[Dixielandjazz] What a difference a key makes

Dan Augustine ds.augustine at mail.utexas.edu
Fri Oct 6 07:24:02 PDT 2006

     I was under the impression that J. S. Bach wrote for the 
"well-tempered" clavier (or a keyboard instrument), and 
well-tempering was an attempt to make all the keys more in tune with 
each other and less discordant in the keys with a lot of flats or 
sharps.  It was definitely NOT the same as equal-temperament, in 
which the octave is divided into twelve exactly equal semitones, so 
that (theoretically, at least) all keys are equally in (or slightly 
out of) tune.
     Is this not true?
     Now i have heard that piano-tuners (at the request of players, 
apparently) in practice slightly 'stretch' some intervals (like the 
octave), but i'm not sure why.  To make those intervals, or the piano 
in general, sound 'brighter'?  Or what?
     Is this topic not congruent with the daily work of a certain Mr. 
Ringwald?  Could he (or someone else) elaborate perhaps?

>From: DWSI at aol.com
>Date: Fri, 6 Oct 2006 06:54:18 EDT
>To: dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com
>Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] What a difference a key makes
>Did Steve really say this?
>"One thing they seem to agree on is that on a piano, (or  a 
>washboard) all keys should be the same..."
>No serious student of the piano would ever agree, nor would any piano 
>technician. Sorry, Steve, somebody is not listening out there. The 
>keys should  NOT
>sound the same because of the way they were constructed originally by J. S. 
>Bach. They were only almost equalized.
>I think I'll read the newspaper instead from now on.
>Dan (backup  piano) Spink

**  Dan Augustine  --  Austin, Texas  --  ds.augustine at mail.utexas.edu
** "Education, n. That which discloses to the wise and disguises from
**  from the foolish their lack of understanding." -- Ambrose Bierce 

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