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Topic: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!  (Read 7007 times)

Offline pskim

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piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
on: May 12, 2003, 05:50:32 PM
Sorry folks.  I just couldn't stand this anymore.  I have been reading many of the forum topics but it is just irritating the heck out of me.

As a pianst, I play piano music or pieces, not songs.  Songs are with lyrics with the voice singing.  Piano piece do not have lyrics.  Song is a misnomer for piano piece.  It seems that most of the forum members are pianists, so lets call our instuments' music pieces or piano music, not songs.  

Sorry for my rant.

Offline Le-ackt

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #1 on: May 12, 2003, 06:32:56 PM
yea , that's what I told me mom and friend . Songs are Vocal lead musicals ~ my mom loves classical and I m of cos a pianist , and we always discuss classical things in car driving while we turn on some CD that I burnt . But I used to correct people who doesnt have the knowlegde like we do . seems she still cant identify what is concerto and what is a symphony . to her she would just know is orchestral .

Offline PoSeiDoN

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #2 on: May 12, 2003, 10:07:30 PM
Preach it.  :)

Offline thomas_williams

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #3 on: May 16, 2003, 01:23:21 AM
I also have to correct people about songs/pieces!

"What's the name of that song?"
"What song?"
"The song you just played."
"It's not a song."
It's GREAT to be a classical musician!

Offline Chiyo

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #4 on: May 16, 2003, 02:13:17 AM

I like calling it 'piano works' ::)

I love Chopin!

Offline tomclear

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #5 on: May 27, 2003, 09:59:04 PM
Caution: this may drive you really crazy--

I was playing Rhapsody in Blue once in a fancy restuarant, and some woman comes up to me afterwards and says:
"I loved it when you played that United Airlines theme!"

And she didn't even tip!

Offline rachfan

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #6 on: May 28, 2003, 04:27:15 AM
Hey Tomclear, probably because she thought it was a song and not a piece!
Interpreting music means exploring the promise of the potential of possibilities.

Offline jonathandodd

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #7 on: May 29, 2003, 11:48:27 PM
Wayhey! Just what I've been ranting about for the last few years too! To any pop lovers who cannot concieve music without vocals:

***IF SOMETHING DOES NOT INCLUDE A SINGER, HOW CAN IT BE A SONG!!!!!!!!!***

cheers pskim,
JD

Offline janice

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #8 on: June 03, 2003, 12:32:12 AM
AMEN, PREACH IT!!!!!!!
that is my BIGGEST pet peeve!  I played a classical piece (not a song, a PIECE!!) in church recently.  One man walked up to me afterwards and said in his southern drawl "that was a realpurtty (yes) SONG that you played".  I almost lost it!  I refrained from screaming "it wasn't a SONG and it wasn't pretty either" (it was a dissonant piece, and the pastor had wanted it to emphasize a point he was making in his sermon.)  No, I didn't scream at him, I said a feeble "thank you", but I still can hear his voice saying that, and it gives me nightmares!!! Arggghhh!!! LOL :)
Co-president of the Bernhard fan club!

Offline rachfan

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #9 on: June 03, 2003, 03:57:37 AM
There is absolutely that distinction.  Incidentally, what we would call a short "character piece" for piano, e.g., a Brahms intermezzo, a Chopin nocturne, etc. has a direct parallel in voice.  It's called the "art song", e.g., one of the Debussy or Rachmaninoff songs.  But being parallel does not mean being interchangeable!  A  piece is a piece and a song a song!  And when a composer converts one of his songs for voice into a piano piece, it is no longer a song in that particular version; rather it is called a piano transcription.  Finally, the "songs without words" by both Mendelssohn and Faure are not truly songs at all, despite that quaint but misleading title.  They are still piano pieces.
Interpreting music means exploring the promise of the potential of possibilities.

Offline ThEmUsIcMaNBJ

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #10 on: June 04, 2003, 10:32:07 PM
Yeah you know...  I was self-taught for a few years and about 3 months ago I got a teacher.  I used to call them songs too.  First lesson she gave me like a 10 minute lecture (no joke) on how they were peices not songs.  And ever since then I've been careful on calling them songs.  And now if I ever hear someone call a peice, a song, It bugs me and makes me think of them as ignorant...  Haha just wanted to give me 2 cents!  ::)

Offline Tirips

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #11 on: June 08, 2003, 05:10:14 AM
Hey tom!  Big Gerswhin fan eh?  Me too!  I just love Rhapsody in Blue.  It's my favorite piece to play, atleast orignal anyways.. But was ticked me off was that one day, I asked my Band Director if we could play it for a concert........ He says "oh that Airline commerical?"  AHHHHHHHH OMG!  I wanted to kill him!  

