Tone Essay

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1 The tone of a song may be described as the “the writer's attitude toward the material and/or readers” (prompt). In the songs “What’s Going On” by Marvin Gaye and “Waiting on the World to Change,” by John Mayer, the tones are different, but the topics are very similar. In Marvin Gayes song, he talks about how he just wants to increase the peace. He is against war and violence towards the anti-war protestors. He states “war is not the answer” (9) and continuously asks, “what’s going on” (16-19). He is wondering why there is so much hate in the world using a very mournful tone. In the song, Gaye describes the brutality faced by the anti-war protestors. He says “talk to me so you can see” (15) to show that you don’t have to use violence, rather, ask someone on there views and try to understand where they are coming from. Take a walk in someone’s shoes before you judge how someone reacts or feels. He doesn’t understand how everyone thinks they (the protestors) are “wrong” (24) when they are only standing up for something they believe in. John Mayers song “Waiting on the World to Change,” on the other hand, has a very tender tone and is very timid and patient. He isn’t questioning or wondering what’s going on in the world, instead he sees and can acknowledge 2 everything that is wrong in the world. He knows what’s happening, but he doesn’t feel he has the power to stop or fight it, so he’s just “Waiting on the World to Change.” If he did have the power though, he states very anti-war solutions, such as bringing the troops home from war. Both of the songs have anti-war properties, and both artists acknowledge some faults the world we live in has, but neither suggests practical ideas to stop the problems, instead, they give us two very different feelings of the subject. Gayes song makes us feel like we should fight for what we

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