More Meaning in Music: How does form impact music?

My last musicology lecture focused on the basics – how do the elements of music impact form. Firstly, the presentation for this can be found here. These are the questions I want students/interested parties to discuss on the blog

•Examples of pieces with unusual bar numbers in sections
•Examples of how rhythm delineates form
•Examples of verse and chorus with same chords
•Examples of artist specific sounds
•Examples of texture/instrumentation delineating form
•Examples of how metre delineates form.
•Examples of how sounds allude toward change of style
•Examples of how sounds indicate a place or time.
•Examples of textures that outline the lyrics and or Title
I would also like some comments about how this fits in with a Rationalistic or Empirical approach.
I would also like everyone to read this paper in the meaning in Zappa’s music. It can be found here.

About Paul Carr

Academic working at the University of Glamorgan
This entry was posted in Academic, Frank Zappa, Musicology and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to More Meaning in Music: How does form impact music?

  1. Jamie says:

    Here is an example of how texture/instrumentation delineates form and is also an example of a track which contains the same chords for both verse and chorus.

    Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol

    The same chords throughout are, A-E-D-A. Even though the lyrics are (quite depressing) and about love lost, the key of the piece is in A major. This could either mean that the vocalist views love lost as a positive subject by overcoming the negative or that a major key is just to make the piece commercial and sell-able.
    The form of the piece is A-B-A-B(2)-A-B(3). (Verse-A, Chorus-B). The texture/instrumentation delineates form by thickening the texture for every chorus, each chorus lengthening and becoming larger and louder in dynamics. Section A contains only the lyrics (with reverb), a guitar (with chorus, delay) and an ambient pad (with reverb).
    In contrast to the final chorus B(3), which contains the lyrics (double-tracked), guitar with light overdrive, compressed bass, drum kit with full spacious sound, warm pad continuing and a string section (most probably midi VST).


  2. simon babb says:

    a good example of a piece with odd bar numbers is good morning by the beatles, its quite hard to work out where the vocals will come in or when a section will end on first listen. this is quite unusual especially compared to previous early work!
    possible ideas of how rhythm delineates form could be i am the resurection by the stone roses as the rest of the band and sections have no choice but to be driven along by it. like its immpossible to resist or another possible example is the intro to cherub rock by smashing pumkins.

    knocking on heavens door is a gould example of same harmony diff mellody and also radio head high and dry you could probably pick 50 percent of rock n roll tracks but you have got to love these to songs.

    an example of an artist specific sound would be john lennons vocal echo! you could spot it a mile away.

    and textures nine inch nails hurt.

    disarm by smashing pumkings is an example of texture or sounds deciding form although there are a couple of sections they are sort of predetermined by the texture and feel of the piece. also perhaps in complete contrast sabbath bloody sabbath!!!! ( scary)

    an example of how metre delineates form would be breaking the girl red hot chili peppers.

    i like the super furries northen light it reminds me of hawaii or being sat on a beach ! awesome tune

    i think the rationalistic view can deal with basic form and meter and harmony but wont really deal with how it makes you feel like the examples of time and space for example. it will something different to most people, it wouls be hard to use this approach to really annalyse what the textures allude to or mean.


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