Music GCSE: Minimalism and the advance of music technology
Howard Goodall explores the second half 20th century music. Following the Second World War, a return to modernist music causes a divide between art music and pop music.
We can trace the legacy of ground breaking work in minimalism, sampling and music technology by composers such as Steve Reich, Terry Riley, Philip Glass and John Adams and see their impact on hip hop music and artists such as David Bowie and Radiohead.
Extracts from: Music for 18 musicians - Steve Reich It's gonna rain - Steve Reich Kid A - Radiohead
This clip is from the series Howard Goodall's Story of Music.
Use this clip when studying minimalist music.
Group students and ask them to record some words using a handheld audio device.
Then ask students to create a composition which explores the ideas fusing minimalist techniques such as ostinato and layering textures with music technology techniques such as looping, panning and manipulating audio.
They could then produce a report detailing what they have produced and why they made the creative decisions they did, and the effects they were hoping to achieve.
This topic is relevant to, GCSE, AS Level and Higher Music in the areas of music history, notation, composition, music theory and understanding styles.