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    Tone: that which colors and enriches

    Tone or tonal colors, like the leaves of a tree, the personality of music

    The next area of musical ingredients that is vital to the richness and beauty of music is that of tonal color otherwise referred to as timbre
    The word tone literally means to stretch-more at thin, timbre, the quality given to a sound by its overtones.

    Tonal color is much like the spices used in cooking.
    It brings out the flavour of the song, it adds to and produces a tasteful end result.

    For instance, a Master Painter must have knowledge of what colors to use and mix to produce those proper hues and tones in a painting. So, as it is with a master of music.

    A composer writting a symphony requires fundamental knowledge of what instruments he is scoring for!
    Why? Because each musical instrument has different tones and overtones.
    For instance, a flute produces very few overtones and as well a very cool sound, where as a violin gives more overtones and a warm quality.

    To illustrate further, composers will envision as they are developing a composition, particular instruments that will produce specific sounds which they will utilize in their compositions

    An example here would be that of Beethovens Septet Opus 20.
    Here he used three wind instruments, a clarinet, a bassoon, and a horn.
    As well he incorporated a violin, a viola , a cello and a bass; a total of seven different instruments were utilized to produce a rich array of tones and overtones.

    So it is very apparent that tonal color is truly the Spice of Musical Life.

    The final point which will be reviewed is that of the fruit of music, that fruit ( from the latin frui- to enjoy) which means literally to enjoy! A link will be provided within the next few weeks to complete the seminar presentation articles.

    1998 Bryon Tosoff

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Bryon Tosoff, providing piano instruction in rcm classical exam prep, & jazz, blues and pop.

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Updated 25/04/2000 Bryon Tosoff