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Old 05-04-2012, 09:44 AM   #1
Piperalpha
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Default Bias

For those of you that have been schooled in a particular style do you find yourself biased towards the way you've been taught when listening to someone of another school? I'm finding the more tunes I learn the more this is happening. I don't know if I would call it bias. It's not that I can't enjoy the performance. It seems my ear expects it to be played a certain way. This happened the other day while listening to Donald MacPherson play the Lament for Donald Duaghal MacKay. It must be very hard for a judge to put his personal preference aside. After playing a tune hundreds if not thousands of times.
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:41 AM   #2
Kirby Allen
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Default Re: Bias

Perhaps if it came to certain pibroch tunes, but for the most part I feel like a lot of sound is pretty standardized.

I don't rejoice in that though, because pibroch to me should be more fluid than solid, and much of the pibroch is written, taught and played like a pipe band march.
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Old 05-04-2012, 11:26 AM   #3
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Default Re: Bias

Yes - it's a natural tendency after becoming immersed in any one style. For now, anything you hear not in that style may grate. The tendency will fade with time as your musical maturity grows.
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:41 PM   #4
Justin Howland
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Default Re: Bias

Quote:
Originally Posted by CalumII View Post
Yes - it's a natural tendency after becoming immersed in any one style. For now, anything you hear not in that style may grate. The tendency will fade with time as your musical maturity grows.
I wish that were the case here! We have a few judges in particular (who are excellent piobaireachd players!), that are anything but unforgiving of interpretations other than their own. It's unfortunate, to me, when adjudicators have a difficult time evaluating a sound and consistent musical performance.
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Old 05-05-2012, 08:00 PM   #5
Texas Gael
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Default Re: Bias

I've been fortunate and had good instructors who have recommended less contoversial tunes to compete with, thus avoiding bias from the bench. I enjoy attending workshops where the instructor is teaching one setting, but I play another. With enough experience, you eventually get a good grasp of the differences.

Cheers -

Wes
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Old 05-05-2012, 08:49 PM   #6
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Default Re: Bias

As I aspire toward the best performance of each tune, I do find that hearing the tunes played from "other schools" is sometimes distracting. I do, however, try to listen to them to compare their expression against my own. To see if some of the difference might be nuance introduced to my own execution without detriment.

I find that judges are more often accustomed to a style because I have had numerous comments that "I would've played it [this way]" followed by an example. But that has only once this year cost me a medal.
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Old 05-07-2012, 11:05 AM   #7
Piperalpha
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Default Re: Bias

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Anderson View Post
As I aspire toward the best performance of each tune, I do find that hearing the tunes played from "other schools" is sometimes distracting. I do, however, try to listen to them to compare their expression against my own. To see if some of the difference might be nuance introduced to my own execution without detriment.

I find that judges are more often accustomed to a style because I have had numerous comments that "I would've played it [this way]" followed by an example. But that has only once this year cost me a medal.
I've never had a judge who let his personal preference get in the way of awarding me a medal. I'm being schooled in the Reid Gillies style of playing. There have been times where the judge has a hard time as it isn't heard that much. I often have to explain what a redundant low A is, that my a Mach is in two different time signatures, strikes from D are to C not low G, and give a copy of of the music with corrections and or alternate settings. This often takes a few minutes.
I thoroughly believe the judge should keep an open mind as to the interpretation of a tune. If what's being presented is musical, well executed, and played on a nice sounding pipe there shouldn't be much room for criticism. I've heard many performances that do not fall into that category. It's really a shame when you hear The Lament for Mary MacLeod played as though it was practiced with a metronome.
I can't recall ever being criticised for playing a different style. I suppose I'm lucky to have had judges that welcome different styles. It will likely be a different story when I start going to Scotland in a few years.
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