Dodecaphonic Sudoku

Wow! Here is a serious brain teaser for music geeks.

For the uninitiated dodecaphony is a music term relating to the twelve notes we use in Western music… the basis of my blog 12 Notes & The Truth!

In the 1920’s Composer Arnold Schoenberg set out to compose music through a process that obliterated the systems we are/were used to hearing. Serialism is the name of the movement in which all twelve notes must be used before any are repeated. Creating no key centers in the composition and lack of melody and harmony as we are used to hearing.

The following puzzle is a take on dedecaphony. A Sudoku matrix set up where each note can only be used only once, horizontally, diagonally and in each of the 12 boxes of the matrix.

In essence there is no difference than converting a regular Sudoku puzzle to be 12 x 12 instead of the traditional 9 x 9. Where the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 are replaced by the 12 notes in our chromatic scale A, Bb, B, C, Db, D, Eb, E, F, Gb, G, Ab. Once completed, a composer would take any of the rows horizontal or vertical and compose using those notes.
Complete Serialism proved to be a little restrictive and many composers have used this technique as a guideline rather than a steadfast rule.

Here is the puzzle. I haven’t worked it so cant guarantee its solve-ability. Have fun if you are so inclined!

This music wasn’t written to be scary or Halloween-ish although not a bad way to transition into October with this piece.

This is real music listen with open ears and an open mind!

Arnold Schoenberg’s, “Piano Concerto op. 42 (Excerpt)”

Enjoy!

Scorpions, “Your Light”

This might not be your typical Scorpions song.

Most fans of the German rockers are familiar with hits like “Rock You Like A Hurricane,”  “Big City Nights,” “Still Loving You” and “No One Like You.” The late 70’s to the 80’s, 90’s, 00’s…was when the band developed their signature heavy metal sound. There were however two other incarnations of the Scorpions. First with 16 year old guitar legend to be Michael Schenker. The second, featured guitarist Uli Jon Roth. Under Schenker for just one album, “Lonesome Crow,” the band had almost a psychedelic sound. The Roth era was somewhere in between this and their ultra-stylistic almost hair metal sound of the 80’s.

I don’t consider the Scorpions hair/glam metal for two reasons. They were heavy metal pioneers that all the crappy 80’s bands tried to emulate and moreover they wrote good music. Anyway, somewhere between being very young acid rockers and trend setting perfectors of the ‘Power Ballad’ mega-stars  was the Uli Jon Roth years.

Heavy? Yes!…..Rockers? Totally! But what was their style?

The Scorps were very unique during this period. They were gaining in popularity, they were still under produced and very original. Roth is a great guitarist very spiritual and Hendrix-ish both terms that don’t always apply to heavy metal guitarists. But they were definitely heavy during these years.

The only way to really understand is to listen. Posted below is one of my favorite Roth era Scorpions songs, “Your Light.”

To me this song sums up the band in the early to mid 70’s. Some heavy-ness, some party feel, some hippie-ish feel and of course incredible guitar work. The song starts out heavy then immediately leads into to a funky dance vibe. But the song truly peaks on the two guitar solos. The first comes at 2:15 in the video. A slow Roth solo mostly reserved, with feeling and anthem-ish. The song then returns to the funky playful riff before the second solo. This is where Roth shows off a little more of his guitar acrobatics. It ends on a playful note as Roth solos into a fade out.

The Roth era Scorpions may be some of the truly under rated music in metal history. They were a little more free form in their songwriting than other bands and certainly then when they became a global commodity in the 80’s. Not always a good thing for massive consumption as most listeners seem to prefer produced cookie cutter bites. Most Scorpions fans have found their way back through the bands back catalog and found these gems. I strongly recommend you check these albums out as well especially if you are looking to uncover some truly quality and cool music.

Enjoy!

For previous Scorpions posts.

For previous Michael Schenker posts.

A fellow blogger’s recent post on Uli Roth.

John Bonham, 32 Years Missed

I remember being a little rocker in training and one of my first teachers were the Mighty Zep, Led Zeppelin. Before I could really join the party and know what the band was all about, besides a handful of songs, their drummer John Bonham passed away on this day September 25, 1980. So sad and a bummer that as soon as I got into the band there would never be any ‘real’ new Led Zeppelin music. No more tours. No more Zeppelin.

Sure there has been a few attempts to revive the brand, but, none of them ever lived up to the original. I have seen Jimmy Page solo, great show, Page & Plant in the 90’s, great show, but just not Led Zeppelin. If there was any show I could go back in time to hear and see, a real Led Zeppelin show in their prime would definitely be atop of the list.

The whole Bonham passing still seems surreal to me to this day. I remember hearing about it as a kid but not truly understanding the finality of it all and the lasting impact and hole the Rock n Roll world was left with.

RIP John Bonham a great musician and unfortunately a true rock star.

 

Also check out Bonham’s legendary drum solo, “Moby Dick”

For more info  check out this post.

Do You Remember the 21st Night of September? EWF

“September,” is truly one of the gems of the 70’s disco era…and who didn’t love Earth, Wind & Fire?

My favorite part…you guessed it…the opening guitar riff. Every time I hear the song I immediately try to picture how he is getting that snappy sound on his guitar. He might just be using the very edge of his pick, like a pick squeal technique without using the fleshy finger. However, it has a peculiar sound like he is actually pinching the string between his thumb and finger and snapping it, almost like you would do with a rubber band. When I play this song that is what I try to do. It is kind of hard to control each note since it is so quick which would mean he is a pretty skilled guitarist.

Here is it “September,” by Earth, Wind & Fire

Jose Feliciano Plays Jimi Hendrix’ Purple Haze

If you’ve read my blog in the past you may have seen some of my posts regarding Jose Feliciano. I was never a fan until recently. Actually, didn’t even know much about him and certainly didn’t know he could play guitar like he does! The man known for being a Latin crooner has some serious guitar chops.

This clip is one I just came across tonight for the first time. It is pretty cool to hear Jose rip some electric guitar riffs although he is much better in his regular genres Latin/flamenco. Thought I would share this video for you all to see another side of Jose’s playing or if you are like me until recently your first listen to his playing.

‘Scuse me while I….

Enjoy

San Diego Super Chargers Win Big on Junior Seau Day RIP #55

It was a dramatic and hot day for all us Charger fans at Qualcomm Stadium.

Dramatic! Before the game the late, great Junior Seau’s uniform #55 became the 3rd number in team history to be retired, joining Dan Fouts’ #14 and Lance Alworth’s #19.

Hot! It was mid 90’s without a cloud in the sky at kickoff, but, that didn’t keep the Chargers lightning from striking! Titans fell to the Chargers 38-10 in a game that wasn’t really ever close from the beginning.

Musical tribute this week…San Diego Super Chargers