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Define Music


ShredAstaire

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First a disclaimer: I have disliked any rap that I've heard.

 

Secondly I think music that is entirely instrumental is in a somewhat different class compared to any music - and even unaccompanied rap is still pretty much "music" - with a lyric.

 

Once a lyric is inserted, there's a different creature whether it has variations in pitch or not. Even a lyric in a language we may not understand will have an impact somewhat different from something strictly instrumental regardless of the emotion played through a device whether it be a primitive flute or a Lucille.

 

Having lived through the beatnik era with "music" backing a poetry reading - sometimes done well and sometimes a bit ludicrous - and some of the "talking blues" from before my own youth, yeah, it's similar to rap. A Lakota drum set, which includes a lyric with words often stretched nearly beyond understanding, is itself the melody as well, potentially the reverse of rap.

 

It's all music, but one's taste will define whether it's pleasing or not. That's regardless of skill of performers, the content or the style of performance.

 

The difficulty in defining "rap" as music is the difficulty of determining a difference between a poetry reading in speaking style and singing a lyric which is a different creature. We see those combined often, btw, in various styles of music by different performers. As the Wiki notes, it's not such a simple definition.

 

m

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If pitches of the singular elements of the song do not change, then I would not call it music.

 

Rap is NOT music. It's mostly monotone story telling with a cadence. I would rather call it poetry.

Not my cup of poetry tea, but poetry none-the-less.

 

 

Some of this new-age atonal crap they call music.. is music, as the pitches change, i.e. not monotone but there is neither a discernible key, nor melody. I can't stand it, but music, it is. My cat could play it walking across a keyboard... if'n I had a cat.

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First a disclaimer: I have disliked any rap that I've heard.

 

Secondly I think music that is entirely instrumental is in a somewhat different class compared to any music - and even unaccompanied rap is still pretty much "music" - with a lyric.

 

Once a lyric is inserted, there's a different creature whether it has variations in pitch or not. Even a lyric in a language we may not understand will have an impact somewhat different from something strictly instrumental regardless of the emotion played through a device whether it be a primitive flute or a Lucille.

 

Having lived through the beatnik era with "music" backing a poetry reading - sometimes done well and sometimes a bit ludicrous - and some of the "talking blues" from before my own youth, yeah, it's similar to rap. A Lakota drum set, which includes a lyric with words often stretched nearly beyond understanding, is itself the melody as well, potentially the reverse of rap.

 

It's all music, but one's taste will define whether it's pleasing or not. That's regardless of skill of performers, the content or the style of performance.

 

The difficulty in defining "rap" as music is the difficulty of determining a difference between a poetry reading in speaking style and singing a lyric which is a different creature. We see those combined often, btw, in various styles of music by different performers. As the Wiki notes, it's not such a simple definition.

 

m

Thats right Rap is not music..

 

Rap is a vocal style and Hip Hop is the musical style that ususaly goes with it.. Its a very common missconception about what Rap is, because they are so often connected most people think Rap and Hip Hop are the same thing.. They arnt.. Theres several rock bands who use rap like Rage Against the Machine, Chilli Peppers, Faith No More and many others.. And theres some Hip Hop that uses singing or spoken word..

 

And im not sure why most of this thread seems to have gone back to the is Rap music debate.. This topic is about the definition of any music and what it is that makes music different from just any sound (if indeed it does at all) :)

 

At the end of the day people will like what they like and thats all thats really important. And most artists will do what they like regardless of what people think anyway which ironically is probably one of the things that makes their fans like them lol

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In short... my view...

 

Music is structured sound, whether intentionally or not, I consider much of what I hear music. Beyond that, if I am to be more discerning (and noting of intent)... music is any series of sounds and silences written and intended to pique one's aurual interest (let's not get into indeterminism, that hangs on the fringe of control over the sound).

 

And to those who dismiss rap as non-music because it lacks melody... might do yourself a favor in checking out some Carnatic music, it is one of the most rhythmically heavy arts I've ever heard. I count rhythm as equally so important as melody, it's merely how you incorporate the two to me.

 

I may have a somewhat liberal view on it...

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As far as notes lacking a change of pitch goes...

 

Is this man capable of producing 'Music' with this quintessentially mono-tone instrument? Is it, in fact, a musical instrument at all?

 

original0.jpg

 

P.

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Actually...

 

I did not say Rap is not "music," I said that in effect, it exemplifies some difficulties with definition of a performance when a lyric is involved.

 

A roughly monotone solo performance without a rhythm and/or tonal backup is probably not. At that point it would be considered at minimum a reading of rhythmic poetry and at best perhaps something bardic.

