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Section 15.3 “Rude” by MAGIC!

Now we will examine contrast in recent popular music. Here is the musical example of the texture from the reggae section of this song, as seen in the previous chapter.

In Verse 1 there is no bass drum, snare drum, or electric bass. All we hear are the voice part and the two guitar parts from the top two staves in the example above. There are fewer voices occurring on the vertical plane, creating a light texture.

Figure 15.3.1 Verse 1 of “Rude”

The bass guitar and drum groove enter in Verse 2, thickening the texture and adding the backbeat of the snare drum.

Figure 15.3.2 Verse 2 of “Rude”

In the pre–chorus, the guitars and bass have legato half notes and quarter notes while the drummer plays cross–stick eighth notes (if one is counting in a slow \(\begin{smallmatrix}4\\4\end{smallmatrix}\)). Without the snare drum backbeat, the texture lightens.

Figure 15.3.3 Pre–Chorus of “Rude”

The chorus has approximately the same accompaniment as Verse 2 but the voice parts are in a higher register, repeating a 2–measure subphrase containing the “hook.”

Figure 15.3.4 Chorus of “Rude”

The post–chorus emphasizes a (3+3+2)+(3+3+2) rhythm on all instruments (guitars, bass, and the bass drum, snare drum, and hi–hat of the drum set).

Figure 15.3.5 Post–Chorus of “Rude”

Below is a formal diagram of the first five sections of “Rude.”

Figure 15.3.6 First 5 Sections of “Rude”

This five–section unit repeats again with Verse 3, Verse 4, the Pre–Chorus, Chorus, and Post–Chorus.

When you listen to the entire piece, you hear how the musicians designate the form using the elements of articulation, rhythm, texture, and dynamics. One element that changes very little during entire song is the chord progression, which we examined in the chapter on harmonic progression.

While you are likely aware of successful songs in the which very few musical elements change, it is worth considering how you can articulate the form of your compositions and arrangements using the elements of music.