Analysis Question with Sample Responses: Send me on my Way II

Analysis Question with Sample Responses: Send me on my Way II

Thank you for your analysis response, anonymous, and permission to publish it.

Question: How does articulation and tone colour create character in the following work?

Listen to the first 1 min 30 seconds

Character: joyful

Jenn Gillan: Great having the character stated clearly at the start.

the pizzicatto guitar (or banjo) in the upper register acts as a melodic accompaniment and creates an airy timbre, adding to the playful and joyful character

Jenn Gillan: I don’t know whether I’d call it pizzicato or finger picked? Plectrum used? Apart fro that, I like that you’ve mentioned register as an influence. I don’t know if this is enough on its own to support a playful character. Joyful maybe but playful usually implies, in my mind at least, something a little different/contrasting that happens. So maybe this could be added to or maybe just leave the character at this point as joyful.

the solo guitar (or banjo) introduction is metallic and crisp, opening the piece with an icy and delicate feeling whilst remaining joyful through the allegro tempo

Jenn Gillan: Your solution for the guitar (banjo) works well. It’s not a guessing the instrument exam so it’s fine. Your example doesn’t lead to character, rather tempo does. Although I do like that you’re saying that while the tone colour would support an alternate character, other elements of music do create this feel still. That would probably support a playful character having those two things at the same time.

bass male voice is full and warm, creating an inviting and joyful character

Jenn Gillan: Is full and warm on its own enough to equal joyful?

2nd male voice in the middle register had a warm and bright timbre when singing the melody, helping to create the joyful character

use of ascending portamentos in the male voices pulls the mood of the piece upwards, thus helping to create a joyful character

Jenn Gillan: This is stronger. There’s a clear link between what’s happening in the music in articulation and the character. Try to aim for this more.

percussive guiro has a piercing and crisp timbre, which also has an ascending feel to it creating joy through the unexpected tone colour and upwards nature of the sound

Jenn Gillan: I get what you mean. You could say the scrape rises in pitch due to the tapering of the guiro? But you got the message across. Unexpected = playful.

rippling accented phrasing of the vocals creates a sense of movement through syncopation, adding to the joyful character

Jenn Gillan: Does this answer the question?
Overall, you have a good turn of phrase and some sophisticated responses. Try to link them clearly to the question now and make sure that the character is fully supported by your musical examples. Is a warm tone colour enough on its own to = joyful? Also try to stick to the element of music in question.