Why Jazz?

This music is a great passion of mine. Mostly it is characterized by swing, forward drive, and improvisation. It is important for me as an attitude towards life and as a journey. I associate freedom, curiosity, openness, and tolerance. Racism and jazz are very difficult to combine, for this kind of music originated mostly from Afro-Americans. Jazz is the most beautiful present that America gave to the world.

Actually, you do not need to read any further. I am going to list my favourite jazzwomen and jazzmen. It is a long, incomplete list without specific order.

Louis Armstrong, Lester Young, Coleman Hawkins, John Coltrane, Dexter Gordon, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Herbie Hancock, Esbjörn Svensson, Michael Wollny, Heinz Sauer, Karolina Strassmayer, Klaus Doldinger, Peter Back, Jürgen Wuchner, Uli Partheil, Christopher Dell, Gary Burton, Keith Jarrett, Jan Garbarek, Inge Brandenburg, Ingrid Laubrock, Paul Kuhn, Rolf Kühn, Chick Corea, Kalle Kalima, Emil Mangelsdorff, Dave Brubeck, Paul Desmond, Chet Baker, Dizzy Gillespie.

Climate Change

At present the Corona crisis is very severe. Many people die from the virus. The damage to the economy is huge. Nonetheless, I want to write on another problem of mankind, the climate change. I have read a German book on this subject by two climatologists from Potsdam, Rahmstorf and Schellnhuber. They report on a large consensus in science that the global warming is caused by man. Doubling the amount of carbon-dioxide in the atmosphere would mean a temperature rise of 3 Kelvin (+/- 1 K at a confidence level of 95%.) Those who want to know more are advised to read the reports of the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.) I think their scientific arguments should be taken seriously, as well as their concern to use the knowledge of our time in a responsible way.

 

Black Hole

Recently scientists succeeded in taking a picture of a black hole. Therefore, I want to write a few lines about this phenomenon.

In a black hole, matter is so highly compressed that even light cannot escape from its vicinity. General relativity treats a black hole as a point, i.e. it has no extension. This is hard to imagine. However, take as an example the electron which is considered as a point particle, although it has a mass at rest.

A black hole is surrounded by an event horizon. Everything that passes it becomes invisible for the world outside. If a matter-antimatter pair is created from the vacuum near the event horizon, a particle may cross it. The other particle seems to come out. This is Hawking radiation.

In particle physics, there are collisions at high energies. Can a black hole be produced in a collider experiment? This question was subject of a court dispute. The physicists bring forward the argument that the cosmic radiation contains particles of much higher energy. Although the cosmic radiation hits the Earth, our world still exists.

Dreamful

I would like to draw your attention to the composer, saxophonist and pianist Renate Hartnagel. Visit her homepage:

http://mellow-tones.de/?lang=en

She is the composer of piano sheet music collections like Enjoy Your Piano and Traumhafte Klaviermusik (Dreamful Piano Music). She masters many styles: classic, Latin, pop, and jazz. One of my favourite pieces is Wie ein Wunder (Like a Miracle):

 

Away From The Blues

The title can also be read as A Way From The Blues. I have practised many ways to play the blues and to improvise over the changes. Now, the composition is supposed to have nothing in common with a blues. This year it was performed thrice, the last time in a park in August.

The lead sheets of the third version:

Weg_vom_Blues_C_V3    Weg_vom_Blues_Bb_V3    Weg_vom_Blues_Eb_V3

Indian Boogie

This is a piece from the year 2017 performed at the barbecue of the Jazz & Pop School. The melody consists of an Indian pentatonic. Essentially, this is a minor pentatonic with a major third. I especially like the mysterious, psychodelic intro by the string instruments.

Here you find the lead sheets:

Indian_Boogie_C   Indian_Boogie_Bb   Indian_Boogie_Eb

Superconductivity

There are materials that have zero electrical resistance if the temperature is sufficiently low. Also the current density and the magnetic field should not be too high. In 1908 Heike Kamerlingh-Onnes and his laboratory accomplished to liquify helium whose boiling temperature is about 4.2 K under atmospheric pressure. Thus he could discover the superconductivity of mercury in 1911.

In the following years many other superconductors have been discovered, even high temperature superconductors (HTS). HTS has the advantage that liquid nitrogen (77 K) is sufficient.

Superconducting magnets often consist of niobium titanium (NbTi) that has a critical temperature of approximately 10 K.

The colder part of current leads is frequently built with HTS for very large currents.

 

Heavy Ions

The title refers to the double meaning of heavy. It is employed in physics as well as in music, only think of heavy metal. Thus a piece of tonal physics was created and performed at the barbecue of the Jazz & Pop School in 2018. When you listen to the recording, I recommend to close your eyes. Imagine you are chasing through the vacuum of the beam pipe with so many other ions of your bunch almost at the speed of light. Again and again you are accelerated by high frequency cavities, being kept on track by superconducting magnets.  🙂

The lead sheets:

Schwere_Ionen_C   Schwere_Ionen_Bb   Schwere_Ionen_Eb

 

Wavy Falling Films

As an example from the broad field of wavy falling films we take a simulation created with OpenFOAM. The picture displays a water falling film of a Reynolds number of 60 being harmonically excited with a frequency of 13 Hz. Gravitation points from the left to the right. The control volume is 600 units long (in the direction of the stream). One unit is the thickness of the corresponding smooth film. The height (perpendicular to the stream) is equal to 4 units being magnified by a factor of 50.

The red colour marks the water, the blue the air. Downstream a certain pattern can be recognized: A large solitary wave and in front of it small capillary waves.

Easier Than Easy

First I composed a bossa with a lot of typical offbeat which I called Easy Bossa. It was never performed, since it seemed too difficult. Therefore only a Band in a Box version exists:

I simplified the Easy Bossa now calling it Easier Bossa. Still it is not easy, but easier.

In the Orangerie Garden Darmstadt the Jürgen Wuchner Workshop Band performed it in the summer of 2015. I especially like the relaxed atmosphere of the recording.

The lead sheets can be found here:

EasierBossa_C   EasierBossa_Bb   EasierBossa_Eb