music appreciation analyize quot cherry pink and apple bottom white quot


— If you have any questions, please feel free to ask me. —

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The principles of unity & variety apply to all music, regardless of compositional style or historical period.

Now that you are familiar with the concepts in the first section of the course (Basic Musical Concepts), and you have seen how they work on different pieces of music, try your hand, mouse, and ears at how they operate in a music selection that you may not have heard yet. The music in the first two assignments was from the “Classical” tradition in music. The piece for this assignment is not from that tradition.

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Give a listen: Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White (4:08)

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What did you hear? Could you map out the overall form? Remember that form (unity) is created by repetition. Did the piece have different sections? Where some of those sections more “songlike”? What was going on in sections that seemed less like a song? Which sections brought variety (changed things up)?

Your analysis should include:

  1. The number of different musical ideas you hear in the piece (can we say that there are two ideas A and B? Or is there only one?) When you hear an idea consider if it could actually be broken down into smaller parts. Something to think about is the similarity that can exist between songs and poems. Some basic poems have a set number of lines with a pattern of rhythms and rhymes.
  2. The timings (start and stop times) of the different sections of the piece. (Hint: Listen for changes in musical ideas and timbre, or for points when one instrument gives way to another.)
  3. How do the following elements contribute to unity OR variety in the sections you identified (give timings)?
    1. Notice that I said “or”. The reason is because if an element contributes to unity them almost certainly it would not also contribute to variety.
      1. Dynamics: Where does the music get louder or softer? Give the time. Is there any apparent reason for those changes?
      2. Timbre: There are a number of changes in timbre through out the piece. Where do different instruments take over the melody? Give the time.
      3. Pitch: What is the general pitch level of the piece? Are there wide variations in pitch level? (Range – the difference between high notes and low notes.)
  4. Although there are sections that feature one instrument over others, do you think this is a piece for a solo performer or for an ensemble?
  5. What style of music might you call this piece? Give me the name of the style. Give me a list of the characteristics of that style. (Hint: Revisit the class titled Folk Music, Art Music, and All That Jazz)
  6. Do you think this piece serves (or could serve) a specific purpose?
  7. Does this piece have any specific connotation(s) for you? (Do you remember what connotations means?)

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I always recommend jotting down things with paper and pencil when you first listen to the music. I believe it also helps to list things vertically not horizontally. On the first listen list the sections you hear. Then listen again and make notes for each section: What instrument do you hear (timbre)? Loud or soft or the same (dynamics)? Maybe on the third listen write down the times that appear on the counter as the song plays.

After a few listens you probably have the idea of what is going on. Double check things. Did you cover all the 7 things listed above? You can get ready to submit things on the computer.

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