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I found out a new word today - melismatic

(25 Posts)
UnquietDad Tue 13-Jan-09 11:42:42

It means - and I didn't even know there was a word to describe this - that really, really, annoying style of singing one syllable over several notes, as employed by Mariah Carey, Alexandra Burke, Melody from the Pussycat Dolls and Beyonce.

stillstanding Tue 13-Jan-09 11:44:18

Ooh interesting. How does one use it in a sentence?

FAQtothefuture Tue 13-Jan-09 11:45:31

lol - they've been doing that in music for centuries grin (singing on syllable over several notes)

gladbag Tue 13-Jan-09 11:46:20

Mariah Carey is a touch too melismatic for my taste.

(fab - I shall use it all the time now)

Katisha Tue 13-Jan-09 11:47:30

And medieval and renaissance music, where it is perfectly normal and not annoying (unless you hate early music). In fact while I'm at it - a great deal of classical music isn't syllabic. And probably quite a lot of pop too. (But I'm a bit clueless about pop)

EachPeachPearMum Tue 13-Jan-09 11:47:52

And en vogue....

Katisha Tue 13-Jan-09 11:47:58

Sorry FAQ x-post!

islandofsodor Tue 13-Jan-09 11:48:39

Melisma in much pop music annoys me intensly but it can be quite beautiful in classical music.

EachPeachPearMum Tue 13-Jan-09 11:48:53

And Purcell of course...

I saw a great phrase used by DaDaDa...- referring to housing market... 'Never catch a falling knife' excellent.

Lio Tue 13-Jan-09 11:50:35

Perfect example of melisma if you need one: Aaron Neville right at the end of "I don't know much" (the duet with Linda Ronstandt).

islandofsodor Tue 13-Jan-09 11:53:52

I Attempt from Lo o oves sickness
To fly yyyy yyyy yy yyy yyyy yy y y y yy yy i in vai ain.

Grade 5 singing many moons ago

WowOoo Tue 13-Jan-09 11:56:22

If only X factor were still on. Would have a valid reason to drop that in the conversation and impress dh.

UnquietDad Tue 13-Jan-09 12:16:47

Yes, I know it's been around for ages but it seems so-o-o-o-o-o much more anno-y-oyo-oying the way those la-ay-ay-ay-aydeeees do it.

AllFallDown Wed 14-Jan-09 12:49:33

MinnieMummy Wed 14-Jan-09 20:51:13

I call it 'chin singing', in that they always chin wobble at the same time. Bleurghh.

uberalice Wed 14-Jan-09 21:04:38

Glo ooooo ooooo ooooo ria in excelsis deo..

GrimmaTheNome Wed 14-Jan-09 21:11:19

And I-ay-ay-ay-ay will always love you-oo-ooo-oo-oo


But Gregorian chant is wonderfully melismatic.

I think Ding Dong merrily marks the transition between the ages.

AuraofDora Wed 14-Jan-09 21:13:39

great word uqd
she sings a tad too melismatically for my liking..our mariah i mean

islandofsodor Wed 14-Jan-09 21:43:35

Dh spends an awful lot of time trying to get rid of peoples "chin wobble" lol. It's an awful technique.

UnquietDad Wed 14-Jan-09 23:48:19

And yet it is rather splendid when Freddie Mercury does it on "Somebody To-oo-ooh...... Lo-o-o-o-o-o-uur-urr oooo-ve."

islandofsodor Thu 15-Jan-09 09:47:30

The girl on the original cast recording of We Will Rock You is pretty good too.

By conincidence I have just been listening to that!

islandofsodor Thu 15-Jan-09 09:48:11

But her chin doesn't wobble.

TsarChasm Thu 15-Jan-09 09:53:51

Ooh good word!

Funny I was laughing at a great example of that very thing yesterdayMariah aka Katy Brandgrin

flimflammum Thu 15-Jan-09 09:58:11

But there's a difference, isn't there, between lots of notes in one syllable that are part of the tune, and that awful Leona Lewis [sp?] style of adding lots of extra wobbly notes in to show off your voice.

Great word, though!

TsarChasm Thu 15-Jan-09 10:07:04

Whitney Houston must be queen of this surely?

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