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Black Holes Resonate (in B-Flat) Baby
February 16, 2007 2:10 PM   Subscribe


 


They both suck?
posted by mrnutty at 2:15 PM on February 16, 2007


I've also heard that refridgerators hum in Bb and that a dial tone is mostly Bb (useful if you dont have a guitar tuner around)
posted by Brainy at 2:40 PM on February 16, 2007


60Hz? Just a teensy bit sharp of Bb.
posted by rlk at 2:42 PM on February 16, 2007


that a dial tone is mostly Bb (useful if you dont have a guitar tuner around)

And considering that DJ Dial-tone is my personal music project... Hmmm.... Hmmm....


B-Flat is the 23 of the music world
posted by drezdn at 2:43 PM on February 16, 2007


Interesting. Back in junior high when I played the french horn, B flat was always my favorite note. Couldn't tell you why, I just loved hearing and playing it.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:44 PM on February 16, 2007


"One more wrong note, and we'll all be flat."
posted by Terminal Verbosity at 2:45 PM on February 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


isn't it the same thing as c#
posted by nervousfritz at 2:46 PM on February 16, 2007


isn't it the same thing as c#

No, sharp is a halftone above; flat a halftone below.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:48 PM on February 16, 2007


Yes it is the same as C#. I've always wondered why people seem to gravitate towards Bb when talking about Chandra and alligators.
posted by Demogorgon at 2:51 PM on February 16, 2007


No, sharp is a halftone above; flat a halftone below.

Oops...
posted by Demogorgon at 2:52 PM on February 16, 2007


Related.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:55 PM on February 16, 2007


And, in the octave scale there are no halftones between B and C.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:57 PM on February 16, 2007


isn't it the same thing as c#
posted by nervousfritz at 5:46 PM EST on February 16


You mean A#?
posted by Pastabagel at 3:02 PM on February 16, 2007


A#.
posted by DandyRandy at 3:03 PM on February 16, 2007


mrnutty for the win
posted by keswick at 3:05 PM on February 16, 2007


When assigning major scale notes to various keys, two rules are applied:
1. Each letter (A through G) is used only once.
2. Half-tones are either all sharps or all flats.

Applying these two rules results in Bb being used more often than A#.
posted by rocket88 at 3:29 PM on February 16, 2007


The sound from black holes is a warning: Stay away from be or you'll be flat.

/pre-adolescent humor
posted by quin at 3:29 PM on February 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


I prefer C# to C. But then, I never liked pointers.
posted by Bort at 3:46 PM on February 16, 2007 [1 favorite]


both can rip your face off with relative ease.
posted by wreckingball at 4:32 PM on February 16, 2007


I actually tried the Bflat humming on those stairs...it's such a surreal experience.

Glenway Fripp is a strange and amazing person. He regularly comes into the local coffee shop and plays the piano. We've been at the same dinner parties multiple times and yet he somehow still thinks my name is Beth (it's actually Sara.)
posted by nekton at 4:38 PM on February 16, 2007


Both Gregorian and Buddhist mantra chants make a lot of use of B flat tones.

Regarding the razor thing, there is a table of note frequencies here: http://www.phy.mtu.edu/~suits/notefreqs.html and we know that US electricity is supplied at 60Hz. This is equidistant from the B-flat at 58.27 and the B at 61.74. So, it makes sense that US electric devices that vibrate at the electrical frequency will make a B-half-flat noise.

As for alligators - it's well known that infrasound affects human moods, although there's no clear conclusion as yet as to which frequencies induce which moods in which people, and the field has mostly been left to crackpots. Infrasound should also affect the moods of alligators. Here's an article about their hearing and vocalizations: http://www.acoustics.org/press/151st/Todd.html
posted by aeschenkarnos at 5:48 PM on February 16, 2007


I've not read the linked article, but I'm guessing that the answer is that neither are very good for cleaning your arse.
posted by seanyboy at 6:05 PM on February 16, 2007


Yay, Terminal Verbosity! That line has gone through my head for 20+ years.

Oh, and the Raveonettes recorded an entire album in B flat. (I frickin' love "Chain Gang Of Love".) It's sorta White Stripes hit Phil Spector's wall of sound.
posted by kimota at 7:12 PM on February 16, 2007


C# (c-sharp) is equivalent to Db (d-flat).

A# (a-sharp) is equivalent to Bb (b-flat).

Technically, C is also B# (b-sharp), as F is E# (e-sharp).

Regarding the tonics, A# isn't very practical. A# minor requires 7 sharps, in other words, every note. A# major isn't even classically list-able as a key signature, as it would have 10 sharps, requiring C## (c-double sharp) F##, and G##.

While enharmonically equivalent, Bb major only has 2 flats.

Basically, Bb major is much easier.

Also, as somewhat of a simple generalization, wind instruments "think" flats, and string instruments "think" sharps.
posted by Ynoxas at 10:00 PM on February 16, 2007


I wonder if B-flat, at some octave below middle C, is the fabled "brown note"? It would make sense, sort of.
posted by fenriq at 10:48 PM on February 16, 2007


9837; + 9839; = 9838; ?

I thought there were some specifics regarding temperament which made an A9839; not exactly the same as B9837;
posted by TheNewWazoo at 6:48 AM on February 17, 2007


Damn, I swear it worked on preview! :(
posted by TheNewWazoo at 6:48 AM on February 17, 2007


Helping a brother out...^
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 11:12 AM on February 17, 2007


Most electric razors these days are of the cordless variety, using 50/60Hz electricity from the wall only for recharging their batteries. Their motor then operates on direct current. Consequently, the note they hum can be pretty much anything. My Braun is definitely singing "C", when it's not in a thick stubble.
posted by ikalliom at 12:29 AM on February 18, 2007


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