April 20th, 2005


Pachelbel's Canon

Every year, at Iowa City High School, they have a concert that puts all the players on the east side of Iowa City from 4th grade to High School together. Each subgroup plays a piece and then they all play Pachelbel's Canon. This year it was 478 players.

A group that size has massive problems playing together -- there's a significant fraction of a second's delay from one side of the group to the other, and you've got players as young as 9, and players who only play in orchestra rehearsals and concerts, so you get a delicious vagueness to concepts like beat and tone.

And I recorded it, sort of, on my MP3 player:


Now that thing doesn't exactly have a Neumann microphone built in, but the recording represents fairly well what was hitting my ears. There's a bit of people talking and kids banging on the bleachers, but that's just more flavor!