6/8 Clave Permutations - Bell Patterns and Church Modes

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Postby windhorse » Sun Feb 17, 2008 9:07 pm

Yes, actually there was no confusion (as long as you were responding to this "Dave"),, I was completely agreeing with you, and by your response it looks as if you agree with my interpretation, which actually comes from my teacher.

Clave goes round and round, other parts fit where they do, and thus there isn't a real one or three. It's just for writing purposes..




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Postby davidpenalosa » Sun Feb 17, 2008 9:46 pm

Thomas,
I understand what you were saying now about quinto. Thanks.

Thomas, Dave (and everyone else at home),
Regarding the 3-2, 2-3 concept and terminology. It is only in effect when there’s a harmonic progression present. The 3-2, 2-3 concept and terminology resulted from the interface of clave with the European harmonic matrix. According to Bobby Sanabria, the concept was developed by Mario Bauza in the 1940’s. Bobby was Mario’s drummer for eight years and is quite the Latin music historian. Machito and his Afro-Cubans, under the direction of Bauza, was the first band to overtly exploit the possibilities of moving the chord progression form one side of clave to the other within the same piece of music.

In folkloric music "one" is always the first beat of the three-side. This is the point in musical time where the clave matrix is initiated, the moment of rhythmic "ignition. At its most fundamental, the rhythmic progression of clave consists of the call/response sequence of two opposed cells (three-side/two-side), over the primary beat scheme: 1, 2, 3, 4.

In popular music the situation is somewhat different. Theoretically speaking, a chord progression may begin on any pulse. However, because of clave’s binary nature, a chord progression is understood to begin in just one of two ways, either on the three-side or the two-side (3-2 or 2-3). The "one" can be on either side of clave, because the harmonic progression, rather than the rhythmic progression is the prime referent. In popular music harmony trumps rhythm. The chord progression is the primary referent and establishes the "one".

Not convinced? Try this experiment: Play a rhythm where all the fills, solos and accents are on the three-side. You might say the "rhythm is in 3-2". Now superimpose a 2-3 piano guajeo over the rhythm (all correct relationships to clave are maintained). The moment the piano enters on the two-side, you will hear the "one" on the two-side. This is not just something musicians hear, dancers would also feel this change.

There is a common misconception that certain rhythms have a set clave sequence. There are no 3-2 rhythms, or 2-3 rhythms per sé. Nor, do on-beat accents have any bearing whatsoever on clave sequence; the chord progression is the sole determinant.

In a folkloric context, the "one" is always on the three-side, but it’s not proper to say "everything is 3-2 in folkloric music". The 3-2, 2-3 concept is in no way a factor.

In folkloric music beat 1 is the beginning of the cycle, regardless of where in that cycle a percussion or vocal part enters. The key patterns in folkloric music start on the three-side because that’s where the clave matrix is initiated. Even if you were to sing a medley of orisha songs that all started on the two-side, you would still begin the bell on the three-side. The songs just come in half-way through the bell. They are not "2-3 songs".

You could put a 3-2 chord progression over those songs (a jazz/bembe fusion let’s say) and the songs would all be in 3-2. It doesn’t matter where in clave a part enters, it’s the chord progression that sets the clave sequence ("direction").

Yes, there is a strong accent on the downbeat of the two-side in iyesa. We have all heard that "clave is the key", "everything is in relation to clave", etc. I have never heard that "the strong on-beat accent is the key". Nor would that rhythmic accent have any bearing whatsoever on whether a popular song is in 3-2 or 2-3. A chord progression could just as easily be in 3-2 as 2-3 in some kind of popular music-iyesa fusion.

So, if a coro comes in on the two-side in a folkloric genre, it’s proper to say the "song enters on the two-side", but it’s not proper to say "the song is in 2-3".
-David




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Postby davidpenalosa » Sun Feb 17, 2008 9:52 pm

windhorse wrote:there isn't a real one or three. It's just for writing purposes..

Sorry Dave, I disagree. There is a 1 (and a 2, 3, 4) and it is independent of any writing system (which is relatively recent of course). The four main beats are a real factor and they have a set sequence. In other words, the 2 never beomes the 3. Once the key pattern cycle is etablished, the main beat cycle is also set.

