The study of how music works, seeking to identify structures and patterns in music.

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14
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4answers
3k views

How can a non-musician recognize anacrusis?

I need help understanding anacrusis (pickup notes). I'm no musician - I'm more of an anthropologist. I was reading some articles on ethnomusicology, and one of them makes reference to anacrusis in ...
0
votes
2answers
46 views

A major scale flat and natural accidental

Wikipedia states the following for the A major scale The key of A major is the only key where a Neapolitan sixth chord on 2 requires both a flat and a natural accidental. Can anyone explain what ...
0
votes
3answers
91 views

Is there a pattern behind the numbers of sharp keys in chromatic scale

Here are the keys of the chromatic scale containing 12 pitches: | C | C# | D | D# | E | F | F# | G | G# | A | A# | B | |---+----+---+----+---+---+----+---+----+---+----+----+ | 0 | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

“ii and ii6 rarely used to harmonize 6 in the soprano” - for what reason?

In my old theory book, I read that while ii and ii6 harmonize scale degrees 2 and 4, they rarely harmonize scale degree 6 in the soprano. (I'm assuming they mean for common practice music, SATB). ...
2
votes
2answers
64 views

Why Cminmaj7 is used and the purpose of minor and major are together?

I am learning the construction of 7th chords and this Cminmaj7 chord made me really confused when I came across in my studies. Why do both minor and major 7 exist together? Also, is this a consonant ...
3
votes
2answers
55 views

In Four Part Writing, is an augmented unison interval in a single voice allowed?

I'm composing a traditional four-part part-writing piece with a soprano, alto, tenor and bass. The song progresses from a F Major chord to an A Major chord. In the former chord, the bass is on C, and ...
1
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1answer
58 views

How can I change the style/rhythm of a song?

I came across a video by Maan Hamadeh, in this he has played Fur Elise in different styles. What is the theory behind this ?
2
votes
4answers
160 views

What do uncommon time signatures consist of?

Take a X/4, it means "the measure will contain X notes, the value of which are 1/4" I understand this concept for X/Y signatures, with Y being a power of 2. But what does that mean for the others ? ...
0
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0answers
30 views

What are the common features of the basic musical periods? [closed]

I was given an assignment to do and have to state how certain pieces are different to the conventional music of that time, specifically classical music. So, it would be really handy if somebody could ...
1
vote
2answers
91 views

At what speed should notes be played?

I'm in the very early stages of reading music. There are great resources on the internet but I'm struggling to find a suitable explanation for a 'Time Signature' that I completely understand. I think ...
1
vote
2answers
88 views

How does a Time Signature affect tuplet duration?

Take a X/Y time signature (but I don't think X matters here). What would be the duration of a n-tuplet (of 8th, 16th and 32nd notes), depending on Y and n?
2
votes
2answers
108 views

Can a note be heared in wrong pitch?

Just like Optical illusion happens to our eyes. can this happen to our ears? Consider a well tuned Piano. can we make hearing illusion with music? because of my horrible English and lack of ...
1
vote
4answers
125 views

How to learn musical theory?

I am taking 1/2 hour lessons in classical guitar and progressing well. I guess I am at the high end of beginner level, just finishing Aaron Shearer's first book. But I don't know how to gain an ...
0
votes
3answers
89 views

Minor Chord Progression

Let's say we have this chord progression (keyboard and SATB voicing): b: i-V-i If I understand it correctly, we have to use harmonic minor in chord progressions. Thus, we never use natural minor for ...
5
votes
2answers
204 views

What do these unusual time signature symbols mean?

I have been studying advanced music theory lately. Having explored a wide range of musical symbols, I was surprised to encounter the following time signature symbols I've never seen before in ...
0
votes
2answers
38 views

When to learn music reading?

