Classical Jazz '05

 

 

SOP - Heartbreak

Why do we love listening to heartbreak songs? What do songwriters do to emote such strong feelings? Featuring Adele – Someone Like You Kacey Musgraves – I Miss You Here is what Panoply said:

  • 2:00 - Plays "Someone Like You" by Adele
  • 2:24 - Main plot is conveyed through the words
    • pre-chorus
    • chorus
    • bridge
  • 3:10 - harmony and chord progression
    • descending melodic line = sad
  • 4:50 - chords linger through arpeggios
  • 5:20 - two main chords
    • A major and C# minor
  • 6:00 - Pattern of chords
    • maj - min - min - maj
  • 7:00 - Chorus
    • A-maj to E-Maj
    • I to V
  • 8:24 - Facts
    • co-written by semi-sonic
    • demo recording
  • 10:30 Chord Structure
    • Verses - Minor feel
    • Chorus - major feel
  • 11:50 - Podcast - Part II
  • 12:28 - Kasey Musgraves
    • song example
  • 13:10 - "I Will Miss You"
    • different than Adele
    • words vs. music = tension
  • 14:30 - This song uses happy major chords
    • the last chord is a dark chord
    • minor iv
  • 15:40 - This song has an identical chord progression to Radiohead's "Creep"

 

 

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Bob Tozier Artist: Bob Tozier
School: North Allegheny
Notes:

Panoply created a podcast series called Switched on Pop.

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In this series, it was stated:

" Pop music surrounds us, but how often do we really listen to what we're hearing? Switched on Pop is the podcast that pulls back the curtain on pop music. Each episode, join musicologist Nate Sloan and songwriter Charlie Harding as they reveal the secret formulas that make pop songs so infectious. By figuring out how pop hits work their magic, you'll fall in love with songs you didn't even know you liked."

 

What do you think about this first podcast?  Can you find any other songs that work like this?  Are there any compositional ideas that you would like to try? 

 


Comments

Joe Bojarski from: North Allegheny - posted: September 14, 2017
This was a great video, i learned a lot about applying music theory. Another song that uses desending melody to evoke saddness is A.C.D. by the band nothing



Anthony Hockenberry from: North Allegheny - posted: September 14, 2017
Being as an Ocean's Dissolve (Album Version (not the single): Waiting for morning to come)- Is a sad song but is faster and not typial piano only sad like "Someone like you" I couldn't find the key online, but it sounds like a sadder key that fits well with the emotion in his voice.



Amy Muhlenkamp from: North Allegheny - posted: September 14, 2017
This reminds me of the song "Still Fighting It" which uses bittersweet chords with hopeful lyrics. The primary chords it uses are C and A major



Angela Lu from: North Allegheny - posted: September 14, 2017
Jar of Hearts by Christina Perri also has a part of the song with a descending melodic line similar to Someone Like You by Adele. The descending melodic line can be heard during the beginning of the song. Here is a video that shows this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z59hX3OV97o



June Bracken from: North Allegheny - posted: September 18, 2017

Alicia Keys' song, If I Ain't Got You, relates to this Switched On Pop lession because of her use of descending arpeggiated major triads throughout the song, specifically the intro. 

 Link:  https://youtu.be/Ju8Hr50Ckwk 



Shane Stewart from: North Allegheny - posted: September 19, 2017
In the podcast, they commented on how Adele's sudden high singing parts brought power to the song.  This reminded me of Roy Orbison.  Whenever he hit a high note, oftentimes at the very end of a song, it was very powerful and added greatly to the song.  This is a similar style in both of their music.



Shane Stewart from: North Allegheny - posted: September 19, 2017
In the podcast, they commented on how Adele's sudden high singing parts brought power to the song.  This reminded me of Roy Orbison.  Whenever he hit a high note, oftentimes at the very end of a song, it was very powerful and added greatly to the song.  This is a similar style in both of their music.



Eugenia Lee from: North Allegheny - posted: September 25, 2017
For this podcast, I found two songs that relate to the topics discussed for Adele's song. First, "Stone Cold" by Demi Lovato is a sad song with a descending melody. Also, "Hallelujah" has the arpeggiated chords.



Maeve Smith from: North Allegheny - posted: October 4, 2017
A song with a descending melody is Look After You by the Fray.  It's kind of a sad song and the melody descends.  I thought it was an ineresting point because I never noticed that about pop songs but it's true.  



Matthew Eisernecih from: North Allegheny - posted: October 4, 2017

Ellies theme from up has a decending melody

its the only song in the world that is happy and has a decending melody.



Yosen Wang from: North Allegheny - posted: October 25, 2017
Faded by Alan Walker also uses a descending melody with somewhat hopeful lyrics.



Maggie Johnson from: North Allegheny - posted: October 25, 2017
A song that can correlate with this is the Up theme song.  The song is actually very happy and major in theory, but it actually evokes a sad feeling because of the melody and the film cues.



Charles Hart from: North Allegheny - posted: October 31, 2017
The Adele song is a great example, another good one would be Speaking With A Ghost by Citizen



sharon dong from: North Allegheny - posted: November 2, 2017
What About Us" by Pink also has a descending melodic line and compliments the sad lyrics of the song



Christopher Lee from: North Allegheny - posted: November 2, 2017
This was a great podcast explaining the chord progression in various sad songs. Another song I think has a great chord progression is Another Day of Sun from the opening of La La Land.



Christopher Lee from: North Allegheny - posted: November 2, 2017
This was a great podcast explaining the chord progression in various sad songs. Another song I think has a great chord progression is Another Day of Sun from the opening of La La Land.



Maria Constantine from: North Allegheny - posted: November 3, 2017

KT Tunstall- Stoppin' the Lovin' 

 

This song has major chords and has sad lyrcs-a very different  way of writing. For example, she plays different inversions of the E major chord while singing about a breakup. 



Jason Ginocchi from: North Allegheny - posted: November 3, 2017
The song not ready to die by avenged sevenfold has a descending melodic line and the song is sad because its about someone who is about to die.



Steven Lu from: North Allegheny - posted: November 3, 2017
It was a very informative podcast about techniques used in sad songs. Another song with a descending melody line is "All Of Me" by John Legend.



Mess Tajewski from: North Allegheny - posted: November 6, 2017
This podcast talking about chords and their impact on songs reminded me of the juxaposition of upbeat melody with minor chords in Burt Bacharach's "I'll never fall in love again," which mirrors the bittersweet message of the song. 



Natalie Daninhirsch from: North Allegheny - posted: November 7, 2017
I've always loved a song with a deep meaning and powerful melody, but I found it mesmerizing that one can equate this with a "formula" per se. I would certainly love to try my hand at a song with a powerful melody as well as lyrics.



Kayla Grasak from: North Allegheny - posted: November 8, 2017
A song with a minor key and happy lyrics is "How to be a Heartbreaker" by Marina and the Diamonds. The diversity adds alot of texture.



Trevor Fenk from: North Allegheny - posted: November 10, 2017
My song "Jamican" has a desending melody but still has a happy tone. I use complex emotion filled chord progressons when I create songs as well!



Kirthana Kannan from: North Allegheny - posted: November 10, 2017
This podcast reminded me of one of my favorite songs, Stone Cold by Demi Lovato, which is a sad song with a melody that descends. This week's podcast made me really think about how much theory goes into the composition of a song. 



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