What is the refrain of a song

By Kagarr | 16.02.2021

what is the refrain of a song

The Parts of a Song

Vocal music, much like poetry, follows a set structure, and the components of a song are arranged into its larger musical form. One of these sections of a . The refrain is also used to establish a sense of familiarity within the song itself, so that after the verse or a bridge section, the song can return to the well-known line or group of lines. Lyrics are the words to a song, usually written down in the same way as a poem.

The title of the song is very important; think of yourself as a salesperson who needs to pitch a product and the title as the name of that product. You would want your title to be memorable and fitting to the theme of the song. You should also highlight your title by placing it within the lyrics of the song. In the AAA song formtitles are placed either at the beginning or end of each verse. The verse is what is the refrain of a song part of the song that tells a story.

Again think of yourself as a salesperson, you would need to use the proper words to convey information about your product in order to sell it.

The verse functions the what causes paranoia from weed way; it gives listeners more insight leading to the main message of the song and it moves the story forward. A song may have a number of verses, depending on the form, consisting of several lines each. A refrain is a line also can be the title that is repeated at the end of every verse. Let's take our example for the AAA song form: at the end of each verse of "Bridge Over Troubled Water," the line which also happens to what is the refrain of a song the title "Like a bridge over troubled water" is repeated.

The refrain is different from the chorus. The chorus is the part how to find the percentage difference between two numbers the song that often sticks in the mind of a listener because it contrasts with the verse and is repeated several times. The main theme is expressed in the chorus; the title what channel is mavtv on comcast the song is usually included in the chorus too.

Coming back to our salesperson analogy, think of the chorus as the slogan, the words that effectively summarizes why consumers should buy your product. There is some confusion as to the function of the refrain and chorus. Although both have lines that are repeated and may contain the title, the refrain and chorus vary in length. The refrain is shorter than the chorus; often the refrain is composed of 2 lines while the chorus can be made up of several lines.

The chorus is also melodically, rhythmically and lyrically different from the verse and expresses the main message of the song. Also known as the "climb," this part of the song differs melodically and lyrically from the verse and comes before the chorus.

The reason why it's called a climb is that it heightens the anticipation of the listeners for the coming climax which is the chorus. Climb: We had a once in a lifetime But I just couldn't see Until it was gone A second once in a lifetime Maybe too much to ask But I swear from now on.

In this form, the bridge gives the song contrast before transitioning to the final A section, therefore it is a necessary part of the song. It is shorter than the verse and should offer a reason why the final chorus needs to be repeated. It also differs melodically, lyrically and rhythmically from the verse and chorus.

In the song "Just Once" recorded by James Ingram, the bridge part begins with the line "Just once I want to understand Coda is an Italian word for "tail," it is the additional lines of a song which brings it to a close. The coda is an optional addition to a song. Espie Estrella. Espie Estrella is a lyricist, songwriter, and member of the Nashville Songwriters Association International.

Updated April 26, Understanding the Guidelines for a Strophic Song. An Introduction to the Elements of Music. Top Huey Lewis and the News Songs of the '80s. LiveAbout uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. By using LiveAbout, you accept our.

What is a Chorus?

Apr 03, A Refrain is any line or group of lines that repeat several times in your song lyric. Because they repeat, refrains are used to get listeners hooked to your song or used to reinforce a point in your song's story. Aug 02, A refrain is a repeated line or lines in a song, which typically occurs at the end of each verse. In contrast, a chorus is a part of a song which is repeated after each verse. The main difference between refrain and chorus is their melodic buildup. There is no melodic buildup in a refrain while a melodic buildup always characterizes a chorus. The sing-along-able, repetitive section of your song. Usually repeated around three or so times throughout. The chorus can contain your hook or lead to it. Lyrically, its approached as the summary of your song. Refrain Typically found in AABA types of songs, a refrain is a line or two that repeats at the end of each verse.

In a poem or song, a refrain is a line or group of lines that regularly repeat, usually at the end of a stanza in a poem or at the end of a verse in a song. In a speech or other prose writing, a refrain can refer to any phrase that repeats a number of times within the text. Refrains first became popular in poetry because of their importance to the lyric poetry forms of the middle ages, which were often recited or sung with musical accompaniment.

The repetition of words or phrases between verses was a useful tool for helping writers and performers memorize the words of poems, and refrains also helped the listener to get a sense for the rhythm of the poem, since refrains are generally repeated at regular intervals.

