Dallas Morning News: Gay composers penned signature American music

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Gay composers penned signature American music
http://www.dallasnews.com/cgi-bin/bi/gold_print.cgi
5.7.2

By SCOTT CANTRELL / The Dallas Morning News

Along with the boom of rockets and crackle of firecrackers, the sounds
of the Fourth of July include the brassy flourishes and drum-poundings
of Aaron Copland's Fanfare for the Common Man. The Dallas Symphony
Orchestra is playing it today at City Hall Plaza, along with Copland's
Outdoor Overture. The composer's Lincoln Portrait and Billy the Kid
Suite are being performed this weekend by the Fort Worth Symphony
Orchestra.

Terms and techniques

In the 20th century, concert-hall music and opera underwent jarring
changes and splintered into feuding camps, including:

Tonality: The traditional system of major and minor keys, with a sense
of "home" key.

Atonality: Deliberate harmonic ambiguity, with no note or key
dominant.

Serialism: Originally, a system of composing with all 12 notes of the
scale - both black and white notes on the piano - also known as
"12-tone" technique. More advanced forms of serialism also subject
rhythms, dynamics and other aspects to pre-set formulas. To ears
accustomed to tonality, the effect can seem disjunctive and dissonant.

Nationalism: Incorporation of indigenous folk songs and dances or
suggestions of them. Music with nationalist associations was penned by
20th-century composers as different as the Hungarian Béla Bartók, the
Czech Leos Janácek, the Finn Jean Sibelius, the Englishman Ralph
Vaughan Williams and the Americans Aaron Copland and Virgil Thomson.

Scott Cantrell

More than half a century on, and 15 years after Copland's death, these
works still define a distinctively American sound. Rodeo even backs
James Garner's growl, "Beef. It's what's for dinner." It's hard to
imagine a movie about the American West without music inspired by
Copland's wide-open sonorities.

Copland's scores are part of our national mythology. Their wide-eyed
clarity and tunefulness radiate working-class idealism and traditional
family values.

Ironically, these celebrations of outdoorsy, big-sky Americana, and of
WASP home and hearth, were created by a homosexual Jew from Brooklyn.
If it took the Czech Antonín Dvorák to interest American composers in
the folk music all around them, maybe it took another set of outsiders
to define our shared musical identity.

Copland was one of a group of composers who, starting in the 1930s,
cultivated a new nationalist - or at least populist modernist - style.
And most of them were gay, including Virgil Thomson, Samuel Barber,
Leonard Bernstein, David Diamond, Lou Harrison, Paul Bowles, Marc
Blitzstein and Ned Rorem. (Though Bernstein married and sired
children, he became openly homosexual after his wife's death. Bowles
married Jane Auer, but sexually, they went their separate ways.)

By contrast, most of the pricklier modernists, including Charles Ives,
Elliott Carter and Roger Sessions, were straight.

The gay composers all knew one another and networked extensively. At
the height of their collective influence, from the late 1930s to the
early '50s, they were a potent force. Through their movie and ballet
scores, notably, and knockoffs by others, they helped define in sound
what it means to be an American.

"American music didn't have much of a banner to fly until Copland hit
it big in the late '30s," says Dr. Nadine Hubbs, a University of
Michigan professor whose book, The Queer Composition of America's
Sound: Gay Modernists, American Music, and National Identity
(University of California Press), explores how these composers,
together with certain cultural trends, created those distinctively
American sounds.

Her book opens with the delicious irony of a recent U.S. Army
promotional recording featuring music by Copland, who, of course,
couldn't serve in the Army if he acknowledged his sexuality.

(Copland was pretty discreet about his private life, which included a
series of relationships with much younger men, but he didn't hide it.)

But then, as Dr. Hubbs points out, the land of the free and home of
the brave has long had an uncomfortable relationship with the arts.

Thanks to our Puritan heritage - and a cult of the macho - the arts
and their practitioners have often been viewed as suspect if not
subversive, effete if not downright unmanly. Real men don't listen to
string quartets.

Hunter-gatherers vs. nurturers

The openly homophobic Ives chided hostile listeners to stand up and
take dissonance "like a man."

Indeed, Ives seems to have set up a kind of socio-cultural war between
the edgier modernist composers, most of whom were straight, and the
"softer" modernists (Copland et al.), most of whom were gay.

The divide wasn't, and isn't, definitive, but it's surprising how easy
it is to line up a dichotomy.

From Ives on, the edgier modernists tended to be products of what Dr.
Hubbs calls "the great-man and masterwork ideologies of the Germanic
musical tradition." And by the 1920s the avatars of Austro-German
music were proclaiming that tonality, based on the traditional major
and minor scales, was dead.

Arnold Schoenberg and his followers constructed music by mathematical
formulas rather than sound. Melody and consonance were replaced by
spiky disjunction, harmony by dissonance.

By the middle of the 20th century, Schoenbergian serialism was the
heterosexual high road. Mathematical rigor made music respectable to
the midcentury cult of scientific progress.

"Experimentalism and dissonance, precisely because they didn't taste
so good - they were a more bitter medicine - were seen as more
masculine and bold and daring," Dr. Hubbs says. "Tonality was
feminized."

Copland and Thomson, by contrast, sparked a new vogue for studying in
France. "Even now," Dr. Hubbs says, " 'French' has a connotation of
queer, hyper-elegant, sissy." And their pivotal teacher there wasn't a
man, but Nadia Boulanger.

While they incorporated American folk tunes and idioms - and, in
Copland's case, some late essays in serialism - their compositions
took on the clarity and direct appeal of French neoclassicism. And
they weren't afraid of prettiness.

If the more aggressive modernists such as Mr. Carter and Milton
Babbitt were the hunter-gatherers of modern music, Copland and company
were the nurturers. If one side of the divide was intellectual, the
other was sensual. One camp favored abstract internationalism, the
other personalized nationalism. One posited scientific argument; the
other cultivated the elegant epigram.

