12
votes
3answers
10k views

With regards to piano sheet music, when are you supposed to press the pedal(s)?

I've been playing piano for about 8 months. I have a digital weighted 88-key piano with only one pedal. My friend, who used to play piano, taught me to hold the pedal down when there is an arc in ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

What is the the Nashville Numbers system?

Recently, a couple of my bandmates were talking about a technique they use called Nashville Numbers. It's similar to writing out chords, but instead uses numbers. These numbers are a pattern that ...
10
votes
2answers
11k views

How should I go about choosing a beginner drum kit?

I'm thinking about getting a beginner drum kit, and am hesitant to make the jump for fear of either buying a lemon or not being as interested as I'd have hoped. Things to consider: 24 years old ...
7
votes
3answers
654 views

Difference between Polychords and Extended chords

I'm really curious about the difference between polychords and extended chords. I know a polychord is two chords played at the same time where there is a higher chord and a lower chord. The common ...
5
votes
7answers
11k views

Is Hanon's “Virtuoso Pianist” good for self-taught musician?

I am a self-taught painist (or keyboardist, whatever you prefer). Some time ago I came across The Virtuoso Pianist but, because I never played under an eye of a professional, I was turned away by the ...
4
votes
4answers
2k views

Difference between equal temperament and just intonation

I am learning Indian classical music and learned about just intonation and equal temperament. I want to know the difference between them. I know that Indian classical music uses just intonation and ...
25
votes
4answers
4k views

Physics behind why a bugle can play several notes, while a whistle only plays one note

A bugle and a whistle are essentially both tubes open at both ends. A bugle has no keys, yet you can play several notes on it. A whistle also has no keys, but it only plays a single note. Why is this? ...
24
votes
11answers
87k views

How not to touch neighbouring strings?

When playing guitar, my fingers often touch other strings on the guitar. I found that my fingertips are too broad for the strings. When I press one string by my middle finger, the meat of the ...
18
votes
5answers
7k views

Why does the D string in a guitar breaks so often?

Well... that's about it. D strings (on acoustic nylon guitars at least) break way more often than the others. I guess there's a physical explanation but I wasn't able to found anything on the ...
17
votes
3answers
2k views

Why are thirds used to construct chords?

I am (slowly) learning music theory on the guitar. I've begun learning about scales and chords, and it seems that all chords are built using some combination of thirds. For example, a minor triad is ...
17
votes
6answers
5k views

With sheet music, how do you determine whether the song is in the major key or the minor key?

For example, if the key signature on the left doesn't have any sharps or flats then it could theoretically be in either the C Major scale or the A Minor scale. How do you determine which one?
16
votes
7answers
2k views

Where does picking speed come from? Forearm, hand, or bicep?

Where specifically on the arm/hand should rapid picking speed come from?
14
votes
4answers
2k views

If between E and F is a halftone, why can F not be an E#

A ♯ raises a note by a semitone or halftone. I'm confused. If E and F are a halftone apart, why can't F be E#?
14
votes
3answers
20k views

Classical music theory notation for chord inversions (figured bass)

In classical music harmony analysis, we see the chord inversions notated like I6/4, I6, V4/3. Examples: What are those numbers? How do they define the inversion? What's the theory behind using ...
13
votes
4answers
13k views

Cleaning a tarnished flute

My flute is tarnished and needs to be cleaned... I was afraid if I polished it, I would break something on it. I read online that it's a bad idea to remove tarnish on a flute yourself as you can ruin ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Basic effects for bass

I’m an amateur bassist looking to get started with effects pedals. Most bassists use effects a lot more sparingly than guitarists, so I’m not sure which ones are common or important. I have AmpKit, so ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

Different Simile Marks

In the pictures below, there are many measures with different simile marks. I know there are many different types of simile marks, varying number of lines, with or without dots, on barline or in the ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

What can I do about my problems with piano scales which manifest in just one direction?

I've been practicing scales for some time now, and I found them mostly easy and fun to play. The problems begin when I have to play them faster, but oddly enough my problem manifests only when playing ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

What's the best method for learning how to play triplets over quavers?

I've always struggled to play pieces where one part is in quavers (or any multiple thereof) and another is in triplets (or any odd number). I'm going to have to finally conquer it, as I am attempting ...
10
votes
4answers
9k views

Why does pedal order matter?

Why does the order in which I put my guitar/bass pedals matter? For example, why does the compressor needs to be the first one in the order?
10
votes
6answers
16k views

What kind of guitar for big hands?

For someone with big hands, what kind of guitar is suitable? What are the advantages and disadvantages of big hands for playing guitar?
10
votes
4answers
364 views

Recommended arm and hand position for neck side

I was wondering if there are some really clear sites, videos or texts explaining the best practices regarding the way to hold your guitar, both to be efficient and to avoid straining your fingers/arm. ...
9
votes
4answers
438 views

What are the specific progressive steps to take in basic ear training?

This question: What are the most effