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 Post subject: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Sun May 13, 2012 1:53 pm 
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Location: Lyon, France
Dear All,
Since there has been recently some interest for Rameau, I am seizing this opportunity to complete the suite in D that I started to record one year ago or so. Two quite long and tricky pieces : Les Tourbillons (the vortices) and Les Cyclopes (the cyclops), and two candies to end : Le Lardon (literally: the bacon, but this strange name more probably designates a young baby) and the last one, La Boîteuse (the lame girl), being my preferred one. As usual for French baroque music, I have recorded these pieces on my digital Yamaha P120 keyboard. Hope you enjoy them !


Rameau - Suite in D - 7: Les Tourbillons (2:19)
Rameau - Suite in D - 8: Les Cyclopes (3:58)
Rameau - Suite in D - 9: Le Lardon (0:52)
Rameau - Suite in D - 10: La Boiteuse (0:58)

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 Post subject: Re: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2012 4:09 am 
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Location: Atlanta, GA
Francois - Thank you for posting this suite. I am not very familiar with Rameau, but I was pleasantly surprised by these pieces and did enjoy them. I think La Boîteuse was probably my favorite, but I found Les Cyclopes quite interesting.

You handled the "tricky" parts well I thought, and I noticed you played quite a few additional ornaments than I had in a downloaded score I found. But they all seemed appropriate to me and not at all over the top.

Overall I thought you played very well! The only critique I have after a quick listen is that in a few places it seemed you struggled to maintain the tempo - for example, a few spots in the last half of Les Cyclopes. I'm not sure what the proper tempo should be for these, but it did seem that you played them very lively and could probably get away with reducing the tempo throughout if needed. :?:

Truthfully I'm not a big fan of the harpsichord sound, even in Baroque music... Probably due to shortcomings in my own musical education I'm sure! :mrgreen: Regarding this effect on your keyboard, there were a few spots where - for me - it came off a bit too electronic. Could be just my ears, but for example in Les Cyclopes measures 15-26 (approx 00:22 - 00:35 secs in recording). This run of alternating-hand eighth notes is very interesting, but the keyboard effect didn't seem to handle it well. Same story twice more in this piece when this rhythm is repeated again. Anyway, just an observation... not sure what you could do about it even if you wanted to address it. :wink:

Thanks again.

Matt

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 Post subject: Re: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2012 10:18 pm 
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Location: Netherlands
I still can't wax lyrically about this music but I recognize good playing when I hear it :)
Francois, can you please fill in all the ID3 tags and refrain from using diacritics like î and ç as described in big fat letters in
http://pianosociety.com/new/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=5115&p=51530
I hate to be a nag but we need people to learn to do this properly. Even if this so far takes more time than doing it ourselves :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2012 7:09 am 
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Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2008 1:11 am
Posts: 489
Location: Lyon, France
mwyman1 wrote:
Francois - Thank you for posting this suite. I am not very familiar with Rameau, but I was pleasantly surprised by these pieces and did enjoy them. I think La Boîteuse was probably my favorite, but I found Les Cyclopes quite interesting.

You handled the "tricky" parts well I thought, and I noticed you played quite a few additional ornaments than I had in a downloaded score I found. But they all seemed appropriate to me and not at all over the top.

Overall I thought you played very well! The only critique I have after a quick listen is that in a few places it seemed you struggled to maintain the tempo - for example, a few spots in the last half of Les Cyclopes. I'm not sure what the proper tempo should be for these, but it did seem that you played them very lively and could probably get away with reducing the tempo throughout if needed. :?:


Hello Matt,
Thanks for your kind compliments, and sorry for my late answer. I totally agree with you regarding my struggle with the tempo. I generally keep it even if it creates some defects (probably a habit I have from my jazzy background :oops: ). However, in terms of chosen tempo, I've just checked on Deezer, and I found that all professional versions of Les Cyclopes last less than mine. So it turns out that I have few room here, especially because I don't think Rameau's music is so resistent to tempo changes, as compared to Bach's one, for instance...

mwyman1 wrote:
Truthfully I'm not a big fan of the harpsichord sound, even in Baroque music... Probably due to shortcomings in my own musical education I'm sure! :mrgreen: Regarding this effect on your keyboard, there were a few spots where - for me - it came off a bit too electronic. Could be just my ears, but for example in Les Cyclopes measures 15-26 (approx 00:22 - 00:35 secs in recording). This run of alternating-hand eighth notes is very interesting, but the keyboard effect didn't seem to handle it well. Same story twice more in this piece when this rhythm is repeated again. Anyway, just an observation... not sure what you could do about it even if you wanted to address it. :wink:


Yes, again you demonstrate your sharp ears ! My digital harpsichord sometimes can be taken for an acoustic one, but not in the very treble range, and not in repeated notes, which is good for harpsichord makers who are doing an immensely difficult job - trying to ressurect the great tradition of European harpsichord facture. It seems that Yamaha and his competitors are not yet making their efforts useless..

