How many of you have a song that means something to you? Maybe it is tied to some memory or a specific person, maybe it gives you the urge to dance or teary you up. We can all think of a song like that. Well, that is the purpose of music, it raises a kind of emotional response in you.
It is obvious that music is as old as human existence in this world. And it is an art of putting sounds together in a way that people like and find it interesting. The different genres in music is what gives music their sense of identity. It helps in knowing what kind of music we’re listening to and also what is involved in the music. For example, jazz music can be identified by its swing patterns on the drums, unusual time signatures, saxophones and trumpets. Today there is a huge variety of music known worldwide, from pop, classical, rock, and jazz.
Segregating music into popular genres-
Classical- Classical music is art music rooted in traditions. It is known for its tone which has a lighter, clearer texture than baroque music and is less complex. This genre of music is performed in a vast range of cultural environments and with many functions other than for entertainment in a concert hall.
Country – Country music is a popular music genre originated along with various American folk music. Country music often consists of ballads and dance tunes with generally simple forms, folk lyrics, and harmonies often accompanied by string instruments such as banjos, and guitars, fiddles as well as harmonicas.
Electronic dance music (EDM) – Electronic dance music popularly termed as EDM is also known as dance music or, club music. It is a range of percussive electronic music genres made largely for nightclubs, raves, and festivals. It is generally produced for playback by DJs who create seamless selections of tracks, called a mix, by segueing from one recording to another. Subsequently, in the new millennium, the popularity of EDM has increased globally.
Hip-Hop- Hip-hop music originated in the predominantly African American economically depressed South Bronx section of New York City in the late 1970s. This genre consists of stylized rhythmic music originally created by DJs isolating the percussion breaks of popular songs, sometimes with two turntables to extend the breaks. Hip-Hop music commonly accompanies rapping, a rhythmic and rhyming speech that is chanted.
Indie-rock – Indie rock music comes from “independent”, and relatively low-budget labels on which it is released. The artists are left free to explore sounds, emotions and subjects of limited appeal to large, mainstream audiences. Indie rock is characterized as having a careful balance of pop accessibility with noise, experimentation with pop music formulae, sensitive lyrics masked by ironic posturing, a concern with “authenticity”, and the depiction of a simple guy or girl.
Jazz – Jazz music originated in the fields of America where black people worked as slaves and made up songs to pass time, express themselves and to keep alive the culture and traditions of their African homelands. Jazz has this cool thing called improvisation which means making it up on the spot. You just play. Jazz commonly has swing patterns on the drums, unusual time signatures, saxophones and trumpets, and that’s how you know it’s jazz.
K-pop- K-pop or Korean Pop is popular mainstream music that originated from South Korea. It is considered a fairly new form of music. The type of K-Pop music that you’re listening to today was formed around the 1990s. The roots for K-Pop began from the 1950s, however, and have since then been influenced a lot by different types of Western music and pop groups. K-pop music is what could be described as the Bubblegum Pop genre which is generally upbeat, cutesy and high-pitched.
Metal – Metal music began in the late 60s and rose to prominence in the early 70s in Britain. The term “metal” is believed to have come from the hippie movement, when “heavy” meant deep or serious. Metal music revolves around a few key components, i.e. heavily distorted guitar riffs and chords, powerful drumming, extra low-range bass notes, and aggressive or throaty vocals.
Oldies – Oldies music is a wide-ranging and ever-expanding term that has come to encompass most pop, rock, and R&B songs released and played on the radio between 1950 and up to at least 10-20 years before the present. Today, most of what is considered to be oldies music covers the 1950s through at least the 1970s.
Pop – Pop music is the genre of popular music that produces the most hits. They have a good rhythm, a catchy melody, and are easy to remember and sing along to.
Rap- Rap is a musical form of vocal delivery that incorporates rhyme, rhythmic speech, and street vernacular which is performed or chanted in a variety of ways, usually over a backing beat or musical accompaniment. The components of rap include “content” (what is being said), “flow” (rhythm, rhyme), and “delivery” (cadence, tone).
Rock- Rock is a popular music genre that combines elements of rhythm and blues (R&B), jazz, and country music with the addition of electric instruments. Originally associated with youth revolt and transgression, the genre is known for energetic performances, catchy melodies, and often insightful lyrics. Rock music is characterized by its extensive use of the electric guitar.
Rhythm and blues- Rhythm and blues often abbreviated as R&B or R’n’B. It originated in African-American communities in the 1940s. Drums, bass, a piano or organ, and the guitar are some of the most common instruments used for composing R&B music. R&B is a type of music that incorporates many genres. When it first originated, it had a heavy beat and was jazz based.
Techno- Techno music is a form of electronic dance music that came of age in the late 1980s and 1990s which is created by using electronic instruments. By nature, techno tends to be highly repetitive, instrumentally-oriented music. The genre places a strong emphasis on rhythm, and techno tends to have a very beat-based sound.
Different types of music genres serve different purposes. For instance, dance music obviously serves its purpose for people to dance to it. Classical music now serves a purpose for people to relax. Because of its soothing sounds of strings and a calmer rhythm. Many athletes listen to Rap or Rock music to pump themselves up so it can serve a purpose in that context.
In conclusion, it can be said that music is in our minds beginning from our birth until our death. Music is an inseparable part of this world and we cannot live without it being a part of this world full of noise and beat.
Visuals by: Kunal Kaustav Duwarah
Article by Neelchandra Roy , The North-Eastern Chronicle