacent). The accidentals will determine whether it's major, minor, augmented or diminished (yes-- G# to Ab!).

There is no law that says that two intervals with different names can't have mathematically identical frequency ratios, as you point out.



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