#1
What is your opinion on this pit?

We all know the music we all know and love somehow came from classical music. Classical composers were employed by the church and religion particularly christianity was a big part of the development of music.

Do you think it would have been different had religion not taken music under it's wing?

It would have been impossible for religion to not take music under it's wing because at that that time, it made things more interesting.

But let's just speculate on who would have been the biggest contributor to musical development if the church hadn't butted in.

#2
I would be. I'd nurture the shit out of music and make it my bitch.
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#3
I guess you need to assess a few things to answer this-
1) What is the biological function of music?
2) What motivation did the church have for nurturing it?
3) Who shared these motivations with the church?

It might be that music fulfills a unifying role, and the church wanted to unify people to control them. If the church hadn't done it, rulers might have.
I dunno if that's what I actually think, but that's all I can think of.
#4
Quote by gothblade
What is your opinion on this pit?

We all know the music we all know and love somehow came from classical music. Classical composers were employed by the church and religion particularly christianity was a big part of the development of music.

Do you think it would have been different had religion not taken music under it's wing?


No, I don't think it would because religion tends to use whatever musical style is popular at the time rather than actualy influencing the direction that music develops in.

Quote by gothblade

It would have been impossible for religion to not take music under it's wing because at that that time, it made things more interesting.

But let's just speculate on who would have been the biggest contributor to musical development if the church hadn't butted in.



Probably pretty much the same as it is now, black African slaves in America, who introduced the Blues which was then crossed with European influences to develop Jazz and Rock 'n' Roll, which is basicaly where most popular music today stems from.
#5
Quote by Reagar
I guess you need to assess a few things to answer this-
1) What is the biological function of music?
2) What motivation did the church have for nurturing it?
3) Who shared these motivations with the church?

It might be that music fulfills a unifying role, and the church wanted to unify people to control them. If the church hadn't done it, rulers might have.
I dunno if that's what I actually think, but that's all I can think of.


So rulers would have employed musicians and the like to control the people?

Interesting take, the royalty did actually employ a lot of musician for their own leisure so they might be the biggest if the church didn't take music to new heights.
#6
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#7
Quote by SlackerBabbath
No, I don't think it would because religion tends to use whatever musical style is popular at the time rather than actualy influencing the direction that music develops in.


I see that's also true. Didn't think of it that way

Quote by SlackerBabbath

Probably pretty much the same as it is now, black African slaves in America, who introduced the Blues which was then crossed with European influences to develop Jazz and Rock 'n' Roll, which is basicaly where most popular music today stems from.


So no impact whatsoever if the church was just most probably minimal to developing music. Were those african slaves influenced by religion as well?
#8
Quote by gothblade


We all know the music we all know and love somehow came from classical music.



Woah woah woah woah.

You gonna back that up with something?

I'm pretty sure:

Blues-> Pop, early rock n' roll, etc -> Rock, early metal and ****in branchin out and shit.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/20th_century_music
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#9
Quote by Julz127
Woah woah woah woah.

You gonna back that up with something?

I'm pretty sure:

Blues-> Pop, early rock n' roll, etc -> Rock, early metal and ****in branchin out and shit.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/20th_century_music


Well ok....that was a mistake...but still classical music had it's influence on modern music right?
#10
Quote by gothblade
Well ok....that was a mistake...but still classical music had it's influence on modern music right?


Of course, particularly modern classical music having an influence on indie music, (eg Radiohead's Johnny Greenwood, who composes modern classical stuff)

And also all the metal bands who claim to be influenced by classical music.
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#11
Quote by gothblade

So no impact whatsoever if the church was just most probably minimal to developing music. Were those african slaves influenced by religion as well?

Depends which way you look at it really, the songs sung by African slaves were work songs, chants used to synchronise everyone in a field to a rhythm which helped them pass the time and do plenty of work, which they then rhymed simple narrative ballads to.

Africans have probably been making narrative music for thousands of years, so obviously some of that music is going to have religious narratives, but I don't think the music itself is influenced by any form of religion, more like the other way around really.

What we must remember is that most traditional African instruments are quite limited in their range, so we see lots and lots of repetative music and rhythms being played in traditional African tribes, (which explains why blues are so simplistic if it culturaly begins with African tribal music) which in turn can have any narrative added to it.

So I think it's probably a case of music first, which is then used for any number of subjects, including religion rather than music being developed specificaly for religious purposes.
Last edited by SlackerBabbath at Jun 6, 2011,
#12
Quote by SlackerBabbath
Depends which way you look at it really, the songs sung by African slaves were work songs, chants used to synchronise everyone in a field to a rhythm which helped them pass the time and do plenty of work, which they then rhymed simple narrative ballads to.

Africans have probably been making narrative music for thousands of years, so obviously some of that music is going to have religious narratives, but I don't think the music itself is influenced by any form of religion, more like the other way around really.

What we must remember is that most traditional African instruments are quite limited in their range, so we see lots and lots of repetative music and rhythms being played in traditional African tribes, (which explains why blues are so simplistic if it culturaly begins with African tribal music) which in turn can have any narrative added to it.

So I think it's probably a case of music first, which is then used for any number of subjects, including religion rather than music being developed specificaly for religious purposes.



That's a good explanation.

Shed some light on my side at least
#13
Quote by gothblade
That's a good explanation.

Shed some light on my side at least



Of course, it can also be argued that Gospel Blues is obviously influenced by religion and later went on to influence R & B, but again, it's really more of a case of blues being used for religion.

