Hello everyone and welcome back to my blog. As yet another PLP project come to a close its time to reflect on the learning that happened and my growth as a student. The “sounds of poetry” project has been a short and sweet project with the goal of answering the driving question, “How might we use music to represent ourselves and text”. To be able to come up with a intelligent answer to this question we completed five individual song analysis using our knowledge that we had gained through this project. In this blog post I will go through the process of creating the song analysis, several of my song analysis and how these pieces of evidence helped me answer the driving question.
Throughout the course of the entire project a large emphasis was put on the identification of literary devices in poems and songs. The ability to identify complicated ideas and terms is what really helped create our song analysis. The ability to show this skill on paper through highlighting and annotating was also very helpful. This skill is seen below. Once our skills as a class were honed and ready we started our song analysis.
The songs I chose were not all necessarily the ones I listen to the most but they are the songs that have resonated with me. Many songs I like because of the sounds or voices really have not a lot of meaning to me whereas there are some you can relate to on a deeper level. The songs I chose create nostalgia, bring connections, or align with something I agree with. The songs I chose to write about in the playlist of my life were “Knock Knock” by Mac Miller, “Breakdown” by Jack Johnson, “Reborn” by KIDS SEE GHOSTS, “Spirit In The Sky” by Norman Greenbaum, and “Everybody’s Gotta Live” by Love. In my opinion the three of my strongest songs analysis were with Knock Knock, Breakdown and Reborn. I was able to identify the uses of literary devices and I have a strong connection with them.
By: Mac Miller
“Knock Knock” is an upbeat song that speaks of new found freedom after high school. Immediately after the fun intro, the funky and catchy chorus sweeps you off your feet and perfectly embodies the entire song. The easy to follow A-B rhyme pattern adds to the fun and ease of this song. “One, two, three, four. Some crazy-ass kids gonna knock up on your door”. The feel good nature of this teenage anthem continues through the song. The easy to understand story and lyrics doesn’t take away from the use of multiple literary devices such as the personification in the line “I feel like a million bucks but my money don’t really feel like I do”.This song remains carefree and well written all the way through. The fact that there seems to be no overarching or subversive meaning besides what’s given really simplifies this songs. This song brings me back to summers that have past, running around without a care. Ideas of freedom and a bright future in combination with a catchy sample makes the happy and triumphant tone fit right in. The ability to relate the lyrics just enhances this songs and the memories it has given me. Being told to get a job and getting in over my head are two things i personally relate to that the song give emphasis on. “They wonder why don’t I go get myself a job” and “In deeper than the water Michael Phelps was in.” While being able to personally relate to some lyrics most are about topics I wouldn’t participate in like drug and alcohol consumption. While Mac Miller clearly puts a massive emphasis on these topics in the songs I prefer not to think about them and just vibe with the lyrics I can relate to. In the end I chose this song due to three major reasons, Nostalgia, relatability and tone. The memories that come with this song, the fun and relatable lyrics and the happy and carefree tone all come together to make this one of my favourite songs.
By: Jack Johnson
Breakdown is an chill and relaxing song questioning the relentless impatience found in everyday life. Throughout the entire song this idea is emphasized by Jack repeating that “I wish the, old train would break down”. I think that the old train is a metaphor for daily life. Jack is saying he wants get leave or at least take a break from the rush of life, “I want to take a walk around”. This message is fully reinforced by the lyrics “all the people in the street walking fast as their feet, I just stroll through town.” Continuing the use of metaphors and symbolism he talks about how everything is moving to fast whereas he can just stroll and is perfectly content. There is also uses of oxymorons to further convey the metaphor of relentless impatience. The use of oxymorons in seen in the line “you cant stop nothing if you got no control. Keeping the song sonically simple just enhances the listening experience. I first heard this song when I was very young and the main part that stuck with me was the imagery Jack Johnson managed to create. Whenever the song came on I could just imagine what the song was about. Now when it comes on I am able to see the imagery and also think about the message the song is giving. Being able to continually identify certain images and thoughts with a song over the course of several years Proves to me that the song is well written and an enjoyable piece of music.
By: KIDS SEE GHOSTS
Reborn is a song about overcoming issues and moving forward from troubling times. This song starts with the chorus which is one of my favourite examples of repetition in a song. “I’m so—I’m so reborn, I’m movin’ forward”. The repetition of movin forward in every line completely fits within the themes of self forgiveness and “being reborn”. Verse one has a very catchy rhyme scheme while remaining in with the theme and use of repetition. As the song goes through another well written second verse the use of repetition becomes the most notable. This gives the listener a sense of calm as we truly come to believe that the artists will keep moving forward. Kid Cudi asks himself “which way do I go?” He can only come up with “keep movin forward, keep movin forward.” This song was written by KIDS SEE GHOSTS (kid Cudi, Kanye West) to be deeply introspective and almost apologetic. The syntax of the lyrics in combination with production and vocal performances makes this song highly memorable and relatable to a wide audience. I like most people can personally relate to just trying to move forward. This song, to me perfectly encapsulates the feeling of trying to get through hard times. When I listen to this song I just the courage to move forward through whatever I want to get through.
I presented these Songs to my classmates in groups of three. I accompanied this presentation with a Keynote I will link the Keynote below and I think it’s very well designed and it really represents each song individually.Throughout all my songs at seven minutes to present in that seven minutes I discussed why I like the songs and how they impacted me through my life. I also talked about their personal connotations to myself. After my presentation I listened to my other three classmates presentations. I will link everyone’s blogs who I presented to and who presented to me I fully recommend taking a look at what they’ve done and the songs they analyzed.
This project was very short but very meaningful and personal to everyone in the class. It was an opportunity to tell our classmates about us and how the music we listen to affects us. Along with it being a cool project personally it was also very interesting to learn how to analyze literature and especially songs poetry and lyrics. Even after this project I feel myself noticing more things in the music I listen to I feel myself analyzing what the artist is trying to convey and I feel more connected to the music and poetry I read. To bring this project to an end I would like to share my answer to the driving question. Music can be used to represent ourselves and text By using lyrics to create personal connections and memories associated with the music.
Thank you very much for reading my blog post. I hope to see you again soon. Here is the YouTube playlist for my songs.