January 6, 2020 Rhythm: contains the beat, the steady pulse that underpins the song. Often articulated by instruments such as bass or drums. Meter: most songs are in 4/4, but not all of them. Might be in triple meter or compound meter. Melody: the tune, or the singable part, constructed as a succession of notes. ●Are the melodies: ○Conjunct? They move by step. ○Disjunct? Does not move by steps, but by jumps. ●They can have: ○Large range; large span of notes. ○Small range; smaller range of notes. Harmony: the colour of the song, constructed when pitches are played at the same time = a chord. ●Major or minor keys; major is happy, minor is sadder. Texture: how many instruments are playing and what are their roles. It can be sparse, rich/full, or dense. Timbre: refers to the quality of the sound. Can be Rough/Smooth. Form: what is repeated, what is different…how something is organized. January 8, 2019 Popular Music in the Early 20th Century ●Popular music was transmitted via Sheet Music ●This comes from the traditions of Victorian Era; domestic sheet music was traditionally played by women who were expected to know how to play the piano. ●Innovations of the Time: ○Things such as the gramophoneandEdison Cylinders and Phonographwere popular and new around this time (cylinders were like the record players but used cylinders instead of records). ○Player piano. ○Radio; developed during the late 19th century, and one of the main technological advancements during WW1. Then started to become a main form of entertainment for people in their spare time. Tin Pan Alley ●Centre of the Music Industry in the USA - it was a physical place (west 28th street between west 42nd and 56th in NYC) as well as a style of writing at the time. ●This was the main area for song production at the time.
●Offices harboured full-house operations including songwriters, lyricists, musical secretaries, etc. ●Industry of sheet music where it was written, bought, then taken home to be played. ●Practices that came from this place: ○Verses, 16 or 32 bars. ○Chorus, equal length of the verse that took the form AABA. ■Piano intro ■Vamp ■First verse ■Chorus with first ending ■Repeat of chorus with second ending ■Vamp ■Second verse ■Chorus with first ending ■Repeat of chorus with second ending Crooners ●“Crooning” is a style of singing enables by changes in microphone technology. ●Popular singing style in 1930’s and 40’s. ●People had to send their voices to the back of the room typically, and when microphones were invented the style of singing had to change. ●This lead to male singers developing a close, sentimental styles with full groups of instruments behind them. ●Half-talking type of singing that teenage girls at the time loves; specifically by Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Bing Crosby, etc.