Offline rachfan

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #12 on: June 08, 2003, 06:06:16 AM
Tirips,

If you like Rhapsody in Blue, you should also check out his Second Rhapsody and the Concerto in F if you are not already familiar with them.  Of the three, for me the Concerto in F, a cyclical concerto, is his finest work.
Interpreting music means exploring the promise of the potential of possibilities.

Offline pskim

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #13 on: July 23, 2003, 05:54:34 PM
bump

Offline allchopin

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #14 on: July 24, 2003, 12:53:55 AM
Well now, we seem to have a large group a politically and grammatically correct individuals in this forum.  When someone says "song", you can get the picture.  You know what they are talking about; they know what they are talking about.  Calmn down, as it is not a big deal.  If you want to feel more sophisticated, watch Frasier.  And if i may, i would just like to quote some of YOU fellow reply-ers: (notice the errors)
-pksim himself:
"Songs are with lyrics with the voice singing." , "Piano piece do not have lyrics." , "lets call our instuments' ..."
Le-ackt:
"yea , that's what I told me mom and friend ."
Chiyo:
"I like calling it 'piano works'. "

Do you have anything more to say?
;)
A modern house without a flush toilet... uncanny.

Offline Hmoll

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #15 on: July 24, 2003, 04:07:16 PM
allchopin,

Using the correct musical terminology is neither politically correct nor grammatically correct - using the wrong terminology is not a grammatical mistake, by the way, and I don't think this Forum possesses the bandwidth necessary to address all the grammatical mistakes in your posts anyway.

The fact is, this forum is about piano playing, so using the correct teminology - pieces, works, compositions, etc. - when talking about piano music might instill credibility in what you post.

Just because people might "know what you are talking about" does not totally excuse using the wrong words. My dog barks when he wants to go for a walk, and I understand what he means. The standards for conversing about music, even informally on the Internet,  while not exactly lofty, are a little higher.

Feel free to call piano music "songs," or anything else you want. It just depends on how seriously you want to be taken.
"I am sitting in the smallest room of my house. I have your review before me. In a moment it will be behind me!" -- Max Reger

Offline allchopin

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #16 on: July 24, 2003, 10:49:24 PM
well if anything, songs has less letters and is therefore easier to type.
A modern house without a flush toilet... uncanny.

Offline Hmoll

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #17 on: July 24, 2003, 10:53:32 PM
Right, and "Mary Had a Little Lamb" has less notes, and is easier to play.

Like I said, it's all in how you want to express yourself.
"I am sitting in the smallest room of my house. I have your review before me. In a moment it will be behind me!" -- Max Reger

Offline ThEmUsIcMaNBJ

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #18 on: July 25, 2003, 02:16:55 AM
Hey allchopin, it's like being a baseball player and always calling that baseball your playing with, a basketball.  Who does that?  Doesn't make much sense...  It just shows ignorance, if you're serious.  Who would take a baseball player seriously if he didn't even know he was playing with a baseball, and not a basketball?

The same way with pieces vs. songs.  Songs denote lyrics, pieces don't.  So calling anything Chopin wrote, songs, is just wrong.  And I'm sure if your idol Chopin was still alive he would try to find out exactly who wrote lyrics to his pieces!  Because I certainly have never seen them!

Offline ghgjff

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #19 on: July 25, 2003, 11:07:56 PM
When I played Fantasie-Impromptu my chicken called it a song and therefore it is one. Period!!!

Offline Ktari

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #20 on: July 26, 2003, 08:19:16 AM
Oh come on, don't take yourselves so seriously. Then you should be like, instead of music book, wait! it's a "SCORE book" because the MUSIC is what you play!! Really, how many of the great pianists/composers got so mired in the technicalities of song vs. piece? Yes, you are right, songs are sung... but it's really not worth jumping on someone for
~Ktari

Offline allchopin

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #21 on: July 26, 2003, 09:41:52 AM
man this thread has gotten WAY too long
A modern house without a flush toilet... uncanny.

Offline ThEmUsIcMaNBJ

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #22 on: July 26, 2003, 06:28:59 PM
Quote
how many of the great pianists/composers got so mired in the technicalities of song vs. piece?

You're telling me that horowitz, chopin, rachmaninoff, rubinstien etc, called pieces, songs?  I highly doubt that...  And like Hmoll said...  It's how seriously you want to be taken.  If allchopin used "pieces" instead of "songs" we wouldn't be having this discussion.

Offline Hmoll2

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #23 on: July 26, 2003, 06:56:29 PM
Quote
Oh come on, don't take yourselves so seriously. Then you should be like, instead of music book, wait! it's a "SCORE book" because the MUSIC is what you play!! Really, how many of the great pianists/composers got so mired in the technicalities of song vs. piece? Yes, you are right, songs are sung... but it's really not worth jumping on someone for


I won't speak for anyone else, but I'm not taking myself seriously, but I do take music seriously, which is why I try to use the correct terminology. Also, I don't want to come off sounding ignorant about the topic of music and piano playing.

