This pioneering record is a sizzling cauldron of soul, funk, blues, and something electric and ineffable. It’s perfect in almost every way, but it almost didn’t come to be…
In his book The Meaning of Human Existence, Pulitzer Prize-winning biologist Edward O. Wilson argues that “healthy people believe intuitively that they can hear every almost every sound. However… we walk through nature like a deaf person on the streets of New York, sensing only a few vibrations, able to interpret almost nothing.” So I hope your cat or dog is a music fan, because they are far more likely to appreciate the crisp top-end preserved in your favorite lossless audio format than you are.
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“No Tears Left To Cry”: There’s so much tonal candy here, we had to have a whole public hearing about it when the song came out: the Kabalevsky-esque interplay between major and minor scales in the melody, the Vsus chord, and these yummy jewels-in-the-necklace add2 chords that make up the main chord-riff. It’s the add2 in the major tonic chord (I) that softens and disguises the tonal change between major and minor, by the way. The intro to this song is really two intros that use chorus material — first as is, then she slows it down from 122 to 100 BPM. Then the second intro is an odd 14 bars long, before we finally get to the verse.
Krumhansl proposed that we’ve heard enough songs in major keys to be able to pick up on what songs in major do, and how they should sound. Just like when you watch enough spy movies, you can basically predict what’s supposed to happen in the spy movie you’re about to watch. Cui says, “I’m assuming that most people hearing ‘I Wanna Dance With Somebody’ would know that it’s in major even though they might not know it’s called major.”
“Drip Too Hard”: They double the choruses and end the second verse with some title/refrain stuff. Hey, you know, one trend that I’d like to call cemented this year is that song form is becoming more and more lyric based. As songs are increasingly built around one single loop phrase, you have to base their form off of something, so it might as well be words. Because it used to be that the chorus, verse, and bridge would all have different chord changes, which would help determine the form. That’s just no longer so.
You did it! It took months of hard work to plan your tour and, despite the inevitable bumps along the road, it was most definitely a worthwhile experience.
Mahea Lee is a classically trained pianist and composer who has a degree from a jazz school and leads an electro-pop band. Her greatest musical passion is lyrical songwriting, but she’s been known to write the occasional fugue. She graduated from Berklee College of Music, where she majored in Contemporary Writing and Production and minored in Music Theory. For more Mahea, check out Soundlfly’s course, The Improviser’s Toolkit.
Looking to advance your skills and open up more opportunities in music? Explore Soundfly’s growing array of Mainstage courses that feature personal support and mentorship from experienced professionals in the field, such as Faders Up: Modern Mixing Techniques, Beat Making in Ableton Live, Orchestration for Strings, and Unlocking the Emotional Power of Chords.
So much of today’s new technologies tend to offer (at least in marketing speak) out-of-the-box solutions to musicians’ and students’ problems. Softwares and plugins, devices and networks, are all designed to minimize the rough edges around taking the time to learn things the hard way, practice them, and interact with things and people. And while these tools are optional, and do provide new avenues for creative expression and learning, they sometimes also skip over some crucial steps in the lifelong learning process of the artist, particularly those steps that historically have happened in the classroom.
Especially during the dry winter season, soups are great for staying warm and hydrated. Broth soups with bases of miso, garlic, or vegetable are wonderful for the voice. They’ll help you avoid vocal fatigue, decreased range, inflammation, vocal loss, and a plethora of health issues that are caused by dehydration such as problems with digestion, acid reflux, allergies, and mental and emotional imbalances that manifest in the brain due to reduced blood supply. Just stay away from anything tomato- or cream-based, as they cause reflux.
In this lick, we use a combination of major and minor pentatonic, with the major 6th present as part of the major pentatonic scale, and the Dorian mode. Notice how the lick ends on the minor 3rd, accentuating the relationship between the minor 3rd and major 6th that makes Dorian so unique.