Music Theory Online 23.3 Sept. 2017

Music Theory Online 23.3 Sept. 2017
http://mtosmt.org/issues/mto.17.23.3/toc.23.3.php
Editor’s Message
Dear readers,
In these turbulent times, we must do what we can to stand against ignorance, injustice, and hatred. To quote the SMT Executive Board’s “After Charlottesville: A Statement of Affirmation”:
Recent events in Charlottesville have served as a reminder that institutions of higher education can become the very stage upon which forces of hatred and violence play out. The Executive Board of the Society for Music Theory reaffirms the Society’s values of open and respectful dialogue and our commitment to ideals of justice, dignity, and equality for all peoples. The hatred that we witnessed directed against those who acted in defense of these values contradicts and threatens our core principles. We stand together for inclusivity, diversity, and the free exchange of ideas.
Music Theory Online was launched experimentally in March 1993, after which issues 0.1 through 0.11 were published. Its permanent status was marked in January 1995 with the publication of Volume 1.1. MTO contains articles, commentaries on articles from previous issues, reviews, and essays all related to the field of professional music theory.
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The Society for Music Theory also publishes the print journal Music Theory Spectrum, which is included in SMT membership.
Editor’s Message
Dear readers,

In these turbulent times, we must do what we can to stand against ignorance, injustice, and hatred. To quote the SMT Executive Board’s “After Charlottesville: A Statement of Affirmation”:

Recent events in Charlottesville have served as a reminder that institutions of higher education can become the very stage upon which forces of hatred and violence play out. The Executive Board of the Society for Music Theory reaffirms the Society’s values of open and respectful dialogue and our commitment to ideals of justice, dignity, and equality for all peoples. The hatred that we witnessed directed against those who acted in defense of these values contradicts and threatens our core principles. We stand together for inclusivity, diversity, and the free exchange of ideas.

Many of us teach alone and do our research alone, and so it is in the domain of service that a sense of community and togetherness is strongest. Helping to foster the free exchange of ideas in Music Theory Online for the past three years has been exhilarating and illuminating, and it is a bittersweet task to write my twelfth and final Editor’s Message. Associate editor Steve Rodgers and I are passing the torch to the new editor Jeff Perry from Louisiana State University and the new associate editor Jonathan Kochavi from Swarthmore College; next year they will be joined by a second associate editor, René Rusch. It has been a pleasure to collaborate on this issue with Jeff and Jon, who bring astute intelligence, critical insight, and sharp analytical skills to the electronic pages of this journal.

In the current issue, we are pleased to present six articles and six book reviews, and a conference report on EuroMAC 9 by incoming editor Jeff Perry. Three articles focus on repertoire outside of the common practice, and two of these concern ambiguity in popular music. Trevor de Clercq analyzes verse-chorus song forms from 1980s pop-rock, demonstrating that formal ambiguities can derive from weak section differentiation, blending of section roles, and/or different hierarchical implications of bridge sections. Mark Richards identifies focal notes in the melody as a way of resolving tonal ambiguities in the “Axis” progression i–V–III–VII and its rotations in late 20th- and early 21st-century popular music. David Clarke explores the applicability of Lerdahl and Jackendoff’s A Generative Theory of Tonal Music to Hindustani (North Indian) classical music through a case study of an ālāp, assessing GTTM’s claims of universality and suggesting some modifications to its preference rules.

Three other articles examine aspects of French and German Romanticism and early Modernism. Damian Blättler offers a model of additive harmony in the Parisian modernist repertoire based on tonal function, harmonic voicing, and the distinction between anchor structures and adorning tones within a chord. James Bungert’s “A Tale of Three Schenkers” considers the performance issues raised by Schenker’s analysis and annotated score of Chopin’s Berceuse as they relate to fingering, bodily gestures, and keyboard topography. Michael Puri makes a case for interpreting Ravel’s Valses nobles et sentimentales as modeled on Schumann’s piano cycles rather than Schubert’s waltzes.

Thanks to the efforts of our excellent reviews editors Joti Rockwell and Michael Callahan, we also present (unprecedentedly) six book reviews. Of these, two reviews evaluate monographs: Emanuel Amiot’s Discrete Fourier Transforms and Jeffrey Swinkin’s Performative Analysis. Two reviews reflect on essay collections: Rethinking Schubert, ed. Lorraine Byrne Bodley and Julian Horton, and Country Boys and Redneck Women: New Essays in Gender and Country Music, ed. Diane Pecknold and Kristine M. McCusker. Two more reviews appraise textbooks: John Franceschina’s Music Theory through Musical Theatre, and the aural-skills textbooks Comprehensive Aural Skills by Justin Merritt and David Castro, and The Moving Body in the Aural Skills Classroom: A Eurythmics-Based Approach by Diane J. Urista.

We offer sincere thanks to Brent Yorgason for his tireless work behind the scenes despite many competing demands on his time, to the members of the editorial board for their thorough and constructive reviews, and to the editorial assistants for their dedication, hard work, and attention to detail. We are, in addition, deeply indebted to the many referees who provide lengthy, detailed, and well thought-out reviews containing excellent advice for our authors. This reflects an impressive and commendable commitment to mentoring new scholarship in the discipline as well as helping to disseminate it.