Boy, we are really opening up lots of "cans of worms" these days aren't we? :)
-David




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Postby windhorse » Sun Feb 17, 2008 10:36 pm

davidpenalosa wrote:
windhorse wrote:there isn't a real one or three. It's just for writing purposes..

Sorry Dave, I disagree. There is a 1 (and a 2, 3, 4) and it is independent of any writing system (which is relatively recent of course. The four main beats are a real factor and they have a set sequence. In other words, the 2 never beomes the 3. Once the key pattern cycle is etablished, the main beat cycle is also set.

Boy, we are really opening up lots of "cans of worms" these days aren't we? :)
-David

haha!
Yes we are! :p

I enjoy the debates, even when they go around and around like the rhythms to which we refer.

I agree with Thomas, that the clave and the drum play their parts, without a starting part. In other words, nothing necessarily causes or forces another thing. The matrix of the entire rhythm/song exists in space outside of the players. In other words I think that it would be quite fine for a clave player to come in playing clave on the back half of the clave pattern in order to fit into the sequence someone else has initiated, just as it would be fine that the shaker came in where it is supposed to play after someone else starts the song,, etc. etc.
That's where I believe Thomas and I were agreeing.
:)

Also, if you're playing music with others, no one person "owns" the rhythm as a player in ensemble music. The true beat or rhythmic conscience exists outside of each and every player, and is shared equally. We've all probably played with someone who insists on speeding up, but the rest are quite fine playing at the speed that everyone else agrees upon. If that person who wants to be the rock in the stream happens to be the clave player, then HE is the one who is wrong, not everyone else.

I realize that has nothing to do with your argument of clave's correct format, but I'm arguing that playing the pattern is different than just thinking of clave as it's own rhythmic pattern.

It's all good!




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Postby Thomas Altmann » Mon Feb 18, 2008 3:02 am

David P.:

Regarding the 3-2, 2-3 concept and terminology. It is only in effect when there’s a harmonic progression present.


... In other words, when you can identify a metric "1".

The 3-2, 2-3 concept and terminology resulted from the interface of clave with the European harmonic matrix. According to Bobby Sanabria, the concept was developed by Mario Bauza in the 1940’s.


David P. strikes again ... Thanks for sharing! Although the world of Afro-American music is overcrowded with people who invented Jazz, Mambo or whatever, I am inclined to believe Mario Bauza, as far as the definition of these categories are concerned. Who else but Bauza was destined to bridge African with European musical concepts?

However, no one can tell me that he invented the concept. Folkloric and religious Afro-Cuban music was organized by the Clave (specifically the Bembe/Ewe bell) early on. One can discern a lot of 3/2 and 2/3 songs, as well as some songs that alternate from solo to chorus parts, or songs that seem to take their respective metric point of gravity (the "1") at a different position in the bell pattern. "El Manicero" (composed by Moises Simons in 1928) was recorded in 1930 by Don Aspiazú, and you can hear a clave audibly played in 2/3, whereas the 1925/1926 recordings of the Sexteto Habanero and Bolona have a lot of 3/2 Clave going on. The concept was already there before 1940.

Maybe Bauza coined the terms. Maybe he was more than anybody else at that time concerned about writing "in Clave", because he was the major figure in arranging orchestral Afro-Cuban Jazz.

Machito and his Afro-Cubans, under the direction of Bauza, was the first band to overtly exploit the possibilities of moving the chord progression form one side of clave to the other within the same piece of music.


Well, at least I will not proceed to count and compare the pieces with corresponding samples by the Cuban conjuntos (Arsenio, Casino, Kubavana etc). :)

In folkloric music "one" is always the first beat of the three-side. This is the point in musical time where the clave matrix is initiated, the moment of rhythmic "ignition. At its most fundamental, the rhythmic progression of clave consists of the call/response sequence of two opposed cells (three-side/two-side), over the primary beat scheme: 1, 2, 3, 4.


This is probably the main point of disagreement between us. The way I see it, the rhythm of the clave is mostly started on "1" of the three side when it is actually played. The drummers may feel the "1" on the other side, and the singer somewhere else - if the metric point of gravity is a general concern at all.

One important expression of Afro-Cuban folklore, the Arara liturgy, is rich in songs that have a weird clave connection, where it's hard to find a "1". One of the relatively simple songs, "Merewotimbo lode", cannot be felt in 3/2 in its first section. In "Enikue nikue ro", the solo phrase is in 3/2 and the responding chorus in 2/3. Everything has been there, before Son, and before any European influence, even if it wasn't called 2/3 Clave or anything.

