How Music Came into Being: Interesting Facts
Undoubtedly, music has become a sphere that has long been firmly entrenched in the life of society and is also able to give people unforgettable emotions.
That’s why the paper writer will tell you about the history of music and remind you of some interesting facts about it.
In the 7th century B.C., organized melody appeared in Ancient Greece. There is an opinion that the first person to sing poetry on specific melodic patterns (chants), that is, to use repetitive musical phrases to memorize and recite verses, was the Spartan poet and musician Terpandre.
Similarly, he is believed to have perfected the first professional musical instrument, the cithara (a type of lyre). He added three more strings to the four, increasing the instrument’s range to almost an octave. After that arose a further theoretical division of this range into tones and semitones, the most specific intervals between sounds.
Interesting fact: The word “music” came to us from ancient Greece. The daughters of Zeus, also known as muses, patronized the arts and sciences. Surprisingly, none of them were specifically responsible for the art of sound.
The first attempts to explain what music belongs to the philosopher and mystic Pythagoras. It was around 530 BC. He tried to do this through mathematics. He also wanted to establish a connection between the movements of the planets and the intervals that occur between sounds.
In 250 B.C., the ancestor of the modern organ, the hydraulics, was invented, attributed to the Alexandrian inventor and mathematician Ctesibius. The invention, a water organ, was often used during public events, but its main merit was the further development of polyphonic instruments and the creation of artificial timbres.
In 389, Blessed Augustine’s treatise De musica provided the first mathematical justification for musical and poetic rhythm. He also calculated metric proportions. The theoretical foundations of this work formed the basis of the first rhythmic practices of the Gregorian hymn in the seventh century and the system for recording notes.
The Middle Ages
In 507, the Roman philosopher and official Boetius introduced three categories of music in his treatise “Teachings to Music:
- world music (mundane)
- human (Humana)
- practical (instrumental).
It was Boetius who first introduced the perception of the musician as a sage and priest of harmony. The philosopher also invented Latin alphabetic notation, the earliest monuments that have only come down to our time since the 11th century.
In 727, the Catholic Church already had an organ. It happened in this way: Pepin the Short received as a gift a small organ from the Byzantine emperor Constantine Copronymus, which was placed in his house church.
At first, the instrument was often used during church services by court circles, but later, the custom appeared in parish churches. Even a version may explain the organ’s popularity – the Catholic Church conducted services in Latin, which the ordinary people mostly did not understand.
In contrast, the Eastern churches conducted services in a language the people could understand. Catholics decided to use the organ to influence the people who prayed.
In the ninth century, they began to write notes in signs. In the days of Antiquity, letters were used for this purpose. However, this notation was eventually forgotten because very few such historical monuments have survived.
As a consequence, the oral tradition began to prevail. However, at the end of the first millennium, new systems for recording music with unique signs, the nevma, appeared. It differs from the note because the latter is a combined sign where there is a sound or even a part of a motif.
Interesting fact: Music can make us happier because it provokes activity in the same part of the brain that produces the “pleasure hormone.
Between 1026 and 1030, the Benedictine monk Guido d’Arezzo wrote a treatise called the “micrologue,” He finally formulated a new way of reading a musical text: the notes were placed on four rulers and in the spaces between them. Also, “keys” were introduced to indicate pitch, similar to the current violin, alto, and bass pitches.
In addition, names were given to notes for ease of memorization based on the first syllables of the prayer to John the Baptist: ut, re, mi, fa, sol, la (ut was later replaced by doing, and si was added by the end of the 16th century).
Between the 1150s, the first names of composers were recorded, and the first known female musician appeared – the founder and abbess of the Benedictine monastery Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179). The latter was later canonized as a saint.
In 1320-1325, the French composer and bishop Philip where Vittry perfected musical notation, making it easier to read music from sheet music and sing by voices. Thanks to this, many genres developed: ballads, madrigals, but above all, a motet.
The latter is a complex composition of at least three voices (later four became the norm), where each sings a different text to a different tune and even often in other languages. There is a version explaining the popularity of the above genres by the plague pandemic – the courts separated, did not invite stray singers, and entertained themselves with such exquisite songs on secular texts.
In 1501 the Italian Ottaviano Petrucci published the first sheet music collection Harmonice musices odhecaton, which printed secular three- and four-voice works, among others by the leading composers of the time: Ockeghem, Obrecht, Josquin Despres, and others.
In 1524 Martin Luther commissioned a collection of hymns that the people could sing. It was based on rhythmic and “sliced” into stanzas unanimous Gregorian melodies and song structure that was easy to memorize.
