Man's physical universe

xanabras

472 ENERGY MAY BE PROPAGATED BY VIBRATIONS

but capable of producing many more overtones. Such instruments

would be so complex and so expensive, however, that few people could

afford to purchase them.

The Novachord uses vacuum tubes to produce electrical waves

that are changed into sound just as radio waves are changed into

sound in the radio loud-speaker. The Hammond Electric Organ uses

synchronous motors to turn iron cogs near coils on magnets which

thus generate alternating currents which are then converted into

sound by the system used in a radio. In 1939 Hammond added a synthetic

reverberation unit which gives the effects of a large organ in an

auditorium.

The Solovox is an inexpensive electrical musical instrument designed

to supplement the piano by providing tone qualities which the piano

cannot produce.

The Human Voice Is the Most Versatile of Musical Instruments.

The human voice is a reed type of instrument. The vocal cords

act as the generator; and their tension, length, and thickness can be

controlled by the muscles. The vibrations are produced by the flow

of air controlled by changing the size and shape of the throat cavities

and by closing and opening the lips. The amplifier consists of those

cavities whose shape markedly affects the quality of the tones

produced.

STUDY QUESTIONS

1. What is music as differentiated from noise?

2. Why is it that some people can produce music from a given instrument while

other people cannot do so?

3. How does the human voice produce sounds?

4. Why are some voices musical, while others are not?

5. What principles are used in different musical instruments — wind, string,

drums, tympani — to produce sounds?

6. Ask some of your musical friends to explain the difference between grand and

upright pianos and between cheap and expensive pianos.

7. Try to find out the difference between Occidental and Oriental music.

8. Upon what factors do pitch, intensity, and quality of sound depend?

9. What are two important parts of nearly all Musical instruments?

10. What does the elimination of overtones do to sound?

11. What does the musician mean by the terms, harmony and discord?

12. What does a violinist do to his violin in order to tune it?

13. How can a violinist produce so many tones with so few strings?

14. Explain how the Novachord imitates many musical instruments. Why does

the Novachord fail to give perfect imitations of musical tones which are very

rich in overtones?

15. What is the function of the Solovox?

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