What is MELODY? What does MELODY mean? MELODY meaning, definition, explanation & pronunciation



a melody singing chanting also

tune voice or line is a linear

succession of musical tones that the

listener perceives as a single entity

in its most literal sense a melody is a

combination of pitch and rhythm

while more figuratively the term can

include successions of other musical

elements such as tonal color

it may be considered the foreground to

the background accompaniment

a line or part need not be a foreground


melodies often consist of one or more

musical phrases or motifs

and are usually repeated throughout a

composition in various forms

melodies may also be described by their

melodic motion or the pitches or the

intervals between pitches

predominantly conjunct or disjunct or

with further restrictions

pitch range tension and release

continuity and coherence

cadence and shape given the many and

varied elements and styles of melody

many extant explanations confine us to

specific stylistic models

and they are too exclusive paul narvison

claimed in 1984 that more than

three-quarters of melodic topics had not

been explored thoroughly

the melodies existing in most european

music written before the 20th century

and popular music throughout the 20th


featured fixed and easily discernible

frequency patterns

recurring events often periodic at all

structural levels

and recurrence of durations and patterns

of durations

melodies in the 20th century utilized a

greater variety of pitch resources than

hob in the custom in any other

historical period of western music

while the diatonic scale was still used

the chromatic scale became widely


composers also allotted a structural

role to the qualitative dimensions

that previously had been almost

exclusively reserved for pitch and


clewware states the essential elements

of any melody are duration

pitch and quality timber texture

and loudness though the same melody may

be recognizable when played with a wide

variety of timbers and dynamics

the latter may still be an element of

linear ordering

different musical styles use melody in

different ways

for example jazz musicians use the term


or head to refer to the main melody

which is used as a starting point for


rock music melodic music and other forms

of popular music and folk music tend to

pick one or two melodies

verse and chorus and stick with them

much variety may occur in the phrasing

and lyrics

indian classical music relies heavily on

melody and rhythm

and not so much on harmony as the music

contains no chord changes

balinese gamalin music often uses

complicated variations and alterations

of a single melody played simultaneously

called heterophony in western classical


composers often introduce an initial

melody or theme

and then create variations classical


often has several melodic layers called


such as those in a fugue a type of


often melodies are constructed from


or short melodic fragments such as the

opening of beethoven's fifth symphony

richard weidner popularized the concept

of a light motif

a motif or melody associated with a

certain idea

person or place while in both most

popular music and classical music

of the common practice period pitch and

duration are of primary importance and


the contemporary music of the 20th and

21st centuries pitch and duration have

lessened in importance and quality has

gained importance

often primary examples include music


clang farben melody elliott carter's

eight day dudes and a fantasy

which contains a movement with only one

note the third movement of ruth crawford

seeger's string quartet 1931

later reorchestrated as andante for

string orchestra

which creates the melody from an

unchanging set of pitches through

dissonant dynamics

alone and georgie legetti's of ventures

in which recurring phonetics create a

linear form