The point is, to identify a metric point of gravity, chord changes are helpful, but not necessary. I, for one, can hear a metric "1" in any melodic phrase. Sometimes there might be several possibilities, but generally I think everybody can feel that.

The chord progression is the primary referent and establishes the "one".

Not convinced? Try this experiment: Play a rhythm where all the fills, solos and accents are on the three-side. You might say the "rhythm is in 3-2". Now superimpose a 2-3 piano guajeo over the rhythm (all correct relationships to clave are maintained). The moment the piano enters on the two-side, you will hear the "one" on the two-side. This is not just something musicians hear, dancers would also feel this change.


A fascinating recording that I used to play for students as a Clave example is the old Barretto Descarga number "Trompeta y Trombon", performed by the Fania All Stars at the Cheetah under the title "Descarga Fania". The ostinato vamp of bass and piano suggest a 3/2 feel that competes with the chorus phrase in 2/3 at the same time. So it's both? Or does the chorus win over the bass? Both are playing chords (horizontally implied in the scale of the melody).

There is a common misconception that certain rhythms have a set clave sequence. There are no 3-2 rhythms, or 2-3 rhythms per sé.


Important notice.

In a folkloric context, the "one" is always on the three-side, but it’s not proper to say "everything is 3-2 in folkloric music". The 3-2, 2-3 concept is in no way a factor.

In folkloric music beat 1 is the beginning of the cycle, regardless of where in that cycle a percussion or vocal part enters. The key patterns in folkloric music start on the three-side because that’s where the clave matrix is initiated. Even if you were to sing a medley of orisha songs that all started on the two-side, you would still begin the bell on the three-side. The songs just come in half-way through the bell. They are not "2-3 songs".


(See above.) Any given song in the tradition has to be in alignment with the Clave, period. The bell player starts mostly on the first beat of the clave, but the way you feel the clave orientation of the song or drum phrasing depends on; 1. whether you apply metric pulsations and their weights at all and 2. where you hear or feel the natural metric orientation of the phrasing in question. So the way I perceive it, you either skip metric thinking in favor of the clave altogether; or, if you don't, you go by your feeling where the "weight" is. Contrasting phrases, such as bell time line against song phrasing, or bass vamp against chorus phrase, do (co)exist.

You could put a 3-2 chord progression over those songs (a jazz/bembe fusion let’s say) and the songs would all be in 3-2. It doesn’t matter where in clave a part enters, it’s the chord progression that sets the clave sequence ("direction").


I bet, however, that an arranger would adopt his chord changes to the phrasing of the song. And even if he didn't, you could start hearing two contrasting levels.

Yes, there is a strong accent on the downbeat of the two-side in iyesa.


Not always. Listen to the caja player demonstating his part on the "Antología de la música Afro-Cubana", or think of Rumba Iyesá variations in batá drumming.

We have all heard that "clave is the key", "everything is in relation to clave", etc. I have never heard that "the strong on-beat accent is the key". Nor would that rhythmic accent have any bearing whatsoever on whether a popular song is in 3-2 or 2-3. A chord progression could just as easily be in 3-2 as 2-3 in some kind of popular music-iyesa fusion.


Of course. First of all we must clearly differentiate the played (and heard) rhythmic accent from the felt metric weight.

If we wanted to investigate the clave direction in a given piece of music, we have to look for rhythmic proportions within a two-bar unit (= four pulsations). If we have one downbeat played (on "1") in one measure, and either a 1+ in, or a syncopated "1" (=4+) towards, the second bar, then we can observe in Rumba (segunda) as well as in Son (guajeos /montunos /tumbaos) that the "1" tends to start the 2-side of the Clave, while the syncopated or delayed "1" marks the 3-side. This is an observation that makes for a case of precedence in the listening experience, and so-called Clave rules are derived from that. If a tune is in 3/2-Clave, the accented "1" is heard on the third pulsation, or the second measure, respectively. This applies only, however, if a Clave-related phrasing is pursued; if a beat-related Jazz feeling is intended, the random use of "1" or "4+" has no effect, clave-wise.