Do I have to know some scales before learning to read music notation? And please recommend me a good book to learn read music on the guitar.
1
vote
4answers
114 views

Theory about chords

How can I learn about the relationships between chords to build chords progressions? Every book I read explains how to build chords, but they don't teach how to put the chords in progression. They ...
6
votes
7answers
1k views

Theory behind the change from a major chord to the same in minor

In many songs I hear the change from a major chord to the same, but minor. For example F A Bb Bbm. It sounds really nice to me and I'm wondering if there is a theory behind it. Is there a genre ...
4
votes
3answers
616 views

How Long Can an Anacrucis Be?

Most anacruses are less than a bar long. Often a one note pick up. An example that brings up my question is 'Fur Elise', which seems to have a pick up which lasts for four beats (in 3 time), before ...
13
votes
1answer
263 views

Do accidentals earlier in the measure affect a trill?

I was attempting to help someone understand all the markings in a piece with which they are unfamiliar. One, however, has given me pause: Now, I know the rule for a trill is that it ordinarily ...
2
votes
2answers
69 views

Bass Guitar Theory: playing with lead sheets

When playing with lead sheets (which is how I always play), I sometimes have a hard time when to go "off script" and go from boring old root-note playing to walking up or down and hitting passing ...
2
votes
4answers
131 views

Should I learn the CAGED patterns for harmonic and melodic minor scales?

So I learned all the 12 patterns for major scale. Should learn the CAGED system for harmonic and melodic minor scales because there are 4 notes on some strings?
5
votes
3answers
108 views

Melody Writing - Tension & Release

I'm back with a more specific question. I read in a book entitled 'Complete Idiots Guide for Music Composition' which has a detailed discussion on writing melodies and techniques to do so. As I have ...
1
vote
2answers
181 views

Scale, Heptatonic Scale, Diatonic Scale, Major Scale

A scale with 7 notes, in an octave, is called a Heptatonic Scales. Heptatonic scales are further divided based on tone and semitones arrangements. If a Heptatonic scale have five tones and two ...
5
votes
2answers
87 views

How did the plagal modes differ from their authentic counterpart in practice?

In the traditional modal system there were eight modes. Four that were authentic and four were plagal. These modes are depicted below: Based on the description of the modes the final note of the ...
7
votes
6answers
344 views

When does the amount of beats not add up to the time signature? (Besides pickup measures)

I read from https://www.boundless.com/users/232513/textbooks/understanding-basic-music-theory/notation-1/time-8/pickup-notes-and-measures-54-13529/ that there are exceptions to the rule that there ...
6
votes
4answers
680 views

What Happens To The Melody When Played In A Different Key

What happens to notation (e.g. a melody line) when a tune is played in a different key than the one it was written in? Do the notes alter in any way or do they always stay the same as originally ...
3
votes
4answers
470 views

Can a melody contain only non chord tones?

I was wondering if it is acceptable, from a theoretical standpoint, to have a melody that doesn't contain any tones from the chord that is played with it? Are there any examples of songs that have ...
-2
votes
2answers
61 views

Percentage Of Different Scales That Are Exactly Alike? [closed]

Was playing with iOS app “Piano Companion” and apparently I'm really quite amazingly consistent. I added two favorite scales that I found in the app and they are exactly the same; namely: ...
10
votes
3answers
718 views

What mode consists of the note G A Bb C Db E F G?

I was playing random scales . I came to a strange nice sounding mode,but could not find out what it's name theoretically. (Even I could not find a tonic sounding in it) The scale/mode notes are : G ...
0
votes
2answers
94 views

Basic music theory learning tips

sorry if this has been posted before. I have a very specific question and although the answers may be scattered, it may be easier to post as a new one. I've started learning scales and this has come ...
4
votes
6answers
200 views

Using the correct enharmonic equivalent

I'm trying to figure out in which situations say, a G# is preferred to an Ab. I know that the two spellings wont necessarily represent tones of identical frequency, and that they only coincide in ...
0
votes
3answers
76 views

Tips on improving rhythmic notation

I know in theory what rhythmic values are such as quarter note, half note, and whole note etc.., and I can do linear scale exercises very quickly without metronome, but I feel difficult to integrate ...
3
votes
4answers
159 views

Is there a term that describes straight 8ths / 16ths vs swing?

