A psaltery is a stringed instrument of the zither family. The psaltery of Ancient Greece is a harp-like instrument; the word psaltery derives from the Ancient Greek ψαλτήριον, "stringed instrument, harp" and that from the verb ψάλλω, "to touch to pluck, twitch" and in the case of the strings of musical instruments, "to play a stringed instrument with the fingers, not with the plectrum." The psaltery was made from wood, relied on natural acoustics for sound production. In the King James Version of the Bible, "psaltery", its plural, "psalteries", are used to translate several words whose meaning is now unknown: the Hebrew keli in Psalm 71:22 and I Chronicles 16:5. In the Christian era, a psaltery consisting of a soundboard with several pre-tuned strings that are plucked came into use, it was known by the name canon from the Greek word κανών, which means "rule", "principle", "mode". The modern Greek folk instrument is called by kanonaki; the instrument is small enough to be portable. From the 12th through the 15th centuries, psalteries are seen in manuscripts and sculpture throughout Europe.
They vary in shape and the number of strings. In the 19th century, several related zithers came into use, notably the guitar zither and the autoharp. In the 20th century, the bowed psaltery came into wide use, it is set up in a triangular format. Similar instruments include the large cimbalom and the smaller dulcimer, both played using small hammers to hit the strings. Gusli Kantele Nevel Psalterium Santur Zither Kankles Kokles Chisholm, Hugh, ed.. "Psaltery". Encyclopædia Britannica. Cambridge University Press. Psaltery Discussion of psalteries, with image from the exhibition Making Musical Instruments: The making of musical instruments in Canada by the Canadian Museum of Civilisation
Diatonic and chromatic
Diatonic and chromatic are terms in music theory that are most used to characterize scales, are applied to musical instruments, chords, musical styles, kinds of harmony. They are often used as a pair when applied to contrasting features of the common practice music of the period 1600–1900; these terms may mean different things in different contexts. Diatonic refers to musical elements derived from the modes and transpositions of the "white note scale" C–D–E–F–G–A–B. In some usages it includes all forms of heptatonic scale. Chromatic most refers to structures derived from the twelve-note chromatic scale, which consists of all semitones. However, it had other senses, referring in Ancient Greek music theory to a particular tuning of the tetrachord, to a rhythmic notational convention in mensural music of the 14th through 16th centuries. In ancient Greece there were three standard tunings of a lyre; these three tunings were called diatonic and enharmonic, the sequences of four notes that they produced were called tetrachords.
A diatonic tetrachord comprised, in descending order, two whole tones and a semitone, such as A G F E. In the chromatic tetrachord the second string of the lyre was lowered from G to G♭, so that the two lower intervals in the tetrachord were semitones, making the pitches A G♭ F E. In the enharmonic tetrachord the tuning had two quarter tone intervals at the bottom: A G F E. For all three tetrachords, only the middle two strings varied in their pitch; the term cromatico was used in the Medieval and Renaissance periods to refer to the coloration of certain notes. The details vary by period and place, but the addition of a colour to an empty or filled head of a note, or the "colouring in" of an otherwise empty head of a note, shortens the duration of the note. In works of the Ars Nova from the 14th century, this was used to indicate a temporary change in metre from triple to duple, or vice versa; this usage became less common in the 15th century as open white noteheads became the standard notational form for minims and longer notes called white mensural notation.
In the 16th century, a form of notating secular music madrigals in was referred to as "chromatic" because of its abundance of "coloured in" black notes, semiminims and shorter notes, as opposed to the open white notes in used for the notation of sacred music. These uses for the word have no relationship to the modern meaning of chromatic, but the sense survives in the current term coloratura; the term chromatic began to approach its modern usage in the 16th century. For instance Orlando Lasso's Prophetiae Sibyllarum opens with a prologue proclaiming, "these chromatic songs, heard in modulation, are those in which the mysteries of the Sibyls are sung, intrepidly," which here takes its modern meaning referring to the frequent change of key and use of chromatic intervals in the work.. This usage comes from a renewed interest in the Greek genera its chromatic tetrachord, notably by the influential theorist Nicola Vicentino in his treatise on ancient and modern practice, 1555. Diatonic scale on C equal just.