Changuito's bass drum accompaniment, 2/3 notation:

|X - - -|- - - -|- - - X|- - - -|

I'm not going to kill any worms from anybody's can. It has always been my purpose in discussions to exchange information, and if there is any (inevitable) disagreement on certain issues, I never hesitate to bow to the better argument. But even if contrasting opinions remain, I herewith state that on my side there is no resentment whatsoever. E-mails do not reflect the non-verbal component of communication and can erroneously evoke the opposite impression.

So, a hundred smileys,

Thomas




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Postby davidpenalosa » Mon Feb 18, 2008 5:53 am

>>>Regarding the 3-2, 2-3 concept and terminology. It is only in effect when there’s a harmonic progression present.<<<
>>... In other words, when you can identify a metric "1".<<

Hi Thomas,
I don’t understand. What form of popular Cuban music does not have an identifiable "metric 1"?

>>However, no one can tell me that he [Bauza] invented the concept.<<

There were definitely 3-2 and 2-3 songs before that. I think since Mario Bauza was the first to overtly exploit the technique of changing the "one" from one side of clave to the other within the SAME piece of music, there was a necessity to develop a concept and terminology addressing that particular composition/arranging technique.

>>One important expression of Afro-Cuban folklore, the Arara liturgy, is rich in songs that have a weird clave connection, where it's hard to find a "1". One of the relatively simple songs, "Merewotimbo lode", cannot be felt in 3/2 in its first section. In "Enikue nikue ro", the solo phrase is in 3/2 and the responding chorus in 2/3. Everything has been there, before Son, and before any European influence, even if it wasn't called 2/3 Clave or anything.<<

Awhile back I addressed the fact that folkloric songs enter on either side of clave. That’s’ not an issue as far as I’m concerned. I’m only talking about the terms "3-2 and 2-3", what they mean and what they don’t mean.

You think that using the 3-2, 2-3 terminology is appropriate for describing where a chorus or percussion part enters. If you have Rebeca Mauleon’s "Salsa Guidebook", I think I can convince you otherwise very quickly. If you don’t have the book, I can email you a jpeg of the page. It’s pg. 160 from the section "The Melody and Clave", ex. 4.176 and 4.177.

>>The point is, to identify a metric point of gravity, chord changes are helpful, but not necessary. I, for one, can hear a metric "1" in any melodic phrase. Sometimes there might be several possibilities, but generally I think everybody can feel that.<<

By "metric one" do you mean an on-beat emphasis, or is harmony involved? Do these "metric ones" ever occur on offbeats?

The metric gravity is in the four main beats. Any accent not on a main beat is felt and understood in contrapuntal relation to it. The primary referents of clave and main beats remain the same, regardless of rhythmic counterpoint.

>>A fascinating recording that I used to play for students as a Clave example is the old Barretto Descarga number "Trompeta y Trombon", performed by the Fania All Stars at the Cheetah under the title "Descarga Fania". The ostinato vamp of bass and piano suggest a 3/2 feel that competes with the chorus phrase in 2/3 at the same time. So it's both? Or does the chorus win over the bass? Both are playing chords (horizontally implied in the scale of the melody).<<

I hear the ostinato vamp of the bass and piano in 2-3. What suggests a "3/2 feel" to you, is it rhythmic or harmonic?

>> Any given song in the tradition has to be in alignment with the Clave, period. The bell player starts mostly on the first beat of the clave, but the way you feel the clave orientation of the song or drum phrasing depends on;

1. whether you apply metric pulsations and their weights at all and

2. ... where you hear or feel the natural metric orientation of the phrasing in question. So the way I perceive it, you either skip metric thinking in favor of the clave altogether; or, if you don't, you go by your feeling where the "weight" is. Contrasting phrases, such as bell time line against song phrasing, or bass vamp against chorus phrase, do (co)exist.<<

Yes they co-exist. The clave and main beats are joined with the rest of the matrix. The entire matrix is grounded in the main beats. That is where the weight is.

David Locke (1982): "The recurring bell pattern establishes the basic musical period or time span and the beats divide that span into equal divisions … four beats to each cycle of the bell pattern …"

The drums typically emphasize cross-beats. You won’t nessesarily hear the "metric weight" in the music alone. The steps of the dancers, rather than the drums usually emphasize the main beats.

