Monday, 1 March 2010

Jonathan Kramer Theory

Media Theorist Jonathan Kramer says "the idea that postmodernism is less a surface style or historical period than an attitude. Kramer goes on to say 16"characteristics of postmodern music, by which I mean music that is understood in a postmodern manner, or that calls forth postmodern listening strategies, or that provides postmodern listening experiences, or that exhibits postmodern compositional practices."
According to Kramer (Kramer 2002, 16–17), postmodern music":
1. is not simply a repudiation of modernism or its continuation, but has aspects of both a break and an extension
2. is, on some level and in some way, ironic
3. does not respect boundaries between sonorities and procedures of the past and of the present
4. challenges barriers between 'high' and 'low' styles
5. shows disdain for the often unquestioned value of structural unity
6. questions the mutual exclusivity of elitist and populist values
7. avoids totalizing forms (e.g., does not want entire pieces to be tonal or serial or cast in a prescribed formal mold)
8. considers music not as autonomous but as relevant to cultural, social, and political contexts
9. includes quotations of or references to music of many traditions and cultures
10. considers technology not only as a way to preserve and transmit music but also as deeply implicated in the production and essence of music
11. embraces contradictions
12. distrusts binary oppositions
13. includes fragmentations and discontinuities
14. encompasses pluralism and eclecticism
15. presents multiple meanings and multiple temporalities
16. locates meaning and even structure in listeners, more than in scores, performances, or composers

Destinys Child - Get On The Bus could be consider postmodern. The song features rapper/producer Timbaland and is lifted from the original motion picture soundtrack of Why Do Fools Fall in Love (1998). As with other Timbaland productions, the single features some unorthodox parts, including the sounds of birds (a similar technique was used in Aaliyah's "Are You That Somebody?")

I have considered how each Kramers ideas could be applied to this song.The fact that the genre is RnB but natural sounds of birds and monkeys can be heard in the background could mean it avoids totalizing forms.

Aaliyah's "Are You That Somebody?" also by Timberland used the same idea in which the sound of a baby gurggling can be heard.

Stockhausen Helicopter String Quartet. This was wrote specifically to fit with noise of helicopters. The sound of the wind is incoperated and recorded.

Alvin Lucier I Am Sitting In A Room.

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