The methods, rules, and conventions for representing music visually.

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3answers
123 views

How are tuplets drawn?

Is it acceptable to draw a tuplet line as an arc (including number in the middle of the arc of course), Or does the line strictly need to be an angled line (just like '[' rotated 90 degrees)? P.S. I ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

What is Tempo (Speed): Moderate 4

I can look up the range of tempos that classify as moderate, but cannot find a source that tells me the specific bpm for: Tempo (Speed): Moderate 4 Assuming the time signature is 4:4
8
votes
3answers
322 views

Arbitrary length full-measure rests in Lilypond

In Lilypond one can make long full-measure rests with: \compressFullBarRests R1*12 which outputs: Is there an engraver I can turn off, or some other way to remove the number from above ...
8
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3answers
307 views

Percussion notes in the vocals

This an excerpt from an arragment to the song "Hakuna Matata" from the movie "The Lion King": Why are there percussion notes in the vocals?
3
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3answers
244 views

Chord notation for stacked and inverted chords or intervals?

I understand how chord notation works for the most part, but I'm wondering how I would notate intervals, octaves, and specific chords. P1, m3, & P5 is Cmin. P1, P5 is C5 But, how do we notate P1 ...
12
votes
3answers
728 views

Origin of the 'squigly line' used for quarter note rest?

This has been driving me nuts - I can't find a single thing on the net that would indicate why the quarter rest is penned the way it is. Did it evolve from some initial or abbreviation or was it ...
6
votes
5answers
992 views

How are double stops / divisi indicated in violin scores?

This is a short section of The Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy from Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker suite. Where the notes are stacked, are they meant to be played as double stops, or do some violinists play ...
13
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2answers
2k views

Unknown Notation - Thick Horizontal Bars Between Notes

I haven't the faintest idea of what these could mean. Some sort of run perhaps? How do you effect the dynamics/notes these bars are referring to? EDIT: For reference, this specific example is ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

How does “triplet feel” for eighth notes affect non-eighth notes?

I'm a software developer creating a MIDI player that can play with "triplet feel" -- that is, when it sees two eighth notes, it plays them as if they were a triplet of quarter note + eighth note. This ...
9
votes
2answers
194 views

Do some measures get no numbers, in an opera score?

I'm counting measures and confirming measure numbers in an opera score, and I've come across a discrepancy. I wonder what this means about conventions for numbering measures in opera scores in ...
7
votes
2answers
519 views

Is this chord progression III I II III?

I've always been a keen music listener but never paid much attention to music lessons back in high school. Now I've decided to (attempt to) teach myself music theory with the hope of developing some ...
0
votes
1answer
144 views

Is there a way to notate alternative transitions between 2 sections of music?

I'm writing out an original song I recently recorded because I need to provide both the sheet music and an audio recording for college applications. It would be okay just to submit what I wrote out ...
6
votes
2answers
125 views

How to notate this ornament?

I'm transcribing a piano ballad by a contemporary-progressive-symphonic-chamber-rock band, and I have come across these two ornaments. Each first measure on the below image shows the passage without ...
5
votes
1answer
103 views

What is the clearest way to signify the harmonic function of a polychord?

Chords can be analyzed with roman numerals to indicate function: C, Am, Dm, G I, vi, ii, V (or I, VI-, II-, V in jazz theory) And inversions may be analyzed by adding an arabic numeral indicating ...
15
votes
4answers
641 views

Should one write # or b?

In the staff, would one write enharmonic notes with # or b? Does it matter which you'd use and why? For example: In the key of C Major, would it be better to write this passage with an A#, as it is, ...
4
votes
4answers
137 views

Still Major Intervals?

I have a worksheet to prepare me for my A level music; however I'm confused when being asked to name these intervals: My logic is that as both the tonic and above note are both flat meaning the ...
12
votes
7answers
277 views

Are there some classical pieces that lend themselves well to guitar?

I would like to practice reading music on something other than notation written for guitar. Are there other pieces written for violin, for instance-or other instruments, that can be transposed easily ...
4
votes
2answers
267 views

What note(s) are a diminished 3rd above D-flat?

In What is the interval between Db and D# some of the comments indicate that the interval Db->Eb can be considered as a diminished third. I would think that Fbb (double-flatted F) is a diminished ...
5
votes
3answers
181 views

Notation of multiple voices in Piano Music

I'm attempting to do some piano composition where (unfortunately) it's not my native instrument. What is the accepted way to handle the notation of multiple voices in a situation like what I've ...
6
votes
3answers
414 views

Learning standard notation without succombing to simply remembering songs?

I'm in a tricky position. I've been playing guitar for around ten years and am fairly good at improvising and tinkering around on a piano, too. I understand sheet music, I can decipher it, but I can't ...
6
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2answers
111 views

Name for pedal markings

Is there any name for the inverted V (∧) in pedal markings? Or are they just known as part of pedal markings?
9
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2answers
388 views

Small note above a normal-sized note

I'm currently looking at a vocal score, and there's a small note right above a normal-sized note. Ordinarily, I would presume this to be a cue note, except that this isn't the start of the singer's ...
9
votes
2answers
588 views

In piano music notation how are notes distributed between the staves?

I recently stumbled across a piece of music for the piano that confused me a little. The first image is how I found the score, the second is how I rearranged it myself. How I usually find ...
7
votes
3answers
105 views

Notation for generic voicing

Is there any common notation for a generic voicing of a chord? For instance, I could specify as a kind of voicing template: "Root, 3rd and fifth in fourth octave, plus root in the fifth octave" ...
6
votes
2answers
506 views

Best name for chord consisting of G Eb F Bb C?

