(Fr. fouet, claquette: Ger. Holzklapper, Peitsche; It. frusta).
A percussion effect imitating the sound of a whip crack; it is a concussion idiophone, or Clappers. The whip consists of two pieces of wood about 10 cm wide and 45 cm in length, hinged at one end and provided with straps or handles; the player slaps the two surfaces together. A variant known as a slapstick incorporates a spring and requires only one hand to operate. The effect of several whip cracks in rapid succession is created by a ‘double whip’: two whips mounted side by side on a board, one operated by each hand.
The sound of a whip has been connected with musical activity for many centuries. An Assyrian bas-relief from Nimrud shows a dancer carrying a whip in his right hand which he appears to be using as a timekeeper. A similar custom exists to this day in eastern Europe.
Composers to make use of the whip effect include Adolphe Adam (Le postillon de Lonjumeau, 1836), Mahler (e.g. Seventh Symphony, 1904–5), Ravel (to open his Piano Concerto in G, 1929–31) and Britten (The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, 1946; Noye’s Fludde, 1957, in which the whip is used in Mrs Noah’s admonition of Mr Noah; and The Burning Fiery Furnace (1966), in which a multiple whip of four different sounds/pitches is required).
JAMES BLADES/JAMES HOLLAND
(Fr. sifflet; Ger. Pfeife, Signalpfeife; It. fischietto; Sp. silbato).
A short, usually high-pitched flute (‘edge aerophone’), either without finger-holes or with no more than one (e.g. the cuckoo whistle; therefore, the Pennywhistle, which has six finger-holes, is a duct flute, but not a whistle within this definition). Whistles may be of wood, cane, metal, plastic, glass, stone, shell or any other material capable of containing a column or body of air. The distinction between flutes and whistles is difficult to establish (a small organ flue-pipe or a tube of a disjunct panpipe, such as is used in Lithuania and by the Venda people of southern Africa, could be defined in the same way); it is normally considered that flutes are used for music and whistles for signalling, leaving a grey area for those instruments which are used, either by the same or by different peoples, for both purposes (e.g.Swanee whistle). Whistles are blown in all the ways used on flutes: via a duct (seeDuct flute), across the side (seeFlute, §I) or the end, or into a notch (seeNotched flute). Whistles may be multiple (e.g. the police whistle) or single, and either tubular or with a vessel as the body, in the latter case sometimes with a captive pellet to add a roll to the sound as with the football referee’s whistle. They have been known to most cultures from prehistoric times to the present day.
A common term for Duct flute. See also Pennywhistle; Tin whistle and Whistle.
German family of publishers. Carl Friedrich (b Kelbra, Thuringia, 1788; d after 1849) studied in Leipzig and after 1811 worked in the Bureau de Musique of Franz Anton Hoffmeister and Ambrosius Kühnel, from 1814 C.F. Peters. Whistling’s Handbuch der musikalischen Literatur, a serious attempt at a list of music in print, was first issued in 1817 by Anton Meysel, whose shop Whistling acquired on 13 November 1821. Friedrich Hofmeister issued Whistling’s supplements to the Handbuch between 1819 and 1825, although Whistling’s own imprint appears after 1826. On 28 May 1830 Hofmeister purchased both the shop and the Handbuch, which by then had evolved into a current list of new music publications, edited by Whistling and later his sons, Friedrich Wilhelm (1809–61) and August Theodor (1812–69). Carl Friedrich later had a music shop in Hamburg, eventually in Vienna, while Friedrich Wilhelm in Leipzig became a publisher in his own right in 1835, introducing important works by Schumann, songs by Robert Franz and other serious vocal and chamber music. In 1858 part of the publishing firm was sold to Gustav Heinze. August Theodor, a senior employee at C.F. Peters in 1855, in 1861 maintained the Whistling imprint, which was dissolved in 1870.
H.-M. Plesske: ‘Zur Geschichte der deutschen Musikbibliographie’, BMw, v (1963), 97–111
R. Elvers and C. Hopkinson: ‘A Survey of the Music Catalogues of Whistling and Hofmeister’, FAM, xix (1972), 1–6
N. Ratliff: Handbuch der musikalischen Literatur: a Reprint of the 1817 Edition and the Ten Supplements, 1817–1827 (New York, 1975)
G. Borghetto: ‘Una lettera inedita di Robert Schumann all’editore Whistling di Lipsia’, Richerche musicali, v (1981), 46–7
D.W. Krummel: ‘The Beginnings of Current National Bibliography for German Music’, Richard S. Hill: Tributes from Friends (Detroit, 1987), 307–29
DONALD W. KRUMMEL
SeeButton & Whitaker.
White, Alice Mary.
SeeSmith, Alice Mary.
(bGalveston, TX, 12 Sept 1944). American soul singer, songwriter and producer. Moving to Los Angeles at a young age, White immersed himself in the local rhythm and blues scene, making recordings under the name Barry Lee and playing, writing, arranging and producing recordings for others. His breakthrough came in 1969 when he began producing for the female vocal trio Love Unlimited. Their hit Walking in the Rain (1972) featured what were to become White's trademarks: sound effects, lush orchestrations, sensitive and unabashedly romantic lyrics and White's speaking voice. Commercial success came in 1973, as a solo singer (I'm gonna love you just a little more baby and Never never gonna give ya up), and as a writer, producer and arranger for the Love Unlimited Orchestra (Love's Theme), a 40-piece group which also performed on White's solo work.
White has a rich baritone voice which he uses in his characteristic seductive speaking role as well as in a tender singing mode. It is supported by swirling strings, flutes, harpsichords, pianos and wah-wah guitars, combined with meticulously crafted funk-influenced grooves and memorable melodies. These sumptuous productions dwarfed previous excursions into opulent soul, rivalling those of Gamble and Huff's Philadelphia International in their grandeur, and anticipated the disco craze of the mid- to late 1970s. After a run of hits from 1973 to 1975, including the number one songs Can't get enough of your love, babe and You're the first, the last, my everything, White's success declined. He experienced a resurgence of popularity in the late 1980s and 90s, notably with Put me in your mix (1991) and Practice what you preach (1994).