Jazz Performance Review Essay

Jazz Performance Review Essay.

In the month of April, Da Camera had a series of Jazz concerts at Discovery Green. On April 12 Pamela York and Trombone Summit with Andre Hayward and Thomas Hulten performed before a crowd of jazz enthusiasts as well as everyday people curious as to what the sounds they were hearing were coming from. Pamela York is a Canadian born Jazz pianist, vocalist and composer (York). She was classically trained at an early age, but when she was exposed to the likes of Bill Evans, Oscar Peterson and Diana Krall she was hooked to jazz.

She went on to receive her degree from Berklee College of Music and later got her Master’s degree as well. (York) Andre Hayward is a Houston Native that attended HSPVA and has been compared to the likes of J. J. Johnson. He started playing trombone at the age of 11; this was no surprise as both his parents were musically inclined (Hayward). Thomas Hulten probably stands out most of the concert due to his foreign background.

He was born in Sweden but later migrated to Houston in 1997 where he has played with the likes of Ray Charles, Barry Manilow, and Michael Bolton (Hulten).

Together all these great musicians put on a free show for the Houston audience to enjoy on a day with already perfect weather. Pamela York started off the show early on in the day, the weather was nice her music was inviting as the audience was still settling in. One by one as she started playing the audience began to grow slowly being drawn by the smooth piano playing and vocals. She was on vocals and piano and was playing very upbeat and improvising on piano. There were also drums and an upright bass accompanying York.

Her vocals were kept in basically the same range throughout never breaching far into much higher or lower tones. It was very rhythmic and upbeat. She then began playing her rendition of a traditional spiritual called “Sometimes I feel Like A Motherless Child”. This song felt very bluesy and had a lot of staccato piano playing. The piano notes varied from high to higher tones, with lots of chromatic sounding runs. The feeling of the song felt very neutral, sometimes going into very dissonant sounding chords and coming back with very consonant sounding scales.

After this song she transitioned into another cover but this time of “Dream A Little Dream”. York seemed to focus more this time on vocals then any of the other instruments playing. I had heard versions of this song before with Louis Armstrong and Eddie Vedder with his ukulele, so I was very biased to hear them with these grand and unique voices. York’s version was a bit lacking seeing as she was really emphasizing on the vocals. When someone hears it with the likes of the people mentioned above it’s very hard to make the song your own and unique.

The arrangement of hers also focused the soloing on piano, being only a trio there was no room for other instruments to really shine. In between songs there was a mix of improvisation of the drums and piano each showing off their virtuoso skills, while the bass didn’t really get much time to solo. The overall tone of her performance was much more influenced by blues I believe, but for my taste it left a bit of a much-needed larger band to fill the emptiness at times. The bass wasn’t as present as I would of liked and an addition of an instrument or two could of blended very well to give the performance a fuller and grander sound.

Next to head up was the Trombone Summit with Andre Hayward and Thomas Hulten with Pamela York accompanying them on piano for the performance. The sound of the trombones added gave it a more New Orleans style sound to the mix. It was a bit more lively and rhythmic; one could almost dance to it. The focus was more on the trombone’s and its soloing with felt very much improvised through most of its playing. Much like the first performance I felt the bass wasn’t as present, it was overshadowed but if played a little louder it would have given it that fuller feeling.

In between songs the Swedish trombonist Thomas Hulten came in to give a bit of comic relief with his anecdotes and commentary which was a nice feature that gave the performance a more relaxed and laid back feeling as opposed to just transitioning from song to song. During each performance each trombonist would take turns soloing and often play in unison as well. Then a song called “Pilska Polska” which I believe was an original by Hulten was played. This song stood out as being an almost anthem like melody one might here at a college football game. The tempo was faster and it was very melodic throughout.

The tone of the songs being played by the Trombone summit sounded like it was meant to be heard by the average person or curious jazz listener as opposed to something that could sound very dissonant that newcomers to jazz would be put off by. A highlight of the night was when the Trombone Summit started playing the Thelonius Monk song “Blue Monk”, which I immediately recognized from class. The tempo was much slower than the original song and the trombone gave it a smoother legato feeling to it, which made it flow in my opinion better than it would on a sax or piano.

Overall the trombonists played it safe and didn’t really experiment which extremely high or low tones. Also no over the top soloing which I respect because sometimes musicians, I can plead guilty to this one as well, want to show off or pull off a fast and intense solo that might be reminiscent of the movie Back to the Future where Michael J Fox’s character just goes into his own world guitar soloing that the audience is left dumbfounded as to what’s going on.

