FORMS 1-3 • Orchestral categorization • Non- Western categorization Timbre and Musical Instrument Families
Timbre Timbre (a.k.a. tone color) is the special sound that makes one instrument or voice different from another.
What determines timber? • Material the instrument is made of. • Shape of the instrument • Size of the instrument • Method used to produce sound • Words used to describe timbre: • Bright • Dark • Rich • nasal
Functions of timbre: • To highlight a new melody • To add variety and contrast to the music • Used for emotional impact
VOICE PARTS Soprano Highest female vocal range Alto Lowest female vocal range Tenor Highest male vocal range Bass Lowest male vocal range
WOODWINDS Instruments originally made from wood that are now often made of metal or plastic. They set a column of air into vibration by wind moving: • Across a mouthpiece 2) Into a whistle-like mouthpiece 3) Over 1 reed 4) Over 2 reeds
Most woodwind instruments have a reed. Some exceptions are flutes and piccolos.
WOODWINDS Flute Piccolo Recorder Clarinet Oboe
STRINGS Instruments that make sounds by vibrating the string in one of the following ways: 1) Drawing a bow across them 2) Plucking them 3) Striking them
STRINGS Guitar Harp Violin family
BRASS Instruments usually made of brass. They create sound from the vibration of the performer’s lips buzzing into a cuplike mouthpiece. They have 2 ends. 1) Mouthpiece end 2) Bell shaped end (to amplify sound) Brass instruments have a strong, rich sound
BRASS Trumpet Trombone French Horn Tuba
PERCUSSION These are the most ancient instruments. They are used to make rhythm. Percussion instruments must be shaken, struck, or hit to make sound. There are two groups of percussion instruments.
PERCUSSION Membranophones Also known as the drum family. An instrument with a membrane (drum head) stretched across a form (drum body). The membrane is struck by a hand or with a stick.
PERCUSSION Membranophones Tambourine Snare Drum Bass Bongo
PERCUSSION Idiophones Make sounds by striking rubbing, shaking, or rattling the materials they are made of. (Sound is generated from its own material)
PERCUSSION Idiophones Xylophone Chimes Triangle Cymbals
Non-Western Instruments When we discuss instruments used in non western cultures, we categorize them differently than those in Western cultures.
Chordophones All stringed instruments including those that are plucked (pizzicato), struck or bowed (arco). Other terms for stringed instruments are: glissando and strum.
Aerophones Wind instruments of ALL kinds. (Here we do not make a distinction between woodwind and brass). Sound is generated by blowing air through a column.
Idiophones Instruments where sound is generated from its own material. i.e It is hit, struck, shaken, scraped or rubbed.
Membranophones Where sound is produced by the vibration of a membrane that is stretched across all or part of the instrument.
Metallophone Any instrument consisting of tuned metal bars which is struck to make a sound usually with a mallet. Eg. xylophone
Electrophones Where the sound is produced by electronic means. Eg. Electric guitar, keyboard, etc
Texture • Monophonic: A single unaccompanied melody line • Polyphonic: Two or more independent melody lines happening simultaneously • Homophony: melody plus accompaniment