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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000263.txt from 2003/06

From: Oliver Seely <>
Subj: Re: [kl] Keys and their character
Date: Tue, 10 Jun 2003 11:07:53 -0400

At 07:20 AM 06/10/2003 -0700, Dan wrote, in part:
The idea that each key had its own personality (with A and E being bright)
and D-flat, G-flat being serious (or whatever), is another romantic
assertion that doesn't have a leg to stand on.
I can see that assertion as not having "a leg to stand on" if one's
evolution has not included the development of legs.

The Google search engine offers 17,300 hits for the keyword "synesthesia."

Here is a brief extract from that page:
Synesthesia is an involuntary joining in which the real information of one
sense is accompanied by a perception in another sense. In addition to being
involuntary, this additional perception is regarded by the synesthete as
real, often outside the body, instead of imagined in the mind's eye. It
also has some other interesting features that clearly separate it from
artistic fancy or purple prose. Its reality and vividness are what make
synesthesia so interesting in its violation of conventional perception.
Synesthesia is also fascinating because logically it should not be a
product of the human brain, where the evolutionary trend has been for
increasing separation of function anatomically.

A person with no ability to carry a tune might characterize the assertion
that a musical composition is "beautiful" as being silly. The physicist
Richard Feynman wrote in one of his two sets of memoirs something to the
effect that he couldn't see why anyone would ever want to listen to a piece
of music twice. It was then that I suspected the guy might have been tone

I wouldn't characterize some description of music as "silly" because it
would probably turn out to be nothing more than a lame excuse for my own
shortcomings. I think it would be better to look for internal consistency
in such a description so as better to understand it and perhaps to separate
it from hyperbole.


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