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  1. Microphones - different types and their uses in performances.

    The two most used Dynamic microphones are the Shure SM-57 and SM-58. The SM-57 is mainly used for capturing guitar amplifiers and snare drums as it has a large frequency range and can withstand the high gain. The SM-57 is suited for guitar amplifiers as it can pick up the lower frequencies of an electric guitar, but is also very good at picking up the higher frequencies used on the higher frets and even harmonics, as shown in the grid below - The SM-57 can be placed against a guitar amplifier in a number of ways to pick up the desired audio signal for the user.

    • Word count: 2307
  2. Sonic Arts Repetoire Essay- Poeme Electronique

    This separation is illustrated by the two main contrasting electronic interpretations, which are present throughout the piece. The use of various musical cues indicate the change in story and section. These cues take the form of what appears to sounds like a pitch-transformed 'animal cry' loop, which gradually fades into the background with increasing densities of reverb effects that reflect this (for example, at '00:56'). Alternatively, it can take the form of a certain sound in the piece that also gradually fades into the background,but is artificially enhanced with delay and attack effects.

    • Word count: 2140
  3. Can Debussy's Music be accurately described as Impressionist?

    Impressionism as a visual art form grew out of a frustration with traditional 19th Century styles of painting, resulting in vivid, colourful works where the artist's interpretation of the subject have had great influence upon the final result, with a particular focus on nature in all its forms rather than more traditional subjects. Oscar Thompson, cited in Schmitz, states that the aim of Impressionism is 'to mirror not the object but the emotional reaction to the object; to interpret a fugitive impression rather than to seize upon and fix the permanent reality'.2 Palmer argues that an important focus of Impressionistic

    • Word count: 2301
  4. Kt(TM)a Kabanov(TM)s psychological state fluctuates throughout Leo Janek(TM)s opera. How is this indicated in the music?

    1 Jan�cek, K�t'a Kabanov�. Vocal Score p. 11 Towards the end of Act 1 Scene 1 K�t'a enters. The music which accompanies this is shown in figure 2 and as it is a variation of K�t'a's theme it is pentatonic. Mellers describes it as meandering, but becoming 'increasingly wayward, suggesting a straining at the leash.'5 A crescendo coupled with an accelerando helps to build up tension and imitate the effect of straining at the leash. This helps to convey K�t'a's confused mental state about her love for another man, a fact not revealed until the next scene, however.

    • Word count: 2454
  5. A Critical Review on the Publication of Ethnicity, Identity and Music(TM)

    The discussion flows onto the monograph by Seeger (1987) where Stokes goes on to say that researchers in this sector can overcome the theoretical divide between the study of music and the study of society. Stokes makes it clear that anthropologists should take on board music and performance as an essential aspect of their discipline. The collection of essays in this book supports his case unerringly. The remainder of the introduction is split up into subsections which draw out the themes of the book: Performance and Place; Ethnicity; Identity and Nation State; Hybridity and Difference; Ethnicity, Class and Media; Gender and Identity.

    • Word count: 2285
  6. Write an analysis of the soundtrack and its interaction with image in a film of your choice.

    Claudia Gorbman supplements this by suggesting there is 'subordination' to a story. Subordination means 'classic narrative sound' films are constructed in such a way that the spectator often does not consciously hear the film score. This is based on the idea that the spectators' attention is focused on the narrative events in the film. (1997, p.31) However there is still a reason why composed scores are used. In this case they create an atmosphere which makes it easy for the audience to relax, it also guides them on what direction the mood of the film is going and also how they should be feeling.

    • Word count: 2577
  7. What does it mean to understand music?

    It is easy enough for someone to say that they can understand music in terms of being able to make sense of the notes on the page well enough to offer some interpretation of them, being capable of 'translating' the notation to sound, but I would be reluctant to describe this type of understanding of music as any more than an understanding of a transcription of the music, not necessarily an understanding of the music itself. If someone can analyse a piece of music, describe the harmonic structure, the form, development etc.

    • Word count: 2030
  8. Historical Methods and the Issues relating to Popular Music

    (Kivy, Peter. 2002. p 11) 'Histography' is the study of the practice of history which explores the examination and problems of historical writing. There are many processes towards the writing of history such as who writes it and for what reasons, which will affect the way history is understood to take place. Is it the media with the music press who writes these histories? Although the media are very powerful the public still have to agree with the media for it to become popular as popular music means so much more, in terms of cultural significance.

    • Word count: 2936
  9. Free essay

    Sgt Peppers Lonely hearts Club band and 1960's

    It was a completely different album to what had been seen in Britain before. It 'caught rainbow confidence and colour of the 1960's' 1 (pg.113). Its new approach to music, design, and burst of psychedelic rock music even produced a cult in the USA 1 (pg.113-114) giving evidence that The Beatles were becoming a cultural phenomenon. 'In an unsystematic fashion it represented the life and times it was created in' 1 (pg.3). The Beatles were four men from Liverpool who wrote music from the influence of their surroundings and nostalgia; during playing Hamburg were they began all night gigs, they

    • Word count: 2056
  10. Advanced Composition Evaluation

    [know] what you want to say dramatically, emotionally, and psychologically; and [to know] your own strengths, weaknesses and capacity to produce" (P.131, Davis, R. (1999) Complete Guide to Film Scoring, Berklee Press). In film music has many aspects. It can be used physically to set the location and time period by using appropriate instruments and styles, and to intensify the on screen action. It can be used psychologically to create a mood; or reveal some unspoken thoughts or feelings, or unseen implications.