I appreciated the fact that these musicians kept it simple and enjoyable for everyone as I saw many people drawn to come in and very few, if any, leave during the performance. I enjoyed the concert very much with the second half being a bit more to my taste than the first. It probably helped that by that time the sun was setting and that added to the mood and relaxation that the soft trombones gave off. Being able to just listen to instrumental songs helped a bit more to enjoy the music.

Sometimes hearing lyrics one starts trying to decipher what they’re saying and what the song is about and in the process forgets about the music playing in the background. Even though the concert was free, there were no formal seats, and it was at a public park, the concert felt very classy and one that people of all ages and backgrounds could enjoy. It was a new experience for me, never having been to a jazz concert it took me outside my bubble of music that I usually listen to and will definitely be looking out for future Da Camera Jazz Performances.

Jazz Performance Review Essay

The Birth of Cool – Miles Davis Essay

The Birth of Cool – Miles Davis Essay.

The “Birth of the Cool” (original recording reissued) album is a compilation of 12 songs that helped hoist Miles Davis to possibly the most influential jazz artist of all-time. In 1947, Davis moved away from the Charlie Parker’s band, consequently becoming intrigued by the work of Gil Evans. Gil Evans had developed a laid-back, low-vibrato “cool” style, using unique instruments such as tuba and French horn. Not long after, Davis began gathering a rotating troupe of musicians to assist him in exploring potentials of this smoother, cool sound.

The series of compositions this group produced over the next two years touched off the “cool jazz” movement. It also inspired dozens of musicians that would follow. The “Birth of the Cool” is unique in that the individual tracks created in 1948-1949, were not assembled and released in a collective album until the late 1950’s. And though it’s been over sixty years since the collective release of the “Birth of the Cool” album, the tracks are still acclaimed as some of the greatest jazz recordings ever made.

Howard Reich, an author with the Chicago Tribune, states that “Part of the allure of “Birth of the Cool” surely owes to the gifts of the instrumentalists” (Howard A&E). I have to agree with this reviewer’s statement. The musicians that Davis amassed to help produce the works of the “Birth of the Cool” was a truly remarkable ensemble. They formed a fluidly functioning group, using elements of both the big band and bebop styles- but fully embraced neither. Davis’s expressive, anti-virtuoso trumpet was a wonderful accompaniment to Gerry Mulligan’s baritone sax. Other musicians rotating within the nonet included: French horn players, Junior Collins, Sandy Goldstein and Gunther Schuller; drummer Max Roach; pianists John Lewis, Kenny Clarke and Al Haig; bassists Al McKibbon and Joe Shulman; Lee Konitz on alto saxophone; and trombonists J.J. Johnson, Mike Zwerin and Kai Winding. Singer Kenny Hagood also complemented one track.

Nevertheless, it was the innovative arrangements, influenced by classical music techniques, which made the “Birth of the Cool” album a success and marked a major development in post-bebop jazz. These pioneering compositions were brilliantly created by a collective writing group, with Evans and Gerry Mulligan (Evans protégé) helping to write much of the material. The group kept things short and concise, keeping the focus on the tones and tunes of the tracks. This virtuosity led to elegant, relaxing, stylish mood music as the end result. This was the very thing that came to define West Coast or “cool” jazz. The repertoire would further go on to chart new territory in “big band” music, eventually leading to the quasi-orchestral music produced by Davis and Evans in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s.

There are twelve tracks that make up the compilation of the “Birth of the Cool” album. These 12 tracks can be further broken into four groups: The first group comprising of two fast tempo pieces; the next grouping comprising of five upbeat pieces; the third grouping of three bluesy feel tracks; and, lastly, the two slow tempo ballad pieces: 1) “Move” is a cool, fast-tempo, swinging style track with innovative harmonies. 2) “Budo” is short in duration, but is very fast and energetic- Miles, Konitz and Winding all deliver great solo parts.

1) “Jeru” the quintessence of cool jazz wherein Miles and Gerry show off their soloing abilities playing with precision and confidence. 2) “Deception” is a very up-beat piece incorporating the ride cymbals and walking bass with a kind of tension-building theme sequence. It has a great solo from Miles. 3) “Godchild” another up-beat piece has an exciting swing style ambience. All the lower instruments contribute to it, making it a fun, playful track. Miles and Winding offer nice solos as well. 4) “Rocker” is an up-beat, yet, piano-less piece that utilizes the ride cymbals. Mulligan creates some soft dissonances as the voices move, but it happens so fast that it isn’t disconcerting to the listener. 5) “Rouge” is a very fun piece with string bass and a distinct piano solo.

