A musical argument is a means of creating tension through the relation of expressive content and musical form:
In music, tension is the anticipation music creates in a listener's mind for relaxation or release. For example, tension may be produced through reiteration, increase in dynamic level, gradual motion to a higher or lower pitch, or (partial) syncopations between consonance and dissonance.
Emotional expressions in psychology are
Over the last 200 years, researchers have proposed different and often competing models explaining emotion and emotional expression, going all the way back to Charles Darwin. However, all theorists in emotion agree that all normal, functioning humans experience and express emotions with their voices, faces, and bodies. The expression of romantic feelings are shaped by cultural and social factors.
In music, Form refers to the structure of a musical composition or performance. In "Worlds of Music", Jeff Todd Titon suggests that a number of organizational elements may determine the formal structure of a piece of music, such as "the arrangement of musical units of rhythm, melody, and or/ harmony that show repetition or variation, the arrangement of the instruments, or the way a symphonic piece is orchestrated", among other factors.
music is representational: the musical form relates to an expressive content and is a means of creating a growing tension; this is what is usually called the musical argument.
Representation is the use of signs that stand in for and take the place of something else. It is through representation that people organize the world and reality through the act of naming its elements. Signs are arranged in order to form semantic constructions and express relations.— Wim Mertens (1999)
Experimental musics may use process or indeterminacy rather than argument.
Process music is music that arises from a process. It may make that process audible to the listener, or the process may be concealed.
Indeterminacy is a composing approach in which some aspects of a musical work are left open to chance or to the interpreter's free choice. John Cage, a pioneer of indeterminacy, defined it as "the ability of a piece to be performed in substantially different ways".
The musical argument may be characterized as the primary flow and current idea being presented in a piece:
The very definition of musical argument is something that keeps going, and you uncover new details and new combinations. A musical argument is not the same as a verbal argument. A verbal argument implies that there's [ sic ] two sides; a musical argument makes the two sides one thing, like counterpoint. A fugue is like that; a double fugue, at least, takes two different ideas and shows you how they relate, and it shows you how they're the same thing.— Phil Lesh (1982)
Thus one may hear of a musical argument being interrupted, extended, or repeated.[ original research? ]
Repetition is important in music, where sounds or sequences are often repeated. It may be called restatement, such as the restatement of a theme. While it plays a role in all music, with noise and musical tones lying along a spectrum from irregular to periodic sounds,(Moravcsik, 114)(Rajagopal, ) it is especially prominent in specific styles.
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A definition of music endeavors to give an accurate and concise explanation of music's basic attributes or essential nature and it involves a process of defining what is meant by the term music. Many authorities have suggested definitions, but defining music turns out to be more difficult than might first be imagined and there is ongoing debate. A number of explanations start with the notion of music as organized sound but they also highlight that this is perhaps too broad a definition and cite examples of organized sound that are not defined as music, such as human speech, and sounds found in both natural and industrial environments. The problem of defining music is further complicated by the influence of culture in music cognition.
In music, a fugue is a contrapuntal compositional technique in two or more voices, built on a subject that is introduced at the beginning in imitation and which recurs frequently in the course of the composition. It is not to be confused with a fuguing tune, which is a style of song popularized by and mostly limited to early American music and West Gallery music. A fugue usually has three main sections: an exposition, a development and a final entry that contains the return of the subject in the fugue's tonic key. Some fugues have a recapitulation.
The Musical Offering, BWV 1079, is a collection of keyboard canons and fugues and other pieces of music by Johann Sebastian Bach, all based on a single musical theme given to him by Frederick the Great, to whom they are dedicated. The Ricercar a 6, a six-voice fugue which is regarded as the high point of the entire work, was put forward by the musicologist Charles Rosen as the most significant piano composition in history. This ricercar is also occasionally called the Prussian Fugue, a name used by Bach himself. The composition features in the opening section of Douglas Hofstadter's Pulitzer Prize winning book Gödel, Escher, Bach (1979).
Sir Donald Francis Tovey was a British musical analyst, musicologist, writer on music, composer, conductor and pianist. He had been best known for his Essays in Musical Analysis and his editions of works by Bach and Beethoven, but since the 1990s his compositions have been recorded and performed with increasing frequency. The recordings have mostly been well received by reviewers.
In poetic and musical meter, and by analogy in publishing, an anacrusis is a brief introduction. Greek: ἀνάκρουσις (anákrousis), literally, "pushing up".
