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March 09 2016


Where Is All The New Music?

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We have come to place music into two broad categories; those of New Music and that of Traditional Music. Music before the turn of the century originates to be thought of as the Traditional. This Traditional Music gets lumped together with what most people refer to as Classical. This classification is really well fixed in people's minds that even traditional rock music is called Classic Rock.

The what are known as Classical Music is really about three different periods that have been all different in their practice. Having said that, there are some differences in the background music after the turn in the century that are distinctive enough to warrant the label of latest Music.

Prior to the turn of the century, all music was 'goal oriented' or 'tonal,' and thus there was one chord in the particular composition that has been the goal or resting reason for the music's chord progression. After this chord was reached, the background music sounded finished and also the music would not sound finished until this chord was reached. Hence this chord would show-up with the very end of the music but additionally at the ends of all phrases or melodies, virtually. It would not be the same chord for each piece of music but relies on the 'key' of the music. That's the meaning of 'key.' If the piece of music is within the 'key of C,' then your chord it must end on is C. A piece in the 'key of G' would end on G and so on.

Well. after a century or so, composers got the itch to try something new and so find the first examples of the modern Music. Claude Debussy has often been known as the 'Father of Modern Music,' with his fantastic works began to make tonality ambiguous by utilizing other types of scales for example the Whole Tone Scale.

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Some composers went beyond this and tossed out tonality as a whole. The most notable example of this was the Serial Music composed by Arnold Schoenberg. Serial Music used a scale of twelve tones (rather than the traditional eight) and studiously avoided any note/chord relationship. Some other composers like John Cage created what was called 'Chance Music,' the location where the notes in the piece were determined by the throw of dice.

Meanwhile, only at that same time, jazz had been made. Jazz and Blues returned to tonality having a vengeance. However there are many other elements added that qualified this as Tunes. The difference in instrumentation, with all the electric guitar and the greatly expanded role of the drums were certainly stuff that had not gone on before and so the birth of jazz as well as development into the pop of today certainly fits into the category of New Music.

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