On keyboard instruments, tuning pure fifth intervals causes octaves to be out-of-tune. A temperament is a system of tuning in which the tuning of the fifths is altered to keep the octaves in-tune, and to allow all notes of the musical scale to be usable. A Guide to Musical Temperament is an introduction to the subject of how the twelve notes of the musical scale are tuned on keyboard instruments such as the harpsichord, clavichord, piano, and organ. This book covers all the various aspects of temperament, including a progressive discussion of the theoretical basis for temperament, the musical implications of a temperament's characteristics, and the relationship of the theoretical with the practical. Giving procedures and techniques for tuning keyboard instruments, along with descriptions and step-by-step instructions for setting temperaments, the book also includes supplementary notes such as advanced calculations and references.
Thomas Donahue is a musician and instrument builder. He is author of The Modern Classical Organ, Gerhard Brunzema: His Work and His Influence (Scarecrow, 1998), and Anthony Newman: Music, Energy, Healing Spirit (Scarecrow, 2000).
Part 1 Foreword Part 2 Preface Part 3 Part 1: Main Material Chapter 4 1. The Basis for Temperament Chapter 5 2. Selected Temperaments Chapter 6 3. Musical Aspects Chapter 7 4. Generating Tuning Instructions Chapter 8 5. The Tuning Process Chapter 9 6. Instructions for Setting Selected Temperaments Chapter 10 7. A Historical Overview Part 11 Part 2: Supplementary Material Chapter 12 8. Starting Notes, Pitch References, and Transposition Chapter 13 9. Theoretical and Equal-Beating Versions Chapter 14 10. Near-Equal Temperament Chapter 15 11. Derivation of the Cent Equation Chapter 16 12. Temperament Data Chapter 17 13. Temperament Spreadsheets Chapter 18 14. Instructions in Musical Notation Part 19 Glossary Part 20 Bibliography Part 21 Index Part 22 About the Author