Chris Sunami supports Monica
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Is the double negative in 'we don't need no education' intentional?
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37 votes

This is quite certainly intentional. While the double negative used as an intensified negative is considered ungrammatical in "standard" English, it is very common in many English dialects, ...

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Why doesn't anyone write great symphonies any more?
22 votes

All musical forms, from Gregorian chant to hip hop, are most closely associated with a particular time and place, they go in and out of popularity. Older forms become a niche product, created and ...

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"Oh we got both kinds. We got Country and Western." But what's actually the difference?
19 votes

Country music is originally from the American South, it has origins in rural folk music, and originally centered around the lifestyle of farmers, miners and other blue-collar, rural Americans, usually ...

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Longest-running artist in music history?
12 votes

The Isley Brothers are the only group to have hit the US Top 100 every single decade between the 50's and the 2000's. That's six decades and counting(!) Lead singer Ron Isley (age 76) has already ...

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What was Ringo's influence in The Beatles?
12 votes

Here's another article I found re-evaluating Ringo. The main points I took from it: Ringo's hard-driving style of playing drums was innovative for the times (a fact now obscured because it ...

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Has any instrumental music ever been used to carry information?
11 votes

In classical music, the term for composition inspired by or including a message or code is a cryptogram. This approach to composition was sometimes used by the western-European classical composers. ...

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What is meant by "Grandma Plays the Numbers"?
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11 votes

The "numbers" were indeed the lottery, but this was back before the government decided to get in on the action, so it was an illegal lottery run by gangsters. Basically, it was a common, but ...

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Highest ranked popular hits with an uncommon time signature
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10 votes

"Take 5", in 5/4, is the top-selling jazz single of all time. It hit 25 on the pop charts as well. The Dave Brubeck Quartet, which recorded it, was known for unusual time signatures. It was ...

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Has a B-side unexpectedly become more popular than A-side?
10 votes

After a little research (A sides in parentheses): “Rock Around the Clock” (“Thirteen Women (And Only One Man in Town)”)– Bill Haley and His Comets in 1954. “Tequila” (“Train to Nowhere") – The ...

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What is the difference between hip hop and rap?
9 votes

Rapping is a style of long-form narrative poetry recitation with a strong and regular rhythmic beat, typically spoken, but occasionally delivered in a sing-song fashion (Nelly, Bone-Thugs-N-Harmony). ...

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Does aging affect our taste in music?
9 votes

A recent scientific research project actually demonstrated that yes, statistically speaking, your personal tastes align less and less with what's currently popular with each passing year. http://www....

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The meaning of "Uptown Funk"
9 votes

The literal meaning of uptown is usually the more northward part of the center city, but it has connotations (via New York City) of an urban area that is more "upscale", wealthy, classy and ...

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Why do music genres exist?
8 votes

Most genres initially develop within a tight-knit, geographically delineated community of musicians and fans. They embody, in some sense, the culture and the preoccupations of that group. As they ...

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What's the name of this french song by Dalida?
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7 votes

The English version of this song is best known as "Those Were the Days." It was a huge hit in 1968 for Mary Hopkins. The French version is called "Le Temps des Fleurs," ("...

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Why did fans used to buy "bootleg" recordings of live concerts?
7 votes

You are used to highly produced music which is created primarily for studio recording, and then reproduced live on stage for fans who demand an exact copy of the recording. But there are bands, and ...

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Are there other "psychedelic" genres than rock?
7 votes

There's also psychedelic folk, from Simon & Garfunkel and the Byrds in the 60's through to modern groups like Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, and the Shins. Leaves That Are Geen - Simon &...

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What is Bass and Treble?
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7 votes

Sound is created by vibrations. How fast those vibrations are is called "frequency." There is a range of vibrations that the human ear is sensitive to. The slower, bigger vibrations in this range ...

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What digital medium should I choose when buying music to maximize artists' profits?
7 votes

Spotify is notorious for underpaying artists. The margins for the artists are better when you purchase the music on iTunes or Amazon, but the best margins are on services specifically designed to ...

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Why the change to "Let us live to make men free?"
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7 votes

It's a philosophical change. The phrase "die to make men free" has an unmistakeably martial connotation, which matches with the song's origins as a literal "battle hymn" of the Civil War. The modern ...

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What piece of classical music is quoted in Bela Fleck and the Flecktones' "Sinister Minister"?
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7 votes

This sounds to be based on Bach's Preludium in C Major, perhaps best known as the accompaniment to Charles Gounod's Ave Maria.

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What is the instrument in the intro of They Might Be Giants' cover of "Istanbul (Not Constantinople)"?
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6 votes

This is violin/fiddle played in the famous "gypsy" (Romani) style. You might try looking up "gypsy violin" or "gypsy fiddle" as a start. This style has been very influential over the years. For a ...

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Missy Elliot's "Work it" lyrics meaning
6 votes

Like any historical artifact, this song can be difficult to judge from outside of it's own time and context. The things that made Missy Elliot revolutionary at the time of her peak popularity don't ...

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Source of accordion melody from "Vienna"
6 votes

As far as I can tell, this isn't intended as a quote of a specific piece of music but rather to evoke the street musicians of Vienna. That particular accordion style actually originates as the "Bal ...

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What does the song 'Helplessly Hoping' by Crosby, Stills & Nash (CSN) talk about?
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6 votes

You are correct, this song is about two young lovers. I'd venture that it's a romance built largely around the wordplay in the lyrics. "Helplessly hoping..." this is a series of alliterations built ...

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Classical piece used as hold music on call to local GP
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6 votes

This is the famous "Celebrated" Minuet, by classical composer Luigi Boccherini, frequently used in movies and on television as a signifier of elegance, class and refinement. For Suzuki-trained ...

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Are there any kinds of Jazz that use Sitars?
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6 votes

The history of the sitar in jazz, that is the fusion of the sounds of Indian classical music with Western jazz, dates back from the late-1950s or early-1960s when musicians trained in Indian classical ...

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"Someone else's dream" - female voice, guitar
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6 votes

This is a cover of the song "Life in Mono" I was able to identify it from scraps of the lyrics: The stranger sang a theme From someone else's dream The leaves began to fall And no one spoke ...

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Songs where melody and lyrics dont't fit (by design)
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6 votes

A number of my favorite songs use this technique. For example, Pumped Up Kicks sounds like a happy dance tune, but the lyrics are about a school shooter. In this case, the song arguably reveals a ...

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Is opera more enjoyable when you don't understand the lyrics?
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6 votes

This isn't specific to opera. Lyrics we can't understand have a tendency to sound more meaningful and profound to us, because we impose our own sense of meaning on them. We assume that they are the ...

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Too much similar music nowadays
6 votes

There are really 3 separate answers to this question: It "all sounds the same" is a common complaint for unfamiliar genres. When you first hear a style of music you are unfamiliar with, all you ...

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