Jazz Vocalist, Songwriter, Composer, Lyricist, Trombonist, Educator

On Music

The Language Of Music - Part 1

A single word in a language has limited meaning by itself. Placed in proximity to other words, a single word takes on a greater meaning derived from the relationship of the meaning of the words, one to the other. The equivalent is true in music. A single tone by itself has a very limited meaning. But placed in proximity to another tone the difference in pitch, or interval between the two tones, brings a meaning to those tones that they do not individually possess. Not a meaning in the way that words have meaning, but an acoustic meaning that has the curious potential to tug at our hearts and minds to evoke emotions through what we call music. The language of music, from the standpoint of pitches placed successively in time to create melodies, is comprised of the sound of the different intervals between those pitches. Internalize the sounds of those intervals, and you have begun to speak the language of music.