As far as how many of the great composers got mired in the technicalities of song vs. piece? The answer is probably none of them, but they also knew the correct terminology - for their respective languages  - and did not belittle their art by using incorrect or unclear language.

Offline Hmoll2

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #24 on: July 26, 2003, 06:57:29 PM
Quote
man this thread has gotten WAY too long



Well you're doing a great job bumping it.

Offline allchopin

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #25 on: July 26, 2003, 09:02:45 PM
thanks
A modern house without a flush toilet... uncanny.

Offline zoolander

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #26 on: July 30, 2003, 02:24:40 PM
Song? Who's singing?
I agree with those above who say that it doesnt matter as long as you can understand the meaning :)

Offline eddie92099

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #27 on: August 02, 2003, 02:34:05 PM
Yeh but it's not as bad as when people say I tinkle the ivories...I don't tinkle and they're not made of ivory!
Frustradedly, Ed

Offline la_carrenio2003

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #28 on: August 05, 2003, 07:16:16 AM
I swear I heard people talking about piano pieces as "themes"...  :P  And be sure they were not analizing the musical structure.

Let me help to make more trouble in this topic: when you have a profession or you're in way to having it, the process involves not only learning the skills but getting into the particular way of thinking of it -sorry, I know my english is terrible but I hope it was understandable-. And you know what? The way you TALK -or write... - reflex the way you THINK. So, if we are musicians here -or music students- we cannot allow us to express our musical thoughts inapropiately. Qué tal? 8)
"Soli Deo Gloria".
     J.S. Bach

Offline Hmoll

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #29 on: August 05, 2003, 07:18:07 PM
Quote
Yeh but it's not as bad as when people say I tinkle the ivories...I don't tinkle and they're not made of ivory!
Frustradedly, Ed


I think the term people use is "tickling the ivories." "Tinkling" the ivories would mean something very different, and it's not an image I want to conjure up.
"I am sitting in the smallest room of my house. I have your review before me. In a moment it will be behind me!" -- Max Reger

Offline eddie92099

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #30 on: August 05, 2003, 07:47:52 PM
The phrase is actually tinkling (can people back me up on this - there is more than one meaning to the word tinkle!),
Ed

Offline Hmoll

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #31 on: August 05, 2003, 08:19:49 PM
Quote
The phrase is actually tinkling (can people back me up on this - there is more than one meaning to the word tinkle!),
Ed


Well, I have to take my dog out for a tinkle a few times a day.
Actually, people say it both ways, so you're right. "Tickling the ivories" is more common, but you hear both.
"I am sitting in the smallest room of my house. I have your review before me. In a moment it will be behind me!" -- Max Reger

Offline eddie92099

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #32 on: August 05, 2003, 08:25:16 PM
In the UK I have only heard of tinkling, but maybe in America they have adapted this (/misheard!),
Ed

Offline eddie92099

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #33 on: December 21, 2003, 10:02:38 AM
Quote
So calling anything Chopin wrote, songs, is just wrong


Even his songs?
Ed (just looking for an excuse to bring this thread back to the top.)

Offline leemay001

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #34 on: December 21, 2003, 11:26:52 AM
Quote
Yeh but it's not as bad as when people say I tinkle the ivories...I don't tinkle and they're not made of ivory!
Frustradedly, Ed

I know I've made the mistake of saying "song" a couple of times now but "tinkle the ivory"??? I'd kill myself for saying such a thing. Well not literally, nobody go killing themselves please. My piano teacher uses the word "song" too much so it kinda stuck. Especially coz most of them WERE songs, such as The Beatles.... It's ok though, I've learned my lesson now but really people, newbies will be newbies (such as myself) and only need a slight correction to solve the problem. Ok, maybe 2 corrections, but still.
  ~Lee~
To learn a piece is one thing... to know it is another.

Offline bernhard

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #35 on: December 21, 2003, 01:26:24 PM
Quote


Even his songs?
Ed (just looking for an excuse to bring this thread back to the top.)


Someone on the thread said that Mendelssohn's SONGS without words don't count. The argument did not convince me completely (I guess "Piano pieces without words" would sound silly). But even accepting that, what about the several piano compositions by several composers titled "lied" (please, note I didn't say "lieder" which actually are songs with piano and voice). What about Schumann's "Humming song" (Should it be called Humming piece?). Or is it a bad translation from the original German? ;)

Could it be that the composers in question were trying to highlight a peculiar characteristic of the piece by titling it so, and in this way suggest that they should be thought of as songs, even if they were pieces? So when someone is asking for a song, maybe they are asking for a piano piece of such a character (OK, I do not believe this either, but it is a possibility and considering the kinds of possibilities people in this forum are prepared to accept - just have a look at the religious debates - why not this one?)