1) “Venus De Milo” has a fairly laid-back Latin feel. This tune was just nice to sit back and listen to with wonderful melody and harmony. 2) “Boplicity” is a masterful arrangement that seems vaster than nine musicians. Mulligan starts with a great sax solo and Miles leads in with the group and then heads into playing a fine solo. 3) “Israel” is very powerful in structure and composition. This song blends the traditional blues with modern harmony (some of the chords are dissonant clusters) and counterpoint. There is a trumpet solo by Davis.

1) “Moon Dreams” is a ballad played with a slow solemnity that makes it a classic. The ensemble playing of this piece is beautiful. 2) Kenny Hagood’s vocal feature titled “Darn That Dream.” This piece has a slow tempo, accompanied by a piano playing in the background throughout the song. In the middle composition is an outstanding solo by Miles.

It is hard to pick a favorite track in such a brilliant production. However, one particular piece- “Move”- hangs in my mind as it has the unique feature of paired instrumentation. In “Move” melody is provided with the pairing of alto saxophone and trumpet; the baritone saxophone and tuba supply counterpoint; and the trombone and French horn deliver harmonies. Move reflects the band’s chemistry and the arrangement is very innovative. It is an arrangement that could naturally carry solos and Miles, Konitz and Roach deliver them well. Another mentionable piece is “Budo.” Though this album is commonly viewed as a departure from traditional bop, a few of the tracks, to include “Budo” do feature tunes that are considered close to the bop style. “Budo” takes the classic bebop tune and plays it cool. “Budo” also has the band bookending solos by Davis, Mulligan, Konitz, and Winding, which is similar to a bebop head arrangement.

Throughout time, “Birth of Cool” has had a few detractors who’ve dismissed it as ‘boring’ and ‘bland.’ However, in my research, the majority of listeners have really been taken by what Davis and his nonet accomplished. Howard Reich wrote: “Birth of the Cool” became a cultural phenomenon – crystallizing the transition from explosive, 1940s bebop to 1950s cool” (Howard A&E). Thus, for any fan of Jazz, Classical or Miles- you must buy this album. Miles Davis certainly changed the music world completely when these recordings came out…and this album will still certainly make an impact upon any present day listener.

The Birth of Cool – Miles Davis Essay

History of the Trumpet Essay

History of the Trumpet Essay.

Trumpets are one of the oldest instruments. In ancient times, people used animal horns or shells like a trumpet. It was first used for signaling in ancient China (2000 BC), Egypt (1500 BC), and Scandinavia (1000 BC). It was long and had no valves. In Roman times, the trumpet was played at military and civilian ceremonies.

The first musical use of the trumpet was in the late 1300’s where it had acquired the folded shape similar to today’s. In the 1500’s, Nuremberg, Germany became the center of trumpet making.

During that time, the first music for trumpets was written. In the late 1700’s, the trumpet became a regular member of the orchestra.

Short pieces of tubing called ‘crooks’ were invented and used to lengthen or shorten the trumpet so it could play more notes. In the 17th to 18th century, trumpets were mostly in the key of D of C for courtly purposes and E flat or F in the military. The valve trumpet was invented in 1815, making crooks unnecessary.

Today, trumpets are usually played in orchestras, jazz bands, brass ensembles, popular music and bands. Different sized trumpets have different pitches and are used in different musical groups. Most trumpets in bands are in the key of B flat major. Historically, trumpets were used for many different things but music was not thought of until the late 1300’s.

Louis Armstrong , born in 1901 and died in 1971, was a trumpet player. He was one of the most famous and influential trumpet player in Jazz history. Many people thought he was the greatest jazz cornet and trumpet player in the world. He was born in New Orleans and he learned to play the trumpet while serving a sentence for delinquency in the Home for Coloured Waifs.

Dizzy Gillespie, born in 1917 and died in 1993, was also a trumpet player. He was an American trumpet player, composer, and band leader. Dizzy Gillespie’s real name is John Birks Gillespie. He was born in Cheraw, South Carolina. Dizzy co founded the bebop jazz movement with Charlie Parker and Thelonious Monk.

