House music is a genre of electronic dance music created by club DJs and music producers in Chicago in the early 1980s. Early house music was characterized by repetitive 4/4 beats, rhythms provided by drum machines, off-beat hi-hat cymbals, synthesized basslines. While house displayed several characteristics similar to disco music, which preceded and influenced it, as both were DJ and record producer-created dance music, house was more electronic and minimalistic; the mechanical, repetitive rhythm of house was one of its main components. Many house compositions were instrumental, with no vocals. House music developed in Chicago's underground dance club culture in the early 1980s, as DJs from the subculture began altering the pop-like disco dance tracks to give them a more mechanical beat and deeper basslines; as well, these DJs began to mix synth pop, rap and jazz into their tracks. Latin music salsa clave rhythm, became a dominating riff of house music, it was pioneered by Chicago DJs such as Steve Hurley.
It was influenced by Chicago DJ and record producer Frankie Knuckles, the Chicago acid-house electronic music group Phuture, the Tennessee DJ/producer Mr. Fingers; the genre was associated with the Black American LGBT subculture but has since spread to the mainstream. From its beginnings in the Chicago club and local radio scene, the genre spread internationally to London to American cities such as New York City and Detroit, globally. Chicago house music acts from the early to mid-1980s found success on the US dance charts on various Chicago independent record labels that were more open to sign local house music artists; these same acts experienced some success in the United Kingdom, garnering hits in that country. Due to this success, by the late 1980s, Chicago house music acts found themselves being offered major label deals. House music proved to be a commercially successful genre and a more mainstream pop-based variation grew popular. Since the early to mid-1990s, house music has been infused into mainstream pop and dance music worldwide.
In the 2010s, the genre, while keeping several of its core elements, notably the prominent kick drum on most beats, varies in style and influence, ranging from soulful and atmospheric to the more minimalistic microhouse. House music has fused with several other genres creating fusion subgenres, such as euro house, tech house, electro house and jump house. One subgenre, acid house, was based around the squelchy, deep electronic tones created by Roland's TB-303 bass synthesizer. Major acts such as Madonna, Janet Jackson, Paula Abdul, Martha Wash, CeCe Peniston, Robin S. Steps, Kylie Minogue, Björk, C+C Music Factory were influenced by House music in the 1990s and beyond. After enjoying significant success which started in the late 1980s, house music grew larger during the second wave of progressive house; the genre has remained popular and fused into other popular subgenres, notably ghetto house, deep house, future house and tech house. As of today, house music remains popular on radio and in clubs while retaining a foothold on the underground scenes across the globe.
House music is created by DJs, record producers, music artists with contributions from other performers on synthesizer and other electronic instruments. The structure of house music songs involves an intro, a chorus, various verse sections, a midsection and an outro; some songs do not have a verse, repeating the same cycle. The drum beat is one of the more important elements within the genre and is always provided by an electronic drum machine Roland's TR-808 or TR-909, rather than by a live drummer; the drum beats of house are "four on the floor", with bass drums played on every beat and they feature off-beat drum machine hi-hat sounds. House music is based on bass-heavy loops or basslines produced by a synthesizer and/or from samples of disco or funk songs. One subgenre, acid house, was based around the squelchy, deep electronic tones created by Roland's TB-303 bass synthesizer; the tempo of most house songs is between 115 BPM and 132 BPM. Various disco songs incorporated sounds produced with synthesizers and electronic drum machines, some compositions were electronic.
