Cassidy Guitars Blog

Music? It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3 ~ about as easy as living to tell the tale about a trip across the Sahara Desert in a Land Rover………..

by | February 19, 2012 | 3 comments

Earning a living as a guitar teacher is really one of the most satisfying things I have ever done.  Buying, selling, fixing and talking about guitars, guitarists and guitar music to enthusiastic students is a pretty good place to be for me. But the variety of people I have the privelege of meeting and helping to progress as guitarists and musicians takes my work to another dimension. People of all ages and backgrounds walk diligently carrying their guitars to my front door on a regular basis eager to tell me what they have been working on, to show me their latest piece, to push their playing on and to ask me about their latest guitar conundrum.

One such person is Dr Melvyn Langford a highly educated man~ (with more letters after his name than me!!) a  Chartered Engineer with a PhD in Risk and Hazard Management. Melvyn arrived at that point in his life when he contemplated priorities and playing the guitar was shuffled towards the top of the his pile of priorities, after being at the back of his mind for the last 30 years or so. As a consequence I had the pleasure of meeting him a few months ago ~ shown here with his rather nice vintage Aria AW600.

Despite his Risk and Hazard Management background, Melvyn hasn’t lost his sense of adventure, recently completing a trip with his wife through Morocco and a large part of the Sahara Desert in his Land Rover. Driving down from his North East home, meeting up with a few like minded souls at Plymouth then crossing to Northern Spain by Ferry, driving down to Gibraltar, across to Morocco, on through Marrakesh, over the snow covered Atlas Mountains and down into the Sahara. (Click on the photos for a better view)….

Now, I quite fancy going along with Melvyn on his next trip, but how might I be able to persuade my wife to sleep in one of these for three or four weeks??? I’ll just tell her about the wonderful sunsets…………

On returning from the Sahara (maybe after a bit too much of the mid-day sun!!) Melvyn’s analytical mind turned itself on understanding why certain notes sound good together and others don’t, and why major chords sound “happy” and minor chords “sad”. Well according to  Jeffrey Rosenthal in his paper entitled “The Magical Mathematics of Music” Music is as easy as 1,2 3…………………..

“The astronomer Galileo Galilei observed in 1623 that the entire universe “is written in the language of mathematics”, and indeed it is remarkable the extent to which science and society are governed by mathematical ideas. It is perhaps even more surprising that music, with all its passion and emotion, is also based upon mathematical relationships. Such musical notions as octaves, chords, scales, and keys can all be demystified and understood logically using simple mathematics.”……….. read the full article here.

Now where did I put my calculator?????…………….


  1. Jack Kitching

    I have read this blog and I really liked it. I found it really interesting.

    • Simon Cassidy

      Well done Jack – you’ll have to explain it all to me next time we meet! 😉

  2. Jack Kitching

    I finally read the right article. I’ll be able too explain at my next lesson Simon. 😎


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