Blues and Jazz

REVISED Live Concert Review (Final Assignment – 600 word minimum) REVISED

Pick 3-4 songs from different styles of Blues and Jazz from the last 150 years. You can look up performances of these songs on YouTube and complete your essay since we do not have access to live concerts at this time. Please also take a look at the following guide to guide you through what to write about with each song. Your essay should have an introduction and a conclusion and use sources to cite your opinions and statements. Some students have already completed the Essay and that’s fine, no need to redo your work, I have just had a few questions regarding the live concerts since we are not able to see live events because of COVID.

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Address the following points:

Setting – when? Where? describe venue, acoustics (use learned/appropriate descriptive vocabulary i.e. lots of echo=”wet”; not much echo=”dry“) Band – instrumentation? vocalist? electronic? acoustic? who was the leader?

Repertory – describe the songs they play, give titles if possible. Talk about tempo, volume, contrasts. If the program consists of many songs, compare and contrast a few which are dissimilar. If everything they play is similar, how so? The melody? the rhythm? the texture?

Style – In what style or styles do they play? Traditional (“Straight ahead”)? The fusion of styles? Rock influenced? Dixieland (New Orleans)? Why did you conclude that? Musical characteristics: melody, harmony, rhythm. Did you know any of the songs? Do they seem drawn from any particular period in history (as related to our class study of styles)?

Song forms, presentation: Do they use lots of arrangements, or do they just seem to play the melody, then improvise, then play the melody again? Use of introductions to the tunes? Try to talk about the form of the tunes.

Improvisation/Interaction – do they improvise a lot? Who improvises most? Do they seem to be communicating in any way? Who do you like the most? Why?

Sound phenomenon opinion – what’s your impression of the overall sound? organized? pleasing to the ear? difficult to listen to? What’s the timbre (sound quality of each instrument and the overall combination)?

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