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Its about the music

By Lawrence Schenbeck, for Copper Magazine
Onward and upward with our New Year’s survey of musical elements. Last time, we got a start on rhythm, because any art form that moves through time must consider rhythm primary.
Yet in Western classical music, pitch is usually awarded pride of place. Westerners have done pretty well with it. Purely melodic constructions in Euro-American “serious” music lack the complexity found in, say, Indian music, with its long tradition of improvisations on raga or mçḷakarta. But in our own brief history we did create—besides melodies—harmony and counterpoint, two pitch-centric techniques largely absent elsewhere.
Pitches also seem to be prime carriers of emotional rhetoric. The range and specificity of feelings that come with a pitch sequence are arguably wider than those that come with rhythms.
In these thousand words I’ll explore how melodies are constructed, while mentioning harmony and glancing toward emotion. It’s a tall order. We may ignore a few hundred details. Let’s begin with Beethoven’s Greatest Hit, as

Link to full article with music samples, Click here
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