As well, the audio mixing and editing techniques earlier explored by disco, garage music and post-disco DJs, record producers, audio engineers such as Walter Gibbons, Tom Moulton, Jim Burgess, Larry Levan, Ron Hardy, M & M, others was important. These artists produced longer, more repetitive, percussive arrangements of existing disco recordings. Early house producers such as Frankie Knuckles created similar compositions from scratch, using samplers, synthesizers and drum machines; the electronic instrumentation and minimal arrangement of Charanjit Singh's Synthesizing: Ten Ragas to a Disco Beat, an album of Indian ragas performed in a disco style, anticipated the sounds of acid house music, but it is not known to have had any influence on the genre prior to the album's rediscovery in the 21st century. Rachel Cain, co-founder of influential dance label Trax Records, was involved in the burgeoning punk scene. Ca
In music, syncopation involves a variety of rhythms which are in some way unexpected, making part or all of a tune or piece of music off-beat. More syncopation is "a disturbance or interruption of the regular flow of rhythm": a "placement of rhythmic stresses or accents where they wouldn't occur", it is the correlation of at least two sets of time intervals. Syncopation is used in many musical styles dance music: "All dance music makes use of syncopation, it's a vital element that helps tie the whole track together". In the form of a back beat, syncopation is used in all contemporary popular music. Syncopation can occur when a strong harmony is placed on a weak beat, for instance, when a 7th-chord is placed on the second beat of 34 measure or a dominant chord is placed at the fourth beat of a 44 measure; the latter occurs in tonal cadences in 18th- and early-19th-century music and is the usual conclusion of any section. A hemiola can be seen as one straight measure in three with one long chord and one short chord and a syncope in the measure thereafter, with one short chord and one long chord.
The last chord in a hemiola is a dominant, as such a strong harmony on a weak beat, hence a syncope. Technically, "syncopation occurs when a temporary displacement of the regular metrical accent occurs, causing the emphasis to shift from a strong accent to a weak accent". "Syncopation is", however, "very a deliberate disruption of the two- or three-beat stress pattern, most by stressing an off-beat, or a note, not on the beat." In the following example, there are two points of syncopation where the third beats are carried over from the second beats. In the same way, the first beat of the second bar is carried over from the fourth beat of the first bar. Though syncopation may be complex, dense or complex-looking rhythms contain no syncopation; the following rhythm, though dense, stresses the regular downbeats, 1 and 4: However, whether it's a placed rest or an accented note, any point in a piece of music that moves your perspective of the downbeat is a point of syncopation because it's shifting where the strong and weak accents are built.
The stress can shift by less than a whole beat, so it falls on an offbeat, as in the following example, where the stress in the first bar is shifted back by an eighth note: Whereas the notes are expected to fall on the beat: Playing a note so before, or after, a beat is another form of syncopation because this produces an unexpected accent: It can be helpful to think of a 44 rhythm in eighth notes and count it as "1-and-2-and-3-and-4-and". In general, emphasizing the "and" would be considered the off-beat. Anticipated bass is a bass tone that comes syncopated shortly before the downbeat, used in Son montuno Cuban dance music. Timing can vary, but it falls on the 2+ and the 4 of the 44 time, thus anticipating the third and first beats; this pattern is known as the Afro-Cuban bass tumbao. Richard Middleton suggests adding the concept of transformation to Narmour's prosodic rules which create rhythmic successions in order to explain or generate syncopations. "The syncopated pattern is heard'with reference to','in light of', as a remapping of, its partner."
He gives examples of various types of syncopation: Latin and before-the-beat. First however, one may listen to the audio example of stress on the "strong" beats, where expected: Play In the example below, the first two measures has an unsyncopated rhythm is shown in the first measure The third measure has a syncopated rhythm in which the first and fourth beat are provided as expected, but the accent unexpectedly lands in between the second and third beats, creating a familiar "Latin rhythm" known as tresillo; the accent may be shifted from the first to the second beat in duple meter, creating the backbeat rhythm: Different crowds will "clap along" at concerts either on 1 and 3 or on 2 and 4, as above. The phrasing of "Satisfaction" is a good example of syncopation, it is derived here from a repeated trochee. A backbeat transformation is applied to "I" and "can't", a before-the-beat transformation is applied to "can't" and "no". 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & Repeated trochee: ¯ ˘ ¯ ˘ I can't get no – o Backbeat trans.: ¯ ˘ ¯ ˘ I can't get no – o Before-the-beat: ¯ ˘ ¯ ˘ I can't get no – o Play This demonstrates how each syncopated pattern may be heard as a remapping, "with reference to" or "in light of", an unsyncopated pattern.
