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> I Shot The Sheriff Ya?
Rallebil
post Dec 10 2009, 09:51 AM
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So I need to do a musical analysis of Bob Marley's I shot the Sheriff. It must include atleast stuff like an explanation of the characteristic stylistic features, including the shape, roles of the different instruments, harmonic and way of singing (call back etc. and stuff). After that I need to place the text of the song into historical context.

Anyways it would be nice if someone would help me out with that, then ill be very happy. Shouldnt take long I guess! And feel free to add anything to it.
(Handing it in tommorow).



And ofcourse the lyrics!

http://www.lyricsfreak.com/b/bob+marley/i+...f_20021744.html

A thousand thanks to whoever helps me wink.gif. Also included the sheet for it.

~Rasmus Vitting

Attached File  Bob_Marley._I_Shot_the_Sheriff.pdf ( 4.78MB ) Number of downloads: 261
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Jakub Luptovec
post Dec 10 2009, 12:17 PM
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QUOTE (Rallebil @ Dec 10 2009, 09:51 AM) *
So I need to do a musical analysis of Bob Marley's I shot the Sheriff. It must include atleast stuff like an explanation of the characteristic stylistic features, including the shape, roles of the different instruments, harmonic and way of singing (call back etc. and stuff). After that I need to place the text of the song into historical context.

Anyways it would be nice if someone would help me out with that, then ill be very happy. Shouldnt take long I guess! And feel free to add anything to it.
(Handing it in tommorow).



And ofcourse the lyrics!

http://www.lyricsfreak.com/b/bob+marley/i+...f_20021744.html

A thousand thanks to whoever helps me wink.gif. Also included the sheet for it.

~Rasmus Vitting

Attached File  Bob_Marley._I_Shot_the_Sheriff.pdf ( 4.78MB ) Number of downloads: 261


Well... I can tell you a bit here and there and maybe we can put something together.. Most of my friends really dig reagge culture, so I was kind of obliged to get to know more of it (alto I am metalcore head biggrin.gif)

Style - Bob was mostly playing subgengre called Roots reagge (reagge is like metal, you got death, speed, trash etc.. - for reagge you got Raggamuffin, roots reagge, dancehall, cry reagge maybe even jungle can be thrown in...). Roots reagge is the slowest subgengre, the most original one - check more on this topic)

Instruments - most commonly bass, guitar, percussion, vocals + some synths/keys/hammonds (as in this I shot the sherrif)

Bass - huge emphasis on the bassline (especially in dancehall reagge)

Guitar
- nothing too complicated mostly, rythm is using a lot of muted strings (see the lesson on mainpage - imagine that in reagge context tho), altho the chords arent tipical barre chords - the bass space is dedicated to bass guitar, so they play chords on upper 3 or 4 strings, 99.9999% played on the backbeat. Chord progressions arent really complicated/much original as well...

- leads are played mostly with very mellow distortion and use of wah, they are very very simple, reagge musicians are not virtuosos in technical sense biggrin.gif

Vocals and lyrics
- lyrics are mostly about their religion (there are ecxeptions tho.) - Rastafariansim, their god Jah (notice the similiarity between Jehova, Jahve (yiddish term for Rod IIRC) and Jah - those religions have common roots), their sacred plant and traditions, if you want you could (and should - since its fundament of reagge music culture) tell more about the culture and the religion, its also very interesting.

-the vocals are mostly simple as well, just some chorus singing from time to time, sometimes using effects on voice

Drums/percussions - nothing too fancy, just some slow rythm mostly

If you want, I can record for you some short video with some chords they use and basslines, so you get some idea of how this gengre works - I think, it would be approperiate, to at least (since you are a guitarist) play some simple song by him smile.gif

Let me know, if there is something else smile.gif

This post has been edited by Jakub Luptovec: Dec 10 2009, 03:58 PM


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Staffy
post Dec 10 2009, 12:48 PM
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I think the lyrics really mirrors the fact that Jamaica was a part of the british commonwealth until 1962 (even that the song was written later), the sheriff and the deputy in the song stands therefore as a symbol to the abuse of the native people of Jamaica during hundreds of years, first by Spain and later in the 16 century Britain, who bought the colony from Spain.

The most characteristic things in reggae is really the backbeat eg. the players emphasizes strongly the second and the fourth beat of the rhytm (listen to guitar...) Also in the drums and the bass the first beat of the measure is nearly always left out. Bob Marley's "abuse" of the english language also set the standards for how (nearly) all reggae players are singing today (even though they can speak english fluidly), mis-interpreting certain words and singing the words with "wrong" accents.

The rastafari culture has always be connected to a heavy abuse of marijuana, and some people think that it was that who really killed Bob Marley, since he died of cancer in one of his toes(!).... He was supposed to gain the cancer by smoking too much.