Kofi Agawu from "Representing African Music: Postcolonial Notes, Queries, Positions" (2003 ): "For cultural insiders, identifying the gross pulse or (‘dance feet’) occurs instinctively and spontaneously. Those not familiar with the choreographic supplement, however, sometimes have trouble locating the main beats and expressing them in movement. Hearing African music on recordings alone without prior grounding in its dance-based rhythms will not nessesarily convey the choreographic supplement. Not surprisingly, many misinterpretations of African rhythm and meter stem from a failure to observe the dance."

All other rhythmic emphasis (chorus, drum parts) is felt and understood in contrapuntal relation to the main referents.

C.K Ladzekpo (webpage): "... one of the integral beat schemes is dominant and the rest are perceived in cross-rhythmic relationship to it. This dominant beat scheme is considered the main beat because of its strong accents in regular recurrence that pervade and regulate the entire fabric."


>>It has always been my purpose in discussions to exchange information, and if there is any (inevitable) disagreement on certain issues, I never hesitate to bow to the better argument. But even if contrasting opinions remain, that on my side there is no resentment whatsoever. E-mails do not reflect the non-verbal component of communication and can erroneously evoke the opposite impression. So, a hundred smileys<<

... and a thousand smileys to you Thomas!

:) :) :) :) :) : ): )

I have never detected any resentment on your part. In fact, I think you are quite tolerant of my consistent adamancy.
-David




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Postby Thomas Altmann » Mon Feb 18, 2008 4:47 pm

Here we go again.

>>>Regarding the 3-2, 2-3 concept and terminology. It is only in effect when there’s a harmonic progression present.<<<
>>... In other words, when you can identify a metric "1".<<

Hi Thomas,
I don’t understand. What form of popular Cuban music does not have an identifiable "metric 1"?


Originally I did not intend to point out the possibility that there might be Cuban music that doesn't have an identifiable "1". I just wanted to interpret your theory that clave direction exists only where chord progressions are involved.

Before answering your question in the negative, I made up my mind and decided to mention just two examples at random where phrasing and text pronounciation do not confirm, or coincide with, a repeating cycle of metric weights.

The first song of the Oru Cantado, "Moyuba o, moyuba Orisha", displaces the natural metric orientation of the phrase in the solo phrase. Only the chorus part corresponds to a European/Euro-American metric feel.

I remember there are quite a few similar examples. One of the worst, or rather most difficult, examples is the Arara song "Saragode".

Some phrasings just don't make musical sense if we listened just with a set metric approach and the expectation to have it confirmed by all musical cultures around the world. In African and Afro-Cuban music, I believe having noticed that musical phrases that don't make sense in European metric relationship, are suddenly easy to understand if juxtaposed to the clave (bell) pattern.

This is just one reason that made me consider the idea that at one point, either historically, stylistically, or occasionally, Clave orientation was prevalent over metric orientation, or, in other words: Clave takes upon a quasi-metric function that does not need metric pulsations. Pulsations become sensible only when dance is added as a physical dimension.

There are other experiences that I made that spoke in favor of this hypothesis, such as folklore drummers in a teaching situation who, when asked where the "1" is, just insist on the first note they play, especially when it's a pick-up. There are more notions that confirm my idea which I just cannot mention publicly. David, I know you don't concur with it anyway, as I think we had already talked about that privately in a previous correspondence.

You think that using the 3-2, 2-3 terminology is appropriate for describing where a chorus or percussion part enters.


Minor correction: Where a part "enters" was your way to express it; I was even talking about folkloric songs being in 2/3 or 3/2 either throughout or in musical sections. This is not consistent with percussion parts. However, both song and percussion may start on either the 2-side or the 3-side of the clave. (Good Golly, I have to really pay attention ...)

If you have Rebeca Mauleon’s "Salsa Guidebook", I think I can convince you otherwise very quickly. If you don’t have the book, I can email you a jpeg of the page. It’s pg. 160 from the section "The Melody and Clave", ex. 4.176 and 4.177.


Nothing convincing about that, I'm sorry. What does the Diana of "Ave Maria Morena" or the phrase ending of the "Manicero" prove? Both melodies start on a pick up, but manifest the actual "1" of the phrase one bar later, thus establishing their respective clave orientation. It rather proves my point, that you feel the meter of a song phrase, no matter where it "enters". But: Are we talking about "popular" music or folkloric music here? Would you call any one of these examples folkloric and the other popular, anyway? At times, things become a bit confusing.