Syncopation has been an important element of European musical composition since at least the Middle Ages. Many Italian and French compositions of the music of the 14th-century Trecento make use of syncopation, as in of the following madrigal by Giovanni da Firenze; the refrain "Deo Gratias" from the 15th-century anonymous English Agincourt Carol is characterised by lively syncopation: “The 15th-century carol repertory is one of the most substantial monuments of English medieval music... The early carols are rhythmically straightforward, in modern 6/8 time; as in other music of the period, the emphasis is not on harmony, but on melody and rhythm.” Composers of the musical High Renaissance Venetian School, such as Giovanni Gabrieli, exploited syncopation in both their s
A drum machine is an electronic musical instrument that creates percussion. Drum machines produce unique sounds. Most modern drum machines allow users to program their own rhythms. Drum machines may play prerecorded samples. Drum machines have had a lasting impact on popular music; the Roland TR-808, introduced in 1980 influenced the development of dance and hip hop music. The first drum machine to use samples of real drum kits, the Linn LM-1, was introduced in 1980 and adopted by rock and pop artists including Peter Gabriel, Fleetwood Mac, Yellow Magic Orchestra and Stevie Wonder. In the late 1990s, software emulations began to overtake the popularity of physical drum machines. Rhythmicon In 1930–32, the spectacularly innovative and hard-to-use Rhythmicon was developed by Léon Theremin at the request of Henry Cowell, who wanted an instrument which could play compositions with multiple rhythmic patterns, based on the overtone series, that were far too hard to perform on existing keyboard instruments.
The invention could produce sixteen different rhythms, each associated with a particular pitch, either individually or in any combination, including en masse, if desired. Received with considerable interest when it was publicly introduced in 1932, the Rhythmicon was soon set aside by Cowell and was forgotten for decades; the next generation of rhythm machines played only pre-programmed rhythms such as mambo, tango, or bossa nova Chamberlin Rhythmate In 1957, Harry Chamberlin, an engineer from Iowa, created the Chamberlin Rhythmate, which allowed users to select between 14 tape loops of drum kits and percussion instruments performing various beats. Like the Chamberlin keyboard, the Rhythmate was intended for family singalongs. Around 100 units were sold. First commercial product – Wurlitzer Sideman In 1959, Wurlitzer released the Sideman, which generates sounds mechanically by a rotating disc to a music box. A slider controls the tempo. Sounds can be triggered individually through buttons on a control panel.
The Sideman was a success and drew criticism from musicians' unions, which ruled that it could only be used in cocktail lounges if the keyboardist was paid the wages of three musicians. Wurlitzer ceased production of the Sideman in 1969. Raymond Scott In 1960, Raymond Scott constructed the Rhythm Synthesizer and, in 1963, a drum machine called Bandito the Bongo Artist. Scott's machines were used for recording his album Soothing Sounds for Baby series. First transistorized drum machines – Seeburg/Gulbransen During the 1960s, implementation of rhythm machines were evolved into solid-state from early electro-mechanical with vacuum tubes, size were reduced to desktop size from earlier floor type. In the early 1960s, a home organ manufacturer, Gulbransen cooperated with an automatic musical equipment manufacturer Seeburg Corporation, released early compact rhythm machines Rhythm Prince, although, at that time, these size were still as large as small guitar amp head, due to the use of bulky electro-mechanical pattern generators.
In 1964, Seeburg invented a compact electronic rhythm pattern generator using "diode matrix", transistorized electronic rhythm machine with pre-programmed patterns, Select-A-Rhythm, was released. As the result of its robustness and enough compact size, these rhythm machines were installed on the electronic organ as accompaniment of organists, spread widely. Keio-Giken, Nippon Columbia, Ace Tone In the early 1960s, a nightclub owner in Tokyo, Tsutomu Katoh was consulted from a notable accordion player, Tadashi Osanai, about the rhythm machine he used for accompaniment in club, Wurlitzer Side Man. Osanai, a graduate of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at University of Tokyo, convinced Katoh to finance his efforts to build better one. In 1963, their new company Keio-Giken released their first rhythm machine, Donca-Matic DA-20 using the vacuum tube circuits for sounds and mechanical-wheel for rhythm patterns, it was a floor-type machine with built-in speaker, featuring a keyboard for the manual play, in addition to the multiple automatic rhythm patterns.
