It also challenged and abandoned the standard

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Unformatted text preview: felt had been lost in the last stages of the Big Band/Swing style. To be effectively different, the new style intentionally incorporated alternative musical characteristics. It is therefore particularly difficult to generalize structural characteristics in the jazz idiom. Nevertheless, recognizing that jazz is very diverse, the following characteristics are generally applicable. Rhythm, Melody and Harmony Rhythm is the foundation of all styles of jazz, and it is complex, clearly reflecting the influences of African rhythmic traditions. Generally performers create rhythms that are constantly 14Dow Dell, D.C. Jazz Milestones.” On website, A Passion for Jazz: Music History and Education. http://www.apassion4jazz.net (accessed 2- 9- 05) 19 syncopated, with the accents occurring on the beats that Western music traditions consider the weak beats. For example, instead of 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4, a very popular rhythmic treatment in jazz would be felt 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4. Additionally, particularly in the earlier styles, there is the use of “swing,” in which the note on the second part of the beat is slightly delayed, giving a sense of pulling back. Jazz is based on the principle that melodies should be constantly varied, and that an infinite number of melodies can be created to fit the established chord progression. In many jazz styles, the harmonic progression is repeated over and over while different soloists are featured improvising their unique version of the melody that fits the progression. In addition, jazz melodies incorporate the African traditions of “colorization,” in which the melody is ornamented with a variety of techniques such as glissandi and slides, nuances of pitch in which there are microtones used within the basic 12- tone Western system, and tonal effects such as growls and wails. Jazz harmony is complex and most jazz musicians (even more so than “classical” musicians) are very knowledgeable about the theoretical structure and principles that guide their particular style. Jazz harmony uses chords that consist of several thirds stacked on top of the basic triad. So for example where folk music, rock and roll, and early Classical music rely primarily on the triad, jazz uses sevenths, ninths, elevenths, and thirteenths as part of its standard ha...
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This document was uploaded on 02/16/2014.

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