Essay Questions Popular Music Test

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2) 3. How did music, during the 19th century, reflect class differences?
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As cities grew in America during the 19th century classes developed between them, helped creating what was known as highbrow & lowbrow entertainment. High entertainment was primarily urban and considered cultivated. Low brow entertainment was essentially rural and considered vernacular/common. –>cont.
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Differences in classes in 19th century popular music? (cont.)
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cont. Music that was genteel and \”correct\” was more likely to appeal to the upper and middle classes. Music such as parlor music or classical music appealed more to this class. Music that was verse/chorus form, for rough, untrained voices, used everyday vernacular, and had a danceable beat was usually considered music for the lower classes. –>cont.
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Differences in classes in 19th century popular music? (cont.)
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cont. Music that required very little training or learning was considered lower class whereas music that required more training and education, a sign of the privileged lifestyle, was considered middle to higher class.
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3) 2. Scott Joplin was one of the first composers of ragtime and he set a standard of quality because he saw his role as a composer differently. In what way did Scott Joplin view himself in his role as a serious composer of music?
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He received formal music training from George R. Smith College. He trained in the European tradition and was a fluent composer and arranger of different styles of music, including ragtime and other popular white music styles. He wanted to legitimize ragtime. He knew that one of the only ways to do that would require years of traditional training to add to his credibility.
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4) 1. What three things changed popular music’s accessibility to the general public in the 1920s? Briefly explain how each changed the way people heard music.
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a) The Invention of the Record – they became available during the 1920s. It was a 12-inch 78rpm record/disc that would play about 4 minutes max until the LP was created. The accessibility to music became easier to listen to without having to go to a vaudeville, revue, or night club to listen. –>cont.
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Accessibility?
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cont. b) The Invention of the Radio – Radio production began in 1920, which allowed people easier access to music. Performers would play songs into microphones and amplifiers to help reconvert the electrical impulses into sound. This also made music more easily accessible. –>cont.
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Accessibility?
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cont. c) The Invention of Talking Pictures – People no longer had to physically be in contact with an instrument or people who were trained performers. They could now go to a movie to hear music instead of having to physically be in the vicinity of performers.

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