By "metric one" do you mean an on-beat emphasis, or is harmony involved? Do these "metric ones" ever occur on offbeats?


No, not emphasis in terms of accenting a note. By metric "1" I just mean the downbeat of European measuring. It's about weight, the point of gravity that you sense. Have you ever been asked by a percussion disciple how he can find out where the "1" of a piece of music is, because he just cannot feel it himself? Have you ever found a way to explain the phenomenon, other than just saying, "you got to feel it", and secretly writing him off? That's the metric "1" that I mean, and of course it is never on any off-beat. (Perhaps you made him aware of the places where chord changes occur.)

The metric gravity is in the four main beats.

We can even go a step further, because each main beat occupies a specific position within a measure on one hand, and has a different effect, a different function in relation to the phrase on the other. Each beat feels different.

If I don't repeat each of your statements in quotations, it means that I either agree with these or have already covered them elsewhere.

All of your text quotations seem to confirm my take on the subject, and partly I have said about the same thing earlier. My theory on off-beat and "cross rhythms" is a bit more related to metaphysics, but that doesn't matter in this context.

I have my reservations as far as C.K. Ladzekpo's statement is concerned. The way I see it, he is (typically) mixing up rhythm and meter, accent and weight. Not at all is the dominant beat always played out in strong accents.

I haven't spoken out the word "typically", O.K.?

Thomas




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Postby davidpenalosa » Mon Feb 18, 2008 7:01 pm

Hi Thomas,
How are you able to select multiple quotes from other postings? I’m only able to select one quote at a time. Selecting multiple quotes is very cool, much better than my method of using >> << marks.

Thomas:>>The first song of the Oru Cantado, "Moyuba o, moyuba Orisha", displaces the natural metric orientation of the phrase in the solo phrase. Only the chorus part corresponds to a European/Euro-American metric feel.<<

OK. I see what you mean now. Thanks.

>>In African and Afro-Cuban music, I believe having noticed that musical phrases that don't make sense in European metric relationship, are suddenly easy to understand if juxtaposed to the clave (bell) pattern.<<

It seems that we agree on this. I’m not sure why you are bringing up European metric concepts though. I don’t believe that I’ve introduced the subject of European metric concepts, unless you are referring to an aspect of the 3-2, 2-3 system.

>>Clave orientation was prevalent over metric orientation, or, in other words: Clave takes upon a quasi-metric function that does not need metric pulsations. Pulsations become sensible only when dance is added as a physical dimension.<<

As I see it, it’s not an either-or situation. The two are joined. As soon as the bell cycle is sounded, the metric structure is established. I agree with Agawu: "No one hears [the bell] without also hearing – actuality or imaginatively – the movement of feet."

>>... folklore drummers in a teaching situation who, when asked where the "1" is, just insist on the first note they play, especially when it's a pick-up.<<

That’s right. It’s best not to ask a folkloric teacher where the "one" is, or if something is 3-2 or 2-3, as those concepts are foreign to them. However, if you ask them to step the dance or to play the accompanying key pattern, you will most likely receive the metrical reference you are seeking.

>>However, both song and percussion may start on either the 2-side or the 3-side of the clave.<<

Well, if you put it that way, I have no objection! If you refrain from using the 3-2, 2-3 terminology in a folkloric context, I end up writing far less. :)

Since "Where a part "enters" was my way to express it, I’ll leave the "Salsa Guidebook" examples aside for the moment. I may have misunderstood you.

>> By metric "1" I just mean the downbeat of European measuring.<<

OK, but the structures of sub-Saharan African rhythm are independent of European measuring systems. The whole "strong beat", "weak beat" concept of European measures is not applicable to African rhythm.

>>>>The metric gravity is in the four main beats.<<<<
>>... because each main beat occupies a specific position within a measure on one hand, and has a different effect, a different function in relation to the phrase on the other. Each beat feels different.<<

I agree. Main beats 1 and 4 coincide with the clave (bell) pattern. When the clave is repeated, the cyclic effect makes beats 4 and 1 seems like an A-B sequence.

>>All of your text quotations seem to confirm my take on the subject...<<

? OK, I guess we are closer in thought than I realized.

