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Close Harmony

GLENN MILLER - MOONLIGHT SERENADE
Image by Leo Reynoldsvia Flickr

What is Close Harmony Music

Close Harmony Music is exactly what it says it is really, it’s an arrangement of the notes of chords which are within a very narrow range.  The term close harmony can refer to both vocal arrangements and instrumentation.  A great example of the use of close harmony music is “Moonlight Serenade” by Glenn Miller, which uses the whole range of single reed wind instruments making a distinctive sound, yet harmonizing everything within a single octave.

Representative Close Harmony Musicians

Close Harmony Music is also commonly used among a Capella groups such as barbershop quartets. Other groups from many different genres of music have used close harmony techniques, including The Beach Boys, the Andrews Sisters, the Everly Brothers, the Boswell Sisters, the Pied Pipers and the Eagles. The extremely successful folk-rock duo of Simon & Garfunkel also used close harmony, following in the footsteps of their role models, the Everly Brothers.

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