[LAU] Paper on new methods of notation

Joep L. Blom jlblom at neuroweave.nl
Sat Jul 3 13:51:15 UTC 2010

David Collins wrote:
> Hi,
> I've written a short paper on different methods of notation which have evolved recently, and thought that some readers here might be interested.
> The paper is available at http://indigo.uk.to/~david/notes/music/notation.pdf .
> The primary languages discussed are Mondrian, Abc notation, Csound, and Lilypond.
> The paper wasn't by any means intended to be comprehensive, so I haven't discussed other tools such as Philip's Music Writer, or the various audio programming environments such as SuperCollider, Chuck and others.
> It's not necessarily Linux-specific, but the software discussed is all FLOSS and available on Linux - and the information might be of interest to people who use Linux to compose music.
> Feedback and corrections are welcome.
> david
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It is an interesting overview but a topic that, in my eyes, is not very 
important. Yes I know Lilypond an Abc and a wealth of other notation 
methods. Dont' forget Messiaen or the Dutch composer Peter Schat (with 
the "Toonklok") or several others, each devising the method best suited 
to their view on music. Don't forget the combination of classical notes 
and chord symbols, actually an extension to the classical basso continuo 
notation from the times of Bach.
However, I don't think that we are in need of a new notational view. To 
me it's a challenge to use standard notation to express as exactly as 
possible your intention with melody, chords, timing, you name it. It is 
the INTERPRETER who will make the notated sounds come to live, be it a 
cantate of Bach, the Soldade do Brazil by Milhaud, a transcripted piano 
solo of Keith Jarrett or an arrangement for Big Band by Klaus Obermayer 
(or Johnny Dankworth to name an English arranger).
Don't forget, current programs (Finale for Windows and Mscore for Linux)
give you an endless gamma of graphical and alphabetical 'tools' to 
express your intentions. Even current modern compositions which are very 
free in the sounds composers want to be heard (listen to the "obliged 
work" of the Queen Elisabeth music competition 2010) are written in 
standard notation.
But others may have of course different views.

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