I have chosen ” Uptown Funk” by Bruno Mars and ” Rock AroundThe Clock” by Bill Haley as this assessment ‘s topic. Basic information of two songs will bementioned first, then similarities, differences, and connections will bediscussed afterward. First of all, BrunoMars is a songwriter and popular singer who came from Hawaii, and he released “UptownFunk” in 2014, it won the Grammy award for Record of the Year.
It is a pop,funk boogie with Minneapolis song. ” Uptown Funk” is talking about how a guylooking good, wearing jewelry and branded shoes, talking about how hot thesinger is and how rich he is also it shows the exciting social life of thesinger. Uptown means the more northward part of the center city literally, italso has a meaning that an urban area is more high-class, complicated andwealthy.
And the line ” Uptown Funk you up” is a pun, where ” funk” hasreplaced by a similar and popular swear word, that means the same thing as “mess you up”. This song is early 80s style and inspired by many sources. Bruno Mars sangthis song together with Mark Ronson, using the trumpet ,electronic guitar anddrums and some vocal accompaniment. The beat of the song is regular , even andrepetitive as well, the rhythm is so energetic and danceable. The song has asteady beat and the speed is allegro which means it is at a jogging pace.Talking about dynamics , the volume is not consistent . It is loud at thebeginning and it goes quitter at the end. The drop in dynamics does add to theinterpretations of the song.
And the texture of the song is homophonic and itdoes not change throughout the song. Moreover, this songfollows an imperfect grammatical standard , for example , “stylin’ willin’livin’ it up the city ” . And the structure of the song is Verse1 ,pre- chorus ,chorus , verse2, pre-chorus , then chorus, bridge, part- chorus and outro.Moreover, the music video has a good choreography, dance in and out on thestreet. In the grand finale , there is a clubbing setting that everyone we haveseen performs as a very popular band. I am fascinated in thebeat of the song, the way that Bruno Mars present the song is excellent, hepretends he is a cool guy from a upper class of the town successfully. He actsfrivolously and whistles to hot girls in the street. My favorite part is when thesong set as an 80s scene, it looks so classic and appealing.
Secondly, “Rockaround the clock” by Bill Haley and His Comets (a Country and Western band fromPhiladelphia) is covered in 1954, which considered to be the first rock androll song on the Billboard charts, and it is one of the major rock and rollsongs of the 1950s, still ranked as Top 10 best-selling singles. This song wasknown by a longer title – “We ‘re Gonna Rock Around The Clock.” This song mayseem unexceptional today, but in era, it was a guarantee of selling, providinga break with the current situation and establishing pop music to a new era. Bill Haley (WilliamJohn Clifton Haley) was an American rock and roll musician, his left eye turnedblind by accident, but did not drag down his steps on pursuing music. BillHaley and the Comets performed this song on the Texaco Star Theater on May31,1955 in NBC. This was one of the earliest nationally performance on TV by arock n roll band, offering innovative musical genre to audience. “Rock AroundThe Clock” was introduced into the Grammy Hall of Fame, it is a special award establishedin 1973 to honor recordings that have ” qualitative or historical influence.” Back to the music, electronicguitar and saxophones played riffs along with Haley ‘s wonderful voice whichfeatures those instruments.
The song followed the 12 bar blues , which was verypopular in early rock and roll . A solo drum hitting in the end of this song ,this became a popular characteristic of rock and roll. Music accompaniment ofthe song included an electronic guitar, bass , drums, keyboards and sax. Moreover,its structure are intro, verse 1 , chorus , verse2, chorus, instruments solo ,verse 3 , chorus, verse 4 , chorus , instrumental solo , verse 5 , chorus. Alsoit is constructed by 12 bar blues with AAB form and bittered chorus with AABAform. The Five verses are made by blues scheme and are interrupted by an eight –barsolo, and by an eight –bar instrumental solo after the fourth stanza. The driving rhythmis not just full of energy, it is also a part of an organization of musicaltime that cancel the directionality of physical time. The repetitive lyrics “We’re gonna rock around the clock tonight” is so memorable and danceable.
Actually, the styleof both songs is quite similar. They are both black music. In fact, funk issomehow a mixture of blues, rock n roll, jazz and soul , and it is an evolutionthat the elements of the genres mentioned above created a new genre – funk. Wehave to notice that rock n roll was played by black people mainly, but funk wasplayed by white nowadays.
Some may say that is “whitening” of rock n rollmusic, the music ‘s re-racialization as just one more iteration of a phenomenonof white-on-black cultural theft. Moreover, “UptownFunk” ‘s writer Mark Ronson restyled it to become 1980s funk, when funk wasstill influencing people culturally, it is definitely can link back to Motown ,which is a music style and label that became a significant musical achievementin 20th century. As I mentionedbefore, rock n roll music brought black music into U.
S, and it created a solidfoundation of Motown and funk. Therefore, funk and rock n roll are basically coherent. Besides, the beatand rhythm of the songs are quite similar too, they both used repetitive lyricslike “Uptown funk you up” and “one, two,three o’clock 4 o’clock rock.” Thosecan brainwash the audiences and it is danceable. They are both quite rely ondrums and to create the rock atmosphere while “Uptown funk you up” is usingmore electronic sounds and “Rock Around the Clock” is using more electronic guitars.
But there are somedifferences between them. “Rock Around The Clock” was the song to the 1955 filmBlackboard Jungle, which is concerning about youngster delinquency. But “Uptownfunk you up” is a song talking about a guy want to show off his socio-economicstatus and want to pick up girls.
“Rock Around The Clock” emphasizes on the first beat on every 4/4 bar with fast tempo, while ” Uptown Funk” used a two-celled onbeat/offbeat structure.But bass lines are being used as centerpiece of both songs. All in all, “UptownFunk” and “Rock After The Clock” have connection and similarities in cultural and historic aspects, but they aredifferent in theme , rhyme and tempo.