notes about music by ~pgadey rss
Sing for Joy

Sing for Joy Annex 2016

Sing for Joy Riverdale 2017

2017-04-12-3 at 23h

Inspired by /u/KnowledgeJunkie's Epic Four Year Quest Through Music, I have started out on a bit of musical yoage myself. The title comes from /r/chronolisten.

I have got a copy of Deutsche Grammaphon's The History of Classical Music in 100 CDs.

CD 1: Gregorian Chant - Feast Of Stephen / Marchaut: Chansons

Listened: 2017-03-29

Guillame de Machaut's Dame, mon cuer en vous

(Image from Wikipedia, see details here.)

CD 2: Dufay - Josquin Des Pres - Motets

Listened: 2017-03-31

 "motet: a piece of music in several parts with words"

The choir music is difficult to follow. It is tighly set stuff, and I often have no sense of where the piece is headed. Still -- It is clear that this stuff is high art, and very polished.

CD 4: Tallis - Byrd - De Victoria - Palestrina - Allegri

Listened: 2017-04-03

I got totally mixed up and listened to CD 4. It turns out that CD 3 is all about Wind Instruments Shawms and sackbuts and stuff. It is all very loud.

However, CD 4 is more really serious choral music. It got me reading looking back over the history and development of choral music. In particular, I read about Guido de Arezzo, the inventor of Western musical notation. What an incredible historical person! The original seed of Do-Re-Mi and all that is known: A hymn, Ut queant laxis.

By CD 4 we are deep in to William Byrd (1542-1623). This is very technical elaborate gymnastics from the Renaissance. It comes after ~400 years of development.

CD 03: Wind Music From Renaissance Italy

Listened: 2017-04-07

There is a lot of very expressive music on this disk. It is nice to hear some recorder music at last. I'm starting to get a sense for how recorder music can sound. Other instruments on the disk are sometimes very alien, but they each have their own personality. One gets used to the sound of a proto-bag-pipe. To my ear, instrumental music is more straightforward than choral music.

simple gifts

My current musical goal is to get a handle on "Simple Gifts".

I am so excited about this piece because I really like the sound of it. This is the first piece of music, that I've ever been able to "really hear".

Moreover, I really like the Shaker lyrics.


Solo uke arrangement by Mike Lynch

Solo uke arrangement by Kim Pryts

Melody on uke by Ken Middleton

Air and Simple Gifts (John Williams), Obama's Inauguration

AARON COPLAND - Simple Gifts From Appalachian Spring - LEONARD BERNSTEIN


Yo-Yo Ma and Alison Krauss

Songs of America - Simple Gift


    Tis a gift to be simple
    'Tis a gift to be free
    'Tis a gift to come down where we ought to be
    And when we find ourselves in the place just right
    'Twill be in the valley of love and delight

    When true simplicity is gained
    To ben and to bow, we won't be ashamed
    To turn, turn, will be our delight
    'Til by turning, turning, we come round right

    Tis a gift to be simple, 
'tis a gift to be fair
    'tis a gift to wake and breathe the morning air
    And when we walk each day in the path we choose
    'tis a gift we pray we never shall lose
potato chip song

At Mila Redwood's community choir Sing for Joy we learned this song:

the potato chip song.m4a

pardon my singing ... let mila carry it

Part 1:

The chips at the bottom of the bag are the saltiest.
Things are much more salty at the bottom of the bag.

Part 2:
Reach down in to the Great Unknown!

--Josh Fox of Asheville North Carolina

It is a really charming song.


Like most students in Ontario, I took a class on playing the recorder in public school. That was a long time ago, and I barely remember what happened in that class. In any case, they're a familiar object around here.

Just before I got started as an undergraduate at Trent, I bought a penny whistle to play. It was difficult, and the high notes bothered me. And yet, the penny whistle is still hanging around. It slowly multiplied and produced to a half dozen different recorders around it.

Now Meg and I have two alto recorders and four soprano recorders of different makes. Unfortunately, I still do not know how to play the recorder.

My goal is to learn to play some nice tunes on the alto recorder.

music corner


  • Yamaha alto and soprano (white plastic)
  • Aulos soprano
  • Dolmetsch Nova alto
  • Silvetta maple alto

[2016-10-01] : Last night we played Old Man, a duet for two sopranos, out of The Children's Song Book (Newman and Kolinski).


My interest in playing the ukulele has flourished lately. It has been a long slow haul, much like my progress with recorder. When I started as an undergraduate, I lived in the "Trent Global Living Community". It was an intentional community of international students living in Champlain College.

A friend of mine bought a banjo, and I followed suit by buying a bright orange Mahalo ukulele. It never got played much, but it was a joy to have around. That was my first ukulele, Arthur the First. Eventually, when I moved to Toronto I realized that I was almost never playing it and decided to give it away to Sam Chapin, who gave it to his brother Sasha Chapin.

After a couple years, I went out and bought another Mahalo starter ukulele. This time, the Mahalo was stained deep red. This became Arthur the Second. It will soon be donated to the Regal Beagle Pub on Bloor Street, for the purposes of impromptu ukulele jamming.

Yesterday, in a fit of excited post-camp glee, I bought a koa wood concert ukulele. It is a brilliant toy. I look forward to our years together.

Despite all this I still do not know how to play the ukulele.

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