How Music Works

Feb 12, 2024 | Performing Arts, Videos

Howard Goodall’s documentary series, Music: The Key of Life, takes a fascinating look at the power of music and how it reflects different cultures. From Mahler to David Bowie; the blues to Bulgarian folk songs; medieval choral music to disco, Goodall dives deep into what makes music so special and how everyone responds to it differently.

The series examines many aspects of music, including melody, rhythm, harmony and bass. On his journey, Goodall reveals the tried and tested tricks of the composer’s trade that are shared by all styles of music. He explores why some melodic shapes are common across all cultures and discovers successful melodies that can be created at random. He also looks at rhythmic patterns used by musicians from around the world – from Brahms to rappers – as well as the roots of western harmony and how it has evolved over time. Lastly, he delves into how instrument makers have been able to create instruments with thudding low notes in order to bring bass into centre stage in genres such as disco, dance and drum ‘n’ bass.

This captivating documentary will leave viewers feeling inspired by learning about the various elements that make up music and its global influence on cultures worldwide. It is a must-watch for any classical or contemporary music enthusiast who wants to gain a deeper understanding of musical composition techniques. With its exploration into multi-cultural musical traditions, Music: The Key of Life is an insightful journey through history that should not be missed!

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David B