MUSI 1002 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Staccato, Jack Bruce, Ice Ice Baby

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1 Feb 2013
Intro to pop music (class #1)
-Criticism: JOURNALISTIC (review, magazine article, interview) ACADEMIC WRITING (books, articles from different
-Popular Music: Mass appeal (popularity), commercialization, status as a commodity
-Considerations of Pop music: Setting (Time & location), Social and Cultural Context
-Culture (values, traditions, social and political relationships) of people that share (history, language, social standard,
-Dominant Culture: center of society (what rich people do)
-Subordinate Cultures: lacks access to power and resources (underground)
-Euro centrism: viewing the world from white, upper/middle class, hetero, western, male, perspectives
-Western Cannon: Cultural knowledge needed to be an “educated” or a “cultured” person
Color of a musical sound, (distinguishing
instruments from each other)
Loudness of musical sound
Frequency of sound waves
Range of timbres or instruments used
change in intensity ( pianissimo, fortissimo)
and spacing (legato staccato)
Aspect of music as a function of time
Group of pitches heard in series vs.
Group of pitches heard at the same time
Way of combining musical elements to give a
certain feel to the music
Term to refer to particular styles or genres
David Allen on pop. music and Theodor Adorno (class #2)
-Theodor Adorno (1903-1969) criticized capitalism, Marxist understanding of society, member of Frankfurt school,
sociologist, philosopher, and musicologist. Famous colleagues: Horkheimer, Marcus, Habermas
-increased popular music in commercials, good for both.
-capitalist societies used sell culture. The Culture Industry. commodification of culture led to standardization of
culture. Standardization leads to passivity in consumers (have a lack of initiative, more submitted to outside influence
rather than their own, go with the flow). This works because people feteshize cultural objects, (like lady gaga)
- creates false needs, prevents other methods of thinking (mind control) all subconsciously
-music provides a framework for encoding and retrieving text and messages, melody provides information rich
-limited studies claim original lyrics and melody are most effective in advertising
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-commodification: assigning commercial value to a good or service
-standardization: culture industry squeezes out any kind of challenge, originality, authenticity, or intellectual
stimulation from the music it produces, “keeps the listener in line by doing the listening for them”
-music is standardized by: a number of types that are immediately recognizable, a small number of structures, a small
number of components to each song that are interchangeable
-pseudo-individualization: provides the hook or uniqueness to the song, finding individual meaning in the song, allows
a variation between standardized songs, surface change (meaning to individual), do not alter basic structure
-differences in High vs. Low Culture: Serious vs. Popular music (degree of standardization, level of complexity, market
-Listener to popular music: caught in standardized and routine response system, superficial and false pleasure,
individuals are corrupted by immersion (surrounded by the standardized culture environment); they get inside your
head man
-popular music MUST provoke the listener’s attention, has to come ‘natural’ (memory & attention)
-music gains popularity through radio, a song must be unique in one aspect yet traditional in the rest
[BRACKET] Technology and the Dawn of Popular Music PAUL WHITEMAN - MARY McBRIDE
-1920’s brought new technology (used to be sheet music and performances) now standardization of records and discs
allowed which helped develop the popular music category (instead of classic/serious) to the bourgeoisie JAZZ also
“crooning” and “vaudeville”.
- “On Wax,” Paul Whiteman and Mary Margaret McBride first to reach unprecedented commercial success. The
autobiography talks about recording difficulties change in recording technology allowed more and different
instruments to be used. Some were not used as to the dissonance they left and the fuzzy sounds they made. Also
talks about ongoing changes in foxtrot and dancing patterns, stressing how different cities went off into their own
different adaptations and their troubles in making music that would appeal to all. Talks about new dancing footwear
that couldn’t maneuver well at slow sticky dancing floors giving birth to a dance called the ‘collegiate’. Miniscule
factors like these determined the success of an orchestra. People adapted musical dances to the different rhythm of
different songs (he played a fast paced foxtrot, so they couldn’t tango and had to switch to a slow two-step)
Industry, Commercialization, and Intro to Politics (class #3)
[SHUKER] Music as a Culture Industry
- With songs going on the internet, corporations and record companies controlling marketplace has become
extremely hard (young people and target purchasers’ unemployment rising losing spending power, and
downloading/internet). It tries to control through: Marketing (using genres and stars to promote sound as a
commodity), and Copyright.
- Music Industry (not only record sales): music publishing, retail, press, hardware (cds and instruments), recording
and reproduction technology, studios, live performances, merchandising, royalties and rights. Approximately 100
- Entertainment Industry Characteristics: profits from crazy hits (thriller) cover other productions that don’t make it,
amount of tracks/expenditures for a single artist is large so more profit, large returns from secondary market (such as
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