Classical music and popular music  

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"Part of the Hungarian Rhapsody No. 6 by Franz Liszt was borrowed by Belgian singer and songwriter Jacques Brel in his 1959 song "Ne me quitte pas". The lyrics "Moi, je t'offrirai des perles de pluie venues de pays où il ne pleut pas" ("I'll offer you rain pearls from lands where it does not rain") are sung to a theme borrowed from the second part, Lassan (Andante), of this piece." --Sholem Stein

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

There is a continuous interplay of classical music incorporating popular music and popular music basing itself on classical music.

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Classical music incorporating popular music

Classical music has often incorporated elements or material from popular music. Examples include occasional music such as Brahms' use of student drinking songs in his Academic Festival Overture, genres exemplified by Kurt Weill's The Threepenny Opera, and the influence of jazz on early- and mid-twentieth century composers including Maurice Ravel, exemplified by the movement entitled "Blues" in Violin Sonata No. 2 (Ravel), his sonata for violin and piano. Certain postmodern, minimalist and postminimalist classical composers acknowledge a debt to popular music.

Classical music incorporating folk music

Composers of classical music have often made use of folk music (music created by musicians who are commonly not classically trained, often from a purely oral tradition). Some composers, like Dvořák and Smetana, have used folk themes to impart a nationalist flavor to their work, while others (like Bartók) have used specific themes lifted whole from their folk-music origins.

Popular music based on classical music

There are numerous examples of influence in the opposite direction, including popular songs based on classical music, the use to which Pachelbel's Canon has been put since the 1970s, and the musical crossover phenomenon, where classical musicians have achieved success in the popular music arena (one notable example is the Hooked on Classics series of recordings made by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in the early 1980s). Some rock bands such as Emerson, Lake & Palmer have recorded classical compositions.

Disco

Classical music was even adapted for disco, notably Walter Murphy's "A Fifth of Beethoven" (1976, based on the first movement of Beethoven's 5th Symphony) and "Flight 76" (1976, based on Rimsky-Korsakov's "Flight of the Bumblebee"), and Louis Clark's Hooked On Classics series of albums and singles.

Commercialism

Certain staples of classical music are often used commercially (either in advertising or in movie soundtracks). In television commercials, several passages have become clichéd, particularly the opening of Richard Strauss' Also sprach Zarathustra (made famous in the film 2001: A Space Odyssey) and the opening section "O Fortuna" of Carl Orff's Carmina Burana; other examples include the Dies Irae from the Verdi Requiem, Edvard Grieg's In the Hall of the Mountain King from Peer Gynt, the opening bars of Beethoven's Symphony No. 5, Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries from Die Walküre, Rimsky-Korsakov's "Flight of the Bumblebee", and excerpts of Aaron Copland's Rodeo. Shawn Vancour argues that the commercialization of classical music in the early 20th century served to harm the music industry through inadequate representation.

Similarly, movies and television often revert to standard, clichéd snatches of classical music to convey refinement or opulence: some of the most-often heard pieces in this category include Mozart's Eine kleine Nachtmusik, Vivaldi's Four Seasons, Mussorgsky's Night on Bald Mountain (as orchestrated by Rimsky-Korsakov), and Rossini's William Tell Overture.

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Classical music and popular music" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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