Its price was comparable with the average annual income of Japanese at that time. Their effort was focused on the improvement of reliability and performance, along with the size reduction and the cost down. Unstable vacuum tube circuit was replaced with reliable transistor circuit on Donca-Matic DC-11 in mid-1960s, in 1966, bulky mechanical-wheel was replaced with compact transistor circuit on Donca-Matic DE-20 and DE-11. In 1967, Mini Pops MP-2 was developed as an option of Yamaha Electone, Mini Pops was established as a series of the compact desktop rhythm machine. In the United States, Mini Pops MP-3, MP-7, etc. were sold under Univox brand by the distributor at that time, Unicord Corporation. In 1965, Nippon Columbia filed a patent for an automatic rhythm instrument, it described it as an "automatic rhythm player, simple but capable of electronically producing various rhythms in the characteristic tones of a drum, a piccolo and so on." It has some similarities to Seeburg's earlier 1964 patent.
In 1967, Ace Tone founder Ikutaro Kakehashi developed the preset rhythm-pattern generator using diode matrix circuit, which has some similarities to the earlier Seeburg and Nippon Columbia patents. Kakehashi's pate
The Roland TR-909 Rhythm Composer is a drum machine introduced by the Roland Corporation in 1983. It succeeded the TR-808, was the first Roland drum machine to use samples and MIDI. Though it was a commercial failure, the 909 became influential in the development of electronic dance music such as techno and acid; the 909 was designed by Tadao Kikumoto, who designed the Roland TB-303 synthesizer. Chief Roland engineer Makoto Muroi credited the design of the analog and pulse-code modulation voice circuits to "Mr Ou" and its software to "Mr Hoshiai". Whereas its predecessor, the TR-808, is known for its "boomy" bass, the 909 sounds aggressive and "punchy", it was the first Roland drum machine to use samples, for its ride and hi-hat sounds. As the clap and snare are generated via the same noise source, they produce a phasing effect when played together; the 909 was the first Roland drum machine to use MIDI, allowing it to synchronize with other devices, or for sounds to be triggered by an external MIDI controller for wider dynamic range.
Older Roland machines can be synchronized via the DIN sync port. The 909 features a sequencer that can chain up to 96 patterns into songs of up to 896 measures, controls including shuffle and flam, it sounds. Roland changed elements of the 909 during its lifetime, adjusting sounds; some users modify their machines to match sounds from earlier revisions. The 909 was released in 1983. According to Muroi, it was a commercial failure as users preferred the more realistic sampled sounds of competing products such as the LinnDrum. Roland ceased production after one year, it was replaced in 1984 by the TR-707. Whereas the TR-808 was important in the development of hip hop, the 909, alongside the 303 synthesizer, influenced dance music such as techno and acid. According to Gordon Reid of Sound on Sound, "Like the TR-808 before it, nobody could have predicted the reverence in which the TR-909 would come to be held."The 909 was popularized in the late 1980s by producers in Chicago and Detroit such as Derrick May, Frankie Knuckles and Jeff Mills, who bought second-hand units.
The Icelandic singer Björk used it to create "militaristic" percussion on her 1997 song "Hunter". In 2017, Roland released a miniature version of the 909 with additional features. "Roland TR-909". Electronics & Music Maker. March 1984. P. 38. OCLC 317187644
In physics, sound is a vibration that propagates as an audible wave of pressure, through a transmission medium such as a gas, liquid or solid. In human physiology and psychology, sound is the reception of such waves and their perception by the brain. Humans can only hear sound waves as distinct pitches when the frequency lies between about 20 Hz and 20 kHz. Sound waves above 20 kHz is not perceptible by humans. Sound waves below 20 Hz are known as infrasound. Different animal species have varying hearing ranges. Acoustics is the interdisciplinary science that deals with the study of mechanical waves in gases and solids including vibration, sound and infrasound. A scientist who works in the field of acoustics is an acoustician, while someone working in the field of acoustical engineering may be called an acoustical engineer. An audio engineer, on the other hand, is concerned with the recording, manipulation and reproduction of sound. Applications of acoustics are found in all aspects of modern society, subdisciplines include aeroacoustics, audio signal processing, architectural acoustics, electro-acoustics, environmental noise, musical acoustics, noise control, speech, underwater acoustics, vibration.
