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Ludwig Van
Toronto Montreal

COFFEE BREAK | Pop Songs Reimagined As Fugues

By Ludwig Van on February 25, 2016

beiberhair-score

One enterprising soul (Giovanni Dettori) has taken counterpoint to the next level by using the main themes from songs by Justin Bieber, Britney Spears, Lady Gaga, Eminem, Nirvana, and Miley Cyrus and setting them as fugues on the piano.

For anyone who has taken a class of counterpoint, the craft involves many years of practice and study. It requires learning the detailed relationships between melodic voices that are interrelated harmonically (think chords), yet remain rhythmically independent.

The results are pretty great. We’re especially partial to Lady Gaga’s fugue.

Britney Spears: Hit me Baby One More Time/Oops I Did It Again

‘Hit me baby one more time’ mixed with ‘Oops I did it again’, performed by Vincenzo Culotta (piano).

Lady Gaga: Bad Romance

A fugue on the theme from “Bad Romance” by Lady Gaga.  Vincenzo Culotta, piano.

Eminem: Without me

This one is a Fugato (a looser type of Fugue) performed by pianist Vincenzo Culotta. See if you can hear the melody from Eminem’s “Without me” in the bass line and upper voice interwoven together.

Miley Cyrus: Wrecking Ball

Miley Cyrus’s “Wrecking Ball” in four-voice fugue form performed by Vincenzo Culotta.

Justin Bieber: Never Say Never

While this one isn’t a formal treatment using counterpoint, it following good voice leading and provides new perspective on Bieber’s tune.

Nirvana: Come As You Are

Nirvana’s “Come as you are”…

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Michael Vincent
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Michael Vincent

Michael Vincent is Publisher of Ludwig Van. He publishes regularly and writes occasionally. He has worked as a senior editor over fifteen years and is a former freelance classical music critic for the Toronto Star. Michael holds a Doctorate in Music from the University of Toronto.
Michael Vincent
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