Medieval theorists defined scales in terms of the Greek tetrachords. The gamut was the series of pitches from which all the Medieval "scales" notionally derive, it may be thought of as constructed in a certain way from diatonic tetrachords; the origin of the word gamut is explained at the article Guidonian hand. The intervals from one note to the next in this Medieval gamut are all tones or semitones, recurring in a certain pattern with five tones and two semitones in any given octave; the semitones are separated as much as they can be, between alternating groups of three tones and two tones. Here are the intervals for a string of ascending notes from the gamut:... –T–T–T–S–T–T–S–T–T–T–S–T–... And here are the intervals for an ascending octave from the gamut: T–S–T–T–S–T–T In its most strict definition, therefore, a diatonic scale is one that may be derived from the pitches represented in successive white keys of the piano: the modern equivalent of the gamut; this would include the major scale, the natural minor scale, but not the old ecclesiastical church modes, most of which included both versions of the "variable" note B♮/B♭.
There are specific applications in the music of the Common Practice Period, music that shares its core features. Most, but not all writers, accept the natural minor as diatonic; as for other forms of the minor: "Exclusive" usageSome writers classify the other variants of the minor scale – the melodic minor and the harmonic minor – as non-diatonic, since they are not transpositions of the white-note pitches of the piano. Among such theorists there is no agreed general term that encompasses the major and all forms of the minor scale."Inclusive" usageSome writers i
The autoharp is a musical instrument in the chorded zither family. It features a series of chord bars attached to dampers, when pressed, mute all of the strings other than those that form the desired chord. Although the word autoharp was a trademark of the Oscar Schmidt company, the term has colloquially come to be used for any hand-held, chorded zither, regardless of manufacturer. Debate exists over the origin of the autoharp. A German immigrant in Philadelphia, US, Charles F. Zimmermann, was awarded US 257808 in 1882 for a design for a musical instrument that included mechanisms for muting certain strings during play, he named his invention the "autoharp". Unlike autoharps, the shape of the instrument was symmetrical, the felt-bearing bars moved horizontally against the strings instead of vertically, it is not known if Zimmermann commercially produced any instruments of this early design. Karl August Gütter of Markneukirchen, built a model that he called a "Volkszither", which most resembles the autoharp played today.
Gütter obtained a British patent for his instrument circa 1883–1884. Zimmermann, after returning from a visit to Germany, began production of the Gütter design in 1885, but with his own design patent number and name. Gütter's instrument design became popular, Zimmermann has been misnamed as the inventor. A stylized form of the term autoharp was registered as a trademark in 1926; the word is claimed as a trademark by the U. S. Music Corporation, whose Oscar Schmidt division manufactures autoharps; the USPTO registration, covers only a "Mark Drawing Code Words, and/or Numbers in Stylized Form" and has expired. In litigation with George Orthey, it was held that Oscar Schmidt could only claim ownership of the stylized lettering of the word autoharp, the term itself having moved into general usage; the autoharp body is made of wood, has a rectangular shape, with one corner cut off. The soundboard features a guitar-like sound-hole, the top may be either solid wood or of laminated construction. A pin-block of multiple laminated layers of wood occupies the top and slanted edges, serves as a bed for the tuning pins, which resemble those used in pianos and concert zithers.
On the edge opposite the top pin-block is either a series of metal pins, or a grooved metal plate, which accepts the lower ends of the strings. Directly above the strings, on the lower half of the top, are the chord bars, which are made of plastic, wood, or metal, support felt or foam pads on the side facing the strings; these bars are mounted on springs, pressed down with one hand, via buttons mounted to their topside. The buttons are labeled with the name of the chord produced when that bar is pressed against the strings, the strings strummed; the back of the instrument has three wooden, plastic, or rubber "feet", which support the instrument when it is placed backside down on a table top, for playing in the traditional position. Strings run parallel to the top, between the mounting plate and the tuning pins, pass under the chord bar assembly. Modern autoharps most have 36 strings, with some examples having as many as 47 strings, rare 48-string models, they are strung in a semi-chromatic manner which, however, is sometimes modified into either diatonic or chromatic scales.