I agree with you on C.K.’s mixing up of meter, accent and weight in that spot. I think he could have written that part a little more clear.
-David
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Postby Thomas Altmann » Mon Feb 18, 2008 9:44 pm

How are you able to select multiple quotes from other postings? I’m only able to select one quote at a time. Selecting multiple quotes is very cool, much better than my method of using >> << marks.


Hi David,

very easy: you mark and copy the text passage you want to quote, then you switch to your posting form, click once on the "Quote" button, past the text, and click on the "Quote" button a second time. Voilá! (You probably see the HTML task code in the brackets then; you can also program these manually.)

I agree with Agawu: "No one hears [the bell] without also hearing – actuality or imaginatively – the movement of feet."


Interesting to hear.

OK, but the structures of sub-Saharan African rhythm are independent of European measuring systems. The whole "strong beat", "weak beat" concept of European measures is not applicable to African rhythm.


Not even that? Well, it should be allright with me! But how can you know that? Who told you how Africans perceive African music? And which Africans exactly?

Greetings,

Thomas




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Postby davidpenalosa » Mon Feb 18, 2008 10:33 pm

Thomas Altmann wrote:Who told you how Africans perceive African music? And which Africans exactly?

C.K. addresses how Africans perceive rhythm. Kofi Agawu compares African views of African music with non-Africans views of African music. His book "Representing African Music: Postcolonial Notes, Queries, Positions" is an excellent overview of the issue. There are other sources out there on the subject. I don’t agree with all of them. Obviously I agree with Ladzekpo and Agawu.

Thanks for the help on quoting. My posts should look spiffyier now. :)
-David




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Postby Thomas Altmann » Tue Feb 19, 2008 11:34 am

Gracias David.
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Postby davidpenalosa » Wed Feb 27, 2008 6:02 am

Thomas Altmann wrote:However, the only instances where I found binary clave patterns like the Cuban Son clave are modern creations like Kpanlogo that post-date Cuban Son. According to Wikipedia;

“Kpanlogo is a recreational dance and music form from Ghana, West Africa. It was first played by the Ga ethnic group, most of whom live in and around the capital city, Accra, but is now performed and enjoyed throughout the country. It is a celebration song that came to popularity around 1960, but is based on much older drumming patterns.”

So my question regarding your theory that binary clave forms existed in Africa before the Cuban Son clave, is: Which other African rhythms do you know that incorporate these patterns?

Hi Thomas and everyone,
This is a follow-up to the portion of our discussion concerning the use of 4/4 "son clave" in Africa. I had a wonderful phone conversation with C.K. Ladzekpo today about this. Whenever I go to C.K. with questions, I always get much more than I asked for, in the best possible way.

C.K. called the 4/4 "son clave" an "ancient bell pattern" in West Africa. He cited two old traditional Ewe musics and two Ashanti musics that use both the 12/8 and 4/4 "son clave" pattern. He also confirmed that the Ga rhythms kinka, oge and kpanlogo use 4/4 "son clave".

C.K. was in Ghana in 1960 when kpanlogo was spontaneously created as part of a political protest movement. While there was certainly exchanges going back and forth between Africa and the Caribbean at this time, he said that kpanlogo was not inspired by Cuban rumba. It came out of the Ga genre known as oge, which also uses that bell part. C.K. did say though, that the young people who were protesting and playing kpanlogo, purposely made kpanlogo drums with metal lugs, similar to those used on Cuban congas, rather than the traditional wooden pegs. Later, kpanlogo drums employed the peg technology.

This new info, plus the information cited in my earlier posts, confirm that both the five-stroke (son clave) and seven-stroke bell pattern are widespread in Africa. The theory that in Cuba, the 6/8 bell evolved into 6/8 son clave and then into the 4/4 son clave, just doesn’t hold water. It is speculation without evidence and does not take the music of Africa itself into account.
-David




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Postby Thomas Altmann » Wed Feb 27, 2008 7:13 pm

Hi David,

that sounds like first hand info, as credible as unexpected. That turns my perspective around, and probably others as well.

Again, thank you very much!

Thomas
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Re: 6/8 Clave Permutations - Bell Patterns and Church Modes

Postby estragon » Fri Mar 04, 2016 8:42 am

This is one of the most astonishingly interesting threads I've read on any forum about anything. :D

Just wanted to say thanks to all the contributors, I'm going to pick through this again more steadily and absorb some of this insight.
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