Cultural forces

Dr. Hubbs tends to interpret this divide as a matter of sexual
politics, and that certainly played a role. But she also points out
the exceptions, the avant-garde camp including Henry Cowell, who was
jailed for sodomy, and John Cage, longtime lover of choreographer
Merce Cunningham. The ranks of populist modernists included the
heterosexual Roy Harris, Walter Piston and William Schuman. And the
development of populist modernism in music had much to do with
economic and political developments that get short shrift in the book.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, it was almost de rigueur
for any serious would-be American composer to study in Germany. But
during World War I, anti-German passions led to banning even Beethoven
from American concert halls. By the 1920s, Paris was the new center of
culture - and counterculture.

The Great Depression was another major factor. Copland began his
compositional career as a more challenging modernist, but by the late
1930s he sensed a need for more affirming fare. And, savvy operative
that he was, he realized that's where the money was.

The introduction of movie soundtracks created a new market for
demonstrably American music that sounded up-to-date but unthreatening.
So did the burgeoning modern-dance movement: A number of Copland's
most enduringly popular scores were created for ballets by Martha
Graham, Agnes DeMille and William Loring.

"Classical music has actually played a more important role in modern
America than people realize," notes Bard College president and
conductor Leon Botstein in an interview on the iclassics.com Web site.
(The New York State college's SummerScape Festival, running July 8
through Aug. 21, is titled "Copland and His World.")

So as the country worked its way out of the Depression and into World
War II, Copland penned his classic essays in Americana: Billy the Kid
(1938); Fanfare for the Common Man, Lincoln Portrait and Rodeo (all
1942); and Appalachian Spring (1944).

Thomson got on the Americana bandwagon even before Copland, with his
scores for the ballet Filling Station and the films The Plow that
Broke the Plains and The River. Copland was a more sophisticated
composer, but Thomson, also a hugely influential music critic, was
there earlier. Of course, Ives was using American folk tunes in
"serious" scores by the turn of the 20th century, but his music wasn't
widely performed until the 1960s.

Later history

In orchestral music, the self-conscious Americana of those Copland
scores of the '30s and '40s soon dissipated, to resurface in music for
film and TV Westerns. For one thing, the American classical-music
scene was now absorbing a huge influx of European performers,
musicologists and composers - the latter including Schoenberg,
Stravinsky, Hindemith and Bartók - fleeing fascism, communism and
World War II. And, as Dr. Hubbs explores in some detail, the McCarthy
hearings in the early 1950s inspired a wave of gay-bashing that made
it wise for Copland and company to lower their profiles.

"It was a masculine decade, during the Cold War," Dr. Hubbs says. "We
were quite threatened by the Soviet scare, so we were flexing our
muscles. Our musical culture was masculinized by the influx of all
those Germans, whose aesthetic ideals were of that sort that Copland
and Thomson had arrayed themselves against."

But the softer side of modernism flowered in American operas of the
1950s, in works by gay composers including Barber and his lover Gian
Carlo Menotti and the heterosexual Robert Ward and Carlisle Floyd.
It's still very much in evidence in Mr. Floyd's 2000 opera Cold Sassy
Tree .

Indeed, the United States seems unique today in maintaining a vibrant
tradition of populist operas. Whatever the merits of Jake Heggie's
Dead Man Walking or Mark Adamo's Little Women, they're keeping their
composers in royalty checks. Dr. Hubbs doesn't much venture into more
recent decades, but it's still true that many of the most successful
classical composers are gay or lesbian, among them John Corigliano,
Lowell Liebermann and Jennifer Higdon.

By the 1930s, Dr. Hubbs says, tonality and atonality had acquired
sexual identities, even if they weren't yet widely expressed as such.
Homosexual composers probably felt freer to defy the dictates of the
avant-garde priesthood precisely because they already felt alienated
from the dominant culture. Having less compulsion to prove macho
bravery, maybe these gay men felt freer to cultivate a nurturing
"feminine" side.

They wanted to create an American music recognizably new, yet rooted
in history, something fresh rather than frightening. Call that
"feminine" if you will; it reached enthusiastic audiences that would
never warm to the asperities of Elliott Carter.

Whatever the confluence of ingredients, Thomson, Copland and their
successors sparked a real explosion of American music, much of it very
good. In Copland's case, at least, it was a product of an openness and
generosity and inclusiveness hard to imagine in our angrily partisan
times. He composed music to unite, not divide.

He was, in short, a liberal, in the oldest and best sense. Adds Dr.
Botstein: "Copland's music is the echo of the American flag." No
wonder we'll be hearing a lot of him this weekend.

E-mail scan...@dallasnews.com

mmaroney

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Jul 5, 2005, 10:15:22 AM7/5/05
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Is this National Retarded Musicological Article month in America?

Peter T. Daniels

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Jul 5, 2005, 12:36:10 PM7/5/05
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mmaroney wrote:
>
> Is this National Retarded Musicological Article month in America?

mmaroney, meet Mr. P. Checker.
--
Peter T. Daniels gram...@att.net

graham

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Jul 5, 2005, 2:02:33 PM7/5/05
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"Premise Checker" <che...@panix.com> wrote in message
news:Pine.NEB.4.63.05...@panix1.panix.com...

Gay composers penned signature American music
http://www.dallasnews.com/cgi-bin/bi/gold_print.cgi
5.7.2

I'm not sure whether the subject and substance of this article are pure
twaddle, squit or absolute and utter garbage.


Frank Berger

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Jul 5, 2005, 2:23:09 PM7/5/05
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"graham" <g.dol...@fingershaw.ca> wrote in message
news:ZWzye.162581$El.14886@pd7tw1no...

Why not share what bothers you about the article (same goes for other
posters so far, none of whom have bothered to be at all specific)?


