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Klarinet Archive - Posting 001216.txt from 1998/04

From: "Dan Leeson: LEESON@-----.edu>
Subj: Lee's comments on dark and light sound
Date: Wed, 22 Apr 1998 00:06:20 -0400

Lee, in correctly assessing the inability of language to describe
what he perceives as being dark and bright sounds instead used
an example of Goodman and Shaw, one having a bright sound and
the other having a dark sound, both in his opinion.

I simply wanted to state that whatever position Lee used to
describe the color characteristics of Goodman and Shaw,
a random sample of 50 people would find some large number who
perceived the sounds of those players in exactly the opposite
way.

All of which is by way of saying that it is the terms themselves
that are impossible to define, not
a weakness in our language or auditory
skills. In my opinion, the terms are meaningless and, even
worse, damaging because they presume to define or describe
a characteristic that has no standard.

It is precisely because of the irrationality of the terms that
the young man who first asked the question on this list deserves
congratulations and kudos. Someone told him the term, he did not
understand it, and he asked. It would have been a lot easier
for him to fake it and say, "Yes. I hear a dark (or bright)
sound" in the absence of any standard on this matter, but he
asked a question that cannot be answered because it has no
answer.

Bravo to him. He may be president some day, if he lives long
enough with such an inquiring attitude.

=======================================
Dan Leeson, Los Altos, California
Rosanne Leeson, Los Altos, California
leeson@-----.edu
=======================================

   
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