19 episodes

This is the podcast for Dr. Chris Wilkinson's Music 271 class.

WVU Music 271 Podcast M. Legler / Dr. Chris Wilkinson

    • Education

This is the podcast for Dr. Chris Wilkinson's Music 271 class.

    4.27.07 (4.25.07 also in the feed)

    4.27.07 (4.25.07 also in the feed)

    Music 271: 4/27/07 (Last Day!) II: “Modern Jazz” or “Bebop”: A: Principal players: • Tenor Sax: Charlie Parker • Trumpet: John Gillespie (Dizzy Gillespie) • Piano: Thelonious Monk • Drums: Max Roach B: Harmonic and melodic inventions and their impact: • Music driven by improvisation, with minimal constraints on the performers (regulated jam sessions) • “Koko” - built upon the chords of a tune by British band leader Ray Nolan (Cherokee) • Standard of Improvisation • Stole a large portion of the Big Band audience III: Derivative jazz styles: A: Hard Bop (after 1955): remains the standard style of modern Jazz (Miles Davis, John Coltrane) B: Third Stream (after 1959): Mix of Jazz and Art music C: Free Jazz (after 1959): led by Ornette Coleman, all elements of jazz should be improvised on the spot (similar to chance music by John Cage). 37-min long free jazz performance by 8 performers IV: Jazz-Rock Fusion (1969 - ): • British Invasion, Beach Boys, Bob Dylan were big on the rock scene • Fusion attempted to marry the two genres • Miles Davis was one of the first to experiment with this (GB: p.86)

    4.25.07

    4.25.07

    Music 271: 4/25/07 I: The Blues: A: Form: • Solo vocalist accompanied by a guitar, small jazz ensemble, Big Band, guitar based ensembles, etc. • Sing the blues is to get rid of the blues • Most of the early singers were men from the south • 1920s: African-American women singers of the blues began their rise • Twelve-Bar Blues: Strophic forms usually in 5-6 stanzas (most vocal, at least one instrumental in many instances) • Three four-measure phrases: A - A’ - B • A: 2mm (I) + 2 mm (I) Singer → Instrument Call Response • A’: 2mm (IV) + 2mm (I) • B: 2mm (V) + 2mm (I) • Robert Johnson, Bessie Smith were among the first blues singers B: Role of call and response: C: The multiple opportunities for Signifyin’: II: Compositions surveying Jazz to c1945: • c1900-c1925: New Orleans Jazz • Outdoors: Parades • Celebratory Parades: (Political campaigns, Social clubs, Saints’ days, and other religious occasions) • Funereal Parades: (Dirges and hymns prior to internment, Jazz numbers after internment) • Dances: (Two-step (Ragtime’s Dance), Fox and other “Trots”) • Indoors: Dances • A: The New Orleans Parade Band: “Lord, lord, lord”: the Olympia Brass Band: B: New Orleans Jazz in Chicago: Louis Armstrong and his Hot Five: “West End Blues”: Jazz went up the IC railroad, not the Miss. river C: The Duke Ellington Orchestra: “Old Man Blues”: III: Crawford’s discussion of developments in Jazz after WWII: • Ch. 30: p.390 • Louis Armstrong: Did more to alter Jazz history than any other player, focused on the improvisation, expanded the range of the trumpet above the treble staff • Introduced Scat singing, but did not invent it: nonsense syllables in place of words • Late 1920s - beginning of 1940s, Jazz evolves into the Big Band style • Centers of Jazz became New York and Kansas City, Missouri • KC: Count Bassie • NY: Duke Ellington Orchestra - wrote pieces to feature individual players in his band, wrote over 1000 pieces •

    4.23.07 (Friday's lecture, 4/20/07, is also in the feed)

    4.23.07 (Friday's lecture, 4/20/07, is also in the feed)

    Music 271: 4/23/07 II: Jazz: Overview of Style and History: (GB: p.81-82) • Blends European and West African traditions • Traceable to beginning of the 20th century • 2 periods: • Jazz as a functional music (c1900 - c1945): A: Chicago, Kansas City, New York B: New Orleans style (NOLA) (c1900 - c1930) C: Chicago style (NOLA style brought north) (c1920 - c1930) D: Swing (Big Band Jazz) (c1927 - c1945) • Jazz as an Art Music: (c1945 - Present) • New York was the center of innovations • Styles in Chronological order: A: Modern Jazz (c1945 - c1955) B: Hard Bop (c1955 - present) C: Free Jazz (c1959 - present) D: Fusion (Jazz Rock) (c1968 - present) E: Post-Modern mixtures (c1970s - present) • No single style of Jazz • Initially favored Band instruments (reeds, brass) • Importance of Improvisation (Signifyin’) • Distinct instrumental voice • Jazz swings III: The practice of Signifyin’: (GB: p.82) A: A definition: To use the language in a very personal and individualized way and to use the sound of your voice as a way of adding emphasis B: Musical Signifyin’: How it works: • Borrows, restates, and varies pre-existing material • Transforms that material by commenting upon it in a way that reflects the personality of the performer whose goals may include demonstrating respect for the original, poking fun at it, parodying it • This May be done at all sorts of levels from commenting upon a style, to commenting upon an individual performer, to commenting upon the nature of improvisation itself C: A Demonstration of Signifyin’: IV: Ragtime and the Blues: two principal antecedents of Jazz: • Ragtime began as improvised music in the 19th century • 1893: Worlds Fair in Chicago: White band began to play Ragtime • 1st of four African-American styles that would shape American Vernacular music • 3 basic categories: Ragtime songs, pieces that are based upon other works that are swung, Piano Rags (structure taken from a march) (AABBA, Trio, CCDD) • Blues is older then ragtime, part of the oral tradition, continues to exert an influence on music even today The Four Principles Styles of 20th-Century African-American Vernacular Music 1. Ragtime: c1893 - c1920 2. Jazz: c1917 - c1950 3. Rhythm & Blues: c1945 - present → Rock ‘n’ Roll: c1955 - present 4. Rap → Hip Hop: c1980 - present

