oral tradition
transmission of music from person to person, rather than through written means
the study of the music of different cultural groups…often represents music that is unique to one cultural group
transmission of music by graphic representation
a progression of single notes (pitches) upwards or downwards in “steps” (A pentatonic scale is a 5-note scale.)
an audible note of fixed pitch ontinuing as a permanent bottom note under other sounding pitches (as the drone note on a bagpipe)
relating to that which is considered transcendent or supersensible…is not subject to empirical verification
considers the character of the universe by combining speculative metaphysics and scientific knowledge, cannot be empirically proven
traditional religions
sometimes called “primitive” or “pre-literate”…More accurately, traditional religions are confined to one geographical area or to one particular society or group
world religions
not confined to one area…These religions are generally codified and thus can be spread through proselytizing (to convert)
derived from Latin paganus (“countryman”)…implies a belief in a variety of nature gods and spirits…generally refers to a believer in the polytheism of the ancient world (Ex: the pagan Greeks, Romans and Celts)…sometimes used to refer to anyone who is not a Christian (or to anyone who is not a Christian, Jew or Muslim)
priest-doctor (usually a musician) who uses magic to cure the sick, to divine (discover, declare) the hidden, and to control events that affect the welfare of the people
instrument whose sound is produced by vibrating air (flute, trumpet)
an instrument whose sound is produced by vibrating strings
an instrument whose sound is produced by its own solid, vibrating body (bell, gong)
an instrument whose sound is produced by a stretched membrane (any type of drum)
doctrine of salvation through Jesus Christ
mass, Greek language are important, purpose of it to preserve the origin, timelessness
lining out
lead singer then group like call and response in Medieval period
cantor chorus
lead singer, but the group joins at times unlike lining out

release of emotion

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1. Spirit possession/exorcism music

2. Lament-style spirituals

3. Devotional songs

4. (Medieval period in Europe) Mystical love songs

5. Religious battle music

Liturgical music

a prescribed type of ceremonial, ritualized religious music performed according to an authorized, standard form (Ex: Kyrie)

more formal than devotional songs and not sung in a place of worship

Devotional songs

sung by common people. for everybody, popular or ill folk style outside original place of worship, for love

non-liturgical music

1. Pilgrims’ songs

2. Ceremonial songs

3. Religious “entertainment” songs

4. Religious art music

Gregorian chant
prayer in song
interior time

experience through ritual, bracketed

psychological perception of time, also called experiencial, ritual time

atemporal time
creation/primal time, (Hopi spiderwoman chant) play active part, participating in story, no change
when people ask something specific supernatural, if the ceremony is done correctly, will get it in exchange
ecstatic trance
group experience, usually involves drums and dancing
purpose to spread islam
want to show reverence and want to channel spirit of animal, spiritual protection, mystical

(doll also called sunface)

1. concepts/ ancestors, family heirlooms

2. figurines

3. regalia “never changes, some colors

4. dance/music always go together, repository form for survival

longest songs in Native American history 

sing vocables, important, secret language, non-lexical sounds, to hide sacred texts



collective memory

memory shared by everyone

ancestors coming to America