    • Word count: 2473
  11. Kant Essay

    Before the argument is developed it is crucial to define Kant's notion of 'beautiful', this instructs that a beautiful object causes harmony in our Imagination and Understanding, once this reaches a pleasurable level, then beauty is felt. This basic premise can't be rejected, as it is the basic principle of beauty, accepted by almost all writers save Clive Bell. Bell rejects that beauty provokes emotions,1 but this is highly implausible in light of the overwhelmingly support given to Kant. We have concluded a basic understanding of how we judge beautiful objects, but it doesn't help us with a definitive concept of beauty.

    • Word count: 2118
  12. Signal flow & the console

    This is where the input sound can be altered through the desk by increasing/ decreasing the amount of bass/ mid /treble boost that are altered through the desk. P (4) &P (5) are the higher end of the sounds and so moving one of these dials to the right would boost the hi end of the output sound and so would increase the hi-hats etc and generally make the sound more tinny. P(5) & P(6) & P(7) & P(8) are the available dials to alter the mid range although this is a very wide mid range and so the P(5)

    • Word count: 2085
  13. The Beatles Influence

    As an outlet form him rebellious acts, Lennon formed musical groups (Magill 226). In 1958, John met Paul McCartney, who as a team helped each other to master the guitar (Moritz Yearbook 1965 255). The second person to join Lennon and the Beatles was Paul McCartney. James Paul McCartney was born to Jim and Mary McCartney on June 8, 1942 in Allerton, England (Mortiz Yearbook 1965 251). Mary suddenly fell ill and died of breast cancer when Paul was at the age of fourteen. McCartney was a considerate son who was worthy of trust and an excellent student (White 123). He received a secondary education at the Liverpool Institute and achieved top-level grades.

    • Word count: 2028
  14. Popular Music History 2 - Heavy Metal.

    The third trend, which may be found in both American and British rock music of this period, was towards the heavy metal sound (featuring a predominantly long haired white male audience), frequently based in the chord structures of the blues but retaining from psychedelia an emphasis on technological effect and instrumental virtuosity. In groups on the edge of psychedelia - such as Blue Cheer, The Yardbirds, Cream, Jeff Beck, Jimi Hendrix, and Iron Butterfly - many of the stylistic traits that would become dominant within heavy metal were already in evidence: the cult of the lead guitarist, the 'power trio'

    • Word count: 2196
  15. Mimesis - Is music an imitative art?

    Likewise, the artist creates a mimetic painting by imitating shapes around him, trees, animals, other humans, and so on. However, neither the composer nor the artist imitates these things just for the sake of it, they are all trying to achieve something by doing this, and it is surely fair to say that they all know perfectly well why they are creating their works the way they are: a painting can set or represent a certain mood, while in a piece of music the composer either tries to express his own or someone else's deepest feelings or alternatively he tries to tell a story, not necessarily without words, but by imitating (or should this be representing?)

    • Word count: 2891
  16. To what extent did the composers of symphonies in the Soviet Unionmanage to comply with the strictures of state control of music whilst retaining a degree of creative individuality?

    The amorphous nature of music renders the notion of enforcement a difficult task. Can a language, which asserts it's-self subjectively and speaks no narrative be used to represent the cultural identity of ones country? Music accrues its meaning and definition through the interpretation of the individual listener and this translation will thus vary from person to person. Therefore, it can never be employed to represent the ideals of everybody. Composers such as Shostakovich and Prokoviev were all too familiar with this musical dilemma and the bulk of their work is littered with frequent contradictions in style, form and content as a response to state intervention.

    • Word count: 2772
  17. Punk rock in the 70's.

    Fashion in the mid to late '70's took a dramatic plunge from the glamour rock era (late 60's - early 70's). From suits and gowns to torn jeans and shirts, and marvellous make-up to tattoos and safety pin body piercings. Punks' weren't the most pleasingly aesthetic group to socialise with! Along with their ragged dress style, punks' flaunted their behaviour to go with their shocking visual appearance. Parents considered punks' to be an undesirable influence on their children due to the latent violence, explicit music, sexual attitudes, drug habits and the way punks' presented themselves both visually and musically.

    • Word count: 2245
  18. Avant-Garde Techniques.

    Another type of prepared piano is the tack piano. A tack piano has small nails secured into the hammers to create a more percussive sound. Other materials can be used i.e. covering the hammers with metal or leather to create different timbres. (Sadie, S. (1980). The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, Fifth Ed. p598). (Rich, A. (1995). American Pioneers: Ives to Cage and Beyond (1st ed.). pp149 - 152). Chance music was an invention that Cage used in all of his compositions from 1951.

