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

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5answers
15k views

What is the difference between swing and shuffle?

I am learning piano from a book and I can't understand the difference between swing and shuffle. I have searched, but I still can't understand the difference. Could someone please iterate the ...
6
votes
4answers
16k views

Piano music with two treble clefs, and notes between staves

I do not understand why there are two treble cleff staves and why there are music notes in the middle of the two staves. Which hand should I play those notes with and why are there two treble cleff ...
6
votes
2answers
440 views

Writing sheet music on your smartphone

This is my first question so sorry if its a poor one for this style of forum. I regularly write and sight-read standard notation but there are plenty of times im caught without pen and paper or a ...
6
votes
5answers
614 views

How should I notate repeated dotted eighth notes?

I am transcribing the Spin-Dig Galaxy Theme from Super Mario Galaxy 2. At 0:21, there is a rhythm that I think is four dotted eighth notes and then two regular eighth notes. Should I notate that as ...
6
votes
3answers
4k views

Help with interpreting notation in Chopin's nocturne op. 9 no. 2

What are the following notations in Chopin's nocturne op. 9 no. 2: Tilde sign with accidentals: tr~~~ Striked note's flag: Small notes. (I know what mean single small notes right ...
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7answers
354 views

Learn musical notation

What would be a good method to learn musical notation, especially how to read the pitches of the notes fast enough to play them on your instrument (sight read)?
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1answer
304 views

What does this tablature notation mean?

There are two lines which have the number 0. Does that mean that I need to play two strings at once?
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3answers
532 views

Meaning of “actual notes” above staff

I've been studying The Unanswered Question By Charles Ives and found a peculiarity in the trumpet part. When the trumpet comes in, it has the phrase "actual notes" written above as seen below. I'm ...
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votes
4answers
493 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!
6
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1answer
309 views

Clef between a beam? proper notation?

Is that F Clef between the beam of those two notes in the 3rd bar proper notation? if so, what does it mean? I'm guessing it's the same as the G Clef that precedes it, so that the next note would be ...
6
votes
4answers
366 views

Do accidentals apply to other staffs of the same type?

In this excerpt from Bach's BWV 772, does the B flat accidental on the lower staff also apply to the upper staff(second to last beat)? I know that accidentally usually do not apply to different ...
6
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2answers
214 views

Simplified notation for two-note tremolo

Does first and second bar mean the same thing? If no, is there a simplified notation for the first one?
6
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2answers
829 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 ...
6
votes
3answers
532 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
votes
3answers
672 views

Learning guitar via staff

I am learning guitar from my tutor and he is teaching me to read notes on a staff. However when I search for guitar music on internet it comes like: A C♯m E Bm F♯m etc. How do I convert these to a ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

What are these small numbers, and squiggly lines on this guitar sheet music

I'm trying to learn the Twilight at the Zocalo, and I found some odd notation I havent seen before. I'm asking for what these symbols are: The squiggly line between 2 notes The small numbers next to ...
6
votes
3answers
596 views

What do multiple l's and r's beneath a note mean?

I do a tad of drumming, but not enough at all to call myself a drummer (or anything close). I understand what a R or a L means under a note, but i'm not sure what two or three under each note means. I ...
6
votes
3answers
514 views

Note duration in Hindemith's “Elementary Training For Musicians”

On the recommendation of a friend (and Nadia Boulanger), I am working through Hindemith's "Elementary Training For Musicians", with an eye to using a small selection of its exercises for some of my ...
6
votes
2answers
468 views

Musical notation/tablature for isomorphic instruments

I've started playing the harpejji, a 16-stringed instrument with an isomorphic fretboard. Due to its very nature, there are several different frets for a given pitch. Has there been an attempt to ...
6
votes
1answer
123 views

Musical “ellipsis mark” (name & usage of this symbol)

I've been seeing this mark for years, usually in historical (e.g. Baroque) manuscripts, and it's meaning is clear to me. It's a sort of W-shaped squiggle with a tail that (usually) comes at the end of ...
6
votes
1answer
605 views

What is B II, followed by a dashed line, and what does it mean?

In the guitar tab of Opus 35, No 22 in B minor of Fernando Sor that I get from classical clef, there is a notation BII as shown in the above picture. What does it mean?
6
votes
2answers
134 views

What is the basso continuo numbering of the inversions of a dominant seventh chord?

Consider for instance the following chord (C7) : C E G Bb E G Bb C G Bb C E Bb C E G How can I number these inversions? I remember it was something with a '+'.
6
votes
1answer
185 views

Half notes with slashed stem

How should I play the half bass notes with the slashed stem? See please the attached image:
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votes
3answers
619 views

What does the indication 9 7 mean?

I' m studying classical harmony, and on the chapter with the V9, I came upon this numbered bass: What does 9 7 mean? I know that it includes the 9th, but why is there the 7th there? Does it tell me ...
6
votes
2answers
191 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
326 views

“Ut” and “La” notation on horn and cornet instruments in orchestral score?