The tradition of repeating refrains in lyric poetry has continued into the present day through popular musicmost genres of songs with lyrics contain choruses with lyrics that repeat, making those choruses a form of refrain. A chorus, in other words, is just a specialized kind of refrain. In the 15th and 16th centuries, refrains branched out from lyric poetry and music; they began to be commonly found in non-lyric formal verse poetry with a strict meter and rhyme scheme and, to a lesser extent, in blank verse poetry with a strict meter but no rhyme.

Since that time, refrains have been used in all types of poetry including in free verse and the conventions that originally determined the ways in which refrains could be usedthat repetition had to be identical in each instance and had to occur at regular intervals, for examplewere met with new variations and innovations.

Thus, the term refrain has expanded over time to encompass any series of words that are repeated throughout a poem. Although refrains can be used in any type of poetry, some fixed forms of poetry require the writer to include a refrain. Below is a list of types of poems that, by virtue of their form, require the use of a refrain in specific places throughout the poem.

For more in-depth information about each of these forms, and for examples of how refrains are used in each, visit the individual entries for each type of poem. The term "refrain" has come to have a meaning that is a bit different, and less specific, in the context of speeches or prose writing. In such writing, a refrain refers simply to any phrase or sentence is regularly repeated. Because a refrain can refer to virtually any kind of repetition in prose writing, it can overlap with other figures of speech that refer to very specific sorts of repetition, including epistrophe and anaphora.

These are the first two stanzas of a song from Shakespeare's play, Twelfth Night. A lyric poem such as this is described as having a "double refrain," because it has two lines that repeat as refrains in each stanza. When that I was and a little tiny boy, With hey, ho, the wind and the rain, A foolish thing was but a toy, For the rain it raineth every day. In this example, which shows the first two stanzas of the poem, the final line of each stanza functions as a refrain.

An atypical example of refrain, Octavio Paz's "Wind, Water, Stone" repeats the same set of words as the refrain of each quatrain in the poem, but the words appear in different orders in each occurrence of the refrain. Here are the first two stanzas of the poem:.

Water hollows stone, wind scatters water, stone stops the wind. Water, wind, stone. Wind carves stone, stone's a cup of water, water escapes and is wind. Stone, wind, water. In this excerpt the refrain comes at the beginning of sentences and is repeated with such regularity, making it also an example of anaphora. Carl Solomon! Here is another, more modern example of a poem with a double refrain. This poem was written in the early 20th century. Excerpted here are just the first two stanzas of the full poem which in its entirety is three stanzas plus an envoi.

With a ripple of leaves and a tinkle of streams The full world rolls in a rhythm of praise, And the winds are one with the clouds and beams-- Midsummer days! Midsummer days! The dusk grows vast; in a purple haze, While the West from a rapture of sunset rights, Faint stars their exquisite lamps upraise-- Midsummer nights! O midsummer nights! The wood's green heart is a nest of dreams, The lush grass thickens and springs and sways, The rathe wheat rustles, the landscape gleams-- Midsummer days!

In the stilly fields, in the stilly ways, All secret shadows and mystic lights, Late lovers murmur and linger and gaze-- Midsummer nights! Even lines that are only repeated once in a poem may be called a refrain, as in the ending of this famous poem by Robert Frost.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep, But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep. While refrain is a popular device in poetry, you are probably most familiar with its use in song lyrics. Refrains are an essential part of the form of most songs, and they're often the most memorable and beloved part of a song.

It is worth noting that a refrain and a chorus in a song are not exactly the same thing. A refrain refers to repeated lyrics, and so every chorus which are marked by repeating lyrics is a refrain.

The term "chorus", however, refers to when all the musical elementssingers and instrumentscome together in unison. It is possible for a song to have a refrain without such a coming together of the musical elements. So, while every chorus in a song is a refrain, not every refrain is a chorus.

If you've ever been inside Fenway Park for the 8th inning of a Red Sox game, then you've heard thousands of baseball fans singing Neil Diamond's "Sweet Caroline. Sweet Caroline Good times never seemed so good I've been inclined To believe they never would. Baby, I'm not always there when you call, but I'm always on time And I gave you my all, now baby, be mine. This refrainlike many refrainsis a condensation of the central themes of the song, which is about a relationship in which two people really care about one another but don't always treat each other right.

The refrain obliquely suggests the couple's difficulties, as well as the fact that they want to make it work anyway, both of which Ja Rule elaborates on during each of the song's verses. A song refrain doesn't always have to make sensesometimes it can be essentially nonsense and still serve the purpose of pulling the audience in through catchy repetition. Take Outkast's "Hey Ya," the refrain of which is simply:.