I have chosen a recording to listen to, from a CD called Trumpets in Modern Jazz. It is called ‘Kush’ and the performer is Dizzy Gillespie. I chose this recording because I knew Dizzy Gillespie was famous and I wanted to hear how he played the trumpet and to see if he really is as good as everyone says.

Trumpets may be loud and annoying sometimes but they have survived through the years so treat trumpets with respect and it might let out the best music in the world.

History of the Trumpet Essay

Duke Ellington Essay

Duke Ellington Essay.

One of the greatest jazz bandleaders, arrangers, recording artist, and composers of all time is none other than Duke Ellington. Born on April 29, 1899 in Washington, D.C., Ellington was destined for musical talent. His family was musically talented; both of his parents could play piano even though neither could read music. Ellington did not grow up in a poor family; and he had educational advantages that many black musicians in his time didn’t have. He received the nickname “Duke” from a fellow classmate, because of his elegant way of dressing and his regal behavior.

While in school elementary school, he received piano lessons, and by the time he reached high school, he was already performing locally. He was also a fairly good painter and won a scholarship to the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York. But his art career was overshadowed by his love for music.

Music won his heart, so art wasn’t in the picture. At the age of 17, he wrote his first song, “The Soda Fountain Rag”, which was his debut.

In 1919, Ellington’s son Mercer was born. With encouragement from Fats Waller, Duke moved to New York with his newly formed group, The Washingtonians. He later formed the Duke Ellington Orchestra, which by 1930 had grown to include 12 musicians. During these early years in New York, Ellington developed skills that he would carry throughout his entire career. He evolved from band member to leader and performed in a variety of clubs. His writing and arranging skills also evolved and became more defined. These new skills would be his unique compositional style. Some of Ellington’s new influences were stride piano players like Willie “The Lion” Smith and James P. Johnson and ragtime piano players.

One of the best career moves made by Ellington was his booking at The Cotton Club in Harlem, New York. His band was established house performers there from 1927 to 1932. Ellington’s influence on the jazz community was definite from that point on. Radio broadcasts from the club made Ellington famous across America and also gave him the financial security to assemble a top notch band that he could write music specifically for. Musicians tended to stay with the band for long periods of time. For example, saxophone player Harry Carney would remain with Duke nonstop from 1927 to Ellington’s death in 1974. In 1928 clarinetist Barney Bigard left King Oliver and joined the band. Ellington and Bigard would later co-write one of the orchestra’s signature pieces “Mood Indigo” in 1930.

In 1929 Bubber Miley, was fired from the band because of his alcoholism and replaced with Cootie Williams. Ellington also appeared in his first film “Black and Tan” later that year. The Duke Ellington Orchestra left the Cotton Club in 1931 (although he would return on an occasional basis throughout the rest of the Thirties) and toured the U.S. and Europe. During Duke Ellington’s tenure at the Cotton Club, he had gone from an aspiring New York bandleader to a leading figure in the world of jazz. He had become well known far beyond New York. Along with the Cotton Club reviews, he had made many records, radio broadcasts, special performances, and even film appearances. He officially had a national following, and he needed to create new music that would address both his national and international audiences. Ellington was set to accomplish new things in the world of jazz.

Ellington’s band was ahead of their time style wise, and they could really swing. Ellington’s first great achievements came in the three-minute song form, and he later wrote music for all kinds of settings: the ballroom, the comedy stage, the nightclub, the movie house, the theater, the concert hall, and the cathedral. Ellington’s different music styles became more pronounced and recognizable.His first style was his jungle style, which included much growling on the instruments. This style was built around the raucous playing of Bubber Miley, Cootie Williams, and Tricky Sam Nanton. The song “East St. Louis Toodle-Oo” is a good example of this style of playing. The floor shows were elaborately designed around the music the band played. His next style was his mood style, is known for his exquisitely beautiful ballads played by saxophonist Johnny Hodges. Some of his most known mood style selections are “Solitude”, “Prelude to a Kiss”, and “Lotus Blossom”.

Another style is his concerto style, in which he featured Cootie Williams, Jimmy Hamilton, and Barney Bigard. By the early 1940s, Ellington experimented with extended composition and his orchestra toured the US and Europe extensively. In 1943, Ellington inaugurated a series of annual concerts at Carnegie Hall with the premiere of Black, Brown, and Beige. He continued to expand the scope of his compositions and activities as a bandleader throughout his life. His foreign tours became increasingly frequent and successful; his travel experiences served as the inspiration for his many works about people, places and trains. He wrote nearly two thousand compositions before his death in 1974. His fourth style was his standard style, where he approached his arrangements in the same manner as the other big bands. He also had a dance style that kind of coincided with his jungle style.

