Note 6 for MUSC 309 with Professor Schwartz at KU
Note 6 for MUSC 309 with Professor Schwartz at KU
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Date Created: 02/06/15
MUSC 309 Lecture 6 Rhythm and Blues I RampB background A What is RampB 1 Marketing label a Rhythm and blues records race records b Records primarily by black artists marketed to African American consumers c Billboard changes chart title in 1949 2 Musical meaning a Strongly rhythmic fusion of African American styles b Crossover appeal i Also popular with white audiences ii Hits have potential to cross over to pop country charts c Musical in uences 7 i Gospel ii Swingjazz iii Boogiewoogie iv Country blues V Popular music B Social and Economic Issues of African American society 194555 1 Improved economic status a World War II stimulated economy b More better payingjobs 2 Pace of great migration increases a More migrants from rural south b Blacks concentrated in most areas in urban north 3 Civil Rights movement 1 Brown V Board of Education 1954 ends legal segregation 2 Montgomery bus boycott in 1955 sparks Civil Rights movement 4 Marginally better access to mass media a KFFA in Helena Arkansas becomes first station to broadcast blues in 1941 b 1948 WDIA in Memphis becomes first all black station in US i B B King and Rufus Thomas serve as discjockeys a Radio personalities with own radio shows b Popularity of DJs also drives listenership ii Within 2 weeks 1 station in Memphis a More African American artists appear on network radio I RampB Basics A Types 1 Uptempo strongly rhythmic blues 2 Electric blues 3 Gospelin uenced styles 4 Doowop 5 RampB with strong AfroCuban in uences a Instruments b Latin rhythms B The Big Beat of RampB 1 In many RampB styles rhythm becomes more prominent than in past 2 Backbeat a Accents on second and fourth beats of measure b In RampB usually strongly accented c Most often in drums usually snare d Sometimes reinforced with hand claps or snaps 3 Shuf e rhythm a Subdivision of beat as in rock style beat b First note ofpair twice as long as second c Ex swung eighth notes injazz 4 Triplets a Beat divided into three equal parts b Clap a steady beat then subdivide into triplets C The sound of uptempo RampB Rocket 88 1 Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats a Group led by Ike Turner i Blues musician from Clarksdale Mississippi ii Also worked as talent scout for independent labels in south b Went to Sun records in Memphis to record song about Oldsmobile 88 c Turner s saxophone player Jackie Brenston sang lead on the track d Sam Phillips mistakenly credited Brenston 2 Guitar distortion a On way to studio guitar amp fell of top of the car b Tore the speaker cone part of speaker that vibrates to produce the frequency being amplified c Resulted in distorted fuzzy sound d Phillips liked used on record i Make guitar line more prominent ii Thought it complemented booting sax 3 Honking or booting saxophone i Alto or tenor sax standard part of RampB bands of 40s and 50s ii Preferred tone color honking or booting aa Harsh slightly sharp sound bb Created by overblowing 7 more air than needed cc Tone color a good match for rough gravelly timbre of vocalists 4 Triplets i Common feature of rhythm and blues ii Derived from boogie aa Rhythmic feel common to many African American folk dance styles i Created by alternating quarter long and eighth short notes ii Rather like shuf e rhythm iii Listen for triplets in piano part iv Shuf e rhythm in guitar and triplets complement each other aa Triplets in 44 time 1 2 3 4 XXXXXXXXXXXX bb Shuf e X X X X X X X X III Jump Blues A Descends from swing bands ofthe 30s and 40s 1 Particularly heavily blues in uenced groups like Count Basie 2 Stripped down instrumentation a Two or three horns b Plus percussion section B Add vocalist to the miX 1 Usually male singer with strong blues voice 2 Called quotblues shoutersquot C Songs a miXture of hokum blues jazz and popular music D Uptempo numbers with shuf e rhythms often boogiewoogie feel E Riffbased accompaniments 1 But not as smooth as swing jazz 2 More raucous quothonkingquot sound F Syncopated four or eightbeat rhythms G Lots of showmanship involved H Earliest and most successful of these was Louis Jordan 1 Arguably lSt RampB artist 2 Rhythm and blues one side of blues as evolved after WWII 3 EX Choo choo ch boogie a Fourbeat shuf e rhythm and boogiewoogie walking bass b Entirely riffbased i Permeates entire teXture ii Including melody iii Kind of gimmicky opening saX riff iv Horn riff under verses c Not a 12 bar blues verse and refrain form d Boogie woogie piano solo e Followed by verserefrain f SaX solo built from riffs g Compare to Tight Like That IV Electric blues A New style develops in cities as result of Great Migration 1 New environment social conditions concerns 2 Typical blues venue shifts from small jukes to larger clubs 3 Informed by country blues style a Clear ties to Mississippi Delta blues b Little in uence from commercial music styles 4 Collective performance the norm B Blues band 1 guitar 2 upright bass 3 drummer 4 harmonica or piano 5 Role of each instrument becomes standardized C Characteristics 1 More regular forms than country blues a 12 or 16 bar blues b versechorus blues form c Versechorus blues form where either verse or chorus is a 12bar blues 2 Dense often riffbased texture 3 Strong rhythm section laying in backbeat 4 Electronic ampli cation a Some blues players using electric guitars in early 1930s b Becomes norm after WWII