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I chose “Autumn Leaves” by Stan Getz. In this version of the song, only Stan Getz is performing. In the original version of the song, it is by Joseph Kosma and the lyrics are by Jacques Prevert (youtube.com). I chose this particular version of the song because I like how soothing it is with Stan Getz and I feel like lyrics may ruin the song as a whole. Stan Getz is an amazing artist and he is popular for Bossa Nova, but this song does not sound like that genre at all. I was not sure of the form and chord progression of the song because it did not sound like the songs we learned in class; it did not sound like 16-bar form, for example. Thus, I did some researching and found that the song is in AABC form (Spitzer, Jazz Theory Handbook, p.81). Additionally, there are other instruments within this version of the song but the solo is focused on almost entirely so it is hard to tell where there are polyrhythms. I believe that there are not any syncopations in this piece. The most memorable part of the song was when Stan Getz creates a “voice” with his instrument by how he plays it towards the end of the song.
This class has definitely given me a more appreciation of jazz just by listening to more jazz. Obviously, I have listened to jazz before but I still did not really enjoy it as much as when I went to the live performance. The live performance tremendously changed my perception of jazz; the music sounded so much better live and it was just overall enjoyable. I do not know if it is because the concert was in the theater, people were not screaming and yelling during the performance, or something else. Additionally, learning about the content of music changed my perception of jazz as well. I did not know jazz had such an extensive history and I enjoy learning about all of these artists that I have heard before, but did not really know anything about. For example, I knew Miles Davis was a famous jazz musician, but I did not know who he really was and what he did. Now, I learned Miles Davis was a giant innovator of jazz and he was an innovator in cool jazz, fusion jazz, and more. On another note, I do hear music a little bit differently now. When I listen to any genre, I really look at if the song was improvised or not. Sometimes, when I am trying to find if a song was improvised or not, I try to find syncopations or a change of pace in the song. Additionally, a lot of songs have polyrhythms and I notice that now. As an overall finishing statement, I think this course gave me a greater appreciation of jazz, I notice more about certain notes and so on within music, and it has positively changed my view of jazz. Therefore, I would recommend this course after taking it to someone because of how it was presented.
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