Standard models have 12, 15 or 21 chord bars available, providing a selection of major and dominant seventh chords. These are arranged for systemic reasons. Various special models have been produced, such as diatonic one-, two-, or three-key models, models with fewer or additional chords, a reverse-strung model; the range is determined by the number of their tuning. A typical 36-string chromatic autoharp in standard tuning has a 3½ octave range, from F2 to C6; the instrument is not chromatic throughout this range, however, as this would require 44 strings. The exact 36-string tuning is: There are a number of gaps in the lowest octave, which functions to provide bass notes in diatonic contexts; the chromatic part of the instrument's range begins with A3. Diatonically-strung single-key instruments from modern luthiers are known for their lush sound; this is achieved by doubling the strings for individual notes. Since the strings for notes not in the diatonic scale need not appear in the string bed, the resulting extra space is used for the doubled strings, resulting in fewer damped strings.
Two- and three-key diatonics compromise the number of doubled strings to gain the ability to play in two or three keys, to permit tunes containing accidentals, which could not otherwise be rendered on a single key harp. A three-key harp in the circle of fifths, such as a GDA, is called a festival or campfire harp, as the instrument can accompany fiddles around a campfire or at a festival; the standard, factory chord bar layout for a 12-chord autoharp, in two rows, is: The standard, factory chord bar layout for a 15-chord instrument, in two rows, is: The standard, factory chord bar layout for a 21-chord instrument is in three rows: A variety of chord bar layouts may be had, both in as-delivered instruments, after customization. Until the 1960s, no pickups were available to amplify the autoharp other than rudimentary contact microphones, which had a poor-quality, tinny sound. In the early 1960s, a bar magnetic pickup was designed for the instrument by Harry DeArmond, manufactured by Rowe Industries.
Pinkerton's Assorted Colours used the instrument on their 1966 single "Mirror, mirror". In the 1970s, Oscar Schmidt came
A mandolin is a stringed musical instrument in the lute family and is plucked with a plectrum or "pick". It has four courses of doubled metal strings tuned in unison, although five and six course versions exist; the courses are tuned in a succession of perfect fifths. It is the soprano member of a family that includes the mandola, octave mandolin and mandobass. There are many styles of mandolin, but three are common, the Neapolitan or round-backed mandolin, the carved-top mandolin and the flat-backed mandolin; the round-back has a deep bottom, constructed of strips of wood, glued together into a bowl. The carved-top or arch-top mandolin has a much shallower, arched back, an arched top—both carved out of wood; the flat-backed mandolin uses thin sheets of wood for the body, braced on the inside for strength in a similar manner to a guitar. Each style of instrument is associated with particular forms of music. Neapolitan mandolins feature prominently in traditional music. Carved-top instruments are common in American folk music and bluegrass music.
Flat-backed instruments are used in Irish and Brazilian folk music. Some modern Brazilian instruments feature an extra fifth course tuned a fifth lower than the standard fourth course. Other mandolin varieties differ in the number of strings and include four-string models such as the Brescian and Cremonese, six-string types such as the Milanese and the Sicilian and 6 course instruments of 12 strings such as the Genoese. There has been a twelve-string type and an instrument with sixteen-strings. Much of mandolin development revolved around the soundboard. Pre-mandolin instruments were quiet instruments, strung with as many as six courses of gut strings, were plucked with the fingers or with a quill. However, modern instruments are louder—using four courses of metal strings, which exert more pressure than the gut strings; the modern soundboard is designed to withstand the pressure of metal strings that would break earlier instruments. The soundboard comes in many shapes—but round or teardrop-shaped, sometimes with scrolls or other projections.
There is one or more sound holes in the soundboard, either round, oval, or shaped like a calligraphic f. A round or oval sound hole may be bordered with decorative rosettes or purfling. Mandolins evolved from the lute family in Italy during the 17th and 18th centuries, the deep bowled mandolin, produced in Naples, became common in the 19th century. Dating to c. 13,000 BC, a cave painting in the Trois Frères cave in France depicts what some believe is a musical bow, a hunting bow used as a single-stringed musical instrument. From the musical bow, families of stringed instruments developed. In turn, this led to being able to play chords. Another innovation occurred when the bow harp was straightened out and a bridge used to lift the strings off the stick-neck, creating the lute; this picture of musical bow to harp bow has been contested. In 1965 Franz Jahnel wrote his criticism stating that the early ancestors of plucked instruments are not known, he felt that the harp bow was a long cry from the sophistication of the 4th-century BC civilization that took the primitive technology and created "technically and artistically well made harps, lyres and lutes."
