[r-t] Musical quarter of Bristol Surprise Major

Mark Davies mark at snowtiger.net
Sat Jan 23 23:19:40 UTC 2010

James Holdsworth writes,

> I tend to use mhwbmhw as it's a good simple 1312 with plenty little bell
> runs spread on the front and back.

Hey, I like this - wonderfully laid-back and elegant. It's a 
minimum-fuss, maximum-result composition. The only things I'm not so 
keen on are the Middle start (53462 is a great coursing order, but maybe 
not the best one to start out with) and the lack of much of the plain 
course. But overall, wonderful.

I used to think the following was one of the best "simple and elegant" 
Bristol solutions. Like James's it has few calls and five courses, but 
stresses the plain course and back-bell rollups a bit more. It does have 
plenty of little-bell music too, though:

1314 Bristol S Major arr MBD

32546 W
35246 H
63542 B
63425 M
64235 H
42635 W
42356 M
32456 sW

Entire plain course
7 xxxx5678
8 xxxx6578
1 xxxx8765
7 8765xxxx
1 5678xxxx
20 LB5
48 LB4

However... I have just put the problem through SMC32 and some weird 
stuff has come out. I made it look for a good balance of big and little 
bell music, and aimed for the simple and elegant by specifying tenors 
together with five whole courses including the plain course... but the 
results were unexpected. My 1314 above does pop out, but strange things 
appear above it. Like this:

1314 Bristol S Major arr MBD (SMC32)

23546 sW
24536 sH
54236 sW
65423 B
65324 sM
46532 B
43562 sH
24356 B
43256 W
32456 W

Entire plain course
14 xxxx5678
2 xxxx6578
2 xxxx8765
6 8765xxxx
20 LB5
66 LB4

That has the same number of back-bell rollups as my arrangement, but 
quite a lot more little-bell runs. It doesn't look particularly pleasant 
though - lots of negative courses. Maybe the proof is in the ringing?


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