Session 4‘the elements of music and form’


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Session 4‘the elements of music and form’

  1. 1.   Elements of Music Stan Hawkins Article
  2. 2.    The vast majority of popular music has a specific structure. Common terminologies we use in popular music include Introduction, Verse, Chorus, and Middle Section/Bridge. Most popular music consists of 2 or 4 bar phrases, so the sections are often divided into 4, 8 or 16 bars.
  3. 3.  For Example:
  4. 4.       Intro: 12 Verse 1: 6+6+8 – what else could it be? 6+6+6+2? 6+7+7? (Why/Why not?) Chorus: Bridge Verse 2: 6+6+2
  5. 5.   Sections usually contrast with one another melodically to sustain interest, but also harmonically, texturally, lyrically, dynamically and rhythmically (or any other ‘element’ potentially). Listen to examples below, how do the above factors change? Sigor Ros – ‘Fljótavík' Melodically Harmonically Texturally Lyrically Dynamically Rhythmically Snow Patrol – ‘Chasing Cars’ Melodically Harmonically Texturally Lyrically Dynamically Rhythmically
  6. 6.  ‘The Pretender’ Foo Fighters
  7. 7.  Look for changes of harmony between sections. Although most use different harmonies between verse and chorus, others use the same. For example:  ‘Stand By Me’ Ben E King (1961)
  8. 8.  Self Evident: discuss
  9. 9.   ‘Sloop John B’ The Beach Boys (1966) Note how this consists of only one section, so variety of texture is vital)
  10. 10.  ‘Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds’: Elton John version (1974)
  11. 11.   As well a metre being used diachronically, it can also be used synchronically. Example: ‘Kashmir’ Led Zeppelin (cover)
  12. 12.      I      Introduction: content usually used somewhere else in the song. Not always incorporated, but always introduces the song. Verse: Recurrent harmonic pattern, but different text and texture etc. Usually occurs after the introduction, but sometimes chorus can occur before it (Example “I Shot the Sheriff”, “Rock and Roll Music”) Chorus: Usually a recurrent harmonic and lyrical pattern. Refrain: Not a distinct section, but part of a verse or chorus. Can end or start a section. Consists of a repeated subsection, often with same lyrics. For Example: “I Saw Her Standing There”: The Beatles (After Verse) God Only Knows: The Beach Boys: (note how refrain repeats at end) “Want To Hold Your Hand”: The Beatles (After Verse) Bridge: Connects two other sections. Normally occurs once, if twice, usually has same text. Sometimes called the ‘Middle 8’. Bridges can be instrumental: “Nights in White Satin” Outro: Content usually derives from elsewhere in the song. Always ends song.
  13. 13.       Examples of Uncommon Structures Polyrhythm Rhythm Delineating Form Metre Delineating Form