The Hurrian Song is a set of fragmentary relics and a nearly complete example of notated music from around 1400 BC. This is important because its one of the first hymns ever written. It’s written on cuneiform on clay tablets. One of the tablets is a song and written for the nine stringed lyre.
The Natya Shastra is a writing that explains performing music, dance and stage performances. Its believed to come from anytime between 200BC-200AD. This is important because it gives detailed information on what the people of India used for instruments around the time. It also represents the foundation of music and other fine arts of India.
Troubadours were traveling poet-musicians that traveled place to place. They performed in front of all people and occasionally nobility. Their music was usually monophonic and they usually had a lyre or a drum. Their performances werent only singing, some did stage performances.
Modes are a series of pitches in predefined order, with specific intervals between each pitch. There are seven different types of modes: Ionian, Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian, Mixolydian, Aeolian and Locrian. One type of mode is Dorian, which is the natural diatonic scale D–D. One song that uses Dorian mode is Scarborough Fair by Simon and Garfunkel.
Polyphonic music is a type of music that uses two or more independent melodies. One of the first polyphonic music were Organum. The first famous composer of this type of music was Hildegard Von Bingen. Monophonic music was a single melody, and it dominated heavily in the early middle ages.
Critical Thinking Questions
I believe early humans began playing music to imitate the sounds that animals made. By making the sounds of animals it could call them in so they could be killed then eaten. They were thought to create music by listening to natural sounds and repeating them. Some believe music was our sort of “mating call” when we were still very primitive, while others believe music was a “social glue”.
The study of prehistoric and ancient music is important because we can see how music started and how it has grown since its “invention”. We can learn how social events were back then based on the style of music and its bpm to get an understanding of if they had parties and such. We can also learn how they lived back then using the old musics.
Music in prehistoric and ancient life roles were similar to today. Music was used for entertainment and religious reasons. Music is used in the same way today, but it has a few more uses like mood changing effects and what not.
Musical notation made it so multiple people could learn to play a specific piece of music without hearing it. It helps composers to be able to create music without having to memorize a piece when they take a break from making a piece. It also allows a piece of music to stay in existence after a composer died, or if the composer forgot the song, it would still be a thing.