[Smt-talk] fw: Lindberg mode

JAY RAHN jayrahn at rogers.com
Sat Jan 19 19:09:27 PST 2013

One could think of this 'mode' as a non-degenerate well-formed scale having a 7-semitone interval as its modulus, within which a 4-semitone interval cycles as follows: 0 4 1 5 2. 

A counterpart having the usual octave as it modulus would be the pentatonic scale employed in the 'equiheptatonic' tuning of Thai classical music: 0 1 2 4 5 (7). A rhythmic counterpart would be the e e q e q timeline employed in Haitian traditional music.

Jay Rahn, York University (Toronto)  

--- On Sat, 1/19/13, Zachary Bernstein <zachbernst at aol.com> wrote:

From: Zachary Bernstein <zachbernst at aol.com>
Subject: Re: [Smt-talk] fw: Lindberg mode
To: daphne.leong at Colorado.EDU, smt-talk at lists.societymusictheory.org
Cc: Jonathan.Leathwood at du.edu
Date: Saturday, January 19, 2013, 12:26 PM

Prof. Leong,

I'm going out on a limb here, given that I don't know Mano a Mano and don't know too much else of Lindberg all that intimately.  But since he has been known to refer to certain old historical ideas - think of his frequent use of chaconne - is it possible that this scale is built from the Daseian scale of the Enchiriadis treatises?  That scale links Tone-Semitone-Tone tetrachords together, separated by a tone. In modern notation, the result is G, A, Bb, C--D. E, F, G--A, B, C, D--E, F#, G, A--B, C#.   As you can see, it's also periodic at the fifth.  Indeed, the pattern is completely congruent with Lindberg's scale, except that he adds a single interpolated semitone in each fifth.  Thus, aligning the two scales (having the Lindberg scale begin with the bottom of the <11212> pattern):

Lindberg		F, F#, G, A, Bb, C, C#, D, E, F, G, G#, A, B, C, D, Eb, E, F#, G, A, A#, B, C#

Enchiriadis	          G, A, Bb, C,       D, E, F, G,       A, B, C, D,       E, F#, G, A,       B, C#

Could it be?



Zachary Bernstein

PhD Candidate

CUNY Graduate Center

-----Original Message-----

From: Daphne Leong <daphne.leong at Colorado.EDU>

To: smt-talk <smt-talk at lists.societymusictheory.org>

Cc: Jonathan Leathwood <Jonathan.Leathwood at du.edu>

Sent: Fri, Jan 18, 2013 9:27 pm

Subject: [Smt-talk] fw: Lindberg mode

I'm forwarding the following query at the request of my colleague Jonathan Leathwood:

I'm currently working on a long guitar piece by Magnus Lindberg from 2004 called Mano a Mano. I have a little familiarity with some of his earlier music and the influence of the spectralists is very obvious to the ear, and there is some literature about that. So far, however, I don't see much in the guitar piece in common with those works: in fact, I would never have guessed they were by the same composer. Instead, I see that the guitar piece it is mostly based on a curious mode that runs (in semitones) <11212…>, repeating the pattern every perfect fifth. For example: <C, C#, D, E, F, G, G#, A, B, c, d, eb, e, f#, g, a…>. 

Lindberg often uses common segments with other more common modes to switch back and forth. It turns out that the repeating pattern yields all pcs of the aggregate within a span of 22 semitones, and so he sometimes suggests other modes by selecting only the relevant pcs while allowing the governing mode to constrain the spacing. Finally, the mode is rich enough that you can write interesting music by choosing only the common tones between two of its transpositions, something I've noted in one passage so far.

My question is simply whether you have encountered this mode -- perhaps it's quite well known and I just haven't seen it before. One thing I wished I had was a good labeling convention for it.


Daphne Leong 							Daphne.Leong at colorado.edu

Associate Professor, Music Theory			tel: (303) 492-4337

Chair, Theory and Composition			fax: (303) 492-5619

University of Colorado at Boulder

College of Music,  301 UCB

Boulder, CO  80309-0301


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