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Old 11-01-2011, 11:44 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Not really. Nobody was playing a guitar while they were working in the fields, they were just singing. At the time when the blues were first being played, I'd say it was unconcventional.
So... you think that by incorporating the use of a certain instrument (in this case... a guitar) in an already-established genre of music makes it unconventional and therefore worthy of being called "avant-garde?" I'm sorry, but that doesn't make any sense.

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There wasn't really anything like it before.
Various forms of traditional folk music across the globe has made use of the guitar (or its ancestors). When it comes down to it... blues is just another type of folk music.

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The Charley Patton song sounds a lot better than that noise.
Okay... great, but how is that relevant? In fact... how is any of this relevant to the purpose of this thread? I set out to make this thread in hopes of learning more about pre-WWII avant-garde composers, not to argue with someone about whether or not blues is considered to be avant-garde.
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Old 11-02-2011, 12:05 AM   #12 (permalink)
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How was it already established? It was pretty unconventional. The classical music theory is not well suited to describe the Blues. From that point of view, Blues is crazy and wrong - playing dominant major 7th chords all over minor pentatonic scales, using chromatic scale pieces for intros and turnarounds, using a 5 tone scale instead of the accustomed 7 tone scales, adding notes that don't belong to any scale.

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Okay... great, but how is that relevant? In fact... how is any of this relevant to the purpose of this thread? I set out to make this thread in hopes of learning more about pre-WWII avant-garde composers, not to argue with someone about whether or not blues is considered to be avant-garde.
You can't always get what you want.

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Old 11-02-2011, 06:02 PM   #13 (permalink)
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How was it already established? It was pretty unconventional. The classical music theory is not well suited to describe the Blues. From that point of view, Blues is crazy and wrong - playing dominant major 7th chords all over minor pentatonic scales, using chromatic scale pieces for intros and turnarounds, using a 5 tone scale instead of the accustomed 7 tone scales, adding notes that don't belong to any scale.
EVery form of music STARTS as avant-garde because it's on the cutting edge of something. Blues stopped being experimental when it found common appeal.

Furthermore, blues is extremely structural. In all fairness, it invented the pop structure, or early usage of it. HOWEVER, due to the fact it adheres to a strict ruleset, it's a genre, not a deviation of a genre.

"that noise" is avant-garde music, and there is an intelligence to it. The thing is, however, it is experimental because it doesn't follow a common ruleset, but a ruleset invented specifically for itself. Blues follows the blues ruleset, therefore is not avant-garde.

No offense, but you're coming into this thread with all mouth, and no ears, Blastinggas.

On that note, an interesting factoid of Edgard Varese. He was an innovative composer, of course. Albeit, more owing to the futurists than he was willing to give credit for later on. However, he is the first ever in terms of inventing all percussion chamber pieces. Nobody before him ever did anything like this:



essentially, he invented an entirely new language of composition when he wrote this piece. One of which is pretty much used up to today.
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Old 11-02-2011, 06:10 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I am talking about when blues were first being played, that's what i've been talking about the entire time. You admitted that it started as avant-garde, and that's the point I was trying to prove. Blues didn't follow the blues ruleset when it was first created, because there was no set of rules at the time. In the beginning, it was avant-garde, and that was my point.
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Old 11-02-2011, 06:21 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I am talking about when blues were first being played, that's what i've been talking about the entire time. You admitted that it started as avant-garde, and that's the point I was trying to prove. Blues didn't follow the blues ruleset when it was first created, because there was no set of rules at the time. In the beginning, it was avant-garde, and that was my point.
Your point is not valid because EVERY ****ING GENRE starts as a form of avant-garde. Which makes blues irrelevant to mention. It's especially irritating because the point of avant-garde is to show people different approaches than the norm, and we've all had the 'blues is great, rock is great' club beat over our heads since childhood.

How about we talk about a form of music that wasn't, ok?

Pre-WWII avant-garde composers are extremely underrated. They approached ideas, and concepts that mainstream music did not adopt really until the 80s(well, somewhat int he 60s), and since has adopted very VERY minimally. They were really pioneers in the sense of utilizing things that nobody would touch. Including sampling, usage of non-instrument devices in music, and electronics. Long before 60s psychedelic bands/producers, or 80s new wave bands made these concepts trendy. They even lead into early musique concrete that created music entirely off samples 50 years before hip-hop was beginning to gain a reputation for it.

These guys were cutting edge, they were beyond cutting edge, to be honest.
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Old 11-02-2011, 06:48 PM   #16 (permalink)
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You belittle the other genres by saying "every genre starts as avant-garde", but for some reason that doesn't apply to these guys.
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Old 11-02-2011, 06:58 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I am talking about when blues were first being played, that's what i've been talking about the entire time. You admitted that it started as avant-garde, and that's the point I was trying to prove. Blues didn't follow the blues ruleset when it was first created, because there was no set of rules at the time. In the beginning, it was avant-garde, and that was my point.
You're acting like blues sprang into existence fully formed at some particular time, but it didn't. It's the product of organically evolving musical tradition and, as such, is essentially the antithesis of "avant-garde" as the term is generally used.
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Old 11-02-2011, 08:01 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Blues music wasn't all that unknown (as far as music composition goes) in the beginning... its sound was derived from the melancholy folk songs that African Americans would sing while they would work. Also, avant-garde music is characterized by being structurally unconventional and (usually, if not always) atonal... blues is not. Personally, I prefer the term "avant-garde" to "experimental" to avoid any confusion... or those just wanting to argue about semantics and genre-naming in music.

Here are two songs that were released in the early 20th Century... one is a delta blues song and the other is an avant-garde/noise piece.




Do you understand what I'm getting at?
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You're acting like blues sprang into existence fully formed at some particular time, but it didn't. It's the product of organically evolving musical tradition and, as such, is essentially the antithesis of "avant-garde" as the term is generally used.





All music has been a product of evolution, Whether it was the evolution of traditional music or the evolution of technology. Music isn't all about technical ability and experimenting, it's about feeling. And I honestly don't see how there is any feeling in that video above. Seems like its all about experimentation.

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Old 11-02-2011, 08:26 PM   #19 (permalink)
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And I honestly don't see how there is any feeling in that video above.
Really? I think it feels distant, cold, ominous, and dehumanized.

EDIT: Oh, and "Ionization" is a great song... Albeit, it's not my favorite piece by him, but it's definitely something to be admired.

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Old 11-02-2011, 09:07 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Really? I think it feels distant, cold, ominous, and dehumanized.

EDIT: Oh, and "Ionization" is a great song... Albeit, it's not my favorite piece by him, but it's definitely something to be admired.
Not mine, either, but I just had to point out the inventiveness of avant-garde sometimes isn't always veering away from accessibility, and often is reflected in music since.

Also, Blastinggas, the futurists were out to anger people. I imagine what you're saying about 'having feeling' is wrong. Imagine you played a Sex Pistols record do an 80 year old lady in the 70s. Then you ask her if it 'has feeling'...

Same response. Same purpose, really.

Does it make the Sex Pistols musically invalid, or is it you refusing to see the bigger picture?
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Terence Hill, as recently confirmed during an interview to an Italian TV talk-show, was offered the role but rejected it because he considered it "too violent". Dustin Hoffman and John Travolta declined the role for the same reason. When Al Pacino was considered for the role of John Rambo, he turned it down when his request that Rambo be more of a madman was rejected.
Al Pacino = God
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