Classical music basicaly comes from the Renaissance, which developed against a Christian backdrop in Italy, and much Classical music was written with religious subjects in mind, but there was also a hell of a lot of Classical music written about mythology and war, among other subjects.
#14
Quote by SlackerBabbath


Of course, it can also be argued that Gospel Blues is obviously influenced by religion and later went on to influence R & B, but again, it's really more of a case of blues being used for religion.

Classical music basicaly comes from the Renaissance, which developed against a Christian backdrop in Italy, and much Classical music was written with religious subjects in mind, but there was also a hell of a lot of Classical music written about mythology and war, among other subjects.


It really is music first. Those people just interpreted in the right context right?

Music I guess is it's own entity and not an offshoot of any institution. Am I right?
#15
Quote by gothblade
It really is music first. Those people just interpreted in the right context right?

Music I guess is it's own entity and not an offshoot of any institution. Am I right?


Music can be defined as a form of expression, like religion etc.
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#16
Quote by gothblade
It really is music first. Those people just interpreted in the right context right?

Music I guess is it's own entity and not an offshoot of any institution. Am I right?


Pretty much, yeah.
#17
The church did plenty to hinder the 'progression' of music, too, you know.

For hundreds of years musical styles were, in large part, dictated by the church. During Medieval times, the tritone was viewed as too dissonant for use in common liturgical services. In fact, the tritone chord progression came to represent the devil. Perhaps as early as the 18th century it was commonly known as “diabolus in musica” (the devil in music). A great deal of superstition came to be associated with the tritone. Some church fathers in the Catholic church adhered to the belief that it may even serve to invoke the power of the devil. Because of this belief, the use of the tritone was banned by the church for liturgical use. Because of this negative association, even secular music produced during these centuries avoided it.
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#19
Christian rock sucks. I went to church with a friend the other day and it was "worship night" where their band just played christian rock songs all night. They all sound the same. And instead of the horns they do this weird thing where they close their eyes and put their arms out.
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#20
Quote by rgrockr
Christian rock sucks. I went to church with a friend the other day and it was "worship night" where their band just played christian rock songs all night. They all sound the same. And instead of the horns they do this weird thing where they close their eyes and put their arms out.

#21
I'm sure the notion of a perfect, divine thing had an effect on composers, even if the specifics of the religion didn't. Weren't gregorian chants and church music originally intended to be beautiful and worthy of god in a way the folk music of the time wasn't?

Although I have no idea where I read/heard that. I might have dreamt it.
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Last edited by whalepudding at Jun 7, 2011,
#22
just because somethings lyricless doesn't mean it isn't considered sacred music. samba was basically born of African slaves incorporating their "sacred rhythms" discreetly into secular music so as to not be punished for practicing their religion illegally.

so I think it's unfair to say definitively that religion is subservient to music. in reality, in Africa especially, music is subservient to dance which can oftentimes be spiritual.
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#23
Music would have grown without the influences of the church, it was around long before, and will continue to be long after, organised religion. It's like claiming that modern literacy is thanks to the church, yes the first books printed were the Bible, but that doesn't mean the art-form wouldn't have grown and developed in its absence.
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#24
Quote by whalepudding
I'm sure the notion of a perfect, divine thing had an effect on composers, even if the specifics of the religion didn't. Weren't gregorian chants and church music originally intended to be beautiful and worthy of god in a way the folk music of the time wasn't?.


it was actually supposed to be atmospheric and simple so as not to distract from the liturgy but to enhance it. hence more parallel fifths than a green day transcription.
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#25
Quote by primusfan
more parallel fifths than a green day transcription.


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#26
Quote by StewieSwan
The church did plenty to hinder the 'progression' of music, too, you know.


Plato even more so. if he had his way only Dorian and Phrygian would exist. he said others were either too effeminate or subversive.
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#27
I think we also need to look past religion as a body, but as an idea.
Bach and Handel are arguably the two most important and influential composers from the Baroque era. Both were very religious. A great deal of Handel's work wouldn't even exist without religion (his Messiah, Elijah, etc). As for Bach, though most of his famous works aren't religious, it would be interesting to see what his music would be like if he weren't religious.
#28
The fact that "the church" (actually, a variety of religious sects and organizations) did actively promote nearly all the arts for a long time is undeniable.
For one thing, these were powerful and wealthy organizations. Further displays of that wealth and power in the form of music, architecture, and art further enhanced the position of the religion and attracted more adherents.... And so on.
However, all these things flourished outside of religion as well. There has always been various forms of folk music and secular music; it was common for the wealthy to employ composers and musicians to provide simple entertainment. That's why "chamber music" existed.
And opera flourished in an almost entirely secular manner, the rock-n-roll of it's time.

Most forumites should be aware that when the guitar first appeared in a form we'd pretty well recognize today, long around the 1600s, it was railed against by the church as it was used primarily for accompanying dancing and singing....."occasions of sin"......
#29
Quote by Bikewer
The fact that "the church" (actually, a variety of religious sects and organizations) did actively promote nearly all the arts for a long time is undeniable.
For one thing, these were powerful and wealthy organizations. Further displays of that wealth and power in the form of music, architecture, and art further enhanced the position of the religion and attracted more adherents.... And so on.
However, all these things flourished outside of religion as well. There has always been various forms of folk music and secular music; it was common for the wealthy to employ composers and musicians to provide simple entertainment. That's why "chamber music" existed.
And opera flourished in an almost entirely secular manner, the rock-n-roll of it's time.

Most forumites should be aware that when the guitar first appeared in a form we'd pretty well recognize today, long around the 1600s, it was railed against by the church as it was used primarily for accompanying dancing and singing....."occasions of sin"......


Damned good point sir.