Message has been deleted

mmaroney

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Jul 5, 2005, 3:16:33 PM7/5/05
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Nope. I use Google Groups and have neither the time nor desire to
accommodate your ilk.

Cheers,
MM

mmaroney

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Jul 5, 2005, 4:11:12 PM7/5/05
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Sure. Where shall I start?

(1) For every 'gay' composer he mentions as belonging to "a group of


composers who, starting in the 1930s, cultivated a new nationalist - or

at least populist modernist - style" I can name at least one
corresponding 'straight' composers that belong in that group.
Therefore, his conclusion that "most" in this group were gay is false.
Additionally, he pads his 'gay' list with composers who simply aren't
performed much today. It seems he's also purposely creating a grey
area by introducing the term 'populist modernist' alongside just plain
'modernist' for obvious reasons. I mean, if he's going to stick Bowles
in the list, I can counter with, say, Ferde Grofe.
(3) Let's not forget those composers who had drastic style changes.
Where does he file George Rochberg? Late-modernist Copland? Early
David Del Tredici? Morton Feldman? Nancarrow? Ruth Crawford Seeger?

(4) He says that the 'gay' group "helped define in sound what it means
to be an American" yet never mentions any actual musical elements that
these composers used in common to create this 'sound', except the term
'tonality', which is about as vague as possible.
(5) "'American music didn't have much of a banner to fly until Copland
hit it big in the late '30s,' says Dr. Nadine Hubbs" Have neither of
these people ever heard of George Gershwin? Scott Joplin? Grofe?
(6) "The divide wasn't, and isn't, definitive, but it's surprising how
easy it is to line up a dichotomy." Yes, it's quite easy to do that if
you pick and chose which composers to include in your 'survey' and
ignore basic facts and music history.
(7) "Melody and consonance were replaced by spiky disjunction, harmony
by dissonance." Of course, you don't 'replace' harmony with
dissonance. That's just absurd. Even a dissonant chord is still a
harmony (see jazz theory, Bruckner's symphonies and Barber's songs, all
of which teem with "dissonance"). Unless he's using "harmony" in its
more general sense, but that seems doubtful in this context, especially
since he used the term 'consonance' immediately before.
(8) He fails to mention the fact that Elliott Carter (and other 'edgy'
composers) studied with Boulanger and produced many "Americana" works
early in his career until exploring other veins, much like Aaron
Copland.
(9) He points to "Schoenbergian serialism" as "the heterosexual high
road", using the names Carter, Babbitt, Ives and Sessions as evidence.
Of course, Carter has never composed a serial work. Ives didn't
either.
(10) If he knew anything about hard-core serialists in America, except
perhaps Babbitt, he'd know that their main influences were French
(i.e., Boulez and Messiaen), not German.
(11) No discussion of 'gay' serialists/modernists such as: Wuorinen,
Cowell, Foss (as modern as anyone listed, depending on the work), Ben
Weber, etc. etc. etc.
(12) "Even now," Dr. Hubbs says, " 'French' has a connotation of queer,
hyper-elegant, sissy." Perhaps to people unfamiliar with recent French
music. Ever hear of Messiaen, Boulez, Dusapin, Mache, Gaussin, etc?
Further, I'd definitely say that Carter's music is among the most
elegant I know. Yes, I'd even describe it as "hyper-elegant."
(13) Since he eventually slides down into the idea that there is a
"masculine" and a "feminine" music, where does he place women
composers? If we were to adhere to stereotypical personality traits
about homosexuals, we'd infer that the one lesbian he mentions,
Jennifer Higdon, would compose 'masculine' (dissonant, modernist,
difficult, muscular, serial) music.

While I do feel that there is perhaps a "gay" sensibility in music, I
don't think it stems from any particular trend of composition, but is a
more abstract aspect present in gay composers, regardless of whether
they compose in a 'tonal' or 'atonal' idiom.

Why musicologists/critics have this incessant urge to split every
period in music history neatly into two little boxes is beyond me.

Cheers,

MM

alanwa...@aol.com

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Jul 5, 2005, 4:38:15 PM7/5/05
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Old Chap is probably only going to confuse matters but could I point
out that "he" is a "she".

Associate Professor of Music (Theory) and Women's Studies.

Whether it makes a difference only you can say.

Kind regards,
Alan M. Watkins

mmaroney

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Jul 5, 2005, 4:47:02 PM7/5/05
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Who's a "she"? Scott Cantrell?

Cheers,
MM

Ward Hardman

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Jul 5, 2005, 5:51:11 PM7/5/05
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Scott Cantrell wrote, in the Dallas newspaper:

> Whatever the confluence of ingredients, Thomson, Copland and their
> successors sparked a real explosion of American music, much of it
> very good. In Copland's case, at least, it was a product of an openness
> and generosity and inclusiveness hard to imagine in our angrily partisan
> times. He composed music to unite, not divide.
>
> He was, in short, a liberal, in the oldest and best sense.
>


Is trying for wider audiences "liberal" or simply "pragmatic"? Can the
sexual caprices of the composer make music sound any better? How does
music become "generous" or "inclusive" ... by some kind of "affirmative
action" or just by having good tunes?

(Sexual orientation must explain why Tchaikovsky sounds so "Russian.")

Was this article intended for Independence Day or Gay Pride Week?


--Ward Hardman


"The older I get, the more I admire and crave competence, just
simple competence, in any field from adultery to zoology."
- H.L. Mencken

Frank Berger

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Jul 5, 2005, 5:54:51 PM7/5/05
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Regardless of the extent to which I end up agreeing with you after
re-reading the article and seeing what others have to say on the subject, I
appreciate your taking the time to share your analysis.


sorabji...@lineone.net

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Jul 5, 2005, 7:23:04 PM7/5/05
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The catalogue of absurdities in this article is such as to shower
insults and ignorance in all directions on American composers of all
persuasions, musical, sexual and otherwise.

