Popular Questions for Music Assignments
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Q. Frances O’Neill was born in County Cork in Ireland in 1848. In his early 20s he immigrated to the United States, and shortly thereafter he settled in Chicago and became a police office. From 1901–1905 he served as the Chief of Police. O’Neill was also a traditional Irish flute, fiddle, and pipe player. Through a lifetime of collection and publication, he left an astounding record of traditional Irish music.
One his most famous publications is O’Neill’s Music of Ireland from 1903, which contains 1,850 songs in all the major genres. Thanks to the work of John Chambers and more than a dozen transcribers, these tunes have been digitally transcribed in the ABC format, making them available for large-scale music analysis, of the kind you’ll do in this assignment.
I’ll provide you with a large data.frame containing the entire collection of ~800,000 notes [“oneill_dataset.rdata”, here] but there are some online sources that will help you check your work, including:
- A page that contains all the original ABC files (http://trillian.mit.edu/~jc/music/book/oneills/1850/X/)(链接到外部网站。)
- An online ABC-notation renderer, in which you can paste the text of an ABC file and see music notation: http://www.abctool.eu/abcsrc/(链接到外部网站。)
- Information about the ABC format: http://www.abcnotation.com(链接到外部网站。)
This assignment will help you master using Hadley Wickham’s dplyr package in R, a remarkable package for doing summary statistics on large data sets very quickly. A good place to start with dplyr is the vignette written by Hadley:https://cran.rstudio.com/web/packages/dplyr/vignettes/introduction.html (链接到外部网站。)
Here are the questions you will answer in the R script (“HW3.r”) that you upload. Make sure the names of members of your group are in the title or the first line of the script.
- What are the three longest songs in the corpus?
- What are the three shortest songs in the corpus?
- Including any ties, which songs have the highest note?
- Including any ties, which songs have the lowest note?
- Why are there so many more answers for one of the last two questions?
- Many melodic ornaments (“grace notes”) are represented in the transcriptions as having a duration of zero. This suggests a definition of the “most ornamented” melody as the one that has the most ornaments per beat. Which melody is this?
- Let’s define “leapy-est” song in two ways: (1) the one with the greatest average interval size, and (2) the one with the greatest proportion of leaps. Find the songs that meet these two definitions. In a few sentences, which definition do you prefer?
And, finally, a more open-ended prompt:
- Make a metric of “rhythmic complexity,” defined any way you wish. Describe your metric and state the most “rhythmically complex” tune.
Q.Provide a link to your favorite song. Describe why you like it, using at least three musical terms about the elements.
Q.Provide an example of experimental music, and describe why it pushes traditional boundaries
Q.Provide an example of music that challenges stereotypes. What is the stereotype, and how does the music address it?
Q.Provide an example of music that uses leitmotifs, and explain what the motive represents.
Q.Provide an example of music that uses word painting, and describe how the technique is used in the example you chose.
Q.Provide an example of music that you never thought you would have liked before this class, and discuss why you like it now.
Q. Provide an example of music that serves to unite a group of people, and explain how it does so.
Q.Provide an example of a movie scene in which the music enhances the mood. Explain how the music contributes to the intended emotion of the scene by describing at least three specific musical elements.
Q.Provide an example of music meant to be scary. How does the composer create that effect?
Q.Provide an example of protest music. Explain what the artist is protesting, and how.
- Happy Xmas (War Is Over) – John Lennon
Happy Xmas is a song by John Lennon with the Harlem Community Choir. In this song the artist is protesting about war in occasion of Xmas. He is wishing Xmas to every human being and telling every strong and weak, rich and poor, yellow and red, black and white to stop the fight. He is telling everyone to start a new year without any fear. He is hoping that the near and dear ones, the old and young ones to have fun in this New Year.