THE LANGUAGE OF MUSIC. By Deryck Cooke. O. U. P., Lo. , pp., $4. The author of this book did not have to hunt for a topic on which. Read the full-text online edition of The Language of Music (). Buy The Language of Music (Clarendon Paperbacks) New Ed by Deryck Cooke ( ISBN: ) from Amazon’s Book Store. Everyday low prices and.
This important book has come to be regarded as a modern classic. Originally published init has exerted a profound influence on all subsequent discussion in the field of musical aesthetics. Deryck Cooke’s thesis is that the fundamental characteristic of music is the expression and evocation of emotion.
He argues that all composers whose music has a tonal basis have used the same, or closely similar, melodic phrases, harmonies, and rhythms to express and evoke the same emotions.
He supports this view with numerous musical examples, ranging from plainsong to Stravinsky, and he argues that music is a language in the quite specific sense that idiom can be identified and a list of meanings compiled. While acknowledging that a ‘dictionary’ of the language of music cannot easily be provided, he here attempts to supply at least a ‘phrase-book’.
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First musif inthis original study argues that the main characteristic of music is that it expresses and evokes emotion, and that all composers whose music has a tonal basis have used the same, or closely languxge, melodic phrases, harmonies, and rhythms to affect the listener in the same ways.
He supports this view with hundreds of musical examples, ranging from plainsong to Stravinsky, and contends that music is a language in the cookee sense that we can identify idioms and draw up a list of meanings.
The book’s final section analyzes two symphonies, Mozart’s Fortieth and Vaughan Williams’s Sixth, to explore the nature of musical inspiration langauge the process whereby the notes actually convey emotion from composer to listener. Read more Read less. Discover Prime Book Box for Kids. Customers who viewed this item also viewed. Page 1 of 1 Start over Page 1 of 1. I Saw the World End: On the Musically Beautiful: Emotion and Meaning in Music Phoenix Books. The Study of Counterpoint: An Introduction to His Music.
A Guide to Musical Analysis. Customers who bought this item also bought. How Music Plays the Mind. Review “One of the most important publications of post-war English musicography Clarendon Press March 8, Language: I’d coooke to read this book on Kindle Don’t have a Kindle? Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a customer review.
Showing of 8 reviews. Top Reviews Most recent Top Reviews. There pf a problem filtering reviews right now. Coole try again later. I had it and lost it. This was a real bargain! This is a truly wonderful book. I happened upon a copy in a used book store and it immediately grabbed my attention. I had wondered about the possibility of music being languuage language, and speaking to a deep and emotional part of human nature, but had never seen the idea developed or argued at length.
Within just the first few pages, however, I knew I’d found something special. Cooke argues that Western mostly classical music is truly a language, but one that speaks to the emotions and not to the intellect. Music is felt, and certain musical motifs or phrases evoke certain emotions in certain contexts.
He provides copious examples showing this to be the case, with meticulous attention given to all basic aspects of music: His writing is crystal clear, his reasoning is well thought out, and his presentation is both entertaining and heartfelt. He shows himself to have a deep understanding of human psychology, emotional depth, and of course, languagr.
This is the guy that orchestrated Mahler’s Tenth, after all.
Cooke closes the book with extended analysis of Mozart’s Fortieth and Vaughan-Williams’ Sixth symphonies, showing how all the individual elements discussed previously come together in a fully realized work. While it’s definitely a shame that so little has been done to develop the ideas in this book since it was written and so many have attacked his basic premise, unjustly in my opinionit’s interesting to see scientific studies confirming some of what Cooke describes, for example the universality of certain musical characteristics.
Musicians will naturally play in certain ways to evoke fear, excitement, sadness, joy. But Cooke’s book goes so much further. If you have some musical background you’ll need it to make sense of the examplesdo check it out. What gives music its meaning When the book was first suggested to me, based on theme, I was expecting something “wishy washy” and not too keen on it, but for some reason I decided to give it a go, since it touches on one of my areas of reasearch.
In the end it turned out to be one of those books that really got the old nogen brewing – – a book that sometimes you have to put down because it really gets your brain going or that if you read it before bedtime, you might wake up at 3: You’ll need to brush up on or learn basic music theory, however, it will be worth the effort For those who love Vaughan Williams’s atypical but emotionally shattering Sixth Symphony, Cooke’s analysis is worth the price of the entire book.
This wonderful little book explains how the basic elements of musical expression communicate emotional content, both locally and on a larger scale. Highly recommended to anyone trying to understand how music works.
Deryck Cooke is the person who orchestrated Mahler’s tenth symphony, starting with Mahler’s original draft. Cooke raises THE fundamental question of music–what does music mean? First, he assumes that music has a universal meaning. Yet no two people will have exactly the same reaction to a piece of music, even if they like it.
It’s therefore a little hard to accept his collections of musically emotive examples as altogether valid, though they are impressive enough.
The Language of Music
Second, anyone who has brushed around in music theory enough can tell you that if you want to find a certain pattern in a piece of music, you will find it if you look hard enough. And since Cooke only uses about four or five examples to “prove” each point, the possibility of these being the lucky five examples with multiple exceptions makes me skeptical.
And one’s not really sure whether Cooke is implying that his emotive musical phrases always work, or just work oc of the time. Basically, it’s impossible to deconstruct how great composers think, in the manner that Cooke attempts.
If you don’t believe me, try writing music according to the emotive principles he derycm. You won’t create anything nearly as good as the music he discusses unless you already have some talent. And the composers’ talent, in Cooke, seems to be reduced to their ability to employ the musical phrases he considers emotional. At the same time, I never thought about the issue of musical meaning very clearly until I read Cooke.
Even though I disagree with his approach and his conclusions, reading his book made understand why I think about musuc meaning the way I do. A must for students of musical philosophy. A well written and comprehensive view of the Harmonic predictability of tonal resolution.
Not as much comment on the melodic aspects except by reference. See all 8 reviews. Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers.
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