Sound is defined as " Oscillation in pressure, particle displacement, particle velocity, etc. propagated in a medium with internal forces, or the superposition of such propagated oscillation. Auditory sensation evoked by the oscillation described in." Sound can be viewed as a wave motion in air or other elastic media. In this case, sound is a stimulus. Sound can be viewed as an excitation of the hearing mechanism that results in the perception of sound. In this case, sound is a sensation. Sound can propagate through a medium such as air and solids as longitudinal waves and as a transverse wave in solids; the sound waves are generated by a sound source, such as the vibrating diaphragm of a stereo speaker. The sound source creates vibrations in the surrounding medium; as the source continues to vibrate the medium, the vibrations propagate away from the source at the speed of sound, thus forming the sound wave. At a fixed distance from the source, the pressure and displacement of the medium vary in time.
At an instant in time, the pressure and displacement vary in space. Note that the particles of the medium do not travel with the sound wave; this is intuitively obvious for a solid, the same is true for liquids and gases. During propagation, waves can be refracted, or attenuated by the medium; the behavior of sound propagation is affected by three things: A complex relationship between the density and pressure of the medium. This relationship, affected by temperature, determines the speed of sound within the medium. Motion of the medium itself. If the medium is moving, this movement may increase or decrease the absolute speed of the sound wave depending on the direction of the movement. For example, sound moving through wind will have its speed of propagation increased by the speed of the wind if the sound and wind are moving in the same direction. If the sound and wind are moving in opposite directions, the speed of the sound wave will be decreased by the speed of the wind; the viscosity of the medium.
Medium viscosity determines the rate. For many media, such as air or water, attenuation due to viscosity is negligible; when sound is moving through a medium that does not have constant physical properties, it may be refracted. The mechanical vibrations that can be interpreted as sound can travel through all forms of matter: gases, liquids and plasmas; the matter that supports the sound is called the medium. Sound cannot travel through a vacuum. Sound is transmitted through gases and liquids as longitudinal waves called compression waves, it requires a medium to propagate. Through solids, however, it can be transmitted as transverse waves. Longitudinal sound waves are waves of alternating pressure deviations from the equilibrium pressure, causing local regions of compression and rarefaction, while transverse waves are waves of alternating shear stress at right angle to the direction of propagation. Sound waves may be "viewed" using parabolic objects that produce sound; the energy carried by an oscillating sound wave converts back and forth between the potential energy of the extra compression or lateral displacement strain of the matter, the kinetic energy of the displacement velocity of particles of the medium.
Although there are many complexities relating to the transmission of sounds, at the point of reception, sound is dividable into two simple elements: pressure and time. These fundamental elements form the basis of all sound waves, they can be used to describe, in every sound we hear. In order to understand the sound more a complex wave such as the one shown in a blue background on the right of this text, is separated into its component parts, which are a combination of various sound wave frequencies. Sound waves are simplified to a description in terms of sinusoidal plane waves, which are characterized by these generic properties: Frequency, or its inverse, wavelength Amplitude, sound pressure or Intensity Speed of sound DirectionSound, perceptible by humans has frequencies from abou
The Roland TR-808 Rhythm Composer known as the 808, is a drum machine manufactured by the Roland Corporation between 1980 and 1983. It was one of the first drum machines to allow users to program rhythms instead of using preset patterns. Unlike its nearest competitor at the time, the more expensive Linn LM-1, the 808 generates sounds using analog synthesis rather than playing samples. Launched when electronic music had yet to become mainstream, the 808 received mixed reviews for its unrealistic drum sounds and was a commercial failure. After building 12,000 units, Roland discontinued the 808 after its semiconductors became impossible to restock, but units remain in use around the world, it was succeeded in 1984 by the TR-909. Over the course of the 1980s, the 808 attracted a cult following among underground musicians for its affordability on the used market, ease of use, idiosyncratic sounds its deep, "booming" bass drum, it became a cornerstone of the emerging electronic and hip hop genres, popularized by early hits such as "Sexual Healing" by Marvin Gaye and "Planet Rock" by Afrika Bambaataa and the Soulsonic Force.
