Gcse Music Analysis Yiri-Koko

Topics: Music, Rhythm, West Africa Pages: 3 (528 words) Published: May 31, 2013

STYLE: West African Music
Features of West African Music:
* Call and Response
* Musical knowledge is passed down through oral tradition * Improvised melodies
* Repetition (ostinato)
* Layered, polyrhythmic textures.
* Cyclic structures
* The country from which this piece comes from is Burkina Faso, West Africa. * Koko is a group composing of 6 musicians, led by Madou Koné, the singer and balafon player. * Yiri is the 4th track of Burkina Faso: Balafons et Tambours d’Afriquereleased by Koko in 2002. * ‘Yiri’ means wood in the local dialect, referring to the wood used in the making of drums.  

* Main metre of the piece is 4/4/, although a few bars are in different metres (eg. Bars 27, 94 and 120 use the metre ¾ and bar 47 uses the metre 5/4) * A change in metre- from 4/4 to a bar of  ¾ then back to 4/4 is used to signal the start of new sections (eg. Bar 95) * The introduction is free tempo, and a steady pulse is maintained throughout the whole piece.  

* Within vocal and balafon parts, syncopation is frequently used (for example in bar 34 during the balafon break where every bar is syncopated) * Cross rhythms are created in bar 66 during the vocal solo as the balafon plays semi quavers in groups of 3 (cross phrases) against quavers. * Triplets are often used by the vocal soloist

* A rhythmic ostinato consisting of a quaver and two semiquavers is repeatedly played by the drums throughout the entire piece * The djembe plays occasional fills
* Piece is polyrhythmic- more than one rhythm at a time * Simple rhythm ostinatos are found throughout the piece (for example bar 14 and bar 17 with the balafons)

* The piece is in the key of Gb major
* The music is hexatonic (based on a 6-note scale, without the note F), but pentatonic at the beginning. * Short patterns, falling from high to low are...
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