Unlike many of their contemporaries, the Ellington Orchestra was able to make the change from the Hot Jazz of the 1920s to the Swing music of the 1930s. The song “It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)” even came to define the era. This ability to adapt and grow with the times kept the Ellington Orchestra a major force in Jazz up until Duke’s death in the 1970s. Throughout the Forties and Fifties Ellington’s fame and influence continued to grow. The band continued to produce Jazz standards like “Take the ‘A’ Train”, “Perdido”, “The ‘C’ Jam Blues” and “Satin Doll”. In the 1960s Duke wrote several religious pieces, and composed “The Far East Suite”. He also collaborated with a very diverse group of musicians whose styles spanned the history of Jazz. He played in a trio with Charles Mingus and Max Roach, sat in with both the Louis Armstrong All-Stars and the John Coltrane Quartet, and he had a double big-band date with Count Basie.

Duke Ellington influenced millions of people both around the world and at home. He gave American music its own sound for the first time. In his fifty year career, he played over 20,000 performances in Europe, Latin America, the Middle East as well as Asia. The extent of Ellington’s innovations helped to redefine the various forms in which he worked. Duke Ellington was awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1966. He was later awarded several other prizes, along with 13 Grammys, the Pulitzer Prize, the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1969, and the Legion of Honor by France in 1973, the highest civilian honors in each country.

Simply put, Ellington transcends boundaries and fills the world with a treasure trove of music that renews itself through every generation of fans and music-lovers. His legacy continues to live on and will endure for generations to come. His son Mercer Ellington took over his band after his death, and his grandson Paul Ellington is over the Ellington Estate now. The Ellington Fund helps to fund the Ellington School of Arts where students are inspired to achieve their highest musical capabilities. Duke Ellington is truly a classic indeed.


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Duke Ellington Essay

Dave Brubeck Essay

Dave Brubeck Essay.

The late Dave Brubeck left behind a legacy as a jazz pianist, composer, bandleader, husband, and father. He wrote everything that ranged from opera and ballet, to a contemporary mass. Brubeck was well known for experimenting with time signatures unusual to the traditional jazz sound. The uneven meters, along with the incorporation of all kinds of different rhythms in his music, is how he captivated the attention of younger listeners. The significance of Brubeck in the history of jazz is unambiguous.

The Dave Brubeck Quartet helped spark an obscure interest in Jazz after World War II, and was a fundamental part of the “West Coast Cool Jazz” style of music that jazz in the fifties and sixties would be known for. David Warren Brubeck, born on December 6, 1920 in Concord, California, “was one of Jazz’s first pop stars. ”(Brown) In his younger years, his mother Elizabeth played an immense role in the conditioning of his music career. His two older brothers were musicians and Brubeck himself would eventually be playing at weekend dances by the age of fourteen.

His schedule was from nine at night to as late as four in the morning.

The strenuousness of it caused him to find playing unappealing, and he pursued his dream of being a rancher. His family had moved to a ranch in Ione, California when he was eleven, so he knew how things on the ranch worked. By the time he was eighteen, though reluctant to leave, he attended The College of Pacific in Stockton, California with the intent to study to become a veterinarian and return to the ranch. After only a year, he decided to change his major to music. While in still enrolled in college he, along with a man by the name of Darius Milhaud, whom Brubeck’s first son would eventually be named after, led a twelve piece band.

By 1942, he met his wife Iola Whitlock and graduated that year with a degree in music. Immediately following, he enlisted in the Army. In 1944, Brubeck was sent to Europe, however, he never actually fought, but played for troops because of his musical aptness. “He traveled to the front lines, but armed with a piano instead of a weapon. ”(Taylor) By the time he was twenty five years old Dave Brubeck was finished serving in the Army and went back to school, this time attending Mills College on a G. I Bill Scholarship where he reconnected with Milhaud.

The two founded the experimental Jazz Workshop Ensemble, and in 1949 it would record as the Dave Brubeck Octet. This was a crucial start to his music career. Later on in the year of 1949 The Dave Brubeck Trio was organized with band members Ron Crotty and Cal Tjader. The trio came to an end before it began due to a neck injury that ended the career of Brubeck for at least six months. Brubeck returned to playing in 1951 with the creation of The Dave Brubeck Quartet. The quartet was comprised of Joe Morello, Paul Desmond (whom Brubeck met while in the Army), and Gene Wright.

