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The Music of Joni Mitchell$
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Lloyd Whitesell

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195307993

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195307993.001.0001

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MELODIC TURNS

MELODIC TURNS

Chapter:
(p.148) 6 MELODIC TURNS
Source:
The Music of Joni Mitchell
Author(s):

LLOYD WHITESELL

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195307993.003.0006

This chapter studies Mitchell's intricate melodic structures. The first section shows how she devises variations on standard popular song forms. The second section examines her nonformulaic approach to phrase structure. Proportions are often irregular due to harmonic extension and metric disruption. Phrases relate to one another through patterns of parallelism, contrast, and complementarity (“open/closed” pairings). The third section explores expressive effects made possible through melodic contour, and characterizes two dramatic paradigm shifts in her approach to melody.

Keywords:   melody, song forms, phrase structure, metric disruption, parallelism, complementarity

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