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Music Review

Final Exam

A Capella Sung without instrumental accompaniment of any kind
Acoustics The science of sound: how it is produced, transmitted, and received
Aleatory Music Music composed using elements of chance
Anthem An English sacred choral work
Aria Italian for "air" or "melody"; any lyrical movement or piece for solo voice, usually with some kind of instrumental accompaniment
Artsong A song set to serious poetry, usually for solo voice and piano, in the tradition of the German Lied
Ballad A poem or song that tells a story
Bepop New jazz style of the late 1940s/early 1950s that developed in response to the popularity of big band music;characterized by fast tempos, short burst of melodic phrases, heavy and unexpected rhythmic accents, and virtuosic soloing
Big Band Music A style of jazz popular in the 1930s and 1940s in which instruments were grouped into sections by function, with carefully constructed arrangements
Blue Note A pitch performed flatter (lower) than the standard major scale would indicate; usually occur as substitutes for the third and seventh notes of the standard major scale
Blues A musical genre derived from African American performance traditions that uses blue notes (flattened pitches) in its melodies and tells first-person stories of hard knocks and love gone wrong
Cadence A point of arrival signaling the end of a musical unit
Cadenza In a concerto, an elaborate improvisation by the soloist on themes heard earlier in the movement, with no accompaniment from the orchestra. It occurs near the end of the recapitulation
Call-and-Response A technique in which one musician or group sings or plays an opening motive, and another musician or group sings or plays an answer
Cantata A type of vocal genre typically sung during a service of worship; in Italian "that which is sung"
Chamber Music Vocal music with more than one singer to a part
Chord Three or more notes played or sung at the same moment
Concerto An instrumental genre for a soloist (or sometimes more than one soloist) and a larger ensemble
Consonance The sound of notes together that our ear finds naturally right
Counterpoint A style of writing in which every voice is a melody and all voices work together
Da Capo Italian for "from the head"; a direction to go back and play from the very beginning of the piece
Dissonance The sound of notes that clash, either harmonically or melodically, and do not seem to belong together
Drone Bass A single long note held underneath the melodic line
Duple Meter An underlying pattern of rhythm in which each unit consists of one accented beat followed by one unaccented beat (1-2| (1-2| etc.) or some multiple of two
Dynamics The volume of sound, determined by the size (amplitude) of each sound wave
Electronic Music Music using sounds generated (and not merely amplified) either in whole or in part by electronic means
Expressionism A broad artistic movement that flourished in music, painting, and literature in the early decades of the twentieth century, in which psychological truth took precedence over beauty, and inner emotion took precedence over any sense of external reality
Fill In jazz and popular styles, a short, instrumental response between a singer's phrases, or a brief solo occupying a musical gap between sections of a piece
Finale A last movement of a multimovement work
Fugue A polyphonic work based on a central theme and employing imitation
Gamelan An Indonesian musical ensemble consisting primarily of a variety of pitched gongs and xylophones
Genre The category of a work, determined by a combination of its performance medium and its social function
Glissando A continuous melodic motion up or down that goes by so fast we almost cannot hear the individual notes
Gospel Music Religious-themed music that burrows from R&B, blues, and other popular styles in its vocal and instrumental styles
Half Step The smallest distance between two adjacent notes on a piano such as C-C#
Harmony The sound created by multiple voices playing or singing together
Head In jazz, the main melody of the song
Hip Hop A cultural movement of the late 1970s through the turn of the century that included fashion, dance (break dancing), art (graffiti), and music (rap); characterized by semi-spoken lyrics that are recited against an accompaniment
Honky Tonk Music A country style of the late 1940s/early 1950s that originally developed in the small bars that catered to rural and working-class audiences; characterized by small ensemble
Hook A short, catchy motive that forms the memorable core of the song
Impressionism An artistic movement focused more on sensations, perceptions, and light than on the direct representation of object
Interval The distance between two pitches
Key The central note and mode on which a melody or piece is based
Major Mode A typical scale produced by singing "do-re-mi-fa-so-la-ti-do", or by playing the white keys of the between C and C, which half steps occur between notes 3 and 4 and notes 7 ad 8; described as "bright" or "happy"
Measure A rhythmic unit, indicated by bar lines in notated music, that presents one complete statement of the matter
Melisma A syllable of text sung to many notes
Melody A single line of notes heard in succession as a coherent unit
Minimalism In music, a style in which a brief musical idea or group of ideas is repeated and varied incrementally over a long span of time, with a relatively slow rate of change
Minor Mode A type of scale produced by playing the white keys on piano between A & A, in which half steps occur between notes 2 & 3 & notes 5 & 6, but often with the 7th note raised so that a half step also occurs between nots 7 and 8; described as "dark" or "sad"
Modernism A spirit that took hold in all the arts, in the early twentieth century, representing a quest for novelty that far exceeded any such drive in the past
Musical A spoken drama with a substantial amount of singing
Musique Concrete French for "concrete music" Music using sounds generated by everyday, real objects not normally thought of as musical instruments and then manipulated electronically