Musicologists have put forth examples of that 4th-century BC technology, looking at engraved images that have survived. The earliest image showing a lute-like instrument came from Mesopotamia prior to 3000 BC. A cylinder seal from c. 3100 BC or earlier shows. From the surviving images, theororists have categorized the Mesopotamian lutes, showing that they developed into a long variety and a short; the line of long lutes may have developed into pandura. The line of short lutes was further developed to the east of Mesopotamia, in Bactria and Northwest India, shown in sculpture from the 2nd century BC through the 4th or 5th centuries AD. Bactria and Gandhara became part of the Sasanian Empire. Under the Sasanians, a short almond shaped lute from Bactria came to be called the barbat or barbud, developed into the Islamic world's oud or ud; when the Moors conquered Andalusia in 711 AD, they brought their ud along, into a country that had known a lute tradition under the Romans, the pandura. During the 8th and 9th centuries, many musicians and artists from across the Islamic world flocked to Iberia.
Among them was Abu l-Hasan ‘Ali Ibn Nafi‘, a prominent musician who had trained under Ishaq al-Mawsili in Baghdad and was exiled to Andalusia before 833 AD. He taught and has been credited with adding a fifth string to his oud and with establishing one of the first schools of music in Córdoba. By the 11th century, Muslim Iberia had become a center for the manufacture of instruments; these goods spread to Provence, influencing French troubadours and trouvères and reaching the rest of Europe. Beside the introduction of the lute to Spain by the Moors, another important point of transfer of the lute from Arabian to European culture was Sicily, where it was brought either by Byzantine or by Muslim musicians. There were singer-lutenists at the court in Palermo following the N
Oscar Schmidt Inc.
The Oscar Schmidt Company was and is a musical-instrument manufacturer, that designed and manufactured numerous models of parlour instruments including lap harps, chord zithers, the Guitarophone, the Marxophone and Ukelins. The company, now owned by U. S. Music Corporation, continues to manufacture autoharps, guitars and mandolins. Founded by Oscar and Otto Schmidt in Jersey City, New Jersey in 1879, the company applied for dozens of patents in musical instruments and related equipment; the Oscar Schmidt Company was formally incorporated in 1911. At its peak in the early 1920s, the company operated manufacturing facilities in five cities; the instruments were sold door-to-door by travelling musical salesmen from the early 1880s until 1965. The company employed current events as a marketing strategy; each year, the company would offer new "special editions" of its products linked to newsworthy events to appeal to the sympathy of customers the salesforce would encounter. These special editions would include a small dedication commemorating the event and sheet music written to commemorate the event.
The company's salesmen kept detailed records of the buying habits of customers, the selection of special editions was made annually with the intent to sell additional instruments to existing customers. The company's instruments were intended to be easy to play for amateurs. Oscar Schmidt designed small, durable instruments intended to be easy to learn, useful for family entertainment in the decades between the Civil War and the emergence of radio and television; the company struggled during the early 1930s — following the death of Oscar Schmidt in 1929 — and was dissolved on May 18. 1937. However, in October 1936 just prior to the company's dissolution, a new company had been formed — Oscar Schmidt-International Inc. — which thrived until the spring of 1978 when falling under Chapter 11 control it was purchased by the owners of Fretted Industries Inc. renamed Washburn International. Oscar Schmidt is located in Buffalo Grove, IL under the management of U. S. Music, a division of JAM Industries Inc. which manufactures autoharps, guitars, basses and mandolins.
