On Jazz Analysis: Schenker, Salzer, and Salience
Pellegrin, Richard S.
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This dissertation explores the significance of the Salzerian analytical tradition with respect to both the Western classical and jazz idioms. The first half investigates issues of salience and subjectivity in both intuitionist and formalist approaches to reductive analysis of classical repertoire. I argue that intuitionist analysis in the Salzerian tradition of late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century repertoire is both valid and necessary, despite its resistance to systematization and other criticisms that have been raised. The second half of the study applies these lines of inquiry to jazz. As in the classical idiom, a strict Schenkerian approach to jazz works best when applied to a certain segment of the canon. A less strict approach, and one according increased weight to salience (after Lerdahl), is required to adequately address repertoire falling outside of this limited scope. The value of jazz analysis in the Salzerian tradition is evidenced in part by a transcription and analysis of a complete performance of "Green Chimneys" by the Thelonious Monk Quartet, that which appears on Columbia Records' 1996 reissue of Straight, No Chaser (1967). This analysis reveals sophisticated large-scale organization, including motivic parallelism operating on all structural levels--that of a complete single-chorus improvisation, a complete multi-chorus improvisation, the solo section taken as a whole, and the composition itself, as well as various lower levels.
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