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Blod 9, Choi

The connection between music and Christmas is that most of the songs associated with christmas are usually the same type of melody and genre. In addition, they are all also mostly slow and steady with a nice catchy tune that is easy to follow along to. They all include bells and chimes, with a jolly feel to each song. It is in almost every family’s tradition to listen to Christmas songs when it is almost Christmas time. 

If I wrote about this topic instead of my own, I would have included adult Christmas songs and children Christmas songs. This is because there are some Christmas songs that children may not listen to like “Baby it’s Cold Outside”. I would connect these songs by seeing the background of the making of the song, and the exact story behind the lyrics. This is because there are many controversy in connection to this song because it seems like sexual assault towards the women singing. Another song I’d add on to my topic presentation is Christmas songs related to religion and Christmas. This is because there are many different music that is associated with Christian music and Christmas music since it is the day Jesus was born. For example, “Joy to The World” is one of the most popular hymns that are sung on Christmas. I would find differences in the tone of the song and melody, compared to regular jolly Christmas music. 

Blog 8, Choi

In the song Democracy written and sung by Leonard Cohen it talks about his views of America. Although he was a Canadian, he cared about America and wanted people to listen to his song because he was horrified and worried about what America was slowly becoming. Some of his lyrics were great representations to what was happening in America today. For example, from the protesters of Black lives matter the lyrics “it’s coming from the sorrow in the street, the holy places where the races meet. Another example are the feminists that are also protesting for equal rights, he said “from the homicidal bitchin’/ that goes down in every kitchen/ to determine who will serve and who will eat”. Although he passed away recently, many Americans still play his music for the wise words and opinions in his song. It is known that if words don’t hinder someones feeling a poem or song will, which is why people listen to these types of songs, possibly to pass on the message. 

The beginning of the song you could hear a snare drum that closely sounded similar to the beginning of an American marching band. This song is a genre of pop as it was widely recognized and played by many people all around the world. His music video shows different pictures of the history of America and could be heard saying U.S.A multiple times. I think his addition of drums in his song are a very effective way to create a political feel to it. Not only does the title of the song give away a political vibe, but his use of instruments also show a great example of a political song. 

Blog 7, Choi

The role the Sema ceremony plays is the role of meeting their soul with God. There are people that come together and sing praises to their God. In the music of the Mevlevi Sufi order they dance to experience the direct spiritual union with God. There are two parts of the Sema ceremony. The first part is Taksim which is “improvisation on ney (flute) outlining the maqam (scale) used in the rest of the ceremony free meter. The second part is Pesrev where “composition, not improvised strict form and meter ney, plucked and bowed string instruments, drum, cymbal”. They use this ceremony to get closer with God, and have fun and celebrate. This is all part of the Turkish tradition and it is supposed to be a lively, upholding ceremony. 

When someone thinks of Christian music, most likely the first song they might think of is Amazing Grace. It is very popular amongst Christian gospel music and is used for many things in their religious aspects. Coming from experience Amazing Grace is one of those songs that could be used for various amounts of things like prayer, worship, dance, offering. It could even just be used as background music to set the mood for the sermon. 

The Sema ceremony and Amazing Grace have some similarities that include the way they use the music. Both use their music to get close to God in some type of way. Although Amazing Grace could be sung without instruments, they are still used with background melodies accompanied by piano and someone singing. Just like the Sema ceremony, Amazing Grace could be used as a dance song as well, people usually compose body worship to help show the emotions from the past through dance and music to create a stronger bond and feeling towards their God and Jesus. 

Blog 6, Choi

When I was little my mom made me and my brother learn korean traditional music. There was this one song that every korean person knew while growing up called arirang. It is one the most popular korean traditional songs. It is usually played with the Korean instrument the gayageum. It is a Korean board with 12 silk strings, 12 movable bridges, and a convex upper surface. Not many people know how to play this instrument because it is very hard and difficult to carry everywhere since it is very heavy. The song arirang originates from Jeongseon, Gangwon Province in the mid 19th to 20th century. Most of the time when people perform arirang now, it is usually for Korean new year parades you see in like Korea town and in the city, and they wear Korean traditional attire and makeup. Although the gayageum is usually played by itself, however there are many other korean instruments that can be accompanied like the jjanggu, and buk. They are like drums and are very traditional and different from the drums you would see normally. The genre is definitely still tied to my ethnicity because no matter how modern it gets changed to, it will always sound like traditional Korean folk and nothing can change where it originated and how it is perceived and sound. 