Leaving aside the fact that neither its writer nor the sources he seeks
from time to time to cite in support of his woolly arguments have any
certain and unchallengeable understanding of the series of
neuroscientific facts that would be vital for the purpose of
underpinning the attempted arguments about sexuality and aristic
creativity alone, there are a handful of other points which deserve to
be thrown into the arena in addition to those which already have been
so thrown by other contributors to this thread.

Leonard Bernstein - the gay Jew who not only premièred but
commissioned Elliott Carter's Concerto for Orchestra (of all things) in
the 1960s; why did he do this?

Aaron Copland, who for some time openly confessed to no small degree of
perplexity about Carter's compositional development, eventually lauded
him in a way more powerful than any Pulitzer Prize award could do, by
citing him as one of America's most important artists in any field
(i.e. not just that of music) - and this occurred shortly after the
emergence of what is arguably one of Carter's most uncompromising
works, the Third String Quartet.

Ives encouraged the young Carter to discover all manner of new music,
yet the two men were always utterly different as composers.

Carter composed a number of more obviously tonally-based works in years
gone by; one of the most important of these is his splendid Piano
Sonata of almost 60 years' vintage. If he'd "moved on" from all that
kind of thing, like the very kind of good heterosexual high-modernist
American which this article would seem to seek to portray him, why
would he have decided to revise that sonata as recently as 1982?

Virgil Thomson once said that to be an American composer one simply had
to be an American citizen and then compose just as one wished; Carter
has echoed these sentiments, both berbally and in the music he has
composed.

The writer appears to imply that tonally based composition - in
America, at least - is - or at least has at some time been - somehow
"soft-core", effeminate and the province of those of non-heterosexual
persuasion and that so-called atonal "aggressive modernism" is, au
contraire, some kind of heterosexual, macho thing. To demonstrate that
the suggestion of some kind of identifiable and codifiable relationship
between tonal persuasions and the sexual proclivities of the musical
creator is the height - no, the depth - of absurdity one has to go no
further than a handful of the most obvious examples; what would Xenakis
have made - and what would Ferneyhough make - of such ideas and where
do the largely tonal American composers Harris, Schuman et al fit into
the scheme of this most spurious of arguments?

The implied notion that it is possible to determine the sexual and/or
other proclivities of the composer by the manner in which he/she
composes is not only unamenable to current scientific endorsement - it
is fraught with counter-argument; a fundamental lack of comprehension
of the implication of human emotions and their origins and functions
within each individual musical creator is clearly the fons et origo of
this gross misunderstanding.

In an article about the sexuality of composers I once wrote that
no listener, male or female, attending, for example, a chamber recital
comprising one string quartet each by Bartók, Maconchy, Bacewicz and
Shostakovich without knowing the composers' identities or having
heard any of the works previously, is likely to be able to identify
which works were the products of masculine minds and which those of
feminine ones, any more than they would be able to tell how many males
and how many females were in the ensemble without prior knowledge.
By implication, it would be equally impossible to determine the sexual
proclivities of any of the composers from their music.

In another on emotions and music I wrote
There remains, unfortunately - and, perhaps, inevitably - a surfeit of
woolly-minded writing and talk about emotions and their expression -
perhaps nowhere more prevalently (or sickeningly) than in the
performing arts. Emotions are - or give rise to - chemical changes in
the brain and, while our proper scientific understanding of the
neurology of such things remains in its comparative infancy, we would
do well to guard our remarks about them and confine them to what is
both known and proven. That said, there is no doubt that great
performances of great works of art are capable of expanding the
listener's emotional horizons - provided that nothing gets in the way
of their being allowed to do so.

If the writer lapses into sense anywhere, it is perhaps in his
observation that a particular aspect of American consciousness appeared
to warm to certain works by Copland despite the fact that he was a
homosexual Jew - and one of Russian origin at that (an additional but
not insignificant fact that the writer omits to mention). Copland, it
should be remembered, went to considerable lengths to encourage and
actively assist in the promotion of many an American composer,
regardless of how close or otherwise that composer may have been to
Copland's own creative aspirations at the time; Sessions, cited as one
of those aggressive modernist heterosexuals was a long-time
collaborator with Copland in constructing and presenting concert series
for the express purpose of promoting a wide variety of new American
music - why? And - to return to the most important living victim of the
writer's ignorance - it is surely not unreasonable, in the light of
certain arguments in the article concerned, to ask whether the full
content of and motivations behind the dedications (to his wife) of the
last of Carter's Three Occasions for orchestra or of the same
composer's much more recent Boston Concerto represent assertions of
heterosexual macho high modernist aggression or a genuinely tender
human response that finds its way right through every bar of the music
concerned.

The implication to be drawn from the latter - if I interpret it
correctly - is that the macho, high-modernist heterosexual American
creative urge as allegedly represented by Carter and others is somehow
lacking in humanity and human sensitivity - an assertion which is as
easy and cheap to make as it is impossible to justify.

The above seems to suggest to me to me that a large part of this
article has - unwittingly or deliberately - insulted a great swathe of
American composers of all manner of persuasions. How very sad! I had
thought that such unpatriotic activity was the province of the British;
how wrong one can be!

Alistair Hinton
Curator / Director
The Sorabji Archive

graham

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Jul 5, 2005, 7:45:29 PM7/5/05
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"Frank Berger" <frank.d...@dal.frb.org> wrote in message
news:11clk01...@news.supernews.com...
I was just too busy to amplify my thoughts further but Messrs. Maroney and
Hinton have pretty well covered the ground.
Graham


graham

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Jul 5, 2005, 7:53:28 PM7/5/05
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<sorabji...@lineone.net> wrote in message
news:1120605784.1...@g14g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...

