Humanities
MUS 3308 University of Ottawa Taylor Swift Contemporary Song Analysis

MUS 3308

University of Ottawa

MUS

Question Description

I’m studying and need help with a Art question to help me learn.

Please analysis: Look what make me do - Taylor Swift

1. Choose a popular song from the past two years that you deem significant. Please make sure that it is from 2019 or 2020 (you will have marks taken off if it is not from the right time period). If there are differing dates for the song’s album and single release, or some other situation with the dates, as long as one of the dates is 2019 or 2020, that is fine. You can pick your favourite song, your least favourite song, a song that has some political significance, a song that uses unusual instruments, a cover of an older song, a mash-up of older songs, an unusual genre, etc.

2. You must provide a copy of the song through a YouTube link at the end of your document.

3. Your assignment should be formatted in the following way:

  • 1200 to 1500 words
  • Use a 12pt Times font with default margins.
  • Use double-spacing.

4. Content of analysis report:

Background (maximum one page)

State who recorded the song, what the song title is, what the song’s date is, and who wrote it. In an opening paragraph, describe the artist(s). Who are they? Where are they from? What else have they done? How is their music usually described in the media?

Analysis (main part of assignment: 2 to 3 pages)

Please read the requirement carefully before your start!

Unformatted Attachment Preview

Name: Student Number: MUS 3308 Assignment Three: Contemporary Song Analysis Instructions This assignment is worth 20% of your grade and will be due on March 31st. You are encouraged to submit in pairs (i.e. two students receive the same grade for one assignment) but you may also work individually. 1. Choose a popular song from the past two years that you deem significant. Please make sure that it is from 2019 or 2020 (you will have marks taken off if it is not from the right time period). If there are differing dates for the song’s album and single release, or some other situation with the dates, as long as one of the dates is 2019 or 2020, that is fine. You can pick your favourite song, your least favourite song, a song that has some political significance, a song that uses unusual instruments, a cover of an older song, a mash-up of older songs, an unusual genre, etc. 2. You must provide a copy of the song through a YouTube link at the end of your document. 3. Your assignment should be formatted in the following way: • 1200 to 1500 words • Use a 12pt Times font with default margins. • Use double-spacing. 4. Content of analysis report: BACKGROUND (maximum one page) State who recorded the song, what the song title is, what the song’s date is, and who wrote it. In an opening paragraph, describe the artist(s). Who are they? Where are they from? What else have they done? How is their music usually described in the media? ANALYSIS (main part of assignment: 2 to 3 pages) A. LYRICS Provide a copy of the lyrics as an appendix (i.e. replace the example I’ve given with your own). This does not count as part of your word count. What do you think the lyrics are “about”? Are there references in the song to specific people, things, or events that suggest a specific “meaning”? To what extent is the song open to multiple interpretations? Can you find background information about the song that might give you an idea of the circumstances surrounding its composition? What about poetic devices like assonance, synecdoche, metonymy, alliteration, simile, metaphor, anaphora, etc.? (Look these up online if you’re not familiar with them.) It is helpful if you circle and label these directly on your appendix (i.e. the table showing lyrics and timings). Can you find any instances of word-painting? Describe them. Hint: think back to our discussion of Joni Mitchell’s “Help Me.” If not, say so but look thoroughly. B. MUSIC Out of the song forms we’ve studied, which does it relate to best? Verse-chorus, 12-bar blues, AABA, through-composed (i.e. without repetition), some other variant? Hint: except in some riff-based forms or instrumentals, you can usually determine form easily by looking at the lyrics. Indicate the parts of the song on your copy of the lyrics (such as verse and chorus) and add timings to each as I have done in my example. Number the lines of the song (see below example) so you can refer to specific places in the song when talking about the music. What instruments are playing? What is the foreground (important focus of the song, usually a melody)? Does this change as the song progresses? How? What is the background (supporting structure, often includes bass, percussion, but not necessarily)? Does this change as the song progresses? How? What role does each instrument or voice play (e.g. background harmonies, rhythm, melodies, a riff)? If you have a musical background, feel free (but not obliged!) to transcribe the main melody or riff. If there is chordal harmony (especially guitar changes) you can usually find these on the internet. They might interest you, and you might want to listen for these chord changes if you find them online, but don’t worry about them if you haven’t studied how chords work. Think about the music both horizontally and vertically. Horizontally: What is happening with various musical parameters (melody, rhythm, timbre, etc.) as the song progresses? In other words, what kinds of changes, repetitions, or gradual developments are most interesting in the song? Vertically: At a given moment or section of the song, what is the overall texture like? For example, is it dense/thick? Is it clear/thin? Are more layers being gradually added to the song or altered as in Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean”? (Not more than one page on the following two sections together.) GENRE You know from the class that genre is a complex and potentially contentious issue. Taking that into consideration, is there a genre category that this artist’s music is usually associated with? Do you agree with that label? Why? SIGNIFICANCE Why did you choose this song? If it is significant to today’s society in some way that you’d like to emphasize, explain how. Is it a personal favourite of yours? If so, why? 5. Citations: You are not expected to provide a formal bibliography for this assignment, as most of the content will be taken from your own song analysis. If you use a book, article, or webpage for any part of the assignment, however, please include a reference. Do not plagiarize! 6. Indicate your word count along with your YouTube link at the end of the document. Grading will be holistic. Please see the grading rubric given at the end of this document. 2 Cowboy Junkies “Sweet Jane” Timing Formal Sections (0:00) INSTRUMENTAL INTRODUCTION (0:13) VERSE (1) Anyone who’s ever had a heart (2) Wouldn’t turn around and break it (3) And anyone who’s ever played a part (4) Wouldn’t turn around and hate it (0:36) CHORUS (5) Sweet jane, sweet jane (6) Sweet, sweet jane (0:53) VERSE (7) You’re waiting for Jimmy down in the alley (8) Waiting there for him to come back home (9) Waiting down on the corner (10) And thinking of ways to get back home (1:17) CHORUS (11) Sweet jane, sweet jane (12) Sweet, sweet jane (1:38) VERSE (13) Anyone who’s ever had a dream (14) Anyone who’s ever played a part (15) Anyone who’s ever been lonely (16) And anyone who’s ever split apart (2:02) CHORUS (17) Sweet jane, sweet jane (18) Sweet, sweet jane (2:26) BRIDGE (new material: music is different from verse and chorus) (19) Heavenly widened roses (20) Seem to whisper to me when you smile (21) Heavenly widened roses (22) Seem to whisper to me when you smile (23) La la la la, la la la... (2:53) CHORUS (24) Sweet jane (25) Sweet, sweet jane 3 Name: Student Number: A+ A A90–100 85-90% 80–84% Accurate music vocabulary - very few errors - pertinent use of technical vocabulary B+ B 75–79% 70–74% Inaccurate music vocabulary - occasional mistakes - clear efforts to use class vocabulary Creative and original insights - connections made with class material - unexpected and effective use of research - ideas that few other students had - evidence of critical thinking Strong command of writing: - varied grammatical structures - varied sentence lengths and rhythms - logical connections (“As a result…” “Conversely…” “Likewise…”) - almost no editing mistakes - a pleasure to read Coherent arguments - cogent statements - arguments are logically connected to evidence Appropriate observations - makes the most important or expected arguments - generally observes what other classmates observe Acceptable writing that shows potential: - occasional verbosity, odd wordchoices, or misused non-music terms - mostly unvarying grammatical structures - occasional spelling or punctuation errors - overly informal language; or, conversely, an unnecessary avoidance of first-person pronouns Basic arguments - giant paragraphs - underdeveloped paragraphs - some sudden shifts in ideas - wastes space with unnecessary writing (“In this paper, I will…”) C+ C 65–69% 60–64% Very little music vocabulary - too much focus on lyrics or visual elements - contrived or forced music terms Overly basic observations - places emphasis on obvious features - overgeneralizes - rarely moves beyond trivial details D+ or below 0–59% No music vocabulary - it is not clear that the student has come to any classes Overly dry or ham-handed writing style: - unnecessarily repetitive - offers a series of facts one after the other (e.g. a playby-play) - run-on sentences Pervasive basic language errors. Frequent writing errors: - spelling mistakes - punctuation errors - requires more proofreading Poor or difficult-to-follow arguments - stream of consciousness style - details do not contribute to a broader argument Irrelevant observations - attempts at clairvoyance - involves stereotypes Writing is difficult to comprehend. Baffling argument. It may not be clear whether there is a point to the writing. - errors in logic no timings given to help follow musical observations 5 ...
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Final Answer

