<< Chapter < Page Chapter >> Page >
You must have the latest version of Macromedia's free Flash plugin to play the musical examples.

“She was dressed in rich materials—satins, and lace, and silks—all of white. Her shoes were white. And she had a long white veil dependent from her hair, and she had bridal flowers in her hair, but her hair was white.” With these words, Charles Dickens introduces the character of Miss Havisham in his novel Great Expectations .

How is musical identity established? How can we describe the basic attributes of a musical idea?

A writer might portray a character through details of physical appearance, background and behavior. We will view musical identity as being created by rhythm, melody, harmony, pitch content and instrumental color.

Rhythm

Because music is a time-art, rhythm is the most basic element of musical identity. Most generally, speed helps to characterize the music: Fast music is different from slow.

More concretely, a repeating rhythmic pattern may underlie a musical idea.

In Maurice Ravel’s Bolero , a fixed rhythmic pattern—first played by the snare drum—anchors the entire composition.

In this excerpt from Steve Reich’s Music for Large Ensemble , the evolving texture grows out of an underlying rhythmic pattern.

The term motive refers to a short, elemental fragment. If the entire pattern or theme is a necklace, then motives are its beads.

A rhythmic motive may be a key identifying feature. The opening of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5 consists of music’s most famous rhythmic motives: “three dots and a dash.”

In this excerpt, the rhythmic motive is passed around the orchestra:

Lalo Schifrin’s theme for Mission Impossible contains a rhythmic motive consisting of “two dots and a dash.” A fixed pattern, or ostinato , underlies the Mission Impossible theme, also contributing to its identity.

A rhythmic motive can take any melodic shape: In the Mission Impossible example, the motive at first heads downwards three times in succession. It then appears three more times: These times, however the motive “curls” upwards. The rhythms are identical but the melodic shape is not strict.

Thus, extended rhythmic patterns and shorter motives may be embedded in a musical idea, contributing to its identity.

Melody

Melody is music’s most familiar and intuitive term: It’s what we sing or hum. In classical and popular music, it is often the primary focus of our attention.

Melody has two components: rhythm, combined with the rising and falling of pitch.

Clearly, rhythm alone does not make a melody: Try singing the rhythm of “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad” in a monotone. Stripped of pitch inflection, it is no longer a song. But pitch alone is not enough either. Try singing “I’ve Been Working” in even-valued rhythms: It loses its form like a crumpled shirt. Thus, melody is a hybrid concept: It incorporates both rhythm and pitch. When we speak of melodic contour and motive , rhythm is often implicated as well.

The contour of a melody describes its shape. The contour of the principal theme of Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 8 rises ever higher in three short thrusts and then sinks back down:

Questions & Answers

how do you translate this in Algebraic Expressions
linda Reply
why surface tension is zero at critical temperature
Shanjida
Need to simplify the expresin. 3/7 (x+y)-1/7 (x-1)=
Crystal Reply
. After 3 months on a diet, Lisa had lost 12% of her original weight. She lost 21 pounds. What was Lisa's original weight?
Chris Reply
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
what's the easiest and fastest way to the synthesize AgNP?
Damian Reply
China
Cied
types of nano material
abeetha Reply
I start with an easy one. carbon nanotubes woven into a long filament like a string
Porter
many many of nanotubes
Porter
what is the k.e before it land
Yasmin
what is the function of carbon nanotubes?
Cesar
I'm interested in nanotube
Uday
what is nanomaterials​ and their applications of sensors.
Ramkumar Reply
what is nano technology
Sravani Reply
what is system testing?
AMJAD
preparation of nanomaterial
Victor Reply
Yes, Nanotechnology has a very fast field of applications and their is always something new to do with it...
Himanshu Reply
good afternoon madam
AMJAD
what is system testing
AMJAD
what is the application of nanotechnology?
Stotaw
In this morden time nanotechnology used in many field . 1-Electronics-manufacturad IC ,RAM,MRAM,solar panel etc 2-Helth and Medical-Nanomedicine,Drug Dilivery for cancer treatment etc 3- Atomobile -MEMS, Coating on car etc. and may other field for details you can check at Google
Azam
anybody can imagine what will be happen after 100 years from now in nano tech world
Prasenjit
after 100 year this will be not nanotechnology maybe this technology name will be change . maybe aftet 100 year . we work on electron lable practically about its properties and behaviour by the different instruments
Azam
name doesn't matter , whatever it will be change... I'm taking about effect on circumstances of the microscopic world
Prasenjit
how hard could it be to apply nanotechnology against viral infections such HIV or Ebola?
Damian
silver nanoparticles could handle the job?
Damian
not now but maybe in future only AgNP maybe any other nanomaterials
Azam
Hello
Uday
I'm interested in Nanotube
Uday
this technology will not going on for the long time , so I'm thinking about femtotechnology 10^-15
Prasenjit
can nanotechnology change the direction of the face of the world
Prasenjit Reply
At high concentrations (>0.01 M), the relation between absorptivity coefficient and absorbance is no longer linear. This is due to the electrostatic interactions between the quantum dots in close proximity. If the concentration of the solution is high, another effect that is seen is the scattering of light from the large number of quantum dots. This assumption only works at low concentrations of the analyte. Presence of stray light.
Ali Reply
the Beer law works very well for dilute solutions but fails for very high concentrations. why?
bamidele Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
Privacy Information Security Software Version 1.1a
Good
Got questions? Join the online conversation and get instant answers!
QuizOver.com Reply

Get the best Algebra and trigonometry course in your pocket!





Source:  OpenStax, Sound reasoning. OpenStax CNX. May 31, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10214/1.21
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google Inc.

Notification Switch

Would you like to follow the 'Sound reasoning' conversation and receive update notifications?

Ask