Birds of a feather! The bird is certainly the big word! Tweet! Tweet! Check this out. Colonel Forbin’s Ascent! Famous Mockingbird! Fikus! Gumbo! Llama! What do all these songs have in common? Birds! The bird is certainly the word. Music started with a bird. It is said that Saint Gregory (Pope Gregory) was befuddled by all of the thousands of different chants that were being sung within the holy Catholic Church. Therefore, he wanted some easy way to write all of these intense chants down in an orderly way. It was the Sixth Century and the organization of music through the language of notation had not yet been invented. Saint Gregory was at a major loss! It’s too bad he never got to see a Phish show. Imagine his gospels if he had witnessed such enigmatic sonic visions as the Phish from Vermont! Actually, scratch that one! Music notation HAD been invented. Unfortunately, for the Godly Pope, he had no clue about it. Leave it to a Catholic to be behind in the times! The Egyptians wrote music on the walls of their tombs. It’s true! There are also ancient Greek tombstones called stele bearing funeral hymns. Leave it to the Greeks to be on top of their shit!
The Egyptian notation looks like hieroglyphs even though they are not. The Greeks wrote little letters over the lines of their poetic pieces. The presumption is that these markings correspond to the various modes of Greek music. Plato goes off about this but never truly explains the connection in detail. Leave it to Plato to be super vague! Gregory had a key problem with organization. He needed to set down music from the oral performance to paper so that it may be archived and referenced. Then, the bird enters! The bird says to Greg that he needs to draw several parallel lines to show how high or low the note is supposed to be and then show where the note is by placing a little black square on the line of the space between the lines.
What happens if the note moves while you are singing the same syllable? Just smear it to where it should end up! Gregory listened to the bird and started developing the idea. At least, that is what people say. What we do know is that Gregory is given credence for inventing what we now know as notation. Leave it to the Catholics to invent shit! The oldest surviving Gregorian chant actually is from a manuscript that came 200 years after his death even though the concept bears his name. Word on the street is that St. Ambrose was collecting chants 150 years prior to Gregory but they were never notated. Most people are convinced that Ambrosian chant was absorbed by the Gregorian style.
The big thing to get from this is that Gregorian chant is the first Western music to be systematically notated and served as the spine of music for thousands of years after the Godly Pope croaked. Have you ever heard Gregorian chant? Uh oh! Houston! We have a fucking problem! Even though it is music notation and even though it is still in use today, it appears that every time a liberal gets all high and mighty, some knuckle head deems that the people demand modern music! The people need stuff they can relate to in modern times! This is the idea! This is the idea that also took us out of the golden age of country music and into the shit show now that we know as modern country music. Blech!
Now check out this steaming pile of shit. He is a lot more American than you!
The chants are shelved and we lose our culture. Bummer dude! The first time this happened, Gregorian chant was just on the loser list long enough for those that were living the oral tradition to die off. Not good! Today, in France, there are monks that keep the traditions alive via the headquarters for Gregorian chant. However, what in the name of all that is good does it sound like?
It’s what we know as monophonic music. This means that only one note is sung at any given time. All those chords that you hear Trey and Page play? Forget about it! There are no chords. Check out those sick harmonies from the Phish show the other night! What about harmony? Gregorian chant does not have any of those either! They don’t even sing an octave apart. What the hell is an octave?!
An octave or a perfect octave is simply an interval between one musical pitch and another with half or double its frequency. This is known within the family of musicians as the basic miracle of music and is a natural phenomenon that connects us to the celestial language and order of things. Musical scales are written normally with eight notes. The interval or space between the first and last note of these eight tones is an octave. If you look at a keyboard you can find the tones CDEFGABC. These eight tones make up the C Major scale. The C at the beginning of this scale and the C at the end are an octave apart. They share the same pitch class. We will dive more into these terms on future episodes of The Philler. Stay tuned!
What does this mean for Gregorian chant? This rule adds up to a very small range for the world of Gregorian chant. There are also no very high or low notes. Anyone that has an average range can bust it out Gregorian style. There is a rhythm but can you hear it? It takes a well trained ear and is very slow.
Friends, isn’t music glorious? You know, all of the music, millions and millions and millions that move us with their motions that fill us with pride and thought. Who have created enourmous trends in philosophy and progress – more than anyone could have ever put into the great combined imaginations of the world. Who have spread love throughout this great marble we call Earth. And most of those that get too fucked up at shows to have little more intelligence than a common slug. This one is for you. We get busy and don’t take no for an answer. You grow the cancer on our scene and are better left at home than within our sacred spaces. Shine on. Grow up. Learn something about your surroundings. Show some self respect. Show some respect to your fellow fan. Clean up. Sober up. No wonder there are so many terrible jokes about the Phish scene. Some of them are so terribly true. The music is grand. The scene? A large embarrassment.
