Regarding the structure of “Jesus and Mary” and “Marion”, both use strophic form throughout the piece. However, the structure of “Marion” is for accompaniment, and can be interpreted by the organist preforming the piece to suit the needs of the congregation or church. In contrast, the structure of “Jesus and Mary” is fixed, predetermined by Guster in this album. Both, however, tend to follow common song structures of their respective genres.
In the case of the melodies, the intent of the song dictates the amount of complexity required. “Jesus and Mary” has a more rhythmically complex vocal melody in the refrain than “Marion”; the vocal parts in the refrain of “Marion” are quite simple due to the need for non-musicians needing to read (or have a basic grasp) of how to sing the notes in time. Guster has no such restrictions on their music.
I decided to go with a multi-post blog format for this investigation because I wanted to be able to share some of the work that I do with my peers. Music is a communal and cultural event; it should be shared. I also know that few readers would take the time to read more than about 300 words at a time, and that on a multi-part series such as this, generally Internet articles are split up and are published in a series of articles that link to each other.
I hope that you’ve had the opportunity to learn a bit more about music!
“Jesus and Mary” — Guster [Easy Wonderful], 2010
“Rejoice, Ye Pure in Heart (Marion)” — Edward Hayes Plumptre (Arthur Henry Messiter) [Hymn 556, Hymnal 1982]