    • Word count: 2371
  19. Compare and contrast four preludes from J.S Bach's 'The Well Tempered Clavier'.

    In J.S Bach's Preludes each prelude represents a distinct type of figuration, texture, form or technical problem. As was the case with Debussy where he established a unique identity at the start through melody (La Fille aux Cheveux de Lin), texture, harmonics (Voiles), ornaments (minstrels) or rhythm. Bach was writing during the Baroque period where he was a practical musician where he composed and performed. During the composing of the Well Tempered Clavier Bach lived in Cothen in 1717 where he worked as a chapel master and director of chamber music. He occupied himself with orchestral and smaller ensemble compositions, but also composed a number of keyboard works that served instructional purposes.

    • Word count: 2252
  20. The Evolution of Dub Music.

    The strong emergence of the sound system began to strengthen the relationship between the producer ad deejay. One of the biggest sound systems during this time was owned by Ruddy Redwood in Spanish Town. Known as Rudy's Supreme Ruler of Sound, it was said that he had one of the most impressive selections of music. This was largely in part of his relationship with Duke Reid one of Jamaicans biggest producers of the time. Duke gave Ruddy access to many exclusive recordings from his studio giving him an advantage over other sound systems. Ruddy went on to play a fundamental role in the development of Dub, he is accredited with being the first person to do a public performance of what became known as version, the instrumental mix of a song minus the vocals.

    • Word count: 2809
  21. Discuss ways in which the first movement of Beethoven's Third Symphony 'Eroica' is revolutionary

    and it is believed that the whole symphony was written in parts between 1801 and 1804. A major problem Beethoven had with this piece was with its title. The French Ambassador, Count Bernadotte, suggested that he write a symphony based upon Napolean. At the time Beethoven was a great admirer of the man, and it is his heroic leadership that is said to be the inspiration of the piece. However, when Beethoven was informed that Napoleon had made himself Emperor, Ferdinand Reis1 recalls Beethoven 'flew into a rage and shouted "He is nothing but and ordinary being!"'.

    • Word count: 2418
  22. "A notation should be directed to a large extent towards the people who read it, rather than towards the sounds they will make." (Cornelius Cardew, 1961) Discuss.

    to create improvised cadenzas for their concerti, while, additionally, the accompaniments were improvised to an extent. Reducing this to a basic level, is it simply the case that, harmonically and stylistically, it was not as difficult to do this in Mozart's time? We no longer have a tradition, or such a tonal system embodying a guiding code, to respect in this way, which has contributed to the prioritising of the composer, and the score. Through our traditional respect for the written word, one expects to perform music as it is written, which itself has consequences: '...it is our veneration for

    • Word count: 2627

"Where words fail, music speaks."

-Hans Christian Andersen

If you can correctly guess most of Bach's cantatas within a few bars, or you'd happily spend an entire weekend composing electronic music, then you might want to consider a university degree in music. Depending on the course, you might study musicology, performance, composition and music technology.

Alongside songs, music students will be expected to compose plenty of essays. If your writing doesn't flow as well as your melodies then you might want to consider studying Marked by Teachers' collection of creative arts and design essays. Reading our real student essays and the teacher's annotations will give you techniques for smarter editing and better writing, prestissimo.

Students of music can stay in the field via teaching,recording, arts administration and performing; or pursue further study and careers in unrelated fields like medicine or marketing. But whatever direction your career might take, musical knowledge will never stop enriching your life.


Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • "A notation should be directed to a large extent towards the people who read it, rather than towards the sounds they will make." (Cornelius Cardew, 1961) Discuss.

    "As we have seen, 'simple' notation does not necessarily equal many possible interpretations, and on the same line, an elaborate notation such as Cardew's can permit varied interpretation. The psychological impact of how the music looks on the page invites varied readings; the printed page is a storage medium where an inevitably incomplete representation of 'notateable' ideas can be retained for the future. The fact that this aspect of the work does not change over time, like a painting or a book, does not mean that the piece will not change and evolve. Art's ability to carry societal properties, to evolve and reflect changing times is surely part of its value. The search for greater notational control led to greater complexity, yet the early influence of the possibilities of electronic music must have contributed to this pursuit. Peter Zinofieff spoke of an early ideal, satisfied by electronic composition, where 'we can each have our own private language specially tailored for our own machines and individual needs or frustrations' 21 Ultimately, though, the performer's job is 'to make the relationships and patterns in the music clear to the listener's mind and ear'22. This hope, though, displaces the enduring problems which lie between composers and those who are employed to realise the work, be they human or otherwise."

  • To what extent did the composers of symphonies in the Soviet Unionmanage to comply with the strictures of state control of music whilst retaining a degree of creative individuality?

    "Therefore in conclusion, the early work of Shostakovich constructs a narrative in which the strictures of the state can be discerned but this didn't stop many aspects of his work to achieving distinct individuality. The referring back to the conservatism of his first symphony and at the same time embracing the rebellion of the intermediate Symphonies enabled Shostakovich to strike a balance between conforming to state policy and maintaining his individuality. Thus, the ambiguous nature of music enabled this composer the means to challenge state musical policy without the regime taking noticing."

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