Opera Buffa Italian for "comic opera"; a genre that uses many of the same conventions as serious opera-arias, recitatives, ensembles, choruses-but with plots revolving around believable, everyday characters rather than mythical or historical figures
Operatta Italian for "small opera." A nineteenth-century stage work that incorporated both singing and spoken dialogue, typically on a comic, lighthearted, or sentimental subject
Oral Tradition One passed down without the aid of written words or notated music
Oratorio A work musically similar to an opera but not staged, and usually on a sacred topic
Ostinato A short pattern of notes repeated over and over
Pentatonic Scale A scale consisting of five tones
Polytonality The juxtaposition of two conventional harmonies in a way that creates a new dissonance
Postmodernism A style in music and the other arts, beginning in the mid-twentieth century, in which modern and traditional elements are combined
Program Music An instrumental work that is in some way associated with a story, event, or idea
Psychedelia Music influenced by the hippie movement of the late 1960s/early 1970s, with its emphasis on mind-expanding drugs, brightly colored fashions, and spiritual and social freedom
Punk Popular music of the mid-1970s that originally arose in reaction to the increasingly commercial and corporate rock of the era. Emphasized a do-it-yourself attitude
Raga In the music of India, a mood, color, or musical scale that forms the basis of a musical composition
Ragtime A style of music from the early twentieth century that emphasizes rhythmic syncopation while continuing many of the characteristics of marches, cakewalks, two-steps, and popular songs from the late nineteenth century
Recitative A style of singing that lies somewhere between lyrical song and speech; also, the operatic number that is sung in this style
Recorder A wind instrument widely used until ca. 1750, similar to a flute bt blown into from one end rather than from the side
Rock & Roll A style of music that evolved in the mid-1950s out of R&B and country styles. It's teenage music, expressing concerns of midcentury young people
Rondo Form A form in which an opening theme (A) returns repeatedly over the course of the movement, interspersed with contrasting ideas (B,C,etc.)
Sample To record music or sound from an existing album
Scale A series of notes that provide the essential pitch building blocks of a melody
Scherzo In Italian "joke." A lighthearted movement in a fast tempo and in triple meter, similar in form to the minuet
Sequence A short musical motive that repeats at successively higher or lower pitches
Serialism A style of writing in which notes are drawn not from a scale, but from a predetermined series of notes
Shuffle Groove A mid-tempo rhythmic pattern, typically in quadruple meter, in which each beat is subdivided into three pulses
Sitar A plucked stringed instrument widely used on the Indian subcontinent
Sonata A type of instrumental genre; literally, a work that is played, as opposed to sung
Sprechstimme In German, "speech-voice." A style of singing halfway between speech and lyrical song, in which the singer hits precise pitches and then allows them to tail off, rather than sustaining them, as in lyrical singing
Standard Song Form A common form for the choruses of "standards" or popular hits of the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s. It consists of 32 measures divided into four phrases in the pattern AABA
Stop Time A kind of musical punctuation between sections, in which the instruments provide the basic accompaniment strike a single note on a down-beat of a measure together, then remain silent for the rest of the measure
Suite A series of individual dance movements, typically in a variety of types such as minuets, gavottes, and gigues, and a variety of characters such as fast vs. slow
Swing A rhythmic pattern of long and short notes approximately a two-to-one ratio, but varying from piece to piece and performer to performer
Swing Music The name given generally to the popular jazz of the 1930s and 1940s that prominently featured a swing rhythm
Syncopation A type of rhythm in which the notes run against the regular pulse of the musical meter, with accents on beats other than the ones usually accented
Tala Fixed, repeated cycles of pulses widely used in music of the Indian subcontinent
Tonal A style of writing that establishes a central note as a harmonic and melodic center of gravity, which in turn creates the potential for a strong sense of resolution and closure
Tonic The note that establishes a key, based on its distinctive relationship with a particular set of harmonies or other notes in the underlying scale
Triple Meter An underlying pattern of rhythm in which each unit consists of once accented beat followed by two unaccented beats (1-2-3, 1-2-3, etc.)
Tutti Italian for "all": the full ensemble as opposed to a soloist
Twelve-Bar Blues AAB A common model for blues songs, in which each verse consists of three lines of text over twelve measure of music, Each line receives four measure in a predetermined harmonic pattern using chords built on the first, fourth, and fifth scale degrees
Twelve-Tone Composition A type of serial composition in which 20th-century composers manipulated a series consisting of all 12 notes of the chromatic scale, not repeating any of these notes until all other 11 had been sounded, thereby effectively avoiding any sense of tonality
Vamp To repeat a basic section of the music in order to fill time or provide a basis for imrpovisation
Verse-Chorus One of the simplest models in popular music. Chorus contains the main idea of the song, incorporating the title as well. When the chorus returns, it keeps the same text and music. Verses advance the plot, using same music each time but different texts.
Vocables Meaningless sung syllables that take the place of song lyrics
Whole Tone Scale A scale with only whole steps, no half steps; this eliminates any sense of a tonal center
Created by: ansecaballero