What makes a song hit
Choose a hit song that you believe is or will be a “classic” created by an artist who you believe we will still be paying attention to in 20 to 30 years
The focus of this assignment has 3 primary elements
1) analyze the musical influences that led to the composition of the song
2) comment on and research the song’s potential longevity as a hit or the artist’s potential for pop “immortality”
3) discuss the primary influences on the artist or band who recorded the song
2) Written report (individual work only please) This report should be 2-3 pages (600 words), typed, with footnotes if necessary and in your own words.
• Short artist profile that includes primary influences (you will need to research this)
• What style is the song today? Create a short historical narrative that demonstrates the musical styles that may have led to the creation of the song. What musical components of the song can you sight that demonstrate these influences. Be as specific as possible. This might include discussion of the rhythmic style or “groove” of the song, instrumentation, texture, form, melody, harmony, political focus or lack there of, and anything else you choose to include. You need to do more than simply mentioning published influences.
• The written report should go into more detail about how the chosen recording artist fits into the history of rock and R&B. Who were their major influences? What aspects of the song can be traced to various historic styles and musical ingredients? Why will we still care about this artist or band in 25 years?
• Research critical writing and commentary on the song and or artist to back up your claims that we will still be caring about this artist in the year 2035. Use and credit at least 3 sources. Try to find relevant quotations that support your argument. Do not use Wikipedia as a primary source. This is an excellent starting point but you must follow up by researching Wikipedia sources and crediting them appropriately.
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