Sunday, April 27, 2008

Stripes with Mozart Music Score

One last music tie before I get back to the more traditional vintage ties. This one belonged to my father-in-law (now deceased), and was a gift to him by friends, as he was a fine amateur musician, played piano, sang, directed choirs, and in his later years, avidly took up the organ.

I don't know for sure, but I suspect it dates from the 1980's, which probably doesn't qualify it as a really truly vintage tie, but then, just how old does something have to be, to be considered vintage? The term is mostly used to apply to grapes and the wine made from them. It is also used to refer to cigars (or rather, the tobacco from which they are made) and coffee.

However, the Compact Oxford English Dictionary also provides this more general definition as a second meaning: "referring to something from the past of high quality."

This tie may well be 25 or more years old, which certainly makes it from the past. Whether or not it is of high quality, could, I suppose, be subject to opinion. The tie's labels could provide some bearing on this topic. The first label, on the back of the wide end, and provided in the form of a loop for securing the small end, reads

Made in U.S.A.

The second label, sewn into the bottom of the small end, reads "PINTAIL" on the front, and provides the composition of the fabric on the back: "80% Polyester, 20% Silk." Now there are those who would say that any tie made from polyester, or mostly polyester, as in this case, cannot, by definition, be of high quality. I do admit to being of the school that prefers natural fabrics to artificial. But sometimes, in ties, we have to relax those standards a bit, as some very fine designers have deigned on occasion, to put their stamp on polyester fabric.

Be that as it may, one can argue for the quality of this tie from another direction entirely. What about the music that is printed on the tie? It may be difficult to decipher from the scanned image, but holding the tie in my hand, I can read the score without difficulty. It represents the top part from the first couple of bars from one of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's most lyrical piano sonatas, the Sonata No. 11 in A Major, K. 331. You can see those same two bars, and listen to the entire movement on Wikipedia.

Now THERE'S quality for you, no questions asked! Not the particular performance captured on Wikipedia, necessarily, but the music itself, intrinsically.


Keep the Faith said...

Hi Will... Stan McDaniel here. Also a church musician, writer, composer. Would love to correspond, and have been considering a move back to WA state. My email is Best wishes...what a great collection of ties..!!!!

Will said...

Hi Stan,

Thanks for your comments! I'm glad you enjoyed the collection. So are you originally from Washington? I'm a native Oregonian, but my first church jobs were here in Washington, and I'm glad to be back here again (for four years, now), after a 20-year absence. There's no place quite like the great Pacific NW!