>The implied notion that it is possible to determine the sexual and/or
other proclivities of the composer by the manner in which he/she
composes is not only unamenable to current scientific endorsement - it
is fraught with counter-argument; a fundamental lack of comprehension
of the implication of human emotions and their origins and functions
within each individual musical creator is clearly the fons et origo of
this gross misunderstanding.<

This was proposed in absurdly obfusc, post-modern/deconstructionist language
by a lesbian musicologist (whose name and the reference I happily forget) at
an academic conference a couple of years ago. She maintained that her
analysis of their music proved that Handel and Schubert were gay!

Ian Pace

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Jul 5, 2005, 7:58:49 PM7/5/05
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One might also ask where Boulez or Barraque or Finnissy or Stabler or
Sciarrino fit into this author's picture? Or Lou Harrison or Harry
Partch or John Cage, to mention but a few other gay composers?

Ian

William Sommerwerck

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Jul 5, 2005, 8:21:07 PM7/5/05
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> Is trying for wider audiences "liberal" or simply "pragmatic"?

In Copland's case, it appears to have been the latter.


alanwa...@aol.com

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Jul 5, 2005, 9:01:00 PM7/5/05
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Blimey! And just to think I go out to play all this stuff without
knowing any of that.

Peter T. Daniels

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Jul 5, 2005, 11:06:49 PM7/5/05
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One version of her article is in *Queering the Pitch*. And no, she
didn't. She claimed that she could identify gay traits in Schubert's
music.

Frank Berger

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Jul 6, 2005, 12:41:54 AM7/6/05
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"graham" <g.dol...@fingershaw.ca> wrote in message
news:tYEye.1872368$6l.67854@pd7tw2no...
Convincingly.


Matthew Fields

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Jul 6, 2005, 6:44:33 AM7/6/05
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In article <42CB4A...@worldnet.att.net>,

Remind the rest of us, is this perchance Susan McClary of whom you speak?


--
Matthew H. Fields http://www.umich.edu/~fields
Music: Splendor in Sound
To be great, do better and better. Don't wait for talent: no such thing.
Brights have a naturalistic world-view. http://www.the-brights.net/

Peter T. Daniels

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Jul 6, 2005, 8:48:32 AM7/6/05
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Matthew Fields wrote:
>
> In article <42CB4A...@worldnet.att.net>,
> Peter T. Daniels <gram...@worldnet.att.net> wrote:
> >graham wrote:
> >>
> >> <sorabji...@lineone.net> wrote in message
> >> news:1120605784.1...@g14g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
> >>
> >> >The implied notion that it is possible to determine the sexual and/or
> >> other proclivities of the composer by the manner in which he/she
> >> composes is not only unamenable to current scientific endorsement - it
> >> is fraught with counter-argument; a fundamental lack of comprehension
> >> of the implication of human emotions and their origins and functions
> >> within each individual musical creator is clearly the fons et origo of
> >> this gross misunderstanding.<
> >>
> >> This was proposed in absurdly obfusc, post-modern/deconstructionist language
> >> by a lesbian musicologist (whose name and the reference I happily forget) at
> >> an academic conference a couple of years ago. She maintained that her
> >> analysis of their music proved that Handel and Schubert were gay!
> >
> >One version of her article is in *Queering the Pitch*. And no, she
> >didn't. She claimed that she could identify gay traits in Schubert's
> >music.

> Remind the rest of us, is this perchance Susan McClary of whom you speak?

I kept thinking McLaren and knew that wasn't quite right.

piss on ward f hardman

unread,
Jul 12, 2005, 6:14:39 AM7/12/05
to

Ward Hardman wrote:
> Scott Cantrell wrote, in the Dallas newspaper:
>
> > Whatever the confluence of ingredients, Thomson, Copland and their
> > successors sparked a real explosion of American music, much of it
> > very good. In Copland's case, at least, it was a product of an openness
> > and generosity and inclusiveness hard to imagine in our angrily partisan
> > times. He composed music to unite, not divide.
> >
> > He was, in short, a liberal, in the oldest and best sense.
> >
>
>
> Is trying for wider audiences "liberal" or simply "pragmatic"? Can the
> sexual caprices of the composer make music sound any better? How does
> music become "generous" or "inclusive" ... by some kind of "affirmative
> action" or just by having good tunes?
>
> (Sexual orientation must explain why Tchaikovsky sounds so "Russian.")
>
> Was this article intended for Independence Day or Gay Pride Week?
>
>
> --Ward Hardman

Ward Asshole is so perturbed by talk of gay people, isn't it funny!

Ward Hardman

unread,
Jul 12, 2005, 3:39:16 PM7/12/05
to
The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," wrote:


> piss on ward [snip]


If sexually deviance were *really* an aid to composing "signature
American [classical] music," then the "Jim Smith" troll "coulda been a
contender."


"Jim" has a keen interest in urolagnia (1), from reports of his recent
activities in Europe:


Poor old scrofulous "Jim," the despised,
Is ecstatic when wetly chastised.
When asked "Why?," that perv said,
"Spray piss over my head,
And I feel like I'm getting baptised!"


That troll is completely bizarre,
A peripatetic clochard (2).
In the Bois de Boulogne (3),
His sole eau de cologne
Is a splash from the nearest pissoir.


In the depths of that park is a bower,
Where his clients growl "YOU need a shower,"
And the pervert embolden
To suggest "Make it golden,
And then *I* will pay *you* by the hour!"


(1) Sexual arousal involving attraction to urine.
(2) French tramp or vagrant. (The 'd' is silent.)
(3) Parisian park infested by transvestite whores like "Jim."

Peter T. Daniels

unread,
Jul 12, 2005, 4:35:22 PM7/12/05
to

"perv said" and "my head" don't rhyme.

Roscoe East

unread,
Jul 12, 2005, 4:54:03 PM7/12/05
to
They do in English.

