Cornflake Girl

A) In both of Tori Amos??™ songs, ???Pretty Good Year??? and ???Cornflake Girl??? she uses female vocals (her own voice), with a piano as her main instruments to create a certain mood of the song. However, while in ???Pretty Good Year??? it seems that those are the only two instruments used, in ???Cornflake Girl??? Amos also includes drums and guitar to keep the tempo of the piece. There seems to be a slight whistling sound at the beginning of ???Cornflake Girl??? as well, which just adds a little bit of texture to the piece. Both pieces are performed in duple meter, and both are simple with the bigger beats being broken down into 2 smaller beats.
The dynamics of these pieces help to convey Amos??™ strong messages that she is trying to get across through the changing dynamics and the lyrics. In ???Cornflake Girl??? there are times when the instruments all drop out except for the vocals and a soft piano in the background. This adds to the urgency and causes the listener to pay attention to the lyrics more specifically at these points. In ???Pretty Good Year??? the beginning of the song starts out piano, very soft and sad sounding, until the second to last verse when it gets louder, becoming a harsh forte. This accentuates these lyrics, just as in ???Cornflake Girl,??? until it gets soft, and sadder again until it fades out.
The lyrics in Amos??™ songs have strong meanings that resonate long after the song is over. In ???Pretty Good Year??? when one is listening to it, it is obvious that the song leaves a sad deeper meaning with you. Amos seems to be talking about a boy named Greg who is growing up, and dealing with his ???wonder years??? being over which we can see when she says ???they say you were something in those formative years.??? She seems to be talking about a boy who is lost in his own life. The dynamics in the song mix with the sad lyrics, about being lost and add to the sadness of the song. ???Cornflake Girl??? has a very deep meaning, when Amos talks about two different types of girls, ???raisin girls??? and ???cornflake girls.??? From what she sings, it seems that these ???cornflake girls??? are more in abundance, and in the first few lines she talks about how she never was a cornflake girl. She relates that to being a good thing, her hanging out with the raisin girls. It seems like cornflake girls can be compared to being the average, norm and raisin girls are unique and harder to find, though in the song Amos sings about a girl switching over or losing her uniqueness, although it is unclear whether that girl is her or not.2). In the song ???Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds??? there are a variety of instruments that fade in and out throughout the entire song. There are male lead vocals as well as a few male background vocals, a lead guitar, bass, an acoustic guitar, drums, and it sounds as if there are maracas in part of the song as well. The song starts out soft and slow, and progressively gets louder and sounds as if the voice is getting closer to the forefront. The song always gets louder and more aggressive at the chorus, and fades out at the verses. The song was written in the mid sixties, specifically 1967, in the height of the bands drug phase. Coincidence or not the title of the song has the initials LSD, with the lyrics mirroring the hallucinations felt when on the drug. Specifically, ???a girl with kaleidoscope eyes,??? which reflects what one would see when tripping on LSD. The song seems like it would either be written when they were high, or in remembrance of a time when the writer was high. The song starts out in triple meter for the intro and the first verses, and moves into duple meter during the chorus when the drums start to come in, but it is changed in a way that when it switches from ? to 4/4 one of the quarter notes now equals a eighth note of the new meter.C).
The first song I chose was a song by Jack Johnson titled ???Better Together.??? This song is typical of Johnson, with the main instrument being just his male vocal with an acoustic guitar. The other instruments that he chooses to incorporate into this song, is a mellow drumbeat with some bass. There are also a few times that the keyboard comes into the song, usually after the chorus but it does not stay throughout the entire song. The dynamics of this song remain very much the same all the way through. The song starts out very softly before the vocals come in, and even after Johnson enters the song remains mellow and quiet, giving the entire song a relaxing feel. This songs meter is very simple, with each measure in 4/4 making the song in duple meter. Further than that each beat is individually divided into triplets, making it compound or swung. The lyrics to this song are pretty simplistic; Johnson is singing a love song, which is both apparent through his lyrics (even the title) and the way in which he sings those lyrics. The second song I chose was ???She??™s Leaving Home??? by the Beatles. The song is very slow and a lot more mellow than a lot of the Beatles other songs. The song has two different male vocals from two of the members of the group, but it is sung one person at a time, except for the chorus, which has a background vocal. The song does not have any drums or guitars, but the instruments that are used are different strings, mainly what sounds like the violin, viola, cello, string bass, and what clearly is a harp. The dynamics of the song are very soft and almost eerie. For the most part the song stays very piano the whole time, slowly peeking at the chorus and then towards the end, for what most likely is emphasis on the lyrics. The lyrics are very moving for this song, and probably reflect something that may have been happening at the time. The lyrics are clearly about a young girl who is ???leaving home??? and has not returned. The lyrics combined with the soft and slow melody creates what seems like a spooky meaning behind the lyrics, as everyone wonders where this girl went.EXTRA CREDIT: Discuss the metric/rhythmic relationship between the main guitar riff and the rest of the ensemble in the song ???Vaseline??? by the Stone Temple Pilots, from Purple (1994).The metric/rhythmic relationship between the guitar and the rest of the instruments in this song is called syncopation. The guitar seems to be playing a mixture of eighth and sixteenth notes in pattern in a ? beat, while the drums plays in 4/4, which creates the syncopation or the slightly weird sound that we hear.

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