Random Thoughts on Classical Music

I just released my YouTube video Bach BWV 005 - Führ auch mein Herz und Sinn and it one again made me realize what I personally like about classical music. I am by no means an expert on this subject, and I know and respect that many people would probably disagree with me.

In this context I refer to “classical music” to anything before 1900 – I know this is a really broad and non-accurate definition and in no way scientifically correct ;) Like I said, not an expert.

Playing classical music on synthesizers (or in the “style”) has a long tradition. A famous example would be the music from Wendy Carlos, like her amazing “Switched-On Bach” Album. There are many classical music fans who do not approve of this kind of music, only listen to ‘real-instrument’ recordings and go to concerts.

Now, what I like about this synthesizer music (and actually producing it) is that in classical music, you can hear a lot more if you ‘read along’ in the sheet music or some other form of visualization of the music being played. That makes it possible to emphasize on certain parts/voices/musical constructs that are otherwise “hidden” and disappear in the whole mix of music. In that video mentioned earlier for example, I made the tenor (yellow voice ;)) much louder than it is supposed to, you can actually hear it better than the soprano. This gives the piece a completely different kind of character, in my opinion it actually sounds better.

No real performance with actual singing voices would be conducted like that. It leaves the nicest things in the music reserved for those who study it and not the ones who only listen to enjoy it.

In that particular video I noticed the ‘missing voice’ relatively late, during the video editing stage. The tenor voice was nearly inaudible and I decided to go back to Ardour to make it a bit louder and maybe change some synth settings. I played the voice back solo and realized how nice it actually sounded, so I decided to make it the main voice of the piece.