On That Note

Single Artwork "It Will Rain"
Some musical highlights from this past week: I changed my car radio presets around.  I axed my local NPR station for 95.7 - the area's smooth R&B channel.  I've been satisfied so far.  Already I've heard "Between the Sheets," the music sampled for The Notorious B.I.G.'s "Big Poppa."  Unaware that this song was sampled (see last week's post - I'm new to hip-hop), I admit, because of the snobbery in me, I lost a little respect for Biggie, the hip-hop mongol.  What real talent, other than being poetic, is exhibited in taking someone else's music and putting your own lyrics over it?  I still like "Big Poppa" - don't get me wrong, but come on!  What happened to actually performing and creating one's own music?!  Did that die with the 80s?!

A song that apparently many people think demonstrates its artist's talent is "It Will Rain."  Bruno Mars's single, released on 27 September of last year, is still in heavy radio circulation - I heard it more times this week than I can remember (literally).  I noticed this this past week and thought "Well, I guess this is my next review."  I thought two-three months of a song being played on the radio was past its life expectancy...

The song features a great hook.  Other than this, I don't see what's great about it.  Is it the worst song ever produced?  Not at all.  What little mind I pay the song is primarily because it happens to be in my second favorite key - b minor.  Beethoven referred to the key as "a black key."  This texture is apparent (to me, at least) in the opening chords.  With the song's progression comes a "happier" theme with the shift to major tonality for those moments.  Bruno Mars admittedly does a fantastic job with the vocals in the single as he announces rich melodic themes throughout the song.

While I'm on the kick - other noteworthy compositions in b minor (cause it's that good/descriptive):

Pink Floyd's "Money" off of Dark Side of the Moon
Pink Floyd's "One of These Days" off of Meddle
Tchaikovsky's 6th Symphony
Matt Bellamy's opening guitar rift to "Plug in Baby" off of Origin of Symmetry
The Stroke's "Reptilia" off of Room on Fire
Jimi Hendrix's "Red House"

Until next time