Auto harp Marxophone Bowed psaltery Parlor guitar Stella Harmony Company Oscarschmidt.com: official current Oscar Schmidt Company website — present day maker of autoharps and ukuleles. Fretless Zithers.com - A multimedia site dedicated to the extended family of instruments, featuring many Oscar Schmidt examples DeJazzd.com: A detailed autoharp and zither devotee website
A chord, in music, is any harmonic set of pitches consisting of multiple notes that are heard as if sounding simultaneously. For many practical and theoretical purposes and broken chords, or sequences of chord tones, may be considered as chords. Chords and sequences of chords are used in modern West African and Oceanic music, Western classical music, Western popular music. In tonal Western classical music, the most encountered chords are triads, so called because they consist of three distinct notes: the root note, intervals of a third and a fifth above the root note. Chords with more than three notes include added tone chords, extended chords and tone clusters, which are used in contemporary classical music and other genres. A series of chords is called a chord progression. One example of a used chord progression in Western traditional music and blues is the 12 bar blues progression. Although any chord may in principle be followed by any other chord, certain patterns of chords are more common in Western music, some patterns have been accepted as establishing the key in common-practice harmony—notably the resolution of a dominant chord to a tonic chord.
To describe this, Western music theory has developed the practice of numbering chords using Roman numerals to represent the number of diatonic steps up from the tonic note of the scale. Common ways of notating or representing chords in Western music include Roman numerals, the Nashville number system, figured bass, macro symbols, chord charts; the English word chord derives from Middle English cord, a shortening of accord in the original sense of agreement and harmonious sound. A sequence of chords is known as a chord harmonic progression; these are used in Western music. A chord progression "aims for a definite goal" of establishing a tonality founded on a key, root or tonic chord; the study of harmony involves chords and chord progressions and the principles of connection that govern them. Ottó Károlyi writes that, "Two or more notes sounded are known as a chord," though, since instances of any given note in different octaves may be taken as the same note, it is more precise for the purposes of analysis to speak of distinct pitch classes.
Furthermore, as three notes are needed to define any common chord, three is taken as the minimum number of notes that form a definite chord. Hence, Andrew Surmani, for example, states, "When three or more notes are sounded together, the combination is called a chord." George T. Jones agrees: "Two tones sounding together are termed an interval, while three or more tones are called a chord." According to Monath. However, sonorities of two pitches, or single-note melodies, are heard as implying chords. A simple example of two notes being interpreted as a chord is when the root and third are played but the fifth is omitted. In the key of C major, if the music comes to rest on the two notes G and B, most listeners will hear this as a G major chord. Since a chord may be understood as such when all its notes are not audible, there has been some academic discussion regarding the point at which a group of notes may be called a chord. Jean-Jacques Nattiez explains that, "We can encounter'pure chords' in a musical work," such as in the Promenade of Modest Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition but, "Often, we must go from a textual given to a more abstract representation of the chords being used," as in Claude Debussy's Première arabesque.
In the medieval era, early Christian hymns featured organum, with chord progressions and harmony an incidental result of the emphasis on melodic lines during the medieval and Renaissance. The Baroque period, the 17th and 18th centuries, began to feature the major and minor scale based tonal system and harmony, including chord progressions and circle progressions, it was in the Baroque period that the accompaniment of melodies with chords was developed, as in figured bass, the familiar cadences. In the Renaissance, certain dissonant sonorities that suggest the dominant seventh occurred with frequency. In the Baroque period, the dominant seventh proper was introduced and was in constant use in the Classical and Romantic periods; the leading-tone seventh remains in use. Composers began to use nondominant seventh chords in the Baroque period, they became frequent in the Classical period, gave way to altered dominants in the Romantic period, underwent a resurgence in the Post-Romantic and Impressionistic period.
The Romantic period, the 19th century, featured increased chromaticism. Composers began to use secondary dominants in the Baroque, they became common in the Romantic period. Many contemporary popular Western genres continue to rely on simple diatonic harmony, though far from universally: notable exceptions include the music of film scores, which use chromatic, atonal or post-tonal harmony, modern jazz, in which chords may include up to seven notes; when referring to chords that do not function as harmony, such as in atonal music, the term "sonority" is used to avoid any tonal implications of the word "chord". Chords can be represent
The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians
The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians is an encyclopedic dictionary of music and musicians. Along with the German-language Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart, it is one of the largest reference works on western music. Published under the title A Dictionary of Music and Musicians, as Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians, it has gone through several editions since the 19th century and is used. In recent years it has been made available as an electronic resource called Grove Music Online, now an important part of Oxford Music Online. A Dictionary of Music and Musicians was first published in four volumes edited by George Grove with an Appendix edited by J. A. Fuller Maitland in the fourth volume. An Index edited by Mrs. E. Wodehouse was issued as a separate volume in 1890. In 1900, minor corrections were made to the plates and the entire series was reissued in four volumes, with the index added to volume 4; the original edition and the reprint are now available online. Grove limited the chronological span of his work to begin at 1450 while continuing up to the present day.