See attached:)

Running head: CONTEMPORARY SONG ANALYSIS

Contemporary Song Analysis
[Name of the student]
[Due date]

1

CONTEMPORARY SONG ANALYSIS


2

Taylor Swift is an artist hailing for the United States and known for being a
single-song writer. Her life had experienced widespread coverage since the age of
fourteen when she was the youngest artist to be signed by a music publishing
company.



"Look what you made me do" song was recorded in 2017 by the American singersongwriter Taylor Swift. The big machine records were responsible.



The initial verse of the song describes the artist's complaints concerning games
that are exhibited by her enemies.



She describes the games as an unfair advantage. A myriad of sources have
claimed that the verse was directed to a long term feud partner Kanye West, but in
her recent interviews, she claimed none of it, insisting her idea of using general
ideologies in her lyrical composition.



Taylor swift songs revolve around several genres, which include country music,
teen pop, country pop, electropop, arena rock, folk music, and country-pop,
among others.



Moreover, it can be described as electropop and electroclash. This is based on the
conventions that the pop video shown incorporates bright colors and clothing.



The song is one of my favorites, and that why I choose it. This is basically
because the song represents a person who is not ready to be defined by past life or
experiences.



In the current society, people live at the mercy of others, having to heed to their
demands and wants. People are after taking advantage of others with total
disregard for others' wellbeing.

CONTEMPORARY SONG ANALYSIS

3


Running head: CONTEMPORARY SONG ANALYSIS

Contemporary Song Analysis
[Name of the student]
[Due date]

1

CONTEMPORARY SONG ANALYSIS

2

Taylor Swift is an artist hailing for the United States and known for being a single-song
writer. Her life had experienced widespread coverage since the age of fourteen when she was the
youngest artist to be signed by a music publishing company. She has recorded a host of albums,
including reputation, which was released between 2017 and 2019. It took the world by storm as
exhibited by the number of records it broke in that year alone. She has a host of other albums,
and currently, she boosts the accolade of being the first woman in the United States to have a
total if sic albums, which have sold over half a million copies a week after debut (Ryan,
Bengtsson, Edlom, & Fast, 2018).
Her public image has been derivi...

Spartacus (12972)
Duke University

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