8 - Blues - Blues Scale(in the key of C C E-flat F G B-flat...

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8 - The Blues Musical tradition set of musical techniques/style musical form down-to-Earth subject matter blues sensibility Time line oral traditional dates to 1870s – 1880s Mississippi delta region folk music of poor, rural African-Americans Early 1900s – first published as sheet music 1920 – popular recorded blues craze begins City Blues “Classic Blues” blues queens African-American female leaders fronting bands working-class performers and perspectives Bessie Smith (1894-1937) “empress of the blues” 160+ recordings “St. Louis Blues” (1925) composed in 1914 by W.C. Handy most recorded song before WWII trio: vocals, trumpet, reed organ blues techniques: call-and-response melodic/rhythmic flexibility blues scale characteristic vocal delivery hybrid form: 2 blues choruses (followed by tango section and TPA section)
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Unformatted text preview: Blues Scale (in the key of C) C E-flat F G B-flat Comparable to a pentatonic (5-note) scale, but the pitches are not absolute. Blues performers often slightly alter pitches or slide/scoop between them for expressive purposes. 12-bar blues form strophic form – each 12-bar stanza sung to same music, music repeats every 12-bars arranged as three 4-bar pharases typical chord progression chords can be altered Marketed as “Race Records” term coined by Ralph Peer (record executive, talent scout) segregated record catalogs and marketing Country Blues “delta blues” rural, southern form solo male performers Robert Johnson (1911-1938) “Crossroad Blues” (1936) ◦ crossroads mythology ◦ flexibility of blues form ◦ tortured intensity ▪ guitar & vocals...
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This note was uploaded on 01/20/2012 for the course MUSICOL 123 taught by Professor Garret during the Fall '11 term at University of Michigan.

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8 - Blues - Blues Scale(in the key of C C E-flat F G B-flat...

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