Classical Gas, by California Guitar and Cat's in the Cradle, by Henry Chapin

Classical Gas, by California Guitar and Cat's in the Cradle, by Henry Chapin

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A human being begins from one of the smallest cells in the body. We then, grow and evolve into extremely complex mechanisms made up of individual parts, such as the brain, the bones, and the heart. However, no matter how complex, a human is only one work, with individual parts working together to make it functional. Similarly, a work of art is composed of individual elements collaborating to create the overall work. Beginning with the colors chosen, to the way the artist swipes their brush in specific directions creating distinct textures, the work would not be complete without its most minute component. The same concept can be applied to musical pieces. A great musical work would not be complete without the original combinations of musical instruments, voices, lyrics, and meaning. Two examples of this idea are “Classical Gas” by California Guitar Trio and “Cat’s in the Cradle” by Harry Chapin.
In reference to music we can identify specific aspects of pitch, including harmony and melody. Harmony refers to the relationship of sounds that happen simultaneously while melody refers to the relationship between sounds that occur one right after the other. “Classical Gas” has a melody, which means it has a hummable tune accompanied by a wide pitch range. Some notes are leisurely and low, while others burst into rapid, loud sounds. “Cat’s in the Cradle” also has a melody, however, its pitch range is much narrower than “Classical Gas”. It does have high and low notes, but the high notes seem to mostly come during the chorus of the song, rather than randomly throughout the piece. “Classical Gas” is mostly presented in a conjunct, or stepwise motion, however, some leaps, or disjunct motions are prominent and repeated throughout the song. Fo...


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...to its most minute aspects, and analyzed from the inside out. Each great piece must be made from individual smaller parts, including, but not limited to, pitch (harmony/melody), dynamics, tone color/timbre, and duration (rhythm). Just the same as how the complexity of the human body lies in the simultaneous working of the organ systems (smaller individual parts).



Works Cited

Zimmerman, P. Guitartab. “Mason Williams-Classical Gas Tab”. 2011. July 27, 2011.

“http://www.guitaretab.com/w/williams-mason/20958.html”.

Hodge, D. Gibson. “Learn to Play ‘Cat’s in the Cradle’”. July 27, 2011.

“http://www.gibson.com/en-us/Lifestyle/Lessons/InstrumentLessons/

Learn%20To%20Play%20_Cats%20In%20The%20Cr/”.

Cleveland, B. Frets. “California Guitar Trio”. 2004. July 27, 2011.

“http://www.sroartists.com/artists/californiaguitartrio/files/

cgt-reviews.pdf”.

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