Choi, blog 5

Out of these four different performances I think I would feel the most comfortable at the jazz club. This is because I prefer jazz music over the other three performances. Places like the orchestra concert requires your full attention, however concerts like the jazz club you can easily be distracted and still be able to enjoy the music without feeling like you are disrupting the performers. I would feel the least comfortable at the chamber music recital because I would honestly accidentally fall asleep watching it. There also doesn’t seem to be many people actually watching it which would be uncomfortable if you needed to go to the bathroom or if you were just “accidentally” falling asleep. I feel like small concerts like that make me feel awkward and out of place because the actual performers would be able to see you and I don’t like that. In the jazz club I feel like I would expect the performers to hype up the crowd and make it fun for the people watching it. They seemed to groove through the music and really looked like they were having fun. I think as the listener I would have to look like I am vibing with them too because if you are the only one that doesn’t look like you are having fun I feel like you would get called out by the people performing. However, concerts like the symphony music recital the performers wouldn’t really talk to the audience because they are too busy looking at their music sheets and the guy in the front. The audience however probably act very civil and mannered. Phones are definitely off and only use the bathroom during intermission.

Blog 3, Choi

In the present day of music making, many artists today use technology to create different sounds and melodies for the basis of their songs. Music technology can be defined as a knowledge, techniques, and tools that help humans or animals to achieve goals. This basically means that music could be made from literally anything that creates our interpretation of sound and music. New technological advances like autotune and turntables help artists express and create different versions of their type of music they are used to producing. I feel like when people use autotune it is usually to create cool new versions of their original voice. Music nowadays are so diverse, that many artists try to differentiate themselves by adding cool new sounds and alternatives to their usual sound. Artists like Travis Scott, and Billie Eilish use autotune to create different sounds for their music, which most of their fans love. Although their voices without autotune sounds just fine, spicing it up with the help of autotune help make their music a bit more popular and enjoyable. Autotune sounds like a cool instrument to create music with, but I have never used it in my life. It sounds like something I would definitely try in the future to see how it really changes your voice. Autotune is noticeable in the song Antidote by Travis Scott, he uses this instrument to enhance his usual voice. This helps create dynamic in his song and nice consonant harmonies with his overlapping vocals. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KnZ8h3MRuYg

Blog 2, Choi

In many songs today, there are a number of different musical elements that are used to create numerous styles of music. In pieces like Alapana from Sitar, Sarode, and Tabla, as well as Kyrie from the Pope Marcellus Mass, you could hear a variety of different musical elements which include texture, harmony, and timbre.

In the song Alapana from Sitar, Sarode, and Tabla, the musical elements, texture, and timbre could be found while listening to the piece. To be more specific, one thing I noticed while listening to this piece was that it was a biphony. Biphony is when there are two separate lines, consisting of melody and a drone. If you listen closely to this music, there is a light staticky sound heard in the background of the song. The same number of chords are being played repeatedly as well. Chords are when three or more pitches that sound at the same time, are built according to specific rules. The musical element timbre is also shown in this piece, as there are instruments that sound like woodwind, strings, and percussion could be heard all throughout the song.

To add on, the song Kyrie from the Pope Marcellus Mass uses the musical elements of texture and harmony. To be more specific, throughout the song heterophony could be heard. Heterophony is a single basic melody performed slightly differently by two or more performers. There were a bunch of different pitches of voices all singing in slightly different paces than each other. In addition, the musical element harmony was also heard throughout the songs, more specifically consonant, which are harmonies that sound pleasing. Although there were a number of voices singing, they all seem to match perfectly together creating a nice, and well put together sound.

Blog 1, Choi

The Medieval period took place in 430 ca through 1430 following the history of Europe, starting from the collapse of the Roman empire to the start of the Renaissance. During this time period, Western notations was introduced, mostly used for composing music. In addition to this, a practice of writing the same melodies that sound at the same time was introduced more specifically called polyphony. Reading and learning about this musical era made me realize, this was the start of music. The Medieval period was a time where music was just taking place and curiosity filled the air. When I think of the Medieval times I think of knights in shining armor, and fairytale like princes and princesses living in brick castles. The textbook describes this time periods music as just a single free flowing line with a vocal line. They were just introduced with adding poetry into their music, so it was a start of something new for them.

The composer I decided to pick was named Perotin (1200), and I listened to his song Beata Viscera. This piece was very beautiful in a way where I really felt like I was physically living in the Medieval era. The song sounded like it could be the background music for the movie Narnia because it was so fitting and a bit spooky in a way. I think the way the textbook described this genre of music was spot on because there weren’t many instruments or other sounds heard in this piece. It really was just one string of music and a vocal line. Although there wasn’t much that went to create this piece, this song gave me the chills and goosebumps. However, when I thought of music from the medieval era, I thought more of a dancing and upbeat genre of music. This is because when I pictured the medieval era I pictured knights on horses jousting and celebrating with a cup of beer, at a pub dancing. Except, this piece by Perotin sounded like a church affiliated type of music, and definitely not a song you would dance to.