I'm a student and have been playing exercises that are either straight 8ths, swing 8ths, straight 16ths or swing 16ths. I'm wondering if there's a term for these different rhythms. If used in a ...
1
vote
1answer
32 views

Can a motif be found outside of a phrase?

Can motifs be found outside of phrases, like by itself? Or do you think that would actually make that "motif by itself" act like a phrase in it's own right?
1
vote
5answers
176 views

Why do I need to change chords throughout a piece music to make it pleasant to listen to?

Why do I need to change chords throughout a piece of music? For example, when playing a guitar accompaniment for 'Amazing Grace' it does not sound pleasant when you play only a G chord throughout the ...
2
votes
1answer
73 views

What's are the essential skills that I need to arrange songs to guitar?

I'm a beginner guitarist (started five months ago), my goal is to be a fingerstyle player. On the horizon of two years, I want to be able to arrange songs. So what's are the essential scales and ...
0
votes
2answers
97 views

Score analysis: Beethoven - Menuetto IV in F major (WoO9) at measure 4

I'm new to music and I'm trying to learn analysis, my question is, what chord is represented in the last bar of this excerpt? It has C in bass, so it could be a dominant chord, but rest of the notes ...
4
votes
3answers
574 views

Why isn't there a key signature with F flat?

I think the title asks the question. There are key signatures with Ab, Bb, Cb, Db, Eb and Gb. But no Fb. There's probably no practical reason for my question. I'm just curious.
2
votes
3answers
55 views

What is the difference between (guitar) articulation and dynamics, and how do they relate?

I have been looking into articulation and dynamics over the past week, primarily focused on guitar (but I'm sure any learning musician can benefit from this regardless of your instrument). I believe I ...
1
vote
1answer
109 views

Why is the snare always on the 3rd beat? [closed]

In the music I listen to (normally Future Bass, Glitch Hop and other genres like such), the snare is what keeps the music from getting unstable, it seems. All of the music has a snare smack dab on the ...
0
votes
3answers
83 views

Question on a piano piece

Hi! This piece (called Roundabouts) is from a book on how to play the piano. I thought it would be fun to analyse this piece but it seems to be very difficult. It's in the key of C major and the ...
1
vote
1answer
92 views

What is the name of the chord contains the notes Ab, C, D and G?

In the key of Bb major I came across a chord that contained the notes Ab, C, D and G. What chord could this be?
2
votes
1answer
166 views

Half oval 3 over notes

I'm a bit confused about this graphic, notice the half ovals on top with the 3 in the center: Is that a "triplet" and the same as this graphic in guitar pro? Please note that I have searched but ...
1
vote
3answers
109 views

When/how to switch in between major and minor pentatonic

I'm trying to figure out how I can mix major and minor pentatonic scales and was wondering if someone could explain the underlying theory concepts that would dictate under what chords/chord changes ...
3
votes
3answers
229 views

8 under clef and timing questions

Please look at the below graphic, there are a few things that are confusing me: 1 - Why is there an 8 under the treble clef? 2 - This is in common 4/4 time, yet one of the beginning 8th notes (in ...
0
votes
1answer
37 views

Some numbers in notation, what does it mean and how do I replicate it in Guitar Pro?

I am trying to copy a page of (guitar) music notation to Guitar Pro, but I am a bit confused about what the numbers above ( "4" "3" "2" "3") and numbers in circles ("3" "2") mean... as well as how do ...
1
vote
1answer
53 views

What does this roman numeral (2) mean? [duplicate]

as you can see above, there is a II in two places, what does that mean? Thanks!
4
votes
2answers
133 views

What is the meaning of time signatures with fractions on the top like ⅘ /4?

Recently I came across this List of musical works in unusual time signatures on Wikipedia. Some of the time signatures mentioned have fractional numbers on the top. e.g. two and a half over four, ...
3
votes
3answers
110 views

Can you have more dots on a note than a triple dotted note?

Recently I've come across some double-dotted notes, and even some triple-dotted ones which seem a bit quirky to me, but who knows? For one dot, you add 1/2 of the note's length, so I suppose for two ...