The Critique of Pure Reason is a 1781 book by the German philosopher Immanuel Kant, in which the author seeks to determine the limits and scope of metaphysics. A heavily-revised second edition was published in 1787. Also referred to as Kant's "First Critique", it was followed by the Critique of Practical Reason (1788) and the Critique of Judgment (1790). In the preface to the first edition, Kant explains that by a "critique of pure reason" he means not "a critique of books and systems, but of the faculty of reason in general, in respect of all knowledge after which it may strive independently of all experience" and that he aims to reach a decision about "the possibility or impossibility of metaphysics". The First Critique is often viewed as culminating several centuries of early-modern philosophy, and inaugurating modern philosophy.
Juliette Nadia Boulanger was a French composer, conductor, and teacher. She is notable for having taught many of the leading composers and musicians of the 20th century. She also performed occasionally as a pianist and organist.
24 Preludes and Fugues, Op. 87 by Dmitri Shostakovich is a set of 24 preludes and fugues for solo piano, one in each of the major and minor keys of the chromatic scale. The cycle was composed in 1950 and 1951 while Shostakovich was in Moscow and premiered by pianist Tatiana Nikolayeva in Leningrad in December 1952; it was published the same year. The complete work takes about two and a half hours to play. It is one of several examples of music written in all major and/or minor keys.
In classical music, musical development is a process by which a musical idea is communicated in the course of a composition. It refers to the transformation and restatement of initial material. Development is often contrasted with musical variation, which is a slightly different means to the same end. Development is carried out upon portions of material treated in many different presentations and combinations at a time, while variation depends upon one type of presentation at a time.
Absolute music is music that is not explicitly "about" anything; in contrast to program music, it is non-representational. The idea of absolute music developed at the end of the 18th century in the writings of authors of early German Romanticism, such as Wilhelm Heinrich Wackenroder, Ludwig Tieck and E. T. A. Hoffmann but the term was not coined until 1846 where it was first used by Richard Wagner in a programme to Beethoven's Ninth Symphony.
In music, a subject is the material, usually a recognizable melody, upon which part or all of a composition is based. In forms other than the fugue, this may be known as the theme.
A Picardy third, Picardy cadence or, in French, tierce picarde, is a major chord of the tonic at the end of a musical section that is either modal or in a minor key. This is achieved by raising the third of the expected minor triad by a semitone to create a major triad, as a form of resolution.
The Große Fuge, Op. 133, is a single-movement composition for string quartet by Ludwig van Beethoven. An immense double fugue, it was universally condemned by contemporary critics. A reviewer writing for Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung in 1826 described the fugue as "incomprehensible, like Chinese" and "a confusion of Babel". However, critical opinion of the work has risen steadily since the beginning of the 20th century. The work is now considered among Beethoven's greatest achievements. Igor Stravinsky said of it, "[it is] an absolutely contemporary piece of music that will be contemporary forever."
In music, especially western popular music, a bridge is a contrasting section that prepares for the return of the original material section. In a piece in which the original material or melody is referred to as the "A" section, the bridge may be the third eight-bar phrase in a thirty-two-bar form, or may be used more loosely in verse-chorus form, or, in a compound AABA form, used as a contrast to a full AABA section.
Wim Mertens is a Flemish Belgian composer, countertenor vocalist, pianist, guitarist, and musicologist.
The Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Handel, Op. 24, is a work for solo piano written by Johannes Brahms in 1861. It consists of a set of twenty-five variations and a concluding fugue, all based on a theme from George Frideric Handel's Harpsichord Suite No. 1 in B♭ major, HWV 434.
Musical improvisation is the creative activity of immediate musical composition, which combines performance with communication of emotions and instrumental technique as well as spontaneous response to other musicians. Sometimes musical ideas in improvisation are spontaneous, but may be based on chord changes in classical music and many other kinds of music. One definition is a "performance given extempore without planning or preparation." Another definition is to "play or sing (music) extemporaneously, by inventing variations on a melody or creating new melodies, rhythms and harmonies." Encyclopædia Britannica defines it as "the extemporaneous composition or free performance of a musical passage, usually in a manner conforming to certain stylistic norms but unfettered by the prescriptive features of a specific musical text. Improvisation is often done within a pre-existing harmonic framework or chord progression. Improvisation is a major part of some types of 20th-century music, such as blues, jazz, and jazz fusion, in which instrumental performers improvise solos, melody lines and accompaniment parts.
"Close to the Edge" is a song by the English progressive rock band Yes, featured on their fifth studio album Close to the Edge (1972). The song is over 18 minutes in length and takes up the entire first side of the album. It consists of four movements.