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MUAR 392 Notes May 2.docx

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Music-Arts Faculty
MUAR 392
Melvin Backstrom

MUAR 392 Notes May 2 nd Characteristic of Tin Pan Alley  Texts o Syllabic (vs. Melismatic)  Melodies o Diatonic (vs. Chromatic) with vocal range of an octave or less  Harmony o Simple, tonal, triadic with (over time) increasing use of added 6ths and 7ths  Basic 12-bar Blues Progression  Form o Standardized  32 bar song form (AABA) Sweet vs. Hot Jazz  Sweet (white) understood as; o Commercial dance music o Cold, clean, conscious o Everyone on same beat  Hot (black) understood as:  3 lines, one per 4 bar o Swinging jazz bands phase st nd o Richer, looser, more relaxed  1 and 2 ndten the o “conflict” inside the music – same or 2 slightly soloist against rhythm section varied  3 line a “response” to Racial Politics of the Swing Era first two  Appropiation What were some of the challenges of early o Whites taking musical elements recording according to Paul Whiteman? from blacks without due credit and then becoming far more  Necessitated changes to successful orchestration/arrangements, e.g. tuba  Essentialism instead of double bass – ironic that now o Is there a relationship between tubas are now seen by some as more race and the ability to play jazz? authentic for playing early jazz Nature or nuture?  Required careful arrangement of  Economic disparity instruments and voices o How are the opportunities for  No ability to edit mistakes blacks and whites different?  Recording studio as laboratory Scaled and Modes How was/is genre an important part of the record industry?  Major Scales  Minor Scales  What are some ways that music is  Blues Scales classified by genre? o Popular Music  Emerged first, named to distinguish it from classical music  Who was the target audience? early 60s although by Performers? then distinction between o Urban country and folk – why? whites  What music is Theodor Adorno’s critique of Popular part of this Music category? o Early  The composition hears for the jazz, listener ballads,  Complications have no waltz consequences songs, novelty  The detail has no bearing on a songs, whole, which appears as an extraneous framework. etc. o Roots/Folk Music  That is, each song must be a little  Race different (the “hook”) to stand out,  Who was the but must obey the overall norm. target audience?  Leads to reflexive responses and diminishes autonomy, promotes Performers? heteronomy, i.e. the tyranny of the o African group over individual Americ ans  Hillbilly Theodor Adorno vs. Walter Benjamin On  Who was the Value of Popular Culture target  Adorno worried about dangers of audience? Performers? mass production to artistic o Rural production, leading to art as ideology and (“naturalizing” the unnatural) and recently thus complicit in propagation of urbaniz inhumane, totalitarian system. ed  Benjamin saw liberatory potential of white artistic mass production in its people  Race and Hillbilly destruction of the aura of artworks recorded later when that had previously depended on the patronage, and thus reflected the discovered by record values, of the ruling classes. companies AND by ethnographers  Partly a result of The Crooners movement from country to cities – southerners,  Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra arguably two most important especially blacks, moving out of the South  Impossible before invention of and into cities for work, microphone in mid-1920s no longer e.g. the Great Migration have to shout over the band  Many people living in the city with disposable  Can sing softly – as it just to you – producing hitherto unimaginable incomes to spend on sense of mass mediated intimacy music but wanting non- urban music  Increased popularity of singers over  Both genres become bands: AFM recording strike from important again in later 1942-44; wartime rationing, folk revival of 1950s mobilization (less men to play music, less resources to allow bands to life…But also influenced by tour) and demand for sentimental European harmony and Christianity. songs as loved ones leave possibly NOTE: Pure cultures don’t exist, never to return. always hybridized, product of mixing  Simultaneously rise of bebop as  Jalis and griots (equivalent of bard especially black musicians grow or minstrel in medieval Europe) play tired of lack of freedom and artistic thekora in West Africa experimentation in big bands  Unaccompanied folk musi
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