A Geometry of Music

Harmony and Counterpoint in the Extended Common Practice

Author: Dmitri Tymoczko

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199887500

Category: Music

Page: 480

View: 1936

DOWNLOAD NOW »

How is the Beatles' "Help!" similar to Stravinsky's "Dance of the Adolescents?" How does Radiohead's "Just" relate to the improvisations of Bill Evans? And how do Chopin's works exploit the non-Euclidean geometry of musical chords? In this groundbreaking work, author Dmitri Tymoczko describes a new framework for thinking about music that emphasizes the commonalities among styles from medieval polyphony to contemporary rock. Tymoczko identifies five basic musical features that jointly contribute to the sense of tonality, and shows how these features recur throughout the history of Western music. In the process he sheds new light on an age-old question: what makes music sound good? A Geometry of Music provides an accessible introduction to Tymoczko's revolutionary geometrical approach to music theory. The book shows how to construct simple diagrams representing relationships among familiar chords and scales, giving readers the tools to translate between the musical and visual realms and revealing surprising degrees of structure in otherwise hard-to-understand pieces. Tymoczko uses this theoretical foundation to retell the history of Western music from the eleventh century to the present day. Arguing that traditional histories focus too narrowly on the "common practice" period from 1680-1850, he proposes instead that Western music comprises an extended common practice stretching from the late middle ages to the present. He discusses a host of familiar pieces by a wide range of composers, from Bach to the Beatles, Mozart to Miles Davis, and many in between. A Geometry of Music is accessible to a range of readers, from undergraduate music majors to scientists and mathematicians with an interest in music. Defining its terms along the way, it presupposes no special mathematical background and only a basic familiarity with Western music theory. The book also contains exercises designed to reinforce and extend readers' understanding, along with a series of appendices that explore the technical details of this exciting new theory.
Release

The Routledge Companion to Popular Music Analysis

Expanding Approaches

Author: Ciro Scotto,Kenneth M. Smith,John Brackett

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134830785

Category: Music

Page: 442

View: 8967

DOWNLOAD NOW »

The Routledge Companion to Popular Music Analysis: Expanding Approaches widens the scope of analytical approaches for popular music by incorporating methods developed for analyzing contemporary art music. This study endeavors to create a new analytical paradigm for examining popular music from the perspective of developments in contemporary art music. "Expanded approaches" for popular music analysis is broadly defined as as exploring the pitch-class structures, form, timbre, rhythm, or aesthetics of various forms of popular music in a conceptual space not limited to the domain of common practice tonality but broadened to include any applicable compositional, analytical, or theoretical concept that illuminates the music. The essays in this collection investigate a variety of analytical, theoretical, historical, and aesthetic commonalities popular music shares with 20th and 21st century art music. From rock and pop to hip hop and rap, dance and electronica, from the 1930s to present day, this companion explores these connections in five parts: Establishing and Expanding Analytical Frameworks Technology and Timbre Rhythm, Pitch, and Harmony Form and Structure Critical Frameworks: Analytical, Formal, Structural, and Political With contributions by established scholars and promising emerging scholars in music theory and historical musicology from North America, Europe, and Australia, The Routledge Companion to Popular Music Analysis: Expanding Approaches offers nuanced and detailed perspectives that address the relationships between concert and popular music.
Release

Olivier Messiaen's Opera, Saint Francois d'Assise

Author: Vincent Perez Benitez

Publisher: Indiana University Press

ISBN: 0253042909

Category: Music

Page: 360

View: 2492

DOWNLOAD NOW »

In this comprehensive study of Olivier Messiaen’s magnum opus, Saint François d’Assise, Vincent Perez Benitez examines the opera from both theological and musical-analytical perspectives to ask how Messiaen expresses his Catholic theology through his work. Benitez combines a close reading of the opera score with accounts from Messiaen’s associates, studies of Messiaen’s birdsong notebooks and other primary documents, and an examination of the religious, musical, poetic, and visual arts literature with which the composer was familiar to explore how the opera’s harmonic language and sound-color relationships motivate its musical meaning and expression. Through his analysis of these diverse sources and comparisons of Saint François d’Assise with other works such as Berg’s Wozzeck and Wagner’s Parsifal, Benitez places Messiaen’s compositional practice within larger musical perspectives and historical contexts.
Release

Mahler's Symphonic Sonatas

Author: Seth Monahan

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0190266465

Category: Music

Page: 296

View: 9034

DOWNLOAD NOW »

Why would Gustav Mahler (1860-1911), modernist titan and so-called prophet of the New Music, commit himself time and again to the venerable sonata-allegro form of Mozart and Beethoven? How could so gifted a symphonic storyteller be drawn to a framework that many have dismissed as antiquated and dramatically inert? Mahler's Symphonic Sonatas offers a striking new take on this old dilemma. Indeed, it poses these questions seriously for the first time. Rather than downplaying Mahler's sonata designs as distracting anachronisms or innocuous groundplans, author Seth Monahan argues that for much of his career, Mahler used the inner, goal-directed dynamics of sonata form as the basis for some of his most gripping symphonic stories. Laying bare the deeper narrative/processual grammar of Mahler's evolving sonata corpus, Monahan pays particular attention to its recycling of large-scale rhetorical devices and its consistent linkage of tonal plot and affect. He then sets forth an interpretive framework that combines the visionary insights of Theodor W. Adorno-whose Mahler writings are examined here lucidly and at length-with elements of Hepokoski and Darcy's renowned Sonata Theory. What emerges is a tensely dialectical image of Mahler's sonata forms, one that hears the genre's compulsion for tonal/rhetorical closure in full collision with the spontaneous narrative needs of the surrounding music and of the overarching symphonic totality. It is a practice that calls forth sonata form not as a rigid mold, but as a dynamic process-rich with historical resonances and subject to a vast range of complications, curtailments, and catastrophes. With its expert balance of riveting analytical narration and thoughtful methodological reflection, Mahler's Symphonic Sonatas promises to be a landmark text of Mahler reception, and one that will reward scholars and students of the late-Romantic symphony for years to come.
Release