Wednesday, May 6, 2020

SearchResearch Challenge (5/6/20): Extramusical sounds that people make during performances?

As you know, I love music... 

... that's not a surprise.  

What might be a surprise is that I used to NOT understand why some people would make noises while the musical performance is going on.  

I don't mean babies crying (that's what babies do), or people unwrapping their lozenges in the concert hall (better that than coughing).  What I've always found surprising are the: 

       extramusical sounds and yells 

that happen during a performance.  

For example, if you've ever been to a mariachi performance, you might have heard one of these "ay yi yi yi" cries ring out during the song.  

Pedro Infante doing a grito in performance  
A grito is a common Mexican interjection (typically at loud volume during a song), used as an expression of joy, sadness, or excitement.  Even though it's not part of the music, it IS a part of the performance!  

Once I learned this about gritos, I became much more understanding about these sounds (and non-traditional sounds in general).  

Here's what a grito sounds like (skip to 00:20:00).  

You can learn how to do a grito by looking at this quick tutorial on how to do it (skip to 00:26:00).  

Today's Challenge isn't to find out more about gritos (they're cool and everything, but now you know about them)... the Challenge is broader than that.  

1.  Can you find examples of other outcries / sounds / shouts that are analogous to a grito.  That is, they are (in some sense) outside-of-the-music--that is, extramusical.  

I can think of a couple of examples of sounds like in other countries' traditional music (maybe you can too).  The real question for this week is How can you search for something like this that's so... difficult to describe?

As always, let us know what you discover.  But even more importantly, tell us HOW you found it.  This is a bit tricky, so your solution process will be super interesting to us all. 

Leave your answer in the comments. 

Search on!  


  1. Very interesting topic and how to find the answer it's complicated. I am thinking some ways.

    My first search

    [Grito mientras canta Mariachi] I know also Banda and Música Norteña (Northern music) has some yells

    Found a link from Chicago Tribune.

    Then, [Distinctive yell in songs], finding Wikipedia page for Grito. Similar to the sound American cowboys do. Also a possible clue word: interjection.

    NPR. In Mariachi Music, A Distinctive Yell Speaks to the Soul

    [Music Distinctive sound] gives interesting results, different to what we are looking for.

    With [music distinctive sounds while performing]

    Found: Thermin

    So, still need to think, search and find how to answer. I wonder too if also the moment when singers stop to allow crowd to sing has a special name and if that could fit in what we are searching.

    1. Searched [music singer interjections]

      Book: The Sounds and Sights of Performance in Early Music

      Strange Interjections in Songs

      With [music crowd interjections] Book: Collective Participation and Audience Engagement in Rap Music

    2. The Early Music book can be seen in the US at:

    3. Good Day! Yesterday, saw some YouTube videos and I want to share with you. Both are music related

      BEHIND THE CURTAIN OF LUZIA | Cirque du Soleil Mexico meets Cirque du Soleil and Cirque du Soleil meets Mexico.

      In this Disney Parks video: Celebrate the Reopening of Shanghai Disneyland on May 11 th, found 2 interesting things:

      At 4:40, what is the name of the instrument he is playing? and at 19:50 starts something that I wonder if this is also part of what we are searching for

      For the first question, did a SRS and found the answer in less than a minute: Chinese: 二胡

      Also, in the morning was thinking about Dr. Russell's question: Official end of Spanish Influenza. So, searched after doing some searches [Who foundation] (April 7th, 1948) and later [world health before WHO]

      Origin and development of health cooperation"...the International Sanitary Bureau in 1902 in Washington- later renamed the Pan American Sanitary Bureau..." Still in our days: Pan-American Health Organization.

      Maybe searching within those institutions, we can find more knowledge and "new" data from that event.

    4. Thanks Remmij! Huqin family has lots of members and they sound awesome.

    5. I am re-reading Dr. Russell's Book: The Joy of Search and finding and searching for more knowledge. Examples? Callanish Stones. Then searched Callanish Vs Stonehenge. Thesaurus, adapted [Spanish Influenza language disease] or ["Surprize" Francis Scott Key] also tried with "Surprise" and [Francis Scott Key death.] Also searched for the boats and so much more. Each chapter makes me find and learn new knowledge, connections, data and also allows me to have fun

      Francis Scott Key: Patriotic Poet By Susan R. Gregson Writes about Francis Scott and more about the country's Anthem. People wanted others like "Yankee Doodle" or "America the Beautiful"

      Also, there is a timeline and glossary

      Separating fact from fiction about 'The Star-Spangled Banner'

      In other topics, searched [Huqin concert]

      Chinese Chamber Music | Ablaze – A Huqin Recital (9 Nov 2017)

      Traditional Chinese music, instruments trio performance (Zheng,Erhu,PiPa)

      YouTube has lots of videos, including intruduction to Erhu.BTW, I found the name searching [Chinese instrument similar to violin]

  2. Speedy Gonzales used this lots to scare poor ol Sylvester. It always made him pay attention just as disaster struck. Maybe that is the purpose in mariachi--you just know something exciting is going to happen after that yell.

  3. I remember learning a little about this in Indian Classical music. I searched: crowd interjections in Indian Musical Perfomances. This brought up quite a few academic studies. It has to do with the crowd recognising and appreciating the Raga and the performer understanding if the performance is going well, but someone else would be able to explain it better than I.