Best wishes,
Bernhard.
The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side. (Hunter Thompson)

Offline eddie92099

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #36 on: December 21, 2003, 04:19:04 PM
Quote

(OK, I do not believe this either, but it is a possibility and considering the kinds of possibilities people in this forum are prepared to accept - just have a look at the religious debates - why not this one?)


Good reference  ;D,
Ed

Offline Jemmers

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #37 on: December 22, 2003, 04:42:55 AM
I will highlight the simplicity of this argument.

If you want to call it a song, do so.
If you want to call it a piece, do so.

If you wish to correct someone who's calling it a song, do so, albeit politely.

However, do NOT vehemently pursue the issue such that it becomes almost a personal vendetta-type thing. After all, this is an internet forum. It's not like you can reach into your screen and grab the guy by the throat, screaming "It's a PIECE you little heretic!!!"

Offline eddie92099

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #38 on: December 22, 2003, 06:41:25 AM
Quote
It's not like you can reach into your screen and grab the guy by the throat, screaming "It's a PIECE you little heretic!!!"


That would be a useful feature (Nils...?),
Ed

Offline leemay001

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #39 on: December 22, 2003, 09:21:10 AM
Quote
It's not like you can reach into your screen and grab the guy by the throat, screaming "It's a PIECE you little heretic!!!"

It could be a gal you know. Not all pianists are guys  :P
To learn a piece is one thing... to know it is another.

Offline thomas_williams

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #40 on: February 24, 2004, 11:36:03 PM
Quote


(just looking for an excuse to bring this thread back to the top.)


Good reason-- in fact, that's my reason for this post!
;D ;D ;D
It's GREAT to be a classical musician!

Offline comme_le_vent

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #41 on: February 25, 2004, 02:21:05 PM
u BEEHATCH  ;D

i actually like calling pieces songs - just to annoy people.
but now that i think about it, i hate the words 'pieces' and 'works' too, they sound pretty crappy and formal, im starting a new revolution - start calling pieces 'ptaw's, that would suit me just fine!
https://www.chopinmusic.net/sdc/

Great artists aim for perfection, while knowing that perfection itself is impossible, it is the driving force for them to be the best they can be - MC Hammer

Offline verchirl

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #42 on: February 25, 2004, 10:24:39 PM
You have to consider the audience.  To the general public, a piece IS a song.  The thread contains stories in which members of the general public made reference to piano "songs" (usually as a compliment!).  Civility suggests not being upset with someone over semantics when they're only paying you a compliment and really have no cause to know the difference.

I only learned this myself recently when I started reading this forum.  Had I complimented one of you on your lovely playing of a "song" and you rolled your eyes at me, I would have found you incredibly priggish.

That being said, I hate it when people call me dumb@ss rather than Roger.
roger

Offline bernhard

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #43 on: February 26, 2004, 01:28:29 AM
Possibilities:

- Pieces
- Compositions
- Music
- Works
- Creations
- Opus
- Tunes
The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side. (Hunter Thompson)

Offline comme_le_vent

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #44 on: February 26, 2004, 06:11:22 AM
'music' is the best possibility, it is universal,
we need a universal word that means a 'piece of music' - describing yiddish folk music, wagnerian operas, napalm death hardcore blasts, and yanni's whacked out phsycho trips.
oh, and who else loves tori amos?  ;D
https://www.chopinmusic.net/sdc/

Great artists aim for perfection, while knowing that perfection itself is impossible, it is the driving force for them to be the best they can be - MC Hammer

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #45 on: March 01, 2004, 01:51:08 PM
What about Mendelssohn's Op19. No1....
"Song Without Words"??? ;)

shag

Offline nad

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #46 on: March 01, 2004, 01:57:49 PM
Quote
What about Mendelssohn's Op19. No1....
"Song Without Words"??? ;)

shag


Exceptions acknowledge the rule  ;)

Offline scriabinsmyman

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #47 on: March 16, 2004, 03:57:58 PM
HEAR HEAR!!!!!

Offline thomas_williams

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #48 on: March 17, 2004, 05:45:47 AM
Quote
HEAR HEAR!!!!!

Yes, I sometimes HEAR people call pieces "songs".  AND THEY'RE GOING TO HEAR ME CALL THEM PIECES!!!!!!!!!!!!
It's GREAT to be a classical musician!

Offline belvoce

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Re: piano pieces, not SONGS!!!!
Reply #49 on: July 01, 2004, 07:01:23 AM
Quote


But even accepting that, what about the several piano compositions by several composers titled "lied" (please, note I didn't say "lieder" which actually are songs with piano and voice).
Best wishes,
Bernhard.


I am a singer, and I must interject. "Lied" is the singular form of "Lieder." Lied means song, and lieder means songs.
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