Thursday, 27 January 2011

7 Hertz, the resonant frequency of a chicken's skull

"Come and see these guys, they're amazing" said Daniel Merrill, a friend whose opinion I listen to, especially when he's talking about music. The band were 7 Hertz, a trio from Leeds who gave an entertaining set to a sparse audience at the Swinburne Hall. And delightful it was too. Playing unamplified acoustic classical instruments (fiddle, clarinet, bass clarinet and 5-string bass) they played their own compositions and improvisations. Looking at the programme it mentioned the influences of Stravinsky, Bartok and Dolphy, suggesting to me that they had been listening to Frank Zappa! Lots of different styles in their "contemporary jazz/folk" set, but no direct quotes that I noticed, just the exquisite flavour of some of my favourite composers.

And why 7 hertz? I don't know. The guy that introduced the numbers had a strong "yark-shuh" accent, and I found him difficult to understand, unlike his music which spoke clearly to me. Googling it, it says that 7 Hertz is the natural resonance of a chicken's skull, thus proving the Zappa connection of "using a chicken to measure it".

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