By 1952 it was categorized as one of Jazz’s greatest combinations. They signed with Fantasy Records in 1953 and released their first album, Jazz at Oberlin. The following year, David Brubeck was featured on the cover of Time magazine. He was only the second jazz artist to be on the cover. The quartet later signed with Columbia Records and began the experimentation with time signatures. The result was the album Time Out. The Dave Brubeck Quartet disbanded in 1967 and only regrouped once in 1976 for the twenty fifth anniversary.

Though the quartet came to an end, Brubeck’s career did not. After the breakup of the quartet, Brubeck spent much of his time with his wife, and five children. He did however stick with music. He went on to write at least an oratorio, four cantatas, a contemporary mass, and two ballets. That only lasted a year because in 1968 he created another quartet with Gerry Mulligan and his sons. The late seventies arrived and he was still composing, touring, and performing. In the year 1999, he was named a “Jazz Master” by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Ten years later, he received a Kennedy Center Honor for his contributions to the American Culture. Also in 2009, his son Michael passed away and many health problems began to arise. Brubeck underwent heart surgery in 2010 at the age of ninety but was up and performing again a month later. On Wednesday, December 5th 2012, David Warren Brubeck died. He passed on, one day before his ninety second birthday. The Jazz Legend may be gone, but he left behind four sons, a daughter, his wife, ten grandchildren, four great grandchildren, and music that will outlive everyone.

Dave Brubeck Essay

19th and 20th Century Music Composers Essay

19th and 20th Century Music Composers Essay.

Debussy had a sense of musical style that allowed the listener to enjoy the moment and to not really wonder about what was coming next. Although Debussy was influenced by Wagner and Liszt, (which can be seen in his usage of chromatic and whole-tone chords), his music is free from the need to constantly resolve. Debussy also tends to keep a tonal focus. However, in his piece L’isle joyeuse he chose to defy the predictable tonal relationships between chords and gave each chord a degree of independence.

Once again, Debussy’s way of doing this completely changed the tone and attitude of this piece and allowed us to enjoy each moment of the piece.

Debussy was also known for his modern and symbolist tendencies. He liked to paint a picture for the listener which can be seen in his piece Nunges from Nocturnes where Debussy highlighted the English horn. Even though Debussy wanted to paint a picture for the listener, unlike other composers, he wanted the listener to figure out what that picture was on their own.

Igor Stravinsky is remembered in part for his originality and his individualism. He developed multiple style traits which most likely emerged from his Russian traditions and these are what he became known for.

Some of these trademarks were his rapid changes of meter, frequent ostinatos, dissonance, and many more. One of Stravinsky’s most famous ballets, Petrushka, utilizes many of these techniques within the opening scene; such as static harmony and repetitive patterns. This may be one of the reasons why this ballet was so well liked. Another piece written by Stravinsky that utilized many of his new techniques was The Rite of Spring. This ballet was marked by primitivism which was used to represent the old pagan Russia. The opening scene focused on a girl who was forced to dance herself to death as a sacrifice.

Even though the listeners may not have recognized these new techniques upon hearing the piece for the first time, they still recognized it as being different. The audience was so infuriated by this piece that there was a riot at its first performance. However, this piece eventually became one of the most regularly performed works of its time period. In conclusion, Stravinsky is the reason neoclassicism is popular and his style, along with the many trademarks that he was known for, was imitated by many composers in the future. Bela Bartok took originality to a whole new dimension.

He created his own voice by using rudiments of music from many different nationalities that he felt had been overlooked. Bartok wanted to create this type of “peasant” music because he felt that it represented his country of Hungary better than the urban pop music that was said to. Bartok first significantly showed off his own style around the year 1908 with compositions such as the First String Quartet and Bluebeard’s Castle. “His Allegro Barbaro (1911) and other piano works introduced a new approach to the piano, treating it more as a percussive instrument than as a spinner of cantabile melodies and resonant accompaniments. Bartok tried to reach the limits of dissonance and tonal ambiguity with his Violin Sonata of 1920 and his Violin Sonata of 1921. His music also attempted to synthesize peasant with classical music by emphasizing what they have in common and also by what is so different about them. By mixing together these concepts, new elements, such as Bartok’s use of harmony, dissonance, and love of symmetry, emerged. Each of these composers (Debussy, Stravinsky, and Bartok) can be grouped together for being different and innovative.

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19th and 20th Century Music Composers Essay