- Sep 2023
The poetic structure: it is undoubtedly a structure made of three lines of fourbars each but its organization differs on the levels of prosody, melody, andharmony.The prosodic structure: AAB generally. The phrase (either sung or spoken)during the first line is repeated in the second line and a second phrasefollows in the third line.9The melodic structure: AAB but often AA’B. The same melodic phrase usuallyis repeated but may be subject to variation.The harmonic structure: ABC. As seen above, the three lines have been differentfrom each other right from the most original chord changes. The first linestarts with I, the second with IV, and the third with V
- Jul 2023
As for meter, Arom adds that “it is in fact the most elementary manifestationof rhythm,” 17 made of identical durations with regular stress patterns.
“The pulse, as it has just been defined, is notrhythm. Rhythm is created by a succession of sound events with contrastingfeatures. This contrast may be generated by accents, timbres and durations.”15This is how these three components operate:
Accents: Contrast is created by means of highlighting certain elements of the music, either regularly or irregularly. When timbre or duration are not at play, accents are the only rhythmic criteria. Timbre: Contrast is produced by hearing/playing different tone colors in turn, either regularly or irregularly. When accents or duration are not at play, timbre is the only rhythmic criterion. Duration: Contrast is produced by the succession of unequal time val- ues. When accents or timbre are not at play, durations are the only rhythmic criteria. 16 As for meter, Arom adds that “it is in fact the most elementary manifestation of rhythm,” 17 made of identical durations with regular stress patterns. Fred Lerdahl and Ray Jackendoff suggest other definitions of the accent, of which they see three types:
walking bass, ching-a-ding, oom-pah
- Jun 2023
But everything changes when degrees I and IV are treated as sev-enths, which is a quality only associated with the fifth degree in tonal harmony.This makes any hypothesis of assimilation impossible.The link between the function and the quality of a chord, which is organic in atonal situation, does not exist in blues. Indeed, let us look at the first degree withfour sounds: C-E-G-B b. All four notes belong to the scale as it has been defined.But this is neither true with the fourth degree (F-A-C-E b), as A does not belongto the scale, nor the fifth (G-B-D-F), which involves a B natural and a D that donot appear in the scale. This lack of organic link between the scale of referenceand how chords are built is a fundamental difference between blues and worksusing the tonal system.
there is also no link between the quality of a chord and its function in blues harmonic system (I and IV chords are both 7th-chords)
The Blues Scale
Chords that are not built on superimposed layers of thirds are still to be in-vestigated. They are of three kinds in principle:Fig. 5.1. Infrastructure, superstructure, and developed chord
the major sixth chord (C6) C-E-G-A • the minor sixth chord (Cm6) C-E b-G-A • the “sus4” chord (C7sus4 or just C7sus, “sus” meaning “suspended”) C-F-G-B b. The first two are usually seen as enriched perfect chords, in which case the sixth is considered an enrichment, like the ninth, eleventh, or thirteenth. The third case is less straightforward and depends on the context. In a tonal situation, the “sus4” chord is a form of suspension.10 In other contexts, it will be considered a specific chord. The question is asked of the distinction between the fourth and eleventh on the one hand, and the sixth and thirteenth on the other hand. How do we decide that F in a C chord is a fourth or eleventh or A a sixth or thirteenth? The reality shows that it is a total mess in the practice of jazz musicians. When a figuring including “4” or “11” (even more so with “6” or “13”) occurs, it is impossible to know for sure what exact degree the author is referring to. It seems to me that the rule should be this: if there is a fourth then there is no third, and if there is a sixth then there is no seventh. Implicitly, this comes down to considering that the fourth is a substitute for the third (as mentioned before, this is easy to understand in a tonal system) and the sixth a substitute for the seventh. This is a consequence of chords being built up on superimposed layers of thirds (which confirms the structuring nature of such a build-up, by the way). For F to be an eleventh, the third (E or E b) must have existed beforehand. The same applies for A to be a thirteenth: a seventh, B or B b, must have existed beforehand. Yet, the “7/6” figuring often occurs, which contradicts this rule (the “13” figuring should include the seventh implicitly). This does not reveal a different approach to that chord but a lack of rigor in figuring practices, with the implicit idea behind it that, as jazz is a type of music based on oral traditions and practices, any localized ambiguity can be clarified at a later stage.
Harmonic substitution—Harmonic substitution consists of changing the qualityof a chord, that is to say altering one or several notes of the infrastructure. Themost common use of this rule produces secondary dominants: in sequencesbased on fifth relations expressed by functional degrees (I-IV-vii-iii-vi-ii-V-I),this consists of transforming any of the chords preceding V (except IV), that isto say either vii, iii, vi, or ii (all chords with minor thirds) into a seventh chord:
a saxophonist may decide to double orhalve the tempo
A pianist may use stride
Theories and Methods Applied to the Analysis of a Work of Jazz
ANALYSIS OF JAZZ
Analysis of Jazz: A Comprehensive Approach Cugny, L 2019
Harmony 2—Harmonic Situations: Tonality . . . . . . 987Harmony 3—Harmonic Situations: Blues, Modality, Non-functionality
The 4 harmonic 'situations' or systems
- May 2023