[Smt-talk] Pop Music And Theory

Victor grauer victorag at verizon.net
Thu Dec 11 08:29:16 PST 2014

On Wed, 12/10/14, CARSON FARLEY wrote:

"The essence of Pop music is that it is free of all rules and not concerned with structure in the same way that classical music/art is."

 I completely disagree. According to my research, pop music is in fact highly constrained. As you say, the musicians themselves are usually not consciously aware of the constraints -- but the same could be said for many "classical" composers as well. Certain fundamental structural and stylistic elements have been passed on as taken-for-granted traditions. But that does not make popular music free of all rules, not at all.

For some insights into how pop music operates within very rigid constraints dating, very possibly, from the 16th century, see my book "The Life and Times of a Musical Virus: A Critical History of the Rhythm Section" -- 

Victor Grauer
Pittsburgh, PA

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