¡El pueblo unido jamás será vencido!

Posted on 2020-07-02 with tags music, piano

In these boring and useless days between Christmas and New Year’s day I finally decided to record myself playing the theme from The people united will never be defeated by Frederic Rzweski. The piece is a set of 36 variations on the Chilean song “¡El pueblo unido jamás será vencido!” by Sergio Ortega and Quilapayún. It’s impossible not to see a certain resemblance with the Goldberg variations by J. S. Bach. Indeed, for example, the main theme on which the variations are built is played again at the end of the variations, exactly as in the Goldberg variations. Moreover the whole composition is full of recursive patterns, e.g. the 36 variations are grouped by groups of six and the latest variations of the first five groups sum up the the first five variations of these five groups. At the end, in the last group, the fist five variations sum up the latest variations of the first five groups and the last variation sums up the first five variations in the last group, in this way, the last variation contains all the thirtyfive previous variations. A job worthy of Bach or Escher!

I have no musical pretensions, I’m not a musician and I studied this piece for fun in my spare time. I also wanted to try to record the analog output of the digital piano1 1 using a normal integrated audio board, to check the quality. I have to say that I’m pleasantly impressed by the low background noise. I’ve used Audacity to record the audio and Openshot to put put together the audio and the video.

It would have been cool to save the midi and then synthetize the audio, however I had no fortune finding a good open source application to do that, I tried FluidSynth with different soundfonts but the internal synthetizer of the piano sounded better in my opinion. I intend to investigate further.

On the contrary, I found several nice and open source generic synthetizers, like ZynAddSubFX, despite I’m not into electronic music I like progressive rock and related. Maybe one day I will spend some time on it…

  1. A Yamaha Clavinova CLP-170↩︎