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Problems With Playing Quicker Notes - Newbie Question


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Most dance rhythms are derived from speech rhythms...




Intriguing...and I would certainly like to know more of your thinking on this statement.


Well, greatly simplified:


We can assume that the first music was vocal, because it it requires no technological basis. The most primitive of instruments need some technological know-how for their manufacture.


It is probable that what we call singing was first used to "heighten" the spoken word. Either a story-teller "sang out" his words to make them carry to his audience, or a shaman his prayers, to make them carry to the gods.


Later, bards and skalds used verse to transport their stories, because the rhythmic structure helped them to memorise the words. The metre of their songs thus had to be mapped to the words.


So the two main elements of music emerged: modulated pitch of vocalised words, and regular rhythm to give words and pitches coherence. Melody and rhythm.


In European poetry, certain types of metre developed: iambic ("Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?" de-dah, de-dah ...); trochaic ("In his arm he sets the woman ..." dah-de, dah-de ...); and dactylic ("Westering home, and a song in the air ..." dah-de-de, dah-de-de ...). A decent lyricist can write texts adhering to these strict metres that sound perfectly natural when read (with poor lyricists, they sound forced!)

Now, think af a jig, for instance: "dah-de-de, dah-de-de" - that's a dactyslic speech rhythm. A waltz is similar, but slower. Or a hornpipe: "dah-de, dah-de ..." that's trochaic.


At some time in prehistory, people must have started moving to the rhythm of the music. That it was not the other way round is evidenced by the fact that musicians can get along very well without dancers, but dancers can't do without musicians.


That's my basic view of the matter.




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