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"Je préfère ce qui me touche que ce qui me surprend"
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 Post subject: Re: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2012 7:13 am 
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Location: Lyon, France
techneut wrote:
I still can't wax lyrically about this music but I recognize good playing when I hear it :)
Francois, can you please fill in all the ID3 tags and refrain from using diacritics

Oups, I had missed this new rule. Can you please tell me if this one is OK, before I send you the three others ? Thanks,

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"Je préfère ce qui me touche que ce qui me surprend"
François Couperin (1668-1733)


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 Post subject: Re: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2012 8:02 am 
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Perfect now, thank you.

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 Post subject: Re: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 5:44 pm 
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Location: Lyon, France
Chris,
Please find attached the rest of the suite with (hopefully) correct tags. Regards,

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"Je préfère ce qui me touche que ce qui me surprend"
François Couperin (1668-1733)


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 Post subject: Re: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 7:04 pm 
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Thanks, all ok now. But what tagging software do you use ? My scripts could not read these (iTunes could).

These are on the site, please check for errors (these suites confuse me no end).

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 Post subject: Re: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 7:51 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2008 1:11 am
Posts: 489
Location: Lyon, France
techneut wrote:
Thanks, all ok now. But what tagging software do you use ? My scripts could not read these (iTunes could).
These are on the site, please check for errors (these suites confuse me no end).

Thanks Chris, the files seem to be in good place. As for the software, I am using Mp3tag. It's a freeware, rather simple to use.

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François
"Je préfère ce qui me touche que ce qui me surprend"
François Couperin (1668-1733)


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 Post subject: Re: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Sat May 26, 2012 5:08 pm 
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Posts: 1250
Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
Hello Francois,
I've been away from home during the week for work (and will be in the weeks to come too) and have limited ability to listen and comment, so sorry for the delay. I listened only to your "One-eyed Monsters" as that is all I have the score for in my library. First, I must again remark at how real the harpsichord sound is; it is amazing. It really sounds physical, resistive and with a snap as the quill gives way. On to your performance. In general it is delightful to listen too. I would have little to critique without the score to follow but for some uneveness. Specifically, I would mention the following:

Bars 7 & 12: you are not keeping time, the bar is too long
Bars 23 & 25: My score has F not A on 2nd beat (meter is 2/2) as in bar 21.
Bar 64: you wait too long
Bar 81: you come in too soon (give full value to the measure of rest in 80)
Bars 97-109: This passage is not even and I have the distinct impression that you are playing it with m.d. sopra. Is this so? You should really play it m.g. sopra; this would allow you to easily make the proper accents on the down beats so that the music is properly and cleanly appreciated in its meter.

That's it. Thanks again for providing us all with exposure to this lovely music. (must run as my house will show in less than 2 hours)

Eddy

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Last edited by musical-md on Sun May 27, 2012 5:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Rameau - Suite in D for harpsichord - End
PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 5:18 pm 
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Posts: 489
Location: Lyon, France
Hello Eddy,
You don't have to apologize for not reacting, or doing so not immediately, on pieces I post on PS: event if I am pleased to find someone else liking and playing Rameau's music, you may have plenty other more important duties (you certainly have !). Anyway, thank you for your carefull listening. As for your remarks, I agree with the second one (as a matter of fact, I made a reading error !), but for the rest, I'am afraid I am not following you: I don't think I am doing rythmic errors, it is just my way of playing this harpsichord music. IMO it requires a clear and 'going-ahead' tempo, but not a metronomic one. Otherwise harpsichord becomes very mechanistic and boring. This is why I may increase slightly some respirations (as in bar 64), and shorten other ones (e.g. bar 81). With the piano, it is not the same, since you can vary the climate with the dynamics - see our recent discussion about the Gavotte variée - but with harpsichord, the distribution of the notes over time is the only way to bring expression (together with ornaments, but they are difficult to perform in fast pieces like this one). Also, regarding your last remark: yes I am doing unfortunately some uncontrolled slips - this part is quite tricky, especially because it is written for two keyboards, but my digital keyboard is unfortunately single, so that the hands bothers each other. However I play RH and LH as stated in my Durand edition.

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