Decent Essays

Indo-Jazz Analysis

Over the course of this semester we have journeyed from African tribal influences to the height of jazz during the Swing era, bebop to the abstractions of free jazz, the beloved John Coltrane to influencing R&B and Hip-Hop. We have analyzed music over the ages, determining what makes it jazz, what makes it good. Our minds have been opened to all styles of jazz and we have been exposed to the jazz standards as well as contemporary and modern pieces, including these mystery songs. Here you will be guided through my interpretation and analysis of one of these songs.
I chose to analyze mystery song 2. I chose this song because of the prominence of a saxophone and because of the way it makes me feel, discussed later. (1) …show more content…

(4) It is played in a fast tempo of about 140 beats per minute and throughout the song, the drums play in a quick, driving manor always pushing the tempo rather than a relaxed, lazy feel. Likewise, the saxophone plays quickly, much like the saxophone players of bebop. As mentioned previously, this song is played in what seems to be a mode common to Indian or Middle Eastern music. The mode is major sounding, adding to the uplifting feel. The theme of the song is played strictly in this mode and the saxophone and guitar stick to this mode with the exception of their improvised solos, where they begin to explore, using all the notes while remaining grounded in the …show more content…

(5) The use of the tabla drum immediately points Hindustani music which is most notably played with the tabla, sitar and tanpura, the ever present drone instrument. The elements of jazz are greatly characterized by the use of the alto saxophone and the electric guitar. Mystery song 2 contains no droning elements and does not bend the pitch of any note which is an iconic element of Hindustani music but rather the saxophone attempts to emulate the sound of the sitar in its melodic runs of the theme. The saxophone uses turns, quickly alternating between notes above and below the note, often heard in jazz. This sound, when done as quickly as it is in this song, reminds one of the influences of the

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