//Staffay


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Jakub Luptovec
post Dec 10 2009, 01:42 PM
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QUOTE (Staffy @ Dec 10 2009, 12:48 PM) *
The rastafari culture has always be connected to a heavy abuse of marijuana, and some people think that it was that who really killed Bob Marley, since he died of cancer in one of his toes(!).... He was supposed to gain the cancer by smoking too much.

//Staffay


Well regarding his death, its quite the opposite - he died, because of untreated (yet treatable) brain tumor, which was indicated by his toe finger problem (he lost his fingernail while playing soccer and it didnt heal at all - thats how they found out, later it moved from toe to brain) - Rastafarians deny any interferences with body, so he denied and died by his own belief. (and cannabinoids act anti-carcinogenic, which is being used in modern medicine - Phoenix Tears for example - to slow down, give relief and even treat cancer, but lets not get sidetracked)

regarding the lyrics, its againts any kind of opression (tho mostly aimed at white man and governments force - the roots most probably coming from the British rule over the island)

Oh and that sherrif Joe Brown (in the lyrics) is more common motive - song Mr. Brown is about him as well, so maybe it was some real person.

This post has been edited by Jakub Luptovec: Dec 10 2009, 01:54 PM


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Staffy
post Dec 10 2009, 01:53 PM
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QUOTE (Jakub Luptovec @ Dec 10 2009, 01:42 PM) *
Well regarding his death, its quite the opposite - he died, because of untreated (yet treatable) brain tumor, which was indicated by his toe finger problem (he lost his fingernail while playing soccer and it didnt heal at all - thats how they found out, later it moved from toe to brain) - Rastafarians deny any interferences with body, so he denied and died by his own belief. (and cannabinoids act anti-carcinogenic, which is being used in modern medicine - Phoenix Tears for example - to slow down, give relief and even treat cancer, but lets not get sidetracked)


Yeah, thats why I wrote "some people", since the use of marijuana is a quite disputable issue and there are different thoughts at both sides of the line.....

//Staffay


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Guitars: Ibanez AM-200, Ibanez GB-10, Fender Stratocaster Classic Player, Warmouth Custom Built, Suhr Classic Strat, Gibson Les Paul Standard 2003, Ibanez steel-string
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Effects: BOSS DD-20, Danelectro Trans. Overdrive, TC-Electronics G-Major, Dunlop Wah-wah, Original SansAmp, BOSS DD-2
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Rallebil
post Dec 10 2009, 03:09 PM
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@Jakub

That is great! Am I rigth saying the bass is playing ostinates ? And maybe there's some call back with his 3 singers.
Besides you probaly wont need to spend your time recording anything, alot from my class plays reggae and alike (http://www.myspace.com/rasadammilitant take a listen).

And I like the comparison to metal hah rolleyes.gif .

About the last part, yea the assignment has elements that is pretty much reflecting the hate towards England. Try googling "Benjamin Zephaniah OBE me? Up yours!" about when the queen was going to make him an officer of the crown or whatever its called, and he denied.

@Staffy

Yea the rastafarian language is a mix of african and english called Patois smile.gif. Try searching after Inglan is a bitch for a good example on Patois I think.


But great!! Keep stuff coming. Is there anything about the shape, like how many strokes are the intro,verse, chorus, are there any contrast playings? And by harmonics I mean tonics, subdominant, dominant.. does it look like bluesharmonics or what?

Again 1000x thanks!
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Jakub Luptovec
post Dec 10 2009, 03:35 PM
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Yea, ostinato could be said... its usually repeated for whole song or just changed for chorus.

And what do you mean by shape? The form? repetitions?


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Sensible Jones
post Dec 10 2009, 03:48 PM
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Don't forget to mention that all Reggae (in general) is played on the 'Off Beat'. (Beats 2 + 4, not 1 + 3)
Lyrically it's mainly based on the theme that he is being accused and hunted for a Crime he DIDN'T commit!
He's accused of shooting the Deputy not the Sheriff, which he's also claiming he did in 'Self Defense'.
Historically speaking I would say that it's a reflection of life at the time in a Jamaica where there was a lot of oppression towards the up and coming Youth after WW II. Because of Financial Restrictions the Poor were living in extreme squalour whilst the Wealthy seemed unaffected by it. This was to lead to more Class Distinction and a rise in Street Crime to make ends meet. The systematic Arrest and Harrassment of the poorer Youths eventually led to an all out War against the Police and Local Governments.

smile.gif

This post has been edited by Sensible Jones: Dec 10 2009, 04:02 PM


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Rallebil
post Dec 10 2009, 05:28 PM
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Cool! Keep it coming, the more the better.

And by shape, well not sure but whatever your association is smile.gif. cool cool

This post has been edited by Rallebil: Dec 10 2009, 05:29 PM
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Daniel Realpe
post Dec 10 2009, 05:28 PM
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Something you must mention about this genre is the characteristic rhythm called syncopation. The strong pulse is actually put not on the first beat but rather one 8th note after "in the middle" of one pulse, giving the kind of jumpy feel to it.



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