 

I find it interesting to listen to some opera material such as Wagner's Liebestod done as an instrumental versus with the vocal. I find them different creatures that I can enjoy in different ways.

 

The harshness of such rap as I've heard is not pleasing to my ear, but I've gotta agree that it's probably more "musical" than some of the atonal "classical" stuff of Webern, for example.

 

But then when I look at my own arrangements of various "popular music" of the past century or century and a half, I have to note that it often tosses in "chords" that would have been unlikely for pieces in their own era - yet with a pretty standard western music concept of tonality that ... well, at worst it's soporific. <sigh> Perhaps that's due to my age. I dunno. Even the "screw you" sound of Link Wray's "Rumble" today seems to younger musicians as rather simplistic and "slow."

 

m

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Actually...

 

I did not say Rap is not "music," I said that in effect, it exemplifies some difficulties with definition of a performance when a lyric is involved.

 

A roughly monotone solo performance without a rhythm and/or tonal backup is probably not. At that point it would be considered at minimum a reading of rhythmic poetry and at best perhaps something bardic.

 

I find it interesting to listen to some opera material such as Wagner's Liebestod done as an instrumental versus with the vocal. I find them different creatures that I can enjoy in different ways.

 

The harshness of such rap as I've heard is not pleasing to my ear, but I've gotta agree that it's probably more "musical" than some of the atonal "classical" stuff of Webern, for example.

 

But then when I look at my own arrangements of various "popular music" of the past century or century and a half, I have to note that it often tosses in "chords" that would have been unlikely for pieces in their own era - yet with a pretty standard western music concept of tonality that ... well, at worst it's soporific. <sigh> Perhaps that's due to my age. I dunno. Even the "screw you" sound of Link Wray's "Rumble" today seems to younger musicians as rather simplistic and "slow."

 

m

 

That quote was not really amied at you.. You are always kind, knowledgeable and gracefull in your posts. Id never think you actually thought that :)

 

I just wanted to point out that Rap/HipHop link that is so often missunderstood :) But yes some of the posters on here and the other Rap thread have actually said that. And anyone who dismisses a whole genre of music like that is just silly ;) (and probably hasnt heard enough to actually make that sort of judgement)

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I know some classical music has a "silent beat" with no percussive equipment involved and it's still music. Most commercial rap/hip hop have a verse AND a hook or something else. The hook can be a chorus with a melody. Freesyle Rap is not real music to me but rather incomplete music. A hook doesn't have to be a chorus or a melody but rather a change in tonality, delivery in my mind is music. You can even put in harmony in your rap song. In my mind it's the structure that has two or more parts to it the make it music.

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What is not music: a short, atonal burp, two coughs that sound the same, a fart that nobody can hear except the farter (in know specific order). I can go on and on and on. We as human beings are VERY much limited so let's celebrate one other's talents for singing, dancing, and playing an instrument instead of dividing me from you and he from she and us from we. P.S. Is your last name Fudd by any chance, you wascally wabbit you.

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Furthermore this whole thread is kind of degrating to different cultures, kind of looking down upon them in general. The argument, I think has gotten microsized to the point where it is us vs. them. How about we actually listen and study Rap/Hip Hop instead of acting like it's the other person's beleaguered music that's totally alien to us. It's time to shed our lilly-whiteness, stop *****-footing around topics and actually know about something before talking about it.

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Furthermore this whole thread is kind of degrating to different cultures, kind of looking down upon them in general. The argument, I think has gotten microsized to the point where it is us vs. them. How about we actually listen and study Rap/Hip Hop instead of acting like it's the other person's beleaguered music that's totally alien to us. It's time to shed our lilly-whiteness and actually know about something before talking about it.

Actually, this IS an effort to learn and educate.

 

Sometimes, friendly arguments are a great way to explore different points of view while at the same time exorcising the cerebral organ.

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Actually, this IS an effort to learn and educate.

 

Sometimes, friendly arguments are a great way to explore different points of view while at the same time exorcising the cerebral organ.

+1 I was gonna say the same thing :)

 

Thats the whole point of these forums to discuss what we all think and compare ideas and MAYBE just MAYBE learn something new. I dont think alot of the comments are taken seriously by most people.. Its all just a larf really :) (even though some people insist on stating their opinion a bit too rigorously ;))

 

If someone is just trolling and you really dont like their opinion then just dont respond to them.. its as simple as that. But if you do respond dont expect to change their minds.

