Volume 10 (2024)

“Dual Leading-Tone Loops in Recent Television Dramas”

Brad Osborn (University of Kansas)

Volume 10.2 (March 2024)


Link to bibliography

In this video I highlight a trend in recent television dramas in which characters’ conflicting emotions are scored using short chord loops that contain leading tones for major and relative minor keys simultaneously. These harmonic structures, which I dub dual leading-tone loops, present an eight-pitch-class palette (e.g. ABCDEFGG#) over a looping progression, and thus exert a strong tonal pull toward both a major key and its relative minor in short succession. Dual leading-tone loops are a particular subset of what scholars have identified as a “double tonic complex,” but in this case the two paired keys shuttle back and forth over a matter of seconds.

Keywords: film music, popular music, tonality, chord loops, musical meaning

“The Best Laid Plans . . . and Others: An 18th-Century Compositional Outline”

L. Poundie Burstein (Hunter College, CUNY) with Quynh Nguyen (Hunter College, CUNY) and Jennifer Roderer (Hunter College, CUNY/The Metropolitan Opera)

Volume 10.1 (January 2024)


Link to bibliography

A standard strategy for music analysis is to reduce out the less essential elements of a composition so as to arrive at a type of musical outline of the work. Both the benefits and problems with such an approach are highlighted in one of the first analyses along these lines, an examination by Heinrich Christoph Koch (1787) of the aria “Ein Gebet” from Carl Heinrich Graun’s oratorio Der Tod Jesu.

Keywords: music analysis, history of music theory, Galant music, analytic models, musical form, autographs and archival documents


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