rambling on sat morning

Oh well, WordPress has defeated me once again. I was writing a long boring post on music and music editions and suddenly it asked me to relog in and of course I lost the entire post replete with linked images. 

I don’t have the heart to rewrite it now. Plus as I wrote it I knew that most of my readers might not be all that interested in an arcane discussion of my recent purchase of scores like Czerny’s edition of The Art of Fugue by Bach. 

I was interested to note that the philosopher Hegel recently popped up in two incongruous books I happen to be reading yesterday: “The Broom of the System” by Wallace and “Friday, Saturday, Sunday: Literary Meditations on Suffering, Death, and New Life” by Cunningham. Wallace uses a character’s voice to comment and ridicule Hegel. Cunningham, not surprisingly, cites Hegel’s ideas that drama is the highest form of art. 

I mentioned Medina’s Brain Rule #5 recently (“Repeat to Remember”) in which says that spaced reviews of material are more effective for retention than massed ones.

David Brooks (usually a bit conservative for me, but I have read books by him, read his columns and usually pay attention when he’s on the News Hour with Jim Lehrer) had an piece in the NYT on Genuis versus practice which seems to be along the same lines.

Anyway, in the same chapter Medina observes that 

The more a learner focuses on the meaning of the presented information, the more elaborately the encoding is processed.”

Which is to say that focusing on meaning helps the retention process in the brain.

Reminds me of learning music. I strive for a level of understanding of any piece I perform. The more I attain this understanding the better I perform the music and the easier it is to do so. 

Anyway, for some reason I have been musing on the fact that my approach of choice to music is pretty primitive.

Despite my training, I so often find myself approaching music more like the pop musician I was at the age of 20 replete with better technique to be sure, but with a related aesthetic that would probably horrify many “musicians.”  

Thinking of learning two movements from Messiaen’s Messe de Pentecost for organ. Probably never have them ready for this Pentecost but whotthehell, archie, toujours gai!

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