Consider this part of the song in relation to the refrain which these lines immediately follow :. You think you've got it Oh, you think you've got it But "got it" just don't get it 'Til there's nothing at all. First, it's about lovehe thought he had love in his relationship, but he didn't understand that the love was false. Second, these lines can be seen as a small joke on listeners, who are likely not to realize that the song, despite its upbeat sound, is sad. In this sense, these lines might directly refer to the song's refrain: listeners think that the chorus is just an excuse for dancing, when maybe it's meant to express the frustration and incomprehensibility of failed love.

Thus, just as Outkast doesn't get love, listeners don't get the refrain of "Hey Ya. In speeches and other prose writing, a refrain refers simply to any phrase or sentence that is regularly repeated. Refrains are popular devices in speeches, because repetition is memorable, musical, and can help to give a common structure and meaning to disparate ideas. These qualities are particularly important in speeches, because the audience must be made to understand and remember complex ideas without the ability to "rewind" or parse a phrase for its meaning.

Sojourner Truth uses refrain in her famous speech "Ain't I a Woman? Her refrain which later became the name by which her untitled speech is knownis a rhetorical question , repeated to make the point that women are just as capable as men.

Below is an excerpt:. That man over there says that women need to be helped into carriages, and lifted over ditches, and to have the best place everywhere.

Nobody ever helps me into carriages, or over mud-puddles, or gives me any best place! And ain't I a woman? Look at me! Look at my arm! I have ploughed and planted, and gathered into barns, and no man could head me! I could work as much and eat as much as a manwhen I could get itand bear the lash as well! I have borne thirteen children, and seen most all sold off to slavery, and when I cried out with my mother's grief, none but Jesus heard me!

By alternating this rhetorical question with evidence of her equality to men, Sojourner Truth uses refrain in order to make her point seem obvious; each time the question is repeated, the notion of contradicting her seems more and more silly. By the end of the paragraphonce "And ain't I a woman? And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal. I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

King uses this refrain for many reasons, but among the most important is that the repetition of "I have a dream" creates a rhythm that makes the statement begin to feel inevitable. This is powerful rhetorical momentum in a speech about progress and equality, and it seems to suggest that King's dream is destined to prevail, just as the phrase is destined to recur.

The phrase "Yes we can" has been a longtime motto of Obama's, and while it appears in many of his speeches, he used it most iconically as a refrain in his speech after winning the election. In the excerpt below, Obama repeatedly references Ann Nixon Cooper, a year old black woman from Atlanta who couldn't vote when she was younger because of her gender and race:.

And tonight, I think about all that she's seen throughout her century in Americathe heartache and the hope; the struggle and the progress; the times we were told that we can't, and the people who pressed on with that American creed: Yes we can.

At a time when women's voices were silenced and their hopes dismissed, she lived to see them stand up and speak out and reach for the ballot. Yes we can. When there was despair in the dust bowl and depression across the land, she saw a nation conquer fear itself with a New Deal, new jobs, a new sense of common purpose.

When the bombs fell on our harbour and tyranny threatened the world, she was there to witness a generation rise to greatness and a democracy was saved.

She was there for the buses in Montgomery, the hoses in Birmingham, a bridge in Selma, and a preacher from Atlanta who told a people that 'We Shall Overcome'. Obama's refrain serves many purposes: it makes a rhetorical point, it uplifts the audience, and it unifies historical events into a narrative of progress.

Perhaps most important, though, the refrain makes the audience feel that they are a part of Obama's victory. As you watch the video of the speech here , notice that the repetition of "Yes we can" invites the audience to participate by repeating the line after he does.

Obama never explicitly tells the audience that they may do thisit's the very structure of the refrain that stirs the audience into participation, which speaks to the rhetorical power of the refrain.

The refrain is a versatile literary device that takes many forms and has many purposes. Writers, musicians, and orators use refrains in songs, speeches, and poems in order to drive a point home, aid a reader or listener's memory, establish central themes, and create structure.

Repeated words or phrases stick more easily in a reader or listener's mind and accentuate the structure and rhythm of what's being saida repeated line like "I have a dream," for example, establishes the central theme of change and progress, and creates a rhythm within which progress feels as inevitable as the speech's structure.

Sometimes refrains are used simply to condense and repeat the central subject of a poem or song, as in Henley's "Ballade of Midsummer Days and Nights" and Ja Rule's "Always on Time," both excerpted above.

Refrains can also organize the content of a speech, song, or poem by providing a memorable rhetorical framework.

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