Ward Hardman

unread,
Jul 12, 2005, 5:43:06 PM7/12/05
to
Peter T. Daniels (PTD), peering through his literary dissecting
microscope, proclaimed:


> "perv said" and "my head" don't rhyme.


Well, I could make it "guy said" to better rhyme with "my head," but
that would be too easy on "Jim."


Though I write of strange persons and climes,
I will strive for the finest of rhymes.
PTD's so meticulous,
That it's often ridiculous,
As he cavils at nickels-and-dimes!


(Why didn't you notify me that your services as an editor were
available? ;-)

Peter T. Daniels

unread,
Jul 13, 2005, 12:06:15 AM7/13/05
to
Ward Hardman wrote:
>
> Peter T. Daniels (PTD), peering through his literary dissecting
> microscope, proclaimed:
>
> > "perv said" and "my head" don't rhyme.
>
> Well, I could make it "guy said" to better rhyme with "my head," but
> that would be too easy on "Jim."

I still wouldn't allow the differing consonants between the vowels.

> Though I write of strange persons and climes,
> I will strive for the finest of rhymes.
> PTD's so meticulous,
> That it's often ridiculous,
> As he cavils at nickels-and-dimes!
>
> (Why didn't you notify me that your services as an editor were
> available? ;-)

Are you buying?

Ward Hardman

unread,
Jul 13, 2005, 5:08:21 PM7/13/05
to
Peter T. Daniels, still "grinding exceedingly fine," wrote

> Ward Hardman wrote:

> > Peter T. Daniels (PTD), peering through his literary dissecting
> > microscope, proclaimed:


> > > "perv said" and "my head" don't rhyme.


> > Well, I could make it "guy said" to better rhyme with "my head," but
> > that would be too easy on "Jim."


> I still wouldn't allow the differing consonants between the vowels.

Even Shakespeare didn't hesitate at that

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou are more lovely and more temperate.
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May
And summer's lease hath all too short a date.
... (Sonnet XVIII)

Or are you suggesting that double rhymes are needed for limericks to
make their fullest humorous effect? I admit that "Boulogne"/"cologne"
and "embolden"/"golden" were double rhymes, but I'm wondering if this
effect in the couplets of the last two lims served to make the first
one seem ... ahhh ... less perfect. ;-)

However, I *can* tweak the first lim to your exacting standards (and to
make it even more unflattering to Jim):


Poor old scrofulous "Jim," the despised,
Is ecstatic when wetly chastised.

When asked "Why?," that guy said,
"When you piss on this head,
All my lice are then getting baptised!"

Or an even better rhyme:

When asked "Why?," that guy said,
"I can offer nice head,
Once your bladder has made me baptised!"


> > (Why didn't you notify me that your services as an editor were
> > available? ;-)


> Are you buying?


When will you be free? ;-)

Peter T. Daniels

unread,
Jul 13, 2005, 5:58:15 PM7/13/05
to
Ward Hardman wrote:
>
> Peter T. Daniels, still "grinding exceedingly fine," wrote
>
> > Ward Hardman wrote:
>
> > > Peter T. Daniels (PTD), peering through his literary dissecting
> > > microscope, proclaimed:
>
> > > > "perv said" and "my head" don't rhyme.
>
> > > Well, I could make it "guy said" to better rhyme with "my head," but
> > > that would be too easy on "Jim."
>
> > I still wouldn't allow the differing consonants between the vowels.
>
> Even Shakespeare didn't hesitate at that
>
> Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
> Thou are more lovely and more temperate.
> Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May
> And summer's lease hath all too short a date.
> ... (Sonnet XVIII)
>
> Or are you suggesting that double rhymes are needed for limericks to
> make their fullest humorous effect? I admit that "Boulogne"/"cologne"
> and "embolden"/"golden" were double rhymes, but I'm wondering if this
> effect in the couplets of the last two lims served to make the first
> one seem ... ahhh ... less perfect. ;-)

The quatrain doesn't involve two-vowel rhymes.

> However, I *can* tweak the first lim to your exacting standards (and to
> make it even more unflattering to Jim):
>
> Poor old scrofulous "Jim," the despised,
> Is ecstatic when wetly chastised.
> When asked "Why?," that guy said,
> "When you piss on this head,
> All my lice are then getting baptised!"
>
> Or an even better rhyme:
>
> When asked "Why?," that guy said,
> "I can offer nice head,
> Once your bladder has made me baptised!"

Yes, those are quite satisfactory.

> > > (Why didn't you notify me that your services as an editor were
> > > available? ;-)
>
> > Are you buying?
>
> When will you be free? ;-)

When I have become independently wealthy.

piss on ward f hardman

unread,
Jul 14, 2005, 6:07:02 AM7/14/05
to
Boulogne and Cologne don't rhyme. But then it's quite an achievement
for Ward Moron to have any rhymes at all in his pathetic doggerel.

piss on ward f hardman

unread,
Jul 14, 2005, 6:12:08 AM7/14/05
to

Ward Hardman wrote:
> for limericks to
> make their fullest humorous effect? I admit that "Boulogne"/"cologne"
> and "embolden"/"golden" were double rhymes,

1. There is nothing humorous about Ward's pathetic rubbish. It's shit.

2. Boulogne and Cologne do not constitute any sort of a rhyme. Rhymes
depend on pronunciation, not spelling.

3. Piss off, Hardman!

Rodger Whitlock

unread,
Jul 14, 2005, 1:49:37 PM7/14/05
to
On Tue, 05 Jul 2005 23:53:28 GMT, "graham" <g.dol...@fingershaw.ca>
wrote:

> This was proposed in absurdly obfusc, post-modern/deconstructionist language
> by a lesbian musicologist (whose name and the reference I happily forget) at
> an academic conference a couple of years ago. She maintained that her
> analysis of their music proved that Handel and Schubert were gay!

