• Call and Response
A Practice in singing in which a solo vocalist (the call) is answered by a group of singers. Also heard in instrumental music, or between vocalists and instrumentalists, the style is vocal in origin. Also referred to as antiphonal singing
• field holler
A type of work song in which a solo singer shouts out a melody very loudly so that it is picked up by other workers in far fields. In some cases, it was said that it, post civil war reconstruction era, was means of communication between various field hands. The melody that starts out at a high pitch and descends in pitch by the end of the line, contributed to the development of blues singing
• Blue notes
The altered pitch or pitches of a blues scale or song
• 12 bar blues progression
One of the most identifiable characteristics of the blues, the blues progression of tonic, it is basic to the blues and is prominently used in rock and roll.
• Ostinato
A motive, phrase, or theme that is constantly repeated while other musical elements change; a riff
• Boogie woogie
A jazz piano style that is characterized by a left hand ostinato that subdivides each beat of a four-beat measure into two, resulting n eight pulses to each bar. The pulse are not evenly played, giving a bouncy, long- short(dotted eighth note and sixteenth note) barrelhouse rhythm to the music. Most boogie boogie is based on the 12 bar blues progression. The ostinato left hand contributed to the development of rock ‘n’ roll rhythm
• Barrelhouse rhythm
The bouncy, long-short rhythm (dotted eighth note and sixteenth note) that is associated with boogie woogie. The name is derived from the place where boogie woogie flourished; bars or “barrelhouses”
• Downbeat
The first beat of a measure. The term has also been used for the regular accented beats in a 4/4 measure, beats one and three
• Strophic song form
A song form in which each verse of the text is sung to the same music. The music for each verse remains the same while the words change. Most blues songs and folk songs are strophic forms.
• “doo wop” progression
Tonic Submediant Subdominant Dominant
I, iv, IV ,V
• Slapped bass
Slap strings down instead of pulling up, gives clicking sound to music
• “Bo Diddley” rhythm/ hambone
A rhythm often used in children’s singing games. More correctly, the rhythm is the West African patted juba rhythm in which the legs, the stomach, and chest are patted in a rhythm. Sometimes referred to as a hand jive. The hambone rhythm was popularized by black shoeshine boys in the now familiar “shave and haircut, two bits.” It is especially associated with the music of Bo Diddley and is therefore also called the Bo Diddley beat.
• Standard song form(AABA)
A musical structure that typically consists o f two musical parts (A and B) played in four sections. Each section is generally 8 measures long, resulting in a 32 measure form. The A part is played and repeated (8+8 measures), followed by the B part or bridge (8 measures), and a return to the A part (8 measures) for an overall form of AABA in 32 measures. In some rock songs the AABA form is borrowed with a great deal of freedom and combined with strophic song form; in some cases the A part further divides into a verse (a) and a chorus(b), while the B part retains its bridge
• Rockabilly
Another term for the style of rock ‘n’ roll that developed in and around Memphis Tennessee in the mid 1950s, Memphis country rock. Rockabilly is derived from the combination of rock ‘n’ roll and hillbilly or country music
• Double stops
• Two beat bass
A type of bass accompaniment in which the bassist play the root of the chord on the first beat of a measure and the fifth of the chord on the third beat of a measure. Associated very strongly with country music
• Backbeat
Placing a strong accent on the off beats. In a four beat measure, the drummer typically emphasizes beats 2 and 4, creating the basic rhythm of rock music
• String band
A musical ensemble associated with southern country music, originating in the 1920s. The typical string band consisted of acoustic guitars, a string bass, fiddles and a banjo, perhaps also a mandolin. String band is also sometimes used to describe a bluegrass ensemble or a folk ensemble. The string band was combined with the swing band rhythm section (piano and drums) and horns in western swing
• Griot(jali)
A singer/ musician from the Senegal and Gambia regions of western Africa. The griots are the oral historians of their people and accompany themselves on string instruments, particularly on the kora. Blues historians consider the griots to be forerunners of the blues singers; the African name for these historians is jali
• Walking bass
A type of bass line in which each beat of a measure is different tone. The bass line is usually a conjunct type of melody that enables the bassist to go from one chord to the next
• Shouter(jump blues band)
Or “screamer” the good-time, party songs and fast dance numbers—songs were of sexual reference, — raw, rough edged blues style
smooch tenor” ( jump blues band)
Ballad singer for the easy listening, slow dancing love songs
• Polyrhythm
Two or more rhythms performed simultaneously
• Bent notes
To slightly alter the pitch of a note by pilling on a string, raising or lowering the voice, or tightening or loosing the embouchure on a horn. it is often considered the blue note
• Tonic
The main or central of a major key. Tonic also refers to the chord that is built on the first pitch of a scale and is therefore the main or central chord or home chord of a major or minor key
• Subdominant
The fourth pitch of a major or minor scale. Subdominant also refers to the chord that is built on the fourth pitch of a scale
• Turnaround
A melodic and harmonic formula that is played at the end of a larger chord progression to prepare the performers and listeners for another repetition of the progression. Turnabouts typically end with a half cadence
• The blackboard jungle
First movie to use rock ‘n’ roll in the sound track—Glenn Ford and Vic Morrow—presence of rock ‘n’ roll in soundtrack helped to establish in the minds of both adolescents and adults that there was a connection between rock ‘n’ roll and rebellion
• Race records
Term that refers to all music recorded by African American from the 1920s through the 1940s, including blues, jazz and rag time. Race records were usually from small independent labels and were distributed by the record company owners themselves, often from the trunks of their cars. Outlets for race records were any type of store that serviced black customers. Race records became referred to as rhythm and blues records during the late 1940s
• Cover records
A recording that has been recorded and released after the original version. A cover may or may not follow the style of the original and sometimes the lyrics are changed. In the early days of rock many rhythm and blues songs, originally recorded by black performers, were covered by white performers. The cover versions were often “cleaned up” meaning that the objectionable or risque lyrics were change to more “acceptable” language. Also it was possible to air the white cover version on more radio stations throughout the country
• Hillbilly
A derogatory term for country and western
• Slide guitar
A metal sleeve or small glass bottle on the chording hand
• Fill
An instrumental embellishment played during breaks (rests) in a vocal melody. The standard 12 bar blues form has an instrumental fill at the end of each sung line. Fill also refers to anything played by a drummer other than strict time- keeping
• Dominant
The fifth pitch of a scale. Also refers to the chord built on the fifth pitch of the scale
• Work song
Songs sung by slaves working in the fields – includes call and response and field holler
• Riff
A short melodic and/ or rhythmic pattern that is repeated over and over while musical changes take place over the fragment. A riff is often the harmonic and rhythm basis of the entire song. A good example of a riff-based song is the rolling stone’s satisfaction