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Concerts across Time
The two concert excerpts I chose was pop artist Drake at Madison Square Garden performed in 2018 and Baroque Music, Post Renaissance Concert, Ancient Music in the Loire Valley performed in 2018. The two concerts were widely different. I don’t think it will be a surprise to anyone if I were to say that I prefer Drake’s concert to the Baroque concert.
I enjoyed Drake’s concert because there is so much energy and excitement going around. Hearing hundreds, or thousands, of voices shouting and chiming together to each tune and seeing the shine of thousands of PDA spotlights light up the setting are sights and sounds that will send chills down your spine and give you goosebumps. The general environment of his show rules out all other feelings other than fervor and bliss.
I did not enjoy the Baroque concert because it imitates ancient music. During this time authors began concentrating less on the muddled polyphony that commanded the 1500 and 1600’s, and inclined more towards a solitary voice with a rearranged backup, or monody. Although these were all things added to make the music sound better, that is what makes this type of music a little boring to me. There is no production to make anything exciting, there is no crowd, and the singing is hard to understand.
Artists have often made a living in modern times, creating just the kind of art they are being pushed to make. Accordingly, we always think of the artist and the degree of his or her artistic inspiration as the starting point for an art work. Indeed, composers in the Baroque period only received living writing music if they were lucky enough to be on a political or religious institution’s payroll, therefore, the musical needs of this organization determined the music produced by the composer.
Despite the differences on the types of music that artists were able to create today verses during the Baroque era, there is one similarity that you cannot ignore. No matter what year during history that music has been made you will always notice that artists wanted to move their listeners. Music today talks openly about mistakes and allows people to listen to something that they can associate with and has allowed this generation no matter what gender you are, to talk about their experiences and their feelings. Music from 1600-1750 based their music off of the interest and ideas from ancient Greece and Rome. The Greeks and Romans believed that music was a powerful communication tool and in their listeners could give rise to any emotion. As a result of the resurgence of these theories, composers became more aware of the potential power of music and developed the illusion that if they correctly emulated ancient music, their own compositions could have similar effects. “Johann David Heinichen, Dresden, 1728: the ‘true aim of music’ is to move the feelings” (Donington 2).
Concerts today are an event that bring together all walks of life and are events that have no age limits.
Including, for instance, high school, college students, service workers, auto mechanics, nail techs, massage therapists, construction workers, nurses, lawyers, corporate managers, and other white collar professionals, thus, broadening the class representation and extending the age group into the thirties and occasionally older than that. (Halnon 749)
Today, we hear an ad on the radio, see posters, billboards, ads on social media, and if you like that type of music and that artist you purchase tickets. We then go to a concert hall of all venues, for example, the beach, a stage built in the middle of time square, stadiums, and the list goes on and on, and then we all scream and yell when the artist comes on stage. It doesn’t stop there, however, and in fact artists today interact with their audiences by having them wave their hands back and forth, dance, and will sometimes even throw themselves into the arms of their audience. Needless to say, it is a production.
This type of public concert was unusual in the baroque period. Many of the most popular baroque works have been performed in churches for a service, or in the home of a wealthy patron as part of a private concert or celebration; however, during the baroque period, public performances became more common, especially in the genres of opera and oratorio, and in many European cities our modern concert tradition began to coalesce.
Technology has had a significant impact on modern music. The music industry also continues to expand as our culture continues to expand technologically. Technological advances have had an influence not only on the type of music artists make, but also on how audiences experience music and learn to play instruments. Music experience is now so closely intertwined with modern technology that without the use of software, many of the ways we enjoy music at the moment would not exist.
The invention of effect pedals has given musicians of all different genres countless opportunities for sound effects. When pedals continue to develop, musicians have grown closer to being able to produce virtually any sound effect they may imagine. Looper apps have also contributed to an excellent way of playing with textured sounds being produced in an inexpensive manner. Looper apps allow artists to practice their improvisation skills without purchasing a pedal, and audio is captured by the apps and then replicated in a continuous loop.
Music streaming services have been developed to make it easier to listen to music from around the world. In response, Apple has now developed “Apple Music,” a streaming platform that will allow you to listen to every track in their online library. You will be able to download songs from the Apple Music app and store them in your iTunes library when you have an Apple Music subscription. Spotify, Sound Cloud and more recently, Audio Mack are some of the other popular streaming sites.
In conclusion baroque era music and modern music today are night and day difference; however, it would be safe to say that even with evolution comes consistency. In this case the consistency is that music is meant to move its listeners. Everyone has a different type of music that they like, everyone comes from a different walk of life, and at the end of the day when you listen to something that lifts you up, puts a smile on your face, or makes you remember a time in your life that brought you happiness, then that is a great piece of work. This is true even if the music is from another century.
- “Baroque Music, Post Renaissance Concert, in a Castle, Ancient Music in the Loire Valley.” YouTube, uploaded by HurryKen Production, 25 February 2018, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qL2y85bdY3Y.
- Bettez Halnon, Karen. “Inside Shock Music Carnival: Spectacle as Contested Terrain.” Critical Sociology, vol. 30, no. 3, May 2004, pp. 743–779, doi:10.1163/1569163042119868.
- Donington, Robert. Baroque music: style and performance: a handbook. WW Norton & Company, 1982.
- “Drake Live at Madison Square Garden NYC Night 1, Aubrey and The Three Migos Tour.” YouTube, uploaded by Loud Quality, 24 August 2018, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9yKTPkE8QD8&spfreload=10.
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