And given the penchant of the more ferocious branch of the feminist
movement to make up -- and broadcast widely -- fictional statistics
and lying factoids about relations between men and women (i.e. that
Super Bowl day sees huge numbers of women battered -- not true at
all), it's clear that this article says a great deal more about its
dyke author than it does about the ostensible subjects.


--
Rodger Whitlock
Victoria, BC, Canada
to send email, change atlantic to pacific
and invalid to net

Rodger Whitlock

unread,
Jul 14, 2005, 1:49:38 PM7/14/05
to
On 5 Jul 2005 14:51:11 -0700, "Ward Hardman" <ward.h...@gmail.com>
wrote:

> ...Can the sexual caprices of the composer make music sound any better?

Somewhere along the line, I've read or been told that sexual virgins
simply can't play Debussy's Syrinx properly.

Ward Hardman

unread,
Jul 14, 2005, 10:50:42 PM7/14/05
to
The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," sputtering

in embarassment about revelations of his personal life, wrote:


> 2. Boulogne and Cologne do not constitute
> any sort of a rhyme.


BOO-lone and CO-lone are more than good enough for rhymes about you.
Be glad that, instead of using "cologne," I didn't use "colon" and
discuss the location of your head.


> 3. Piss off [snip]


You're off on your urolagnia trip again. Your favorite American
composer must be Walter Piston.

Ward Hardman

unread,
Jul 14, 2005, 11:00:37 PM7/14/05
to
Rodger Whitlock observed:
> Ward Hardman asked:


> > ...Can the sexual caprices of the composer make
> > music sound any better?


> Somewhere along the line, I've read or been told that
> sexual virgins simply can't play Debussy's Syrinx
> properly.


Male instrumentalists too? ;-)

piss on ward f hardman

unread,
Jul 15, 2005, 11:27:54 AM7/15/05
to

Ward Hardman wrote:
> The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," sputtering
> in embarassment about revelations of his personal life, wrote:
>
>
> > 2. Boulogne and Cologne do not constitute
> > any sort of a rhyme.
>
>
> BOO-lone and CO-lone are more than good enough for rhymes about you.

You didn't write BOO-lone, or anything that's pronounced like it. You
wrote Boulogne, which is pronounced rather differently. As I told you.
Hardman is a moron and an arrogant and ignorant asshole.

FUCK WARD 'MORON' HARDMAN IN THE ASS!
H.L.Mencken

Ward Hardman

unread,
Jul 15, 2005, 11:25:14 PM7/15/05
to
The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," arrogantly
and ignorantly proclaimed:

> > Ward Hardman wrote:

> > > The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," sputtering
> > > in embarassment about revelations of his personal life, wrote:


> > > 2. Boulogne and Cologne do not constitute
> > > any sort of a rhyme.


> > BOO-lone and CO-lone are more than good enough for rhymes about you.


> You didn't write BOO-lone, or anything that's pronounced like it.
> You wrote Boulogne, which is pronounced rather differently.


So let's write it phonetically, as "boo-LOAN" and "co-LOAN," with the
accented syllable, as delivered in the limerick, represented as
uppercase. (In the earlier version, the uppercase was hightlighting
the penultimate syllables to demonstrate the very slight difference in
their sound.) It's a perfectly satisfactory rhyme for English-speaking
people. Are you trying to misrepresent yourself as some kind of French
connoisseur?


Still fascinated by urine? There's a story about your recent encounter
with a British client:


Said "Jim," in spike heels and torn sheers,
And soaked from the bladders of queers,
"It's the first time I've whored
For a guy who's a Lord:
He says he is one of the Pee-ers!"

piss on ward f hardman

unread,
Jul 21, 2005, 7:50:13 AM7/21/05
to

Ward Hardman wrote:
> The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," arrogantly
> and ignorantly proclaimed:
>
> > > Ward Hardman wrote:
>
> > > > The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," sputtering
> > > > in embarassment about revelations of his personal life, wrote:
>
>
> > > > 2. Boulogne and Cologne do not constitute
> > > > any sort of a rhyme.
>
>
> > > BOO-lone and CO-lone are more than good enough for rhymes about you.
>
>
> > You didn't write BOO-lone, or anything that's pronounced like it.
> > You wrote Boulogne, which is pronounced rather differently.
>
>
> So let's write it phonetically, as "boo-LOAN" and "co-LOAN," with the
> accented syllable, as delivered in the limerick, represented as
> uppercase. (In the earlier version, the uppercase was hightlighting
> the penultimate syllables to demonstrate the very slight difference in
> their sound.) It's a perfectly satisfactory rhyme for English-speaking
> people.

No it's not. It may be a satisfactory rhyme for ignorant provincial
assholes.

Ward Hardman

unread,
Jul 21, 2005, 9:38:40 PM7/21/05
to
The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," wrote:


>Ward Hardman wrote:

> > The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," arrogantly
> > and ignorantly proclaimed:

> > > Ward Hardman wrote:


> > > > > The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," sputtering
> > > > > in embarassment about revelations of his personal life, wrote:


> > > > > 2. Boulogne and Cologne do not constitute
> > > > > any sort of a rhyme.

> > So let's write it phonetically, as "boo-LOAN" and "co-LOAN," with the
> > accented syllable, as delivered in the limerick, represented as

> > uppercase. [snip]


> > It's a perfectly satisfactory rhyme for English-speaking
> > people.

> No it's not. It may be a satisfactory rhyme for
> ignorant provincial assholes.


Then why don't you like it?

Peter T. Daniels

unread,
Jul 24, 2005, 12:53:07 PM7/24/05
to
Ward Hardman wrote:
>
> The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," arrogantly
> and ignorantly proclaimed:
>
> > > Ward Hardman wrote:
>
> > > > The epicene cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll, "Jim Smith," sputtering
> > > > in embarassment about revelations of his personal life, wrote:
>
> > > > 2. Boulogne and Cologne do not constitute
> > > > any sort of a rhyme.
>
> > > BOO-lone and CO-lone are more than good enough for rhymes about you.
>
> > You didn't write BOO-lone, or anything that's pronounced like it.
> > You wrote Boulogne, which is pronounced rather differently.
>
> So let's write it phonetically, as "boo-LOAN" and "co-LOAN," with the
> accented syllable, as delivered in the limerick, represented as
> uppercase. (In the earlier version, the uppercase was hightlighting
> the penultimate syllables to demonstrate the very slight difference in
> their sound.) It's a perfectly satisfactory rhyme for English-speaking
> people. Are you trying to misrepresent yourself as some kind of French
> connoisseur?

"Boulogne" and "Cologne" rhyme in English; they rhyme in French, though
not with the English versions; only if JS is claiming that "Cologne" is
"really" "Köln" could the claim that they don't rhyme hold.

piss on ward f hardman

unread,
Aug 5, 2005, 1:30:58 PM8/5/05
to
> "Boulogne" and "Cologne" rhyme in English; they rhyme in French, though
not with the English versions;

I disagree. Cologne has a distinct English pronunciation rhyming with
alone. Boulogne does not, in English it retains more of the original
pronunciation. It would sound very odd if pronounced Balone. The g
colors the second o. Anyway, Ward Hardman's garbage doggerel is not
worth defending.

Ward Hardman

unread,
Aug 8, 2005, 4:43:48 PM8/8/05
to
The urolagnic (see Note 1 below), cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll,
"Jim Smith," badly beaten up in the limericks of this thread, lamely
moaned:

> Ward Hardman's garbage doggerel is not
> worth defending.


Your insistence that rhymes in the limericks attacking you meet the
very highest standards demonstrates the great pride you take in being
the target of these verses (possibly your only claim to fame).


I think that you are a masochist, who posts every now and then in order
to get demolished in verse. You keep proclaiming "Piss on <name>," but
have a hard time disguising the fact that your keen interest in
urolagnia (1), stems from a mental compulsion towards aberrant
sexuality. Some of this stems from the wretched results of your
botched sex-change operation, but that too can be regarded as an effect
rather than a cause. We have received reports of your recent
activities in Europe, and have chronicled some of them for your
scrapbook:


Poor old scrofulous "Jim," the despised,
Is ecstatic when wetly chastised.

When asked "Why?," that perv said,
"Spray piss over my head,
And I feel like I'm getting baptised!"


That troll is completely bizarre,
A peripatetic clochard (2).
In the Bois de Boulogne (3),
His sole eau de cologne
Is a splash from the nearest pissoir.


In the depths of that park is a bower,
Where his clients growl "YOU need a shower,"

And that pervert embolden


To suggest "Make it golden,
And then *I* will pay *you* by the hour!"

Said "Jim," in spike heels and torn sheers,

Well soaked from the bladders of queers,


"It's the first time I've whored

For a Brit who's a Lord:


He says he is one of the Pee-ers!"


Anent the renowned Shroud of Turin,
"Jim" wanted to spray it with urine:
"I may draw down the Fire,
But so great's my desire,
I'll risk a divinely-sent murrain (4)!"


(1) Sexual arousal involving attraction to urine.
(2) French tramp or vagrant. (The 'd' is silent.)

(3) Parisian park infested at night by transexual whores like "Jim."
(4) A pestilence or plague.

Peter T. Daniels

unread,
Aug 8, 2005, 10:08:16 PM8/8/05
to
Ward Hardman wrote:
>
> The urolagnic (see Note 1 below), cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll,
> "Jim Smith," badly beaten up in the limericks of this thread, lamely
> moaned:
>
> > Ward Hardman's garbage doggerel is not
> > worth defending.
>
> Your insistence that rhymes in the limericks attacking you meet the
> very highest standards demonstrates the great pride you take in being
> the target of these verses (possibly your only claim to fame).

I thought I was the only one requiring more attention to the rhymes.
Almost everything below is quite fine ("perv said"/"over my head" also
has an interesting assonance thing going), but "murrain" doesn't rhyme
with "Turin"/"urine" (it's mur-RAIN).

Ward Hardman

unread,
Aug 9, 2005, 7:57:52 PM8/9/05
to
Peter T. Daniels wrote:
>Ward Hardman wrote:

> > The urolagnic (see Note 1 below), cephalorectal (head-up-ass) troll,
> > "Jim Smith," badly beaten up in the limericks of this thread, lamely
> > moaned:


> > > Ward Hardman's garbage doggerel is not
> > > worth defending.


> > Your insistence that rhymes in the limericks attacking you meet the
> > very highest standards demonstrates the great pride you take in being
> > the target of these verses (possibly your only claim to fame).

> I thought I was the only one requiring more attention to the rhymes.
> Almost everything below is quite fine ("perv said"/"over my head" also
> has an interesting assonance thing going), but "murrain" doesn't rhyme
> with "Turin"/"urine" (it's mur-RAIN).


If I'd thought 'twas pronounced as "myrrh RAIN,"
I'd have dumped our friend "Jim" in Bahrain,
But Webster says "murrain"
Is rhyming with "urine";
You're claiming it sounds like "moraine."
;-)

My Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, 11th edition, shows
"M<SCHWA>R-<schwa>n," where the <schwa> symbol is the upside-down 'e'
which represents the "uh" sound, like either vowel in "abut."
Actually, if the schwa is shown as '*', they show 'm*r-*n or 'm*-r*n,
with the single quote showing the emphasized syllable. Are you using a
British (or Canadian) dictionary?

Peter T. Daniels

unread,
Aug 9, 2005, 10:33:40 PM8/9/05
to

I've probably been to a lot more seders than you, and that's the only
place I've encountered the word spoken.

MW's pronunciation strikes me as British, cf. 'gar-ridge vs. g*-'razh.

BTW @ is often used for the shwa symbol in ASCII phonetics.

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