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Again no real perspective. We're talking music not rocket science. In my mind it's soley entertainment, what is music and what isn't. I know most comments on this site are pro-rock so I think we all need to step back and don't point out that in which can divide us and expoit the unequalness of the world.

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Actually, this IS an effort to learn and educate.....Sometimes, friendly arguments are a great way to explore different points of view while at the same time exorcising the cerebral organ.

+1 from me too.

 

[thumbup]

 

It's one of the most attractive aspects of this virtual community collected here. I'm learning new things from many of you chaps (and ladies) pretty much on a daily basis......although in my case my cerebral organ needs more in the way of exercising rather than exorcising....

 

[laugh]

 

I hope......:unsure:

 

P.

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Boy it looks like a got a real good pseudo-education on music today. I guess the thread really did generate brain signals that have been fixed on head-banging and guitar shredding. Next time maybe I can totally blur the lines of education and entertaiment on my next post and cause somemore controversy.

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I think people just get hung up on "Music is what I like and what speaks to me" which is the definition of Art, not necessarily music. The three tones that NBC uses to accompany their logo is music, but can hardly be called Art.

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Ok... RE: "rap."

 

Yes, I think a great deal of criticism of "rap" is cultural. Note I said "cultural," not "racial."

 

OTOH, I think a great deal of criticism of Wagner's operas has been cultural as well.

 

I enjoy reading Jane Austin as much as I enjoy listening to rap, and frankly I think it's from the same source, and that's "cultural." Neither speak to me or my literary, musical or overall artistic sensibilities.

 

Yet I can listen to a Lakota drum set for hours; a good piper for as long or more. I can literally get misty-eyed listening to Wagner's Liebestod. I love Celtic and US southern mountain folkie stuff and some cowboy music and some good "hard" old fashioned country and blues by the old guys from pre-electric to BB and the younger set.

 

Rap, I think, is almost like atonal music especially in its earlier years in that it has a counterculture appeal that does reeeeally appeal to a certain cultural group. I can take Bartok string quartets about once a year. I could listen to dowop for months at a time.

 

Why?

 

Culture. It's how we interpret our cultural environment. Some of that certainly will change as we age, but the bottom line is that it's how we take where we've literally been and interpret it.

 

For what it's worth, I'm perfectly happy smelling a cattle feedlot next door but find urban traffic smells somewhat offensive. Urban-raised friends don't even notice the traffic smells but find the smell of even a rural pasture offensive if there's a cow pie in there someplace.

 

Culture...

 

I also wonder what the hip hoppers and rappers would think of reading Petronius' Satyricon or having it read to them if they had difficulties with literacy. I find it quite interesting to read, but my own - and perhaps Petronius' own - sensibilities also find it a rather depressing perspective on mankind in general...

 

Whatever. <grin> BTW, one should note that Satyricon likely has never been on a juvenile or youth recommended reading list and teens might choose not to bring a copy home. But then one might say "ditto" about some of Chaucer, and he's been an English language author famed for centuries.

 

m

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As soon as you try to define anything, someone pushes the definition. Music has nothing to do with aesthetics or entertainment or structure or lyrics. At its bare minimum music is rhythm and pitch and nothing else.

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...Next time maybe I can totally blur the lines of education and entertaiment on my next post and cause somemore controversy.

Whyever not? Controversy stimulates both Thought and often subsequently, as a direct consequence, Discussion/Debate.

 

Education and entertainment, of course, needn't be mutually exclusive and, therefore, it's rarely necessary to blur the lines too much. There is a great deal to be learned from those who entertain us.

 

Certainly entertainment can be and end in itself, but I happen to like the "Old Dog Learning New Tricks" process.

 

P.

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What is not music: a short, atonal burp, two coughs that sound the same, a fart that nobody can hear except the farter (in know specific order). I can go on and on and on. We as human beings are VERY much limited so let's celebrate one other's talents for singing, dancing, and playing an instrument instead of dividing me from you and he from she and us from we. P.S. Is your last name Fudd by any chance, you wascally wabbit you.

 

No my name is not Fudd.

your answer tells me that you did not catched my drift...

 

But in music it is the same as in any other art. It is not only good or bad because you think it is good or bad. There are kinds of music performances that you or me prolly don't like or don't understand, but it does not mean that is not music because YOU don't find it is music.

 

If anyone produces sounds (how ever it is produced) and find that it is music...then it is music. If anyone on this earth hears a sound and find it is music than it is music. And you can say what ever you want about that but who are you to disagree...you cannot discus about taste. Define art is something very very difficult and also very personal.

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