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M.M.

Postby Hector Pascal » Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:35 am

Greetings again,

I was just wondering whether to put M.M. in front of my metronome marking. I just looked up Gould, but it appears to me that she is silent on the matter.

What do you think? Is it considered old fashioned and obsolete, or is it professional and proper to include it.

Cheers,
Hector.
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Re: M.M.

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Re: M.M.

Postby David Ward » Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:53 am

Hector Pascal wrote:I was just wondering whether to put M.M. in front of my metronome marking… … …

It's completely unnecessary. It's clutter and adds nothing useful. Most published scores don't have it.
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Re: M.M.

Postby OCTO » Thu Oct 11, 2018 8:15 am

Agree with David.

In my opinion: music notation is the best when the "notational language" describes the complete music idea with fewest possible information.

Both "to little" or "to much" information is bad.
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Re: M.M.

Postby Peter Thomsen » Thu Oct 11, 2018 11:22 am

The less black you have on the page (without losing any information), the better.
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Re: M.M.

Postby John Ruggero » Thu Oct 11, 2018 3:11 pm

As you know, M. M. means "Mälzel's Metronome", named for the guy who said he invented the pendulum type back in Beethoven's day. He seems to have been quite a promoter and practically trademarked the thing. My metronome is a Dr. Beat DB88 and electronic, so I don't give the guy any credit; nor does anyone else for a very long time now.
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Re: M.M.

Postby OCTO » Thu Oct 11, 2018 3:42 pm

John Ruggero wrote:As you know, M. M. means "Mälzel's Metronome", named for the guy who said he invented the pendulum type back in Beethoven's day. He seems to have been quite a promoter and practically trademarked the thing. My metronome is a Dr. Beat DB88 and electronic, so I don't give the guy any credit; nor does anyone else for a very long time now.


I think, but I might be wrong, that his invention was how to measure different tempos that are senisble to humans. Such as 36-60 as 2, from 60-72 is as 3, and than above is all doubled and tripled.
Some metronomes cannot handle for instance 75, and I have seen in Stockhausen some more exotic metronome marks.

So I guess putting M.M. 75 is not applicable EDIT: for M.M.
Last edited by OCTO on Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: M.M.

Postby N Grossingink » Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:03 pm

OCTO wrote:So I guess putting M.M. 75 is not applicable.


Put whatever you want. Good musicians will find a natural heartbeat in any worthwhile music which may differ from performer to performer.

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Re: M.M.

Postby OCTO » Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:15 pm

N Grossingink wrote:
OCTO wrote:So I guess putting M.M. 75 is not applicable.


Put whatever you want. Good musicians will find a natural heartbeat in any worthwhile music which may differ from performer to performer.

N.


That is absolutely correct; I just didn't finish the sentence, now it is edited:
So I guess putting M.M. 75 is not applicable EDIT: for M.M.
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Re: M.M.

Postby motet » Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:38 pm

Maelzel also invented what he claimed was a chess-playing automaton, which in fact had a person hidden inside. Edgar Allan Poe wrote an essay exposing the fraud via logic.
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Re: M.M.

Postby ebiggs1 » Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:46 pm

Hector Pascal wrote:Greetings again,
I was just wondering whether to put M.M. in front of my metronome marking.
Cheers,
Hector.


I don't.
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Re: M.M.

Postby David Ward » Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:52 pm

John Ruggero wrote:As you know, M. M. means "Mälzel's Metronome"… … …

I'd forgotten that (if I ever did know). Fascinating, anyway, and confirms how irrelevant its use would be nowadays.
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Re: M.M.

Postby oldmkvi » Thu Oct 11, 2018 5:42 pm

Interesting!
I always thought it was "Metronome Marking."
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Re: M.M.

Postby Hector Pascal » Thu Oct 11, 2018 10:56 pm

Thanks for all the collective wisdom :)

I must admit that I am still not 100% convinced that I should chuck out the "M.M."

M.M., to me, is concise and does signify a lot of meaning. It tells us that we are talking about a metronome and puts the symbols and numbers in a context. Couldn't it be argued that leaving out the M.M. takes away the context for the numbers and symbols? Sure, it is "inferred"... but that is the crux of the issue.

Crotchet = 120 is, strictly speaking, meaningless. 120 what? It really could mean 120 different things! If you leave out M.M., then the context should at least be stated as 120 B.P.M. But, wait, that's more black on the page than M.M.

When we say that it is 32º C. outside, or 89º F., the C and the F are sometimes left out, but as a rule, one should leave them in because they give context to the numbers and symbols. M.M. offers concise and essential meaning and context and is less black that B.P.M. I rest my case, lol :)

To be fair, I see reasons for chucking M.M. out, but I also see reasons for keeping it. Context and tradition is readily chucked out these days, rightly or wrongly. I guess I am just in the process of making up my mind on whether to join the throng on this one!

Cheers,
Hector.
This thread has been brought to you today by the letters M.M. (for German Johann Nepomuk Maelzel), C (for Swedish astronomer, Anders Celcius) and F (for Dutch–German–Polish physicist Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit).
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Re: M.M.

Postby motet » Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:08 am

I can't imagine what else crotchet = 120 could mean, so I don't think that's a worry. And publishers have been using crotchet = 120 for over a century. on the other hand, it doesn't cause much harm, if any.
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Re: M.M.

Postby Michel R E » Fri Oct 12, 2018 4:23 am

32°C and 32°F ARE two different things that require the C/F to signify the exact meaning of the numeral.
There is absolutely no equivalence with quarter = 60 or eighth = 120.
We KNOW they are metronome markings, and since there is only one type of metronome - one that marks beats per minute - then there is absolutely no ambiguity.

There is no need to specify "the following numeral and associated musical value are a tempo marking in beats per minute". It would be like a speed limit sign that says "60km/hr on this road". Of course it's "on this road", why else would the speed limit sign be there?
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Re: M.M.

Postby Hector Pascal » Fri Oct 12, 2018 5:01 am

Ok. I've rolled over. Consider me convinced!

Cheers,
Hector.
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