I have a chord progression in the key of C, which walks up from the IV chord up to a particular variation of the V7 chord, which I'm trying to name in a helpful way for a lead sheet. Here are my ...
2
votes
1answer
54 views

How to abbreviate multiply -diminished or -augmented intervals

I know they aren't used often, but how do you abbreviate a doubly-, triply-, or otherwise multiply- diminished or augmented intervals? For instance, a perfect fifth is abnbreviated P5, a diminished ...
9
votes
2answers
633 views

“Standard” drum notation alternatives

For the purpose of playing live, working through ("popular") songs involving verse, chorus, bridge, intro, outro, etc., is there a standard notation that drummers use to help them know what to play, ...
11
votes
1answer
507 views

How do I read this notation?

The wikipedia article about diminished seventh chords mentions the following: Fétis tuned the chord 10:12:14:17. What does this mean? Until very recently, I had never ever seen this before, and ...
8
votes
3answers
354 views

Can the double stop E natural F sharp be played on cello?

I'd like to find out if it is possible to play the double stop of E natural and F sharp on the cello. Thank you
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2answers
146 views

What is this Chord Notation?

I know how to read Roman Numerals for chord progressions. But I've seen something recently I don't understand. I've attached an image below. What are those sub/post-strip's?
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vote
3answers
174 views

Deciphering the notation of this slash chord

I’m having a hard time “really” understanding the following slash chord: Notes: Ab Eb Gb - Db F Gb Bb (in that order) Logic is telling me: Gb maj7/13 / Ab I would like to give this chord a ...
7
votes
1answer
358 views

Different trill notations in Schubert piano music

I'm trying to teach myself some Schubert and am playing through Sonate 1 (Op. 42). The piece employs a lot of trills. However, there are two notations in use: tr and the up & down squiggle. Is ...
2
votes
2answers
396 views

What's the name of an area split by Bar Line (s) called?

What is the unit name of an area split by Bar Line(s) called ? (See the red-circled area in below picture) The translation from my native language to English results in Time Signature . I feel ...
3
votes
1answer
144 views

How to make nonstandard scales on Finale?

I'm trying to use the scale: A,C,F#,A And then: A,B,C#,D#,F,G,A But I'll need to input a nonstandard key signature. How can I do that?
3
votes
1answer
176 views

Note length line (beam) placement in numbered musical notation

I am making a computer application for typing numerical / numbered musical notes. I have some question regarding note length line / beam. Will it have a same meaning if we place the beam either on ...
10
votes
2answers
731 views

On the piano, how should you play staccato with the pedal?

In some pieces, there is a pedal designation along with staccato. How should this be played?
25
votes
3answers
2k views

What is the origin of the up bow and down bow symbols for bowed string instruments?

My brother is a beginning cellist and I was helping him annotate "up bow" and "down bow". I find it particularly strange that the "up bow" symbol is similar to a V. Intuitively, I would have thought ...
6
votes
2answers
158 views

Notation used for harmonic context

Could someone please explain what it means to say, "the harmonic context of V/V-V-I". How should one read this? It would be nice if you could also give two or three examples if you think it would ...
3
votes
1answer
675 views

What does a marking of Trio. mean on a score?

In this version of Mozart's German Dances, the third section of each dance has "Trio." engraved above the staff. What does this indicate?
25
votes
4answers
970 views

Has music notation become more prescriptive?

Another question asks about the Meaning of 1/1 and 1/2 beneath pedaling marking near some sustain pedal markings. It looks like they are used to specify a particular amount of pedal to use while ...
6
votes
1answer
236 views

Lilypond Conga Notes

I am writing a conga part in LilyPond. I saw on LilyPond's documentation how to write conga notes: ...
5
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1answer
610 views

Meaning of 1/1 and 1/2 beneath pedaling marking

Today I saw 1/1 and 1/2 written in one of my pieces beneath the pedal markings. Do these have a meaning or is it a misprint?
7
votes
1answer
177 views

Groups of eighths

A lot of times, I've seen eighths in groups of 2, and other times in groups of 4. Is there any difference in the way you are supposed to play them?
6
votes
4answers
391 views

What notation would you use to differentiate different types of minor keys (e.g. Em natural, Em harmonic, Em melodic)?

Are they all just 'Em', or is there some standard, concise way of differentiating between them? Thanks!
9
votes
2answers
859 views

Is there a specific name for Sheet music that uses numbers (二胡 Èrhú Sheet Music)?

I am searching for a software program (preferably opensource but not necessarily) that can create sheet music. However since I am a beginner at my instrument I still use a simplified notation. I play ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

What is this symbol, a line over the note heads? [duplicate]

Today I came across this symbol: (on top of the first four notes) What is this symbol and how am I supposed to play it? A friend of mine told me it's Marcato, but Wiki gave me this: as Marcato, ...
7
votes
7answers
2k views

Can legato notes be played staccato?

I've been working on this piece by Sousa, and I came across this oddity: Does this mean to play these notes somehow legato and staccato at the same time? If so, how would I play it? If not, what ...
3
votes
2answers
501 views

Question about “The Place I'll Return to Someday” music sheet

There is a song I want to play with my 12 holes ocarina: "The Place I Will Return to Someday" (also known as "A Place to Call Home"). These are the music sheets: Music sheet part 1 Music sheet part 2 ...
4
votes
1answer
118 views

Where do accidentals go when voices overlap?

When two different voices on the same staff have overlapping note ranges, they get shifted and written side-by-side. For example: What happens if there is an accidental on a note of the voice ...
9
votes
3answers
330 views

Why are only even values used for note duration?

So, I was wondering why there are only even numbered notes? Like half, quarter, and eighth and so on.