    4.20.07

    4.20.07

    Music 271: 4/20/07 II: American Neo-Classicism concluded: Copland’s Piano Variations and beyond: • Copland, Elliot Carter were all Neo-Classic composers • Rhythmic aspects of early jazz (ragtime) till the 1920s • Tonal, clear textures: these all can be heard in Copland’s Piano Variations • Schönberg is a Neo-classical composers who uses serial harmony III: The Experimentalists (Ultra-modernists): Rejection of both post-Romanticism and Neo-Classicism: A: Henry Cowell and The Banshee (1925): • Neo-Classicism “Attempt to reduplicate a bygone style” • Introduced a new agenda: quest for new sonorities and timbres • The strumming of the piano strings become the new timbres B: Edgard Varese and Ionisation (1933): • Neo-Classicism is “Zealously academic” • Percussion is another source of new timbres and sonorities • Began the percussion ensemble tradition: was the first new piece that wasn’t transcribed from another source C: John Cage: • Inspired by Varese, composed works for percussion ensemble, solo percussion (brake drums) • “Discovered sounds” • The father of prepared piano works (after WWII) • New direction of experimentalism: pre-recorded sounds (Magnetic tape) • Magnetic tape could be edited • William’s Mix (1952) IV: George Crumb: A disciple of the Experimentalist as well as a multi-culturalist: A: Crumb’s inspiration: 4 musical domains: 1. European Art Music: 2. American vernacular music: 3. The fusions of folk traditions in WV: 4. Elements of African, Indian, and Japanese music: • Highly individual style B: Ancient Voices of Children for soprano and mixed chamber ensemble (1970): poetry by Federico Garcia Lorca: • Oboe, percussion, piano, musical saw, harp

    4.18.07

    4.18.07

    Music 271: 4/18/07 I: Igor Stravinsky’s contributions to the formation of 20th-century art music: A: Second Stage Nationalist (to the beginning of WWI) 1. The influence of Debussy on his ballet scores: • Collaborated with other Russian artist for a series of ballets made for Paris • Oiseau de feu (Firebird) - 1910 • Petrushka - 1911 • Le sacred u printemps (The Rite of Spring) - 1913 • “The Nightingale” opera displays many Debussy influences from Nuages 2. The Rite of Spring: and example of “Primitive Nationalism”: • Influenced by Russian composers (including Rimsky-Korsakov, his mentor) • Prompted a riot on its opening night • Based on Stravinsky’s dream about pre-Christian Russian community (Neolithic times). Virgin sacrifice brings about springtime • Represented a turning point for Stravinsky • Marked the ending of Post-Romanticism • 3 major political empires collapsed: Austro-Hungarian Empire, Ottoman Empire, Russian Empire (October Revolution) • Stravinsky fled to Paris following the Russian Revolution B: Neo-Classicism: a Post WWI reaction to Post-Romanticism: • Defined as a return to absolute music coupled with a rejection of the attitude that music can be descriptive • 1923 - Stravinsky’s Octet for Winds (his first Neo-Classical piece) • Models were deliberately taken from 18th-century style • Elimination or subordination of the strings from the music (Winds and Brass become the standard in Neo-Classicism) • Open texture (Not a think texture, less parts then before) II: American Neo-Classicism: A: The influence of Nadia Boulanger: • French pedagogue of composition • Taught students how to find their own musical style • Demanded that students have knowledge of Western Art Music • Argued for Neo-Classicism in her teachings B: Aaron Copland’s piano variations: 1930 •

    4.16.07

    4.16.07

    Music 271: 4/16/07 I: Schönberg’s twelve-tone composition or Serialism (c1923-1951): • Logical use of all 12 pitches of the chromatic scale • Suite für klavier: Presents prime row right at the beginning and the top line • Note = length of time • Pitch = frequency • Prelude, Menuett, and Trio • His alternate row forms favor the tritone, one semitone below the P5 II: Bartók and Stravinsky: their separate points of origin in 19th century European art music: • Bartók born in 1881: Went from Germanic nationalism for Hungarian nationalism • Stravinsky born in 1882: Abandoned nationalism for neo-classicism (and dabbled in serialism) • These two would change their direction as composers, unlike Schönberg III: Bela Bartók’s multi-faceted career and its legacy: A: Four major roles: 1. Virtuosic pianist: Educated to be a concert pianist and composer; 2. Ethnomusicologist: One of the first scholars to collect music of a tradition outside the realm of European art music (Hungary and Slavic Europe) (Bonds: p. 570) 3. Composer: 3rd stage Nationalist: “Allegro Barbaro” was one of the first compositions of this nature (1911), “Three Rondos on folk tunes” another example • Large quantity of folk songs • 3rd stage nationalist: Radical innovations of style and form inspired by the native culture (sometimes accompanied by a deprecation of the formerly venerated foreign culture) 4. Pedagogue: wrote the six volumes of Mikrokosmos, prepared performers to play Bartók’s own music B: Three-fold legacy: • IV: Igor Stravinsky’s contributions to the formation of 20th century art music: Part I - Second-Stage nationalist (to the beginning of WWI): • Came from a musical background • Born in St. Petersburg • First composition teacher was Rimsky-Korsakov: introduced Stravinsky to several volumes of Russian folk songs • Rite of Spring Bassoon solo is a Lithuanian folk tune • Went to Paris to study music

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