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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Music and It's Elements

image quotation about music & life

          What is music? They say, “Music is my life, and the lyrics are my story”, for me it is true. Had it ever happened to you that when you listen to a particular song, some of the lyrics of that song seems like it also happened to you, and that the song writer have written that song only for you? 

The Elements Of Music:

              1. Rhythm – It is the beginning of music, the variation of accentuation of a series of sounds. It’s most fundamental component is beat. Beat is that to which we clap our hands or tap our feet. According to Charles Hoffer, the beat of music is “a pulse or throb that is sensed rather than sounded and it recurs regularly…and is not necessarily present in all music”. The beat is the simple pulse found in almost all music familiar to us while the rhythm is a larger concept, including the beat and everything that happens to sounds in relation to time. One way of measuring rhythm is by means of meter. Meter is the arrangement of rhythm in fixed, regular pattern with a uniform number of beats in uniform measures. 

2          2. Melody – It is the second important element of music. If rhythm is associated with physical motion, melody is associated with mental motion. It is sometimes called the memory element because it is always remembered by a listener. Melody is an organized group of pitches strung out sequentially to form a satisfying musical entity. Melody occurs in various guises and circumstances and is heard in terms of pitch. Pitch indicates the highness or lowness of sound and is determined solely by the frequency of molecular vibrations.  Thus, the slower the vibration, the lower the pitch and  the faster the vibration, the higher the pitch. The relation of one pitch to another is called an interval. When certain patterns of intervals are repeated at a different pitch, we have sequence. The sequence embodies melodic and rhythmic repetition. A good melody must contain the following qualities: 

        a) The listener must have a sense of satisfaction, completeness, and feeling of integrity.
        b) Melodic line must have a sense of continuity - long in flowing high and low point of interest, and a climactic moment. This is called the “La Grande Ligne” - the great long line. 

3         3. Harmony – It refers to the manner of sound combination wherein we add subordinate sounds to enhance the quality of the main sounds. It is the sounding of series or group of tones at the same time or simultaneously, instead of a single tone sounded separately.  The tonal combination of two or more tones sounded at the same time is called a chord. If the combination or chord seems to produce an impression of agreeableness or resolution to the listener, it is called concord. If it does not, the combination is called discord or dissonance. In general, harmony refers to the simultaneous sounding of pitches regardless of whether the chords sound pleasing or not.

              4. Tempo It refers to the speed of a certain musical piece. It is measured by a device by the musical notes given half or full values.
      Terms commonly used to indicate tempo:

a)  Largo- very slow
b)  Adagio- slow and stately
c) Andante- at a walking pace
d)  Andantino- alternatively faster or slower than andante
e)  Allegreto- moderately fast
f)  Allegro- fast
g)  Presto- very fast
h)  Accelerando- gradually becoming faster
i)  Ritardando- gradually becoming slower

5            5. Dynamics It refers to the amount, strength, or volume of the sound. It is the degree and variations of sonority and force with which the music is played from soft to loud. Dynamics is perceived when composers and performers make skillful use of shading or volume so that the  music reveals an almost constant interplay between loud and soft music.

6            6. Timbre- refers to tone quality. This element helps differentiate one type of voice from another or one instrument from another.

In general, when the elements are organized and combined in such a way that the listener finds the experience rewarding and meaningful, then music is created.