Analysis of Music Played in Different Settings

Topics: Music, Musical instrument, Emotion Pages: 6 (2343 words) Published: September 25, 2007

MUL 2010 - Section 0754
Word Count: 2014

Entry #1 – 598 words
Over a day or two, compile a list of all the music you hear, including movie and television sound tracks, elevator music, music in the cafeteria, music coming from neighboring rooms and work areas, and the music you and your friends play and hear. What sort of music was selected for what purpose, and by whom? What factors are involved in choosing music for an adventurous movie chase scene, as opposed to a love scene? What effect would there be on the listener if the soundtracks were interchanged? Would you play the same music for the first visit to your dorm/apartment by a potential boyfriend or girlfriend as for a visit by your mother? Music can be found anywhere and everywhere. In my humble opinion life without music would be so boring. Music adds a special touch to our everyday activities; it has a powerful impact in our emotions. I believe I speak for most people who, like me, listen to music everyday just for pleasure, when I say that there is no doubt that music can affect and propose our mind's state. A lot of people will agree that music and one's mood go hand-and-hand. One might be prone to put on soothing music for a quiet, romantic evening, but maybe choose something more livelily while running on a treadmill or out partying. Sometimes one does not have control of the music playing in the surrounding areas, and in many cases we might not notice that music is being played until we find ourselves driven by it; for example, by tapping one's foot to the beat of the music, without realizing you are doing it. On doing this assignment I tried to be more alert to the sounds around me, to analyze the music that was being played and the reasons behind the choices that were made. The first day that I sharpened my senses, I found myself depressed. I could not understand why. Then I realized that my roommate was playing, really loudly I might add, slow songs that her boyfriend had dedicated to her when they started dating, about four years ago. I went into her room and found her crying with a sad smile on her face. She and her boyfriend had been fighting and she told me she wanted to listen to the music from "the good old days." She further explained that listening to that kind of music brought back good memories and made her feel better. Coming back to the point made about the power of music, one great example can be found in the soundtrack of movies. When selecting the music that is will go on each scene, I believe, the film-makers probably have the following questions on their mind: "What emotions am I trying to convey? What mood do I want the audience to be in? Is it a romantic scene? Is it suspense? Is it action?" I believe it would be accurate to say that, for the most part, the music in a movie correlates to the emotions and the actions being presented before us. In other words, if we are watching The Fast and the Furious we expect to hear some kind of heart-pumping, energy raising song when Vin Diesel is competing against the other guy in the car. Or if we are watching Titanic we anticipate a slow, solemn song in the scene when Leonardo Di Caprio's character dies. If the songs were to be interchanged the immediate response on the listener would be of confusion. We are used to be guided by the music to know was going to happen next. In a horror movie we know that the bad guy is about to do something because we feel the suspense that the music adds. The effect on our emotions would not be the same if no music was used. Furthermore, like I mentioned before, music choices may vary with different situations. One is not likely to play the same tune when having a romantic dinner with the boyfriend than when inviting one's mother over for lunch. I might play Barry White when I am with my boyfriend and put some instrumental music CDs when eating with my mother. Entry # 2 – 575 words...
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