c Requires ampli cation of singer bass and harmonica as well 5 Call and response with vocal like responses from harmonica or guitar D Muddy Waters McKinley Morganfield 1915 1983 1 quotDiscoveredquot in Mississippi in 1941 by Alan LomaX while recording for Library of Congress 2 Moved to Chicago shortly after 3 Major in uence on every blues player since 4 Hoochie Coochie Man a Waters accompanied by piano bass harmonica b Verse i Stop time now almost blues cliche ii Big nasty 1 12 beat riff followed by 2 12 beats for vocals c Chorus i Laid back shuf e rhythm b 8bar blues d dense texture e Multiple rhythmic layers f Hoodoo lyrics i Hoodoo Southern African American folk magic ii Contains some African retentions aa High John the Conqueror root bb Black cat bone cc Mojo V The Latin tinge part 2 New Orleans RampB A AfroCuban in uence surfaces in rhythm and blues in New Orleans B Professor Longhair Roy Head 1 Few major hits 2 But very in uential 7 mentors large number of younger New Orleans musicians 3 Professor Longhair s BluesRhumba a Walking bass b boogiewoogie piano c eight beat shuf e rhythm d quotreversequot clave rhythm or 23 son rhythm i 1 2 3 4 X X X X X ii As opposed to l234l234 X X X X X C Fats Domino 1 Native of New Orleans 2 Very much in uenced by sound of Professor Longhair and Latinin uenced boogiewoogie 3 Signature of many of his songs fast even triplets 4 Thick dense sound particularly in middle register 5 What qualities do you hear in Mardi Gras in New Orleans a Thick texture often polyrhythmic as well b Clave rhythm c l2bar blues form D Bo Diddley by Bo Diddley Elias McDaniel l The Bo Diddley Beat aka hambone rhythm a Compare to clave rhythm b Slight modification but clearly AfroCuban origin c Connected to patting juba i Children s game ii By extension keeping time by patting on parts of body 2 Essentially children s song that is REALLY funky 3 Note the maracas a Latin percussion instrument b Before this rarely used outside of Latin music c Articulates eight beat rock rhythm 4 Accompaniment a single chord 5 Rhythm constitutes main interest of song V Not quite RampB doowop A Background 1 History of quartet singing in African American culture a Important social role in African American life after Civil War b Often attached to barbershops surprised 2 Most visible examples gospel quartets B Doowop or vocal harmony groups 1 Basically gospel vocal quartet sound but with secular lyrics a Important precursors i Mills Brothers ii Ink Spots 2 Mostly urban phenomenon of 40s and 50s 3 Major characteristics a Harmonizing in thirds b Falsetto obbligato 7 requisite high part c Prominent bass singer d Songs are l2bar blues versechorus or AABA form e Emphasis on rhythmic accentuation i Often via scat singing ii Using voice to imitate instruments or percussive sounds iii Also important in bebop 7 newjazz sound of 1940s aa Small ensembles replace big bands bb Melodies convoluted chromatic cc Disjunct melodic lines and wide leaps dd Rhythmically aggressive 4 Frequently crossed over to pop charts often in cover versions a Hit songs rerecorded by a different group b Most often RampB hits covered by white artists a But remake that could be played on pop radio stations b And appeal to mainstream white audience c Often single artist or group did covers of particular RampB artists a Crew Cuts 7 redid Orioles tunes b Most infamous 7 Pat Boone covers of Buddy Holly tunes c Also black groups that covered white pop hits i These often involve new interpretation ii Different arrangements stylistic shifts C Comparing gospel quartets and doowop 1 Compare The Chords Sh Boom to Jesus I 3911 Never Forget 2 Differences a Sh Boom more like pop song b How i Harmonies more compleX than blues but not much ii Melody iii versechorus form not based on blues iv Triplets in background vocals na na na na na na in chorus 3 Similarities a Vocal percussion light b Harmonies in vocals c No significant instrumental accompaniment D Epitome of the slow doowop style Flamingos I Only Have Eyes for You 1 Slow tempo 2 Very much in uenced by pop 3 Triplets in accompaniment 4 Scat singing in riffbased accompaniment doowopchbop 5 Fairly compleX harmonies E Coasters the opposite of most doowop 1 Fair assessment 2 Listen to Young Blood 7 how is it different from ShBoom a Heavy backbeat b Humor c Tells a story d breaks e Faster tempo f More percussive backing vocals VI Gospel in uences in rock and roll A Important component of RampB B Ampli ed by performers with strong gospel backgrounds C Sam Cooke 1 Former lead singer of Soul Stirrers 2 Began recording secular material in 1956 3 Pioneered popgospel style 4 EX You Send Me a Gospel traits i Melismatic ourishes ii Effortless control of full vocal range iii Emotional connection to material soul b Pop i Arrangement aa discreet instrumentals bb white background singers in pop style cc Subdued time keeping D Ray Charles 1 Raised in Florida but in uenced by West Coast RampB pianists like Nat King Cole and Charles Brown 2 Earliest recordings in blues crooner style 3 Moves to New Orleans starts to incorporate gospel in uences a Some early songs essentially secularized gospel b Getting happy feeling 4 What39s gospel in I Gotl Woman Besides that s it s a gospel song a Exuberance 7 getting happy feeling b Vocal melismas c Falsetto range d Gospel shout 5 What s RampBblues a Lyrics about relationship b Stop time c Electric bass d 8 beat rock rhythm on cymbal 6 What about What 61 I Say
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