    1. Looking forward to learning more about this. Any luck yet?

  4. I think this might now go by the name "disrupter" Something to catch your attention. It started long ago.

    January 1791 Mr Haydn in London conducting his Symphony 94 in G Major apparently on a whim had the orchestra playing very quietly at the start of this movement suddenly drum up the volume, thus wakening somnolent listeners. It now goes by the moniker "Surprise Symphony"

    No yelling, no heehaw, no grito, but the perhaps the same effect.

    1. Interesting thought... but since it's directly scored in the music, it's not quite a spontaneous extramusical sound. But it's an interesting point, what about the birdsong in the score for the Pines of Rome ( see the YouTube recording with the score) -- that's IN the score, but it's an extramusical example.

  5. does this count?
    was looking for examples of musical interjections, but only found interjections usage set to music… meh
    Your Favourite Vocal Interjections...
    how about as an interlude? thru 4:10

    1. Good critical question.

      That's not QUITE what I was looking for, though close.

      I don't want every time someone shouts in the middle of a song UNLESS it's a common cultural practice. But your question points out a great nuance--is a shout during a blues performance considered a cultural extramusical sound? Maybe, but it would DEFINITELY be a cultural reference point if that particular sound had a name. Does it?

      (And don't get too hung up on "interjection" as a term. It's just the word I used.)

      But thanks for the throwback to Schoolhouse Rock. That's fantastic.

    2. your response brought this up… still don't have a label… but am finding some new sounds…
      "Synchronous arousal, action synchrony and imitative behaviours are among the means by which music facilitates social bonding."
      Cross-cultural perspectives on music and musicality
      the primal scream…
      or a rebel one
      just cuz
      if the cows come?
      the -or a- swan song…
      more Kulning

      different - check view nos.
      posted in April…
      "Ya Bassa"

    3. your old favorite…
      Kernkraft 400
      web - Florian Senfter
      your chance to do a similar - hows the piano coming?
      &, of course party rock… with almost 2 Billion views
      …most rap, hip-hop, military songs, rhythm, beat, primal, native american… use of vocal accentualzation…
      @ 18 in… great video
      clapping… gospels too?
      cadences…"old beer can - soundoff"
      rock steady

    4. Zombie Nation - great song, but no extramusical sounds, no?

      Link to the cadences is broken, so I'm not sure what you mean by that one. But the next one (Rock Steady) is a great example of a marching chant (or cadence)... but not extramusical, per se.

    5. LOVED the article on "cross-cultural perspectives." That's a great find. (How DID you find it, remmij?)

    6. link seems to work here… gremlins? bury me in an old beer can
      I Don't Know, But I've Been Told
      2nd result on SERP

  6. Does this count ? at 3:09

    1. That's a great example of scat singing see Wikipedia article. But since it's really musical (that is, tuneful), it's not "extramusical" in quite the way I mean. Great fine, however. For an extended example, check out Ella Fitzgerald One Note samba with lots of scatting.

  7. Wikipedia "Instrumental"

    Some recordings which include brief or non-musical use of the human voice are typically considered instrumentals. Examples include songs with the following:

    Short verbal interjections (as in "Tequila" or "Topsy" or "Wipe Out" or "The Hustle" or "Bentley's Gonna Sort You Out")
    Repetitive nonsense words (e.g., "la la..." (as in "Calcutta") or "Woo Hoo")
    Non-musical spoken passages in the background of the track (e.g., "To Live Is to Die" by Metallica; "Wasteland" by Chelsea Grin)
    Wordless vocal effects, such as drones (e.g., "Rockit" or "Flying")
    Vocal percussion, such as beatbox B-sides on rap singles
    Yelling, (e.g. "Cry for a Shadow")
    Yodeling (e.g., "Hocus Pocus")
    Whistling (e.g., "I Was Kaiser Bill's Batman" or "Colonel Bogey March")

  8. As Remmij said, I took some time to get distracted. I thought a lot about this SRS Challenge and still don't know how to search for that. And, finally "got time" to search for how anchors work. My first step was to look for how ancla is said in English, and then [ how anchors work]

    Lots of good results. Some very technical. I liked this one:
    The Ultimate Actionable Guide of Anchoring a Ship

    Also checked [Anchors diagram] and [anchors cruise ships] that brought:
    Coronavirus forces cruise ships to drop anchor in surprising places around the world"...Jacksonville isn’t the only port city seeing a sudden influx of cruise vessels. The suspension of cruise operations around the globe due to the outbreak of the new coronavirus has set off a scramble among cruise lines to find places to park all their ships...Many ships will be able to dock in their normal home ports for the coming weeks..." And others do not have docks as they travel all the time.

    Photos: @JeremyCohnTV
    Miami,FL: Surreal to see about 10 empty cruise ships docked at the usually bustling port.

    Never thought about Cruises docks nor that they have even secondary docks.

    Searched [Cruise Ships dock Mexico] but find just one cruise dock in Puerto Vallarta. Also read cruises cancelled all Summer travels and read just San Diego will do some trips later. [cruise ships San Diego] on news

    San Diego Tribune: ¿Volverás a tomar un crucero desde San Diego? Of course, the re-opening of Disney Shanghai is great news as are that soccer is coming back in Germany (Bundesliga), England (Premier League) and Spain (La Liga) and also probably Italy (Serie A) even if for now is without people. I think, most sports will do this (at least those that TV and sponsors need

    Europe’s Priciest Soccer Players Lose Value in Pandemic These sports can't allow not to play until September or 2021. Hopefully, everything goes well and playing without people is safe for players and all the people around. I heard that at least 300 people are needed to broadcast a soccer game.