The 808 was used on more hit records than any other drum machine. Its popularity with hip hop in particular has made it one of the most influential inventions in popular music, comparable to the Fender Stratocaster's influence on rock, its sounds are included with music software and modern drum machines, it has inspired numerous clones. In the late 1960s, the Hammond Organ Company hired American musician and engineer Don Lewis to demonstrate its products, including an electronic organ with a built-in drum machine designed by the Japanese company Ace Tone. At the time, drum machines were most used to accompany home organs, they had preset patterns such as bossa nova. Lewis was known for performances using electronic instruments he had modified himself, decades before the popularization of instrument "hacking" via circuit bending, he made extensive modifications to the Ace Tone drum machine, creating his own rhythms and wiring the device through his organ's expression pedal to accent the percussion.
Lewis was approached by Ace Tone president and founder Ikutaro Kakehashi, who wanted to know how he had achieved the sounds using the machine Kakehashi had designed. In 1972, Kakehashi formed the Roland Corporation, hired Lewis to help design drum machines. By the late 1970s, microprocessors were appearing in instruments such as the Roland MC-8 Microcomposer, Kakehashi realized they could be used to program drum machines. In 1978, Roland released the CompuRhythm CR-78, the first drum machine with which users could write and replay their own patterns. With its next machine, the TR-808, Roland aimed to develop a drum machine for the professional market, expecting that it would be used to create demos. Though the engineers aimed to emulate real percussion, the prohibitive cost of memory drove them to design sound-generating hardware instead of using samples. Kakehashi deliberately purchased faulty transistors that created the machine's distinctive "sizzling" sound. Chief engineer Makoto Muroi credited the design of the analog voice circuits to "Mr. Nakamura" and the software to "Mr. Matsuoka".
The 808 produces sounds in imitation of acoustic percussion: the bass drum, toms, rimshot, handclap, cowbell, hi-hat. Rather than playing samples, the machine generates sounds using analog synthesis. Users can program up to 32 patterns using the step sequencer, chain up to 768 measures, place accents on individual beats, a feature introduced with the CR-78. Users can set the tempo and time signature, including unusual signatures such as 54 and 78; the 808 was the first drum machine with which users could program a percussion track from beginning to end, complete with breaks and rolls. It includes volume knobs for each voice, numerous audio outputs, a DIN sync port to synchronize with other devices through the Digital Control Bus interface, considered groundbreaking, its three trigger outputs can synchronize with other equipment. The 808's sounds do not resemble real percussion, have been described as "clicky and hypnotic", "robotic", "spacey", "toy-like" and "futuristic". Fact described them as a combination of "synth tones and white noise... more akin to bursts coming from the BBC Radiophonic Workshop a proper rhythm section".
The machine is noted for its powerful bass drum sound, built from a sine oscillator, low-pass filter, voltage-controlled amplifier. The bass drum decay control allows users to lengthen the sound, creating uniquely low frequencies that flatten over time not by design. According to the New Yorker, "Less a product of engineering than a force of nature, this bass-rolling subsonic boom has come to be what people mean when they refer to'an 808'." The 808 launched in 1980 with a list price of US$1,195. Roland marketed it as an affordable alternative to the Linn LM-1, manufactured by Linn Electronics, which used samples of real drum kits; the 808 sounded synthetic by comparison. Many reports state that one review dismissed the machine as sounding like "marching anteaters", though this was referring to machines that predated it. Contemporary Keyboard wrote a positive review, predicting that it would become "the standard for rhythm machines of the future". Despite some early adopters, the 808 was a commercial failure and fewer than 1
Brussels the Brussels-Capital Region, is a region of Belgium comprising 19 municipalities, including the City of Brussels, the capital of Belgium. The Brussels-Capital Region is located in the central portion of the country and is a part of both the French Community of Belgium and the Flemish Community, but is separate from the Flemish Region and the Walloon Region. Brussels is the most densely populated and the richest region in Belgium in terms of GDP per capita, it covers 161 km2, a small area compared to the two other regions, has a population of 1.2 million. The metropolitan area of Brussels counts over 2.1 million people, which makes it the largest in Belgium. It is part of a large conurbation extending towards Ghent, Antwerp and Walloon Brabant, home to over 5 million people. Brussels grew from a small rural settlement on the river Senne to become an important city-region in Europe. Since the end of the Second World War, it has been a major centre for international politics and the home of numerous international organisations, politicians and civil servants.
