The Spectrum of Sound: the Obscure Timbres within Muted Brass




Micu, Marc

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Composers and performers have long used mutes to achieve new and unique timbres for brass instruments. The scope of this field is evolving at a rapid rate however, and understanding brass mute technology and the depth of how it informs a composition is a much overlooked piece in today’s music. A modern brass instrument mute fits into or over the bell to change the tone color and/or volume. Mutes are often used extensively in new music, and can be compared to applying effect pedals to an electric guitar. A series of graphs are curated to study the vastness of the spectrum of mute timbres. This is to assist composer, performers, and song writers for selecting the correct type of brass mute in their music. These graphs would also reveal how truly obscure these muted brass timbres may be, as they lay deep in the spectrum of sound.



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