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“At the River” by Robert Lowry, Essay Example

Pages: 1

Words: 298

Essay

“At the River” was a piece that was originally written by Robert Lowry. Even though Charles Ives adds some nuances to the song, it uses the same lyrics as the original. Furthermore, even though it appears that the purpose of the piece is to add a new feel to the traditionally religious song, when listening to it, it appears to have similar meaning regardless of how it is performed. Both versions of the song seem most appropriate to sing in the church setting, for the purpose of praise. While Lowry’s version and Ives’ version use the ensembles differently, simply adding a choir instead of an individual or small group to sing the piece does not make it original.

In the modern music world, there is much debate over what constitutes as original. Many artists use samples of music from other songs. While they create pieces that are loved by people around the world, it still would not be possible to claim that this music is completely original. It is certainly artistic to rearrange existing songs to give them a new feeling and purpose, but it would be insulting to call the new artist an originator of the piece, when in reality this right should be attributed to the first artists who became involved with its production. Ultimately, it would be an insult to Robert Lowry to call Charles Ives’ rendition of “At the River” an original because it uses the same lyrics and musical elements as the original version. Thus, Lowry’s piece is the original and Ives’ is an artistic rendition of this piece. While both versions can be used for different reasons, they are essentially the same in terms of musical elements.

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