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Listening Log - Essay Example

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Listening Log

At the same time it is certainly interesting to listen to and somehow seems to transfix you when you listen to it, like it is the only thing in the world. The second song remains in the same genre of traditional European classical music as the first one, but the instrumentation changes from the stringed cello to the piano. I find this piece a bit more evocative for some reason, perhaps it is the minor key moodiness that still speaks loud and clear to me hundreds of years after this was written, but I find that I can emote more strongly with this piece than with the yo-yo ma one. It also seems to have an interesting kind of subtlety to it, I do not think that it shoves its message down your throat but rather lets you kind of sit back and let it wash over you, with shallow lulls and low highs that keep you relatively grounded. The third song is “Smooth Criminal” by Michael Jackson. I find this song to be incredibly (almost sickeningly) poppy. It has an unvaried four-four time with stress on the two and the four, and uses many of the traditional pop instruments of the eighties. This song kind of grates on me, and it is hard for me to identify what exactly about it I do not like. I think one of the things is instrumentation choice, I think that I prefer clean sounds where you can identify the instrument that is being played, whereas this seems like a muddied combination of synth MIDI files and other instruments that have been run through a computer so many times that you cannot identify what

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they are when they come out. Even the percussion does not sound like instruments I recognize, without having a clean sound that lets you realize what they are supposed to be sounding like. I might need to work on my appreciation of the eighties some, but this song just fails to speak to me, especially its over-wrought story. The fourth Song is “Viva la Vida” by Coldplay. This song, despite being popular, is actually fairly good. It is hard to classify its musical style, as it has a wide variety of influences and instrumentation. There is a strings section of some sort discernable, with the main thrust of the song being carried by what sounds to me like a cello, and violin highlights throughout. There also seems to be an orchestral-style percussion, with at very least a tympani being evident in a variety of locations. Despite this interesting instrumentation, this song has a pretty strong rock element to it, and rock/pop style vocals overlaid. I really like this sound, partly because of Coldplay’s willingness to experiment with different types of instruments in a thoroughly modern setting, and because I think that the sound has almost a visual quality to it, it kind of sounds like what watching fire –works looks like. The final song is “Back to Black” by Amy Winehouse. Though I think that a lot of Winehouse’s popularity comes from sympathy for her untimely death, this song definitely shows that she had a lot going on musically. The first thing that strikes someone listening to this is the old-style R&B backbone with a heavy amount of soul overlaid on top of it. It almost makes you disbelieve the date you see next to the song to listen to it, you almost think

Summary

This song is performed on a cello without any other instruments. The piece is in a classical style, though very well performed by Yo-Yo Ma. The piece demonstrates incredible technical skill by the artist, who is able to adjust pitch and volume exactly, and it crests and falls in a very interesting way creating a sense of journey as you listen to the song…
Author : ysmith
Listening Log essay example
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