I'm looking at an orchestral score from the late 1800's (well, OK, it's "The Mikado" by Arthur Sullivan). In the portion of the score that I am looking at, the non-transposing instruments all have no ...
6
votes
1answer
231 views

What is Capital H Looking Symbol on score?

Question: What is this "H" symbol above the staff in my copy of the string quartet transcription of the Art of Fugue? Background:I play guitar but recently realized that most string instrument ...
6
votes
2answers
382 views

Rhythms notes for didgeridoo

I'm learning to play didgeridoo and have a question - How can I write the rhythms on paper? It's overtone musician instrument and I don't know how can I apply musical notation or something other. I ...
6
votes
1answer
490 views

Lilypond Conga Notes

I am writing a conga part in LilyPond. I saw on LilyPond's documentation how to write conga notes: ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Same note in two staves [duplicate]

I have only just started to learn (on my own) to read music and play the piano at the grand old age of 64! Please can someone tell me how to play the same note on two staves? I keep being asked to ...
6
votes
1answer
283 views

Over/under pitch note

I know there is a quarter tone notation, but is there a symbol for music score that will simply say over/under pitch? I think quarter tone notation might be too strict/rigid in music arrangement that ...
6
votes
1answer
445 views

Learning Bossa Nova Guitar

It's been awhile since I have played guitar but I'm trying to get back into it. I really like bossa nova music and want to learn how to play it. I have some beginner sheet music that I am learning ...
6
votes
1answer
364 views

What is this cross staff tied/slurred note supposed to be?

So I am learning Messiaen's Transports de Joie from L'Ascension suite. Things are fine until there is an ambiguous note on the top of page 16 (we are in F♯ Major and both hands are in the treble ...
6
votes
2answers
168 views

What notation systems exist for indicating rhymes, alliteration and cadence in rap lyrics?

The only example I've seen so far is The Rapper's Flow Encyclopedia, which uses standard musical notation with phrasing to indicate cadence, and lyric capitalization to indicate (but not group) ...
6
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2answers
207 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
82 views

Representing the snapping of the damper pedal to create an ambient tone in sheet music

The other day I was sitting down at my piano while composing when I encountered something that I had noticed a few times in the past. Here is what happened: I pressed the down the damper pedal ...
6
votes
2answers
236 views

Is there a standard notation for “Happy Birthday” with two names (twins)?

When singing the well-known Happy Birthday song, is there a standard or official way of having two names? The measure has to be elongated, and there's a question of which note to sing the first name ...
6
votes
1answer
811 views

Sources for sight-reading exercises that focus on subdivisions (emphasis on drums)

As is the case for all drummers, for me, it's a great fun to find weird rhythmic patterns and to practice over basic beats to create some tension in the straight sections of various songs. However, ...
5
votes
6answers
1k views

Same note to be played with both hands?

Why some notes in the piano are written the same for the left and right hand ? What is the purpose of this ? And how do we play them ? Do we just choose one hand to play them or do we play them ...
5
votes
3answers
682 views

Need help with notation and time signatures

This is my first twelve-tone composition, and I realize that it's terrible. My problem is that I was told that I'm not writing in 4/4 correctly, and I have no idea how I'm supposed to interpret that. ...
5
votes
2answers
8k views

What exactly does a 3 mean over a quarter note and an 8th note?

There is an eighth note followed by a quarter note, and above them is a little overarching bracket with a little 3 in it. I know this has something to do with the timing, but I have no idea what. ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

What does the roman numeral notation mean for this borrowed chord?

I am working my way through Asturias (Leyenda) in E minor for classical guitar. I believe the arrangement is based on the one by Segovia. I am using this sheet music, and comparing it to the tablature ...
5
votes
1answer
376 views

Is it a typo or how do I play it? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: The same note on two staves I have put red arrows where I am in trouble. As I understand this, I should hit D but it is already pressed down. Do I misunderstand ...
5
votes
2answers
717 views

How do I read guitar tabs written in this format?

I need some help learning how to read some Chinese guitar tabs I found online. They seem completely different to the standard Western format: I don't even know where to start with these, I suppose ...
5
votes
3answers
957 views

What is the proper name of the dash symbol over a note and how to play it

Can anyone specify the name of the particular symbol above the crotchet? According to Wikipedia it's called a Tenuto but my teacher said it's called a "dash". Which one is correct? Or are both names ...
5
votes
1answer
724 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?
5
votes
1answer
198 views

String skip in tablature

How do I play this tab ? I confused since no fret number is written on the 3rd string, and I guess it's not an open string either. Do I pick those two (2 and 4) strings only? What I did is just to ...
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1answer
2k views

What does a sideways “s” over a note mean?

For example, from Bach's two part invention no. 11 (G minor):
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3answers
273 views

How should 3 notes joined with 1 beam line drawn on 5-staff-line?

Straight to the question, if I have this following numerical scores notation : 4/4, Do=C How to draw it into staff musical notation (If you have better way to say this musical notation type, ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

What does the 3 above the staff represent?

From the below image, What does the 3 above the three quarter notes represent? I attempted to look it up here but I did not find anything similar to it. I am assuming it makes the 3 notes shorter, ...