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A song is a musical composition intended to be performed by the human voice. This is often done at distinct and fixed pitches (melodies) using patterns of sound and silence. Songs contain various forms, such as those including the repetition and variation of sections.

Written words created specifically for music, or for which music is specifically created, are called lyrics. If a pre-existing poem is set to composed music in classical music it is an art song. Songs that are sung on repeated pitches without distinct contours and patterns that rise and fall are called chants. Songs composed in a simple style that are learned informally "by ear" are often referred to as folk songs. Songs that are composed for professional singers who sell their recordings or live shows to the mass market are called popular songs. These songs, which have broad appeal, are often composed by professional songwriters, composers, and lyricists. Art songs are composed by trained classical composers for concert or recital performances. Songs are performed live and recorded on audio or video (or, in some cases, a song may be performed live and simultaneously recorded). Songs may also appear in plays, musical theatre, stage shows of any form, and within operas, films, and TV shows.

A song may be for a solo singer, a lead singer supported by background singers, a duet, trio, or larger ensemble involving more voices singing in harmony, although the term is generally not used for large classical music vocal forms including opera and oratorio, which use terms such as aria and recitative instead. A song can be sung without accompaniment by instrumentalists (a cappella) or accompanied by instruments. In popular music, a singer may perform with an acoustic guitarist, pianist, organist, accordionist, or a backing band. In jazz, a singer may perform with a single pianist, a small combo (such as a trio or quartet), or with a big band. A Classical singer may perform with a single pianist, a small ensemble, or an orchestra. In jazz and blues, singers often learn songs "by ear" and they may improvise some melody lines. In Classical music, melodies are written by composers in sheet music format, so singers learn to read music.

Songs with more than one voice to a part singing in polyphony or harmony are considered choral works. Songs can be broadly divided into many different forms and types, depending on the criteria used. Through semantic widening, a broader sense of the word "song" may refer to instrumentals, such as Mendelssohn's 19th century Songs Without Words pieces for solo piano.

Song Media

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Six songs; for the harpsichord or piano forte, composed by Mrs. Pownall and J. Hewitt; to which are added and selected Rossetti's celebrated La chasse, and a duet for two voices. Price two dollars.
William Blake - And all the Songs of Beulah....
The Harrison medal minstrel : comprising a collection of the most popular patriotic songs
Admired songs from the opera of "Giselle" or the Night dancers. [Lithograph by] E. Brown, Jr. Sarony & Major's Lith.
Gospel Service Songs. Shivery family papers
Unattributed caricature of cast of Vaudeville production School Boys and School Girls performing songs "When We Were a Couple of Kids" and "San Antonio" as published in the New York World, June 9, 1907
Hayes song and joke book
Hayes and Wheeler campaign song book, for the centennial year: containing over sixty original songs, adapted to popular melodies
Hayes & Wheeler song book
The beggar child's amen
If you love me, darling, tell me with your eyes
If 'tis a dream. - love song
All aboard for Podunk
Gesundheit (To your health)
The colored four hundred : march song
Apart - love song
America's the baby
I found her weeping
And I went with him!
If you love me, darling - love song
A bunch of wild roses
Don't forget to dream of me
The Boston cats
The children's home
I'm not baby McKee
Bright eyes
Don't know
He was a pal of mine! (Ned and I)
I'm a king with a capital K
Come back to you children and me
I'm not old enough to know
A golden argosy - love song
Bye, baby, bye : a lullaby
Come down Mrs. Flynn
Bird of blue : waltz song
I'll send for you darling - love song
The fairest of flowers
The daisy
Finegan the umpire
The coons' Christmas dinner
He ain't in it
Brown kept one, and gave to me the other
I whistle and wait for Katie
The Irish jubilee
The Irish jubilee
Throw him down McCloskey
The old grapevine swing
When I was a child of three
Swinging in the grapevine swing
That is love
Mother, dearest friend of all
Paddy Flynn. Sung by the only Maggie Cline
We were shipmates Jack and I
A touch of humanity
That is love
Only tired (my own song)
That is love
Just a little sunshine, just a little rain
Too late
Since Casey runs the flat
Maggie Murphy's home
She's my heart's delight : baby song
The keepsakes in the old cupboard drawer
Once a sailor, from the opera of Alvin Gray
They're after me
Maggie Murphy's home
The maid who waits for me
Rosie Asthore - love song
The picture of my baby on the wall
Mother's last words to me
Throw him down McCloskey
The Irish jubilee
Thou art an angel - love song
Kathleen - love song
Little Jim
Selden's new cuckoo's call
My Clementine - love song
Whistling Susanna
Since Maggie learned to sing
An old faded picture
The Irish jubilee
Mary and John, or, The lovers' quarrel - love song
A little bird whispered to me
The Irish jubilee
Maggie Murphy's home
Sweet Katie Conner
Wait till I come again
It used to be proper, but it don't go now
Star of the east ; words by George Cooper ; music by Amanda Kennedy.
Sweet charity
The stepping stone
This little pig went to market
Swinging in the grapevine swing
Sweet Katie Conner
Paddy Flynn!
The little old red schoolhouse on the hill
Learning McFadden to waltz
The song of the steeple

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