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Harmonograph: A Visual Guide to the Mathematics of Music (Wooden Books) [Hardcover]

Anthony Ashton

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Walker & Company; 1st U.S. Edition edition (April 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802714099
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802714091
  • Product Dimensions: 17.6 x 15.1 x 1.2 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 884,341 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Harmonograph Ashton presents a short, illustrated introduction to the evolution of simple harmonic theory. Illustrations. Full description

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.2 out of 5 stars  23 reviews
44 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful 17 Aug 2006
By Sean Boyle - Published on
I found this book to be extremely helpful. I'm a music teacher and have been interested in the physics of music for years, but I've never seen the physics of frequency explained so clearly and concisely. I'm really impressed with how well the Pythagorean Comma was handled.

This book, in a format where chapters are almost always one page long, gets into some pretty difficult concepts and explains them better than I thought possible.

This is the book I loan high school kids who are thinking about doing a science project with music. They love it.
65 of 71 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars hints of the mystical 26 April 2004
By A Customer - Published on
This is an excellent little book on harmonics and sound, encompassing science and music. It is a much needed counter weight to the effervessence of other recent titles on temperament and harmonics. It is such a beautifully visual book, with graphic depictions of sound waves, you will simply want to look at the illustrations for hours. It hints at the mystical without falling off the edge into either New Age or Cultural Supremacy.
40 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful and Fascinating 15 Aug 2003
By Jeffrey K. Tyzzer - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I discovered the the Wooden Books series less than a year ago through some serendipitous bookstore browsing, and soon purchased them all. Each volume is compact, well-written, beautifully illustrated, and most of all informative. I'm reading my copy of Harmonograph along with Stuart Isacoff's book Temperament (also recommended), and couldn't imagine a more perfect pairing of books. Being musically challenged, I rely on Harmonograph to make better sense of the intervals Isacoff discusses in his book, and it does so in a brilliant, unique way. You won't be disappointed in this little gem.
33 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At last I understand this stuff ! 16 Jan 2006
By Mark Samuels - Published on
This is a great book - not only is it absolutely beautiful, but it actually does the job. After years of struggling with Pythagorean Commas and Syntonic Commas and all the other tricky little bits in music I was given a copy of Anthony Ashton's little book and the pieces finally fell into place. A simply delightful book with truly awesome images and clear concise mathematics. I have given copies to every musician friend I have and they all love it too. Well done Wooden Books - clarity, brevity and beauty combined. More please.
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not Really Music but Interesting All the Same 30 Dec 2008
By Neil D. Hemann - Published on
Let me first say that I like this book and the visuals are incredible. But a harmonograph is essentially a spirograph with a PhD and the resulting pictures will not teach you about music. What they are is a fantastic example of how something both absolutely certain and very abstract like a musical third, which is just a ratio, can be represented graphically. Its almost like being able to make a graph of an emotion. They are beatuiful and artistic but not really an analytical tool in the traditional sense of a graph.
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