The second edition, in five volumes, was edited by Fuller Maitland and published from 1904 to 1910, this time as Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians. The individual volumes of the second edition were reprinted many times. An American Supplement edited by Waldo Selden Pratt and Charles N. Boyd was added in 1920; this edition removed the first edition's beginning date of 1450, though important earlier composers and theorists are still missing from this edition. These volumes are now available online; the third edition in five volumes, was an extensive revision of the 2nd edition. Colles and published in 1927; the fourth edition edited by Colles, was published in 1940 in five volumes. In addition to the American Supplement, Macmillan published a Supplementary Volume edited by Colles; the fifth edition, in nine volumes, was edited by Eric Blom and published in 1954. This was the most thoroughgoing revision of the work since its inception, with many articles rewritten in a more modern style and a large number of new articles.
Many of the articles were written by Blom or translated by him. An additional Supplementary Volume, prepared for the most part by Eric Blom, followed in 1961. Blom died in 1959, the Supplementary Volume was completed by Denis Stevens; the fifth edition was reprinted in 1966, 1968, 1970, 1973, 1975. The next edition was published in 1980 under the name The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians and was expanded to 20 volumes with 22,500 articles and 16,500 biographies, its senior editor was Stanley Sadie with Nigel Fortune serving as one of the main editors for the publication. It was reprinted with minor corrections each subsequent year until 1995, except 1982 and 1983. In the mid-1990s, the hardback set sold for about $2,300. A paperback edition was reprinted in 1995 which sold for $500. ISBN 0-333-23111-2 – hardback ISBN 1-56159-174-2 – paperback ISBN 0-333-73250-2 – British special edition ISBN 1-56159-229-3 – American special edition Some sections of The New Grove were issued as small sets and individual books on particular topics.
These were enhanced with expanded and updated material and included individual and grouped composer biographies, a four-volume dictionary of American music, a three-volume dictionary of musical instruments, a four-volume dictionary of opera. The second edition under this title was published in 29 volumes, it was made available by subscription on the internet in a service called Grove Music Online. It was again edited by Stanley Sadie, the executive editor was John Tyrrell, it was to be released on CD-ROM as well, but this plan was dropped. As Sadie writes in the preface, "The biggest single expansion in the present edition has been in the coverage of 20th-century composers"; this edition has been subject to negative criticism owing to the significant number of typographical and factual errors that it contains. Two volumes were re-issued in corrected versions, after production errors caused the omission of sections of Igor Stravinsky's worklist and Richard Wagner's bibliography. ISBN 0-333-60800-3 – British ISBN 1-56159-239-0 – American Publication of the second edition of The New Grove was accompanied by a Web-based version, Grove Music Online.
It too, attracted some initial criticism, for example for the way in which images were not incorporated into the text but kept separate. The complete text of The New Grove is available to subscribers to the online service Grove Music Online. Grove Music Online includes a large number of additions of new articles. In addition to the 29 volumes of The New Grove second edition, Grove Music Online incorporates the four-volume New Grove Dictionary of Opera and the three-volume New Grove Dictionary of Jazz, second edition, The Grove Dictionary of American Music and The Grove Dictionary of Musical Instruments, comprising a total of more than 50,000 articles; the current editor-in-chief of Grove Music, the name given to the complete slate of print and online resources that encompass the Grove brand, is University of Pittsburgh professor Deane Root. He assumed the editorship in 2009; the dictionary published by Macmillan, was sold in 2004 to Oxford University Press. Since 2008 Grove Music Online has served as a cornerstone of Oxford University Press's larger online