We encourage new and creative submissions to MTO. Although we are especially well suited for the publication of articles that incorporate recordings, videos, and other media, we also welcome text submissions in a variety of formats, including full-length articles, shorter essays and commentaries, conference reports, and entire special volumes. Commentaries in response to this issue’s articles, as well as announcements for our job listings and dissertation index, may be submitted to the Editor for publication in the next issue. Please refer to our submission guidelines.

All MTO volumes dating back to our first issue in 1993 can be accessed from the contents page at http://www.mtosmt.org/issues/issues.html. Thank you, as always, for your support of MTO—a Journal of the Society for Music Theory.

articles

Damian Blattler, A Voicing-Based Model for Additive Harmony
This article develops, for the Parisian modernist repertoire, a model of additive harmony in which voicing plays a foundational role. In comparison with the conventional extended-triad model of additive harmony, the voicing-based model better describes the range of novel verticalities used in tonal progressions in this repertoire, and the features that allow those verticalities to serve as stand-ins for common-practice chords. This study also enriches our understanding of the important developments in Western tonal language that took place in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Most research on these stylistic developments details how innovation within certain horizontal-domain pitch constraints allowed for the incorporation of new harmonic successions into tonal contexts; this paper demonstrates that a similar process can be read in the vertical domain, wherein adherence to certain vertical-domain pitch constraints allowed for the incorporation of new chords into tonal contexts.

James Bungert, A Tale of Three Schenkers: Analysis, Piano Pedagogy, and Performance of the Chopin Berceuse op. 57
This article addresses the discrepancy between Schenker’s lifelong devotion to performance and the limited treatment of performance issues in the secondary literature on Schenker — a discrepancy exacerbated by the delayed publication of his performance manual The Art of Performance (2000). This study helps to ameliorate the discrepancy by examining his analysis of the Chopin Berceuse op. 57 in D-flat major in Das Meisterwerk II (1926) in comparison to his own annotated score of the piece, with the ultimate goal of creating a clearer picture of how Schenker’s conception of performance intersects with his theories. Following Rings 2011, the article develops a Lewinian transformational model of conceptual tension based on Schenker’s understanding of retention and anticipation in passing motions, and applies it to the rather complex intentional structure of finger choice (the finger chosen at various critical junctures in piano performance). Given the epistemological separation between Schenker’s Berceuse analysis and his annotated score, the article refers to The Art of Performance to formulate a “neo-Schenkerian” legato fingering (“neo” in that it represents my own performance values and participates in the modernist project of American Schenker reception) for the Berceuse theme that serves as a backdrop for understanding not only the conceptual tension of that fingering (according to the transformational model) as it relates to his analysis, but also the conceptual tension of his own fingering, taken from his personal copy of the piece. However, Schenker’s fingering largely ignores his own recommendations for legato and, unlike the underlying voice leading and neo-Schenkerian fingering, does not sustain conceptual tension throughout the theme. Nevertheless, it engages the bodily core in a manner that—in light of the large-scale push to the subdominant (Gflat major) later on in the piece, and the bodily actions associated with playing almost exclusively in the black-key plane—serves the organic coherence of the Berceuse as a whole. This coherence, which arises from the performer’s physical actions, also resonates with some of Schenker’s comments regarding the relationship of The Art of Performance with his mature theory, and his appreciation for what he called Chopin’s “particular synthesis.”

David Clarke, North Indian Classical Music and Lerdahl and Jackendoff’s Generative Theory – a Mutual Regard

Trevor de Clercq, Embracing Ambiguity in the Analysis of Form in Pop/Rock Music, 1982–1991

Michael Puri, Ravel’s Valses nobles et sentimentales and its Models

Mark Richards, Tonal Ambiguity in Popular Music’s Axis Progressions

reviews

Jonathan Guez, Review of Lorraine Byrne Bodley and Julian Horton, eds. Rethinking Schubert (Oxford University Press, 2016)

Brian Hoffman, Review of John Franceschina, Music Theory through Musical Theatre (Oxford University Press, 2015)

Samantha Inman, Review of Justin Merritt and David Castro, Comprehensive Aural Skills: A Flexible Approach to Rhythm, Melody, and Harmony (Routledge, 2016) and Diane J. Urista, The Moving Body in the Aural Skills Classroom: A Eurhythmics Based Approach (Oxford, 2016)

Jonathan King, Review of Diane Pecknold and Kristine M. McCusker, eds., Country Boys and Redneck Women: New Essays in Gender and Country Music (University Press of Mississippi, 2016)

Daphne Leong, Review of Jeffrey Swinkin, Performative Analysis: Reimagining Music Theory for Performance(University of Rochester Press, 2016)

Jason Yust, Review of Emmanuel Amiot, Music through Fourier Space: Discrete Fourier Transform in Music Theory (Springer, 2016)

conference report

Jeffrey Perry, Conference Report: EuroMAC 9