I’ll conclude by asking the reader one question. How is this connected to Phish in any way? Listen to this track that ends Hoist and the person with the best comment in this blog entry below will receive a free poster courtesy of The Sloping Companion. Let’s hear it. What do you think? Leave it to Robert Champion to leave you up in the air! Take care of each other.
Hey everyone. We’ve started a campaign to try to raise money for two of our field reporters. They need a laptop really bad in order to start working from the road and beyond and we have set out to make that happen for these two newly married batches of awesomeness. Please click on the picture above to get all of the info on the campaign and to watch the video that we made to accompany the campaign which ends on July 10th. We are offering some great incentives this time around for those that choose to help fund this project. The last one that we did exceeded our expectations and this will be a valuable resource to anyone that is into what we do and to those who love music and youth music education. Again, please check out the campaign by clicking on the image above. You can also watch the video below to get a feel for why we are doing this and what you get in return for your contribution via the different donor levels. There are several levels to choose from and there is no such thing as a small donation. Every donation is equally important in our eyes! Check it out and let’s give these two love birds a big hand for stepping up to the plate with a smile everytime they hit the lot. They are beautiful. They are winning! Thanks for your time. This ends July 10th so please help us out early and often. Tell all of your friends and family. Many blessings. Take care of each other.
Those with planets in fire signs have a simmering at-the-ready stance, as they hunt for things that light them up. They’re prone to sudden illuminating flashes of insight and bursts of enthusiasm. Like fire itself, they can flare up when inspired, making them seem very passionate about life. They like to live large, and often feel frustrated by mundane chores and duties. Fire signs are known to be intuitive, and to rely on gut-level instincts. Going on faith in their inner guidance gets them far, but they have a tendency to skip crucial steps, or to be unaware of the emotional impact of their actions. The element of Fire is associated with the signs Aries, Leo and Sagittarius, and it also rules the First, Fifth and Ninth Houses. As one would expect, those graced by Fire are fiery, indeed. They are enthusiastic and sometimes larger than life. Just like a fire that is left untended, however, Fire signs can burn out of control — so it’s best to tend those embers. Fire sign is also an indicator of creativity. This element manifests itself in creative and unique ways, and those in its glow are wonderfully courageous and lively spirits. Those influenced by a Fire sign are self-sufficient, spontaneous and possess a tremendous zest for life. It also stands to reason that a combustible Fire signer would be ardent in the game of love. Yes, these are the sexiest signs of the zodiac, knowing they are the cat’s meow and climbing ever higher in the name of love. To their credit, those touched by Fire are often an inspiration to others, certainly for their adherence to solid moral and religious ideals.
How are the three Fire signs different?: Along with the triplicities, there is another grouping in astrology, known as the qualities. These are Cardinal, Fixed and Mutable – each element has a sign with one of the qualities. Among the fire signs, Aries is cardinal, Leo is fixed and Sagittarius is mutable. Aries (♈) /ˈɛəriːz/ (meaning “ram“) is the first astrological sign in the Zodiac, spanning the first 30 degrees of celestial longitude (0°≤ λ <30º). Under the tropical zodiac, the Sun transits this sign between March 21 and April 20 each year. This time duration is exactly the first month of Solar Hejri calendar (Farvardin). Under the sidereal zodiac, the sun currently transits Aries from 15 April to 15 May (approximately).
According to the Tropical system of astrology, the Sun enters the sign of Aries when it reaches the northern vernal equinox, which occurs around March 21. Due to the fact that the Earth takes approximately 365.25 days to go around the Sun, the precise time of the equinox is not the same each year, and generally will occur about 6 hours later each year, with a jump of a day (backwards) on leap years. Since 1900 the vernal equinox date ranged from March 20 at 08h (2000) to March 21 at 19h (1903) (all times UTC). Individuals born during these dates, depending on which system of astrology they subscribe to, may be called Arians orAriens. Aries is one of the constellations of the zodiac. It is located in the northern celestial hemisphere between Pisces to the west and Taurus to the east. The name Aries is Latin for ram, and its symbol is , representing a ram’s horns. It is one of the 48 constellations described by the 2nd century astronomer Ptolemy, and remains one of the 88 modern constellations. It is a mid-sized constellation, ranking 39th overall size, with an area of 441 square degrees (1.1% of the celestial sphere). Although Aries came to represent specifically the ram whose fleece became the Golden Fleece of Ancient Greek mythology, it has represented a ram since late Babylonian times. Before that, the stars of Aries formed a farmhand. Different cultures have incorporated the stars of Aries into different constellations including twin inspectors in China and a porpoise in the Marshall Islands. Aries is a relatively dim constellation, possessing only four bright stars: Hamal (Alpha Arietis, second magnitude), Sheratan (Beta Arietis, third magnitude), Mesarthim (Gamma Arietis, fourth magnitude), and41 Arietis (also fourth magnitude). The few deep-sky objects within the constellation are quite faint and include several pairs of interacting galaxies. Several meteor showers appear to radiate from Aries, including the Daytime Arietids and the Epsilon Arietids.