In 1537 the first conservatory was opened in Naples, Italy. It was this: an orphanage appeared at the church of Santa Maria di Loreto, where pupils were taught music so that they could then work. It was thanks to conservatories that church choirs and opera houses were replenished.
The opera appeared in 1600, the instrumental concerto in 1686, the piano in 1700, and Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier in 1722.
However, the most exciting development was the appearance between 1740 and 1745 of the primary genre of instrumental music, the symphony. There is an opinion that it emerged from the overture – the introduction to an opera.
In 1752 the figure of the conductor appeared, which was introduced by the German flutist Johann Joachim Quanz in his treatise “experience of instruction in playing the transverse flute”; in 1762, Jean-Jacques Rousseau invented recitation to music.
Interesting fact: Plants grow faster if they listen to classical music.
In 1781, Mozart became the first professional composer not in the service, for he broke off his working relationship with his patron. He began a life of individual commissions and later of organizing “academies.”
He also sold the rights to publish sheet music. During this period, Mozart reached the high point of eighteenth-century classical symphonic.
From 1808 a national identity in music began to take shape. First choral societies, small but numerous associations that performed uncomplicated choral repertoires, appeared in Bohemia and Germany.
This era also saw a new type of musician, the virtuoso, the first of whom was Niccolò Paganini. Thanks to him, free-form works became a virtuoso-exquisite genre, and he also attracted the public with his enigmatic demeanor during his performances.
From the 1930s, music with literary content appeared. A new genre was the program symphony, which Beethoven began. He wanted to create something capable of combining music and literature.
In the 1890s, the young musician Eric Satie was looking for new musical patterns and invented his composition system. Short melodic phrases docked to each other in seemingly arbitrary order (in fact, we are talking about sophisticated formal logic). This event completely reversed the way the musical form was classically understood.
At the same time, the musician wrote a piece called “Vexations” (“trouble” or “annoyance”), which consisted of a single sheet of music. It was offered to be played 840 times in a row, first performed only in 1963 by John Cage. Satie was thus the first composer to invent the principles of the musical avant-garde.
Musical modernism began with Claude Debussy’s symphonic poem The Afternoon of a Faun. The musician did not want to use the orchestra to create a monumental sound.
Instead, he preferred to use the orchestra as a collection of groups of instruments with elaborate textures of sound.
At the same time, experiments with what is now known as electro music began, and atonal music was born. In 1910, the first world record in the recording industry was registered: the total circulation of 3 recordings of the famous aria “Vesti la giubba” from the opera “Pagliacci” by Ruggero Leoncavallo in 1892, performed by Enrico Caruso, exceeded one million.
At the beginning of the 20th century, the Italian composer, futurist poet, and artist Luigi Russolo built noise instruments, created a noise orchestra, and wrote the futurist music manifesto. From that moment, the boundaries between music and noise began to blur.
A fundamentally new step was the creation of a score for such instruments, thanks to which noise became ordered in time. There is an opinion that Russolo’s invention influenced the styles that emerged in the computer age – noise and industrial.
In 1921 they held the first festival of new music called the Donaueschingen Chamber Concerts in Support of Modern Music. The eccentric Prince Fürstenberg was persuaded to support the contemporary art of music because of the difficult economic situation.
Old and new music used to be played together at concerts and festivals, but then innovative composers separated from academics.
In the same century, radio put an end to the monopoly of gramophone recordings on the technical reproduction of music. In Great Britain, the British Broadcasting Company (BBC), a national language company, was established in 1922.
Interesting fact: While listening to music, our heart adjusts to the tune’s rhythm.
There were predictions that music radio broadcasts would “kill” the gramophone at the time. However, what suffered was home amateur music-making – family listening to concerts on the radio destroyed the traditional evening home concerts. Television became even more popular in the ’50s, with musical content.
It would seem that why mention movies in this piece, but it does matter. Back in the 1910s, they started experimenting with voice-over films, but it wasn’t until decades later that “cinema” began to speak.
In 1926-1927, the language of actors and the reliable synchronization of music and sound emerged. The first such feature film was The Jazz Singer.
About 20 years later, John Cage drew a line under the entire previous musical tradition – he composed a piece called “4’33” where musicians took the stage with their instruments and didn’t play them for 4.5 minutes. During the piece’s performance, every random and extraneous noise became an integral part of the musical work.
It distinguished the musician’s experiment from past experiments, for previously, no such conceptual framework had been assumed. After that, the artists began to explore the boundaries of the musical. There is an opinion that Cage’s work is “the limit of music.