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Lecture 3

MUS110H1 Lecture 3: MUS110 Lecture 3

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Patrick Nickleson

Lecture 3: Timbre Term Paper • 4-5 page paper on a song, and then a cover of it • Use terminology from class to contrast and compare the songs • Include history and background work! • Recorded, studio cover • Min. 4 bibliography items Timbre: “Or tone colour, is the quality… and atmosphere of a piece of music”. (156) Focus on: • Acoustics o Amplitude vs. time ▪ Period waveform ▪ Sine wave • Single note, single frequency o Noise ▪ Every sound, in their oral range, happening at the same time ▪ Ex: A radio in-between stations o Waveforms of clarinet vs. trumpet ▪ Clarinet: waves more shaky ▪ Trumpet: waves more spread apart o The waveforms are how we differentiate between each instrument or voice o Fundamental: “The lowest-sounding frequency vibration of a sounding, tone, and the predominant part of the sound” (158) o Harmonics: “Related vibrations above the pitch of the fundamental. Also known as overtones or partials” o Vibrato: “A subtle pulsating quality, caused by very slight pitch change recurring in a rapid pattern, that is said to increase the expressiveness of a tone” o Acoustics of timbre: The harmonic series on C • Instrumentation • More “subjective” timbral language Timbre and the voice • Different vowel and consonant shapes • Like instruments, the voice relies on moving air through a “resonating chamber”— our mouths • Diff. shapes produce diff. timbres, and thus “letter” sounds • In music, we divide voices by range o Soprano, alto, tenor, bass • We refer to a traditional choir of mixed male and female voices as SATB Opera and choral music play w contrasts and similarities between voice types Giuseppi Verdi (1813-1901) • Otello o Performed at La Scala • Contrasting voices a traditional part of (heteronormative) opera duets o Typical voices for hero/lovers in operatic repertoire (tenor and soprano) Claudio Monteverdi • Poppea • The heroes are evil • A unique standout in the Operatic repertoire • Nero performed here by a countertenor—high ma
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