Brussels is the de facto capital of the European Union, as it hosts a number of principal EU institutions, including its administrative-legislative, executive-political, legislative branches and its name is sometimes used metonymically to describe the EU and its institutions. The secretariat of the Benelux and headquarters of NATO are located in Brussels; as the economic capital of Belgium and one of the top financial centres of Western Europe with Euronext Brussels, it is classified as an Alpha global city. Brussels is a hub for rail and air traffic, sometimes earning the moniker "Crossroads of Europe"; the Brussels Metro is the only rapid transit system in Belgium. In addition, both its airport and railway stations are the busiest in the country. Dutch-speaking, Brussels saw a language shift to French from the late 19th century; the Brussels-Capital Region is bilingual in French and Dutch though French is now the de facto main language with over 90% of the population speaking it. Brussels is increasingly becoming multilingual.
English is spoken as a second language by nearly a third of the population and a large number of migrants and expatriates speak other languages. Brussels is known for its cuisine and gastronomy, as well as its historical and architectural landmarks. Main attractions include its historic Grand Place, Manneken Pis and cultural institutions such as La Monnaie and the Museums of Art and History; because of its long tradition of Belgian comics, Brussels is hailed as a capital of the comic strip. The most common theory of the origin of the name Brussels is that it derives from the Old Dutch Bruocsella, Broekzele or Broeksel, meaning "marsh" and "home" or "home in the marsh". Saint Vindicianus, the bishop of Cambrai, made the first recorded reference to the place Brosella in 695, when it was still a hamlet; the names of all the municipalities in the Brussels-Capital Region are of Dutch origin, except for Evere, Celtic. In French, Bruxelles is pronounced and in Dutch, Brussel is pronounced. Inhabitants of Brussels are known in French in Dutch as Brusselaars.
In the Brabantian dialect of Brussels, they are called Brusseleirs. The written x noted the group. In the Belgian French pronunciation as well as in Dutch, the k disappeared and z became s, as reflected in the current Dutch spelling, whereas in the more conservative French form, the spelling remained; the pronunciation in French only dates from the 18th century, but this modification did not affect the traditional Brussels' usage. In France, the pronunciations and are heard, but are rather rare in Belgium. See also: History of Brussels The history of Brussels is linked to that of Western Europe. Traces of human settlement go back to the Stone Age, with vestiges and place-names related to the civilisation of megaliths and standing stones. During late antiquity, the region was home to Roman occupation, as attested by archaeological evidence discovered near the centre. Following the decline of the Western Roman Empire, it was incorporated into the Frankish Empire; the origin of the settlement, to become Brussels lies in Saint Gaugericus' construction of a chapel on an island in the river Senne around 580.
The official founding of Brussels is situated around 979, when Duke Charles of Lower Lotharingia transferred the relics of Saint Gudula from Moorsel to the Saint Gaugericus chapel. Charles would construct the first permanent fortification in the city, doing so on that same island. Lambert I of Leuven, Count of Leuven, gained the County of Brussels around 1000, by marrying Charles' daughter; because of its location on the shores of the Senne, on an important trade route between Bruges and Ghent, Cologne, Brussels became a commercial centre specialised in the textile trade. The town grew quite and extended towards the upper town, where there was a smaller risk of floods; as it grew to a population of around 30,000, the surrounding marshes were drained to allow for further expansion. Around