Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Music 204 & 308: Jazz: Jazz Music Analysis

Key Works : Analysis

Now featuring...

World's Largest Jazz Archives at Rutgers


 How do you analyze jazz music?

Many scholars investigate the meaning of jazz by analyzing the music itself: instrumentation, melody, harmony, rhythm, and structure in jazz reveal vital cultural information related to the creative process.They also might examine jazz in relation to race and society, and considering political climate.

Analysis Article

Applying Schenkerian Theory to Mainstream Jazz: A Justification for an Orthodox Approach

by David J. Heyer

This paper examines several recent modified Schenkerian analyses in order to compare the strengths and weaknesses of a modified approach with those of an orthodox approach to analyzing jazz. Applying an orthodox Schenkerian approach reveals transformations on structural levels that may go otherwise unnoticed, and these transformations often illuminate important relationships between jazz and common-practice music.