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A Good Day

Today was fun. I started my Modal Analysis class, in which we will spend ten weeks learning all about classical Persian music. I like classical Persian music. This, incidentally, is the class that goes with the Modal Analysis comprehensive exam, which was the exam that I had to take back in September without having taken the class because it wasn't offered last year. Now, finally, I get to find out what all the fuss was about. I'm especially excited because Bruno Nettl, who is one of the country's great doyens of ethnomusicology, is coming from Urbana to guest-teach this course. This is really learning from a master here. As a side note to dawtheminstrel: Nettl is technically an emeritus professor. This is what he spends his retirement doing. Traveling from Urbana to Chicago every week to teach Modal Analysis.

And I found out today that one of my friends from the Fairest College had a baby yesterday! I saw the picture that her wife posted, and the baby is absolutely adorable. This is actually the second adorable baby born to a friend recently -- this one lady in my Hebrew class had her baby over Spring Break, and he is adorable, too.


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 4th, 2008 12:17 pm (UTC)
It is only knowing that the term Modal Analysis is associated with music that saves me from cringing. It sounds like something from calculus. I hope you like the class. It's cool that someone who loves it so much is teaching it. That always makes a difference.

And congrats to all the new mothers. Something must be in the air up there. :-)
Apr. 4th, 2008 01:05 pm (UTC)
Modal Analysis sounds like it'll be fun. I shall have to find and post some good clips of Persian music so that you folks can hear what I'm learning about. Now that you've all gotten so blasé about the gamelan (I haven't been able to play for a while on account of the appendix adventure), I have to find more stuff to confuse you with.

When we were discussing the Hebrew class baby, I told the teacher that, although technically one could call the baby "chamud," which is Hebrew for "cute," he was in fact cute enough that you had to go straight to Japanese and call him "kawaii." There's cute, and then there's kawaii!
Apr. 4th, 2008 12:38 pm (UTC)
Nettl hasn't grasped the idea of retirement yet.

It's always nice to take a class if you have to take an exam. Before. After. Who cares? :-)
Apr. 4th, 2008 01:07 pm (UTC)
Nettl and Mom Pony both seem to have the same idea of retirement. Mom Pony actually retired last year. This has not stopped her from driving every day to the university an hour away to teach ginormous classes. Little Sister Pony and I have been trying to explain the concept of retirement all year (albeit mostly by doing things like getting sick or getting ready to graduate nursing school and wanting help with apartment-hunting. Maybe we should be more direct about it.)
Apr. 4th, 2008 05:56 pm (UTC)
Nettl needs to look up the definition of 'retirement' in the dictionary, LOL.

Babies are wonderful - particularly when you can give them back to their parents when they need something :>)
Apr. 4th, 2008 08:33 pm (UTC)
Babies are wonderful - particularly when you can give them back to their parents when they need something :>)

My feelings exactly. I can't wait to be an auntie, and I'm sure that Little Sister Pony will be happy to oblige once she's graduated nursing school and got her life on track.
Apr. 5th, 2008 12:03 am (UTC)
I'm not familiar with classical Persian music, but I had to listen to classical Turkish music once and while I could appreciate it as an art form, it certainly will not replace Green Day on my CD rotation.
Apr. 5th, 2008 12:33 pm (UTC)
You probably wouldn't really go for dastgah, either. But one thing that I've found is that most music becomes more interesting and more fun to listen to after you've studied a little about it and know a few things to listen for. The only types of music where this doesn't work for me are Chopin and raga.
Apr. 5th, 2008 01:31 am (UTC)
Nettl reminds me of my dad. He talked about retiring for ten years, then retired. For the first five years of retirement he was a consultant doing the same thing he had been doing before!
Apr. 5th, 2008 12:35 pm (UTC)
Sounds like your dad wasn't quite ready to retire. Professor Nettl seems to be perfectly content schlepping up here and teaching Modal Analysis every couple of years, trotting off to SEM, contributing his marzipan recipe (which is in rhymed verse) to the Ethnomusicologists' Cookbook, and whatever else a not-really-retired ethnomusicologist does in his copious free time.
Apr. 5th, 2008 09:28 pm (UTC)
I'm with elliska, Modal Analysis sounds strange and inscrutable. Persian music, on the other hand, sounds more approachable.
Apr. 6th, 2008 04:02 am (UTC)
For music persons, Modal Analysis reads automatically as "analysis of a system of modes." As opposed to Tonal Analysis, "analysis of a system based on tonality," or Atonal Analysis, "farting around." But Persian music does sound friendlier. I shall have to find and post some good clips.
Apr. 9th, 2008 01:17 am (UTC)
Tonal and atonal music at least sound like something I've heard of. :-) Will look forward to the clips if you can find some.
Apr. 9th, 2008 03:04 am (UTC)
I'll poke around. Maybe after Thursday's class, after I have a better idea of what's good.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )


by Illsaysheis

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