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Kelsey Z.

the saw vs. the theremin.....who will win??

May 26, 2006 at 11:55 PM

Today started a little untypically. First off, I woke up and looked at my alarm clock and made an executive decision that I could in fact cram my normal morning happenings into a shorter space of time, so I reset my alarm and went back to sleep. When I did finally get up, I turned the radio on and to my delight it was the results of Tom Allen and his show, Music and Company's "Cage Match" The two dueling performances this week were interpretations of the Rachmaninov Vocalise. Competitor #1 was performing this famous piece on the Theremin, Competitor #2 was performing on ....wait for it..... the SAW. Yes, that's right. A saw. To my great pleasure the saw performance won! What made the victory all the sweeter was that I was able to hear the whole performance of the work done on a saw (it was seriously the most haunting, eerie, creepy sound and it worked so well). To make it even cooler yet. The guy playing the saw is a cellist who taught my chamber music group at a music camp I went to a few years ago and in one of the performances by faculty, he played his cello and saw in the space of the same piece! It was amazing! So that was my start to my day.

From Jasmine Lewis
Posted on May 27, 2006 at 12:22 AM
saws are awesome...
From Jim W. Miller
Posted on May 27, 2006 at 12:24 AM
You forgot to say the saw is played with a bow. I know of a recording from the 20s where an insrument is identified as a slide guitar in modern notes about it when it's really a saw, because nobody ever heard of playing a saw.
From Jim W. Miller
Posted on May 27, 2006 at 12:29 AM
Then there's that 80s song with the chainsaw solo. Sort of like acoustic and electric guitars.
From Pauline Lerner
Posted on May 27, 2006 at 6:47 AM
Kelsey, you have the most interesting experiences. Is there some place online where I could hear a performance on the saw?
From Wanda Jenkins
Posted on May 27, 2006 at 2:16 PM
A well played saw is spine tingling beautiful with so many possible nuances. They're not easy to learn to play well. You can use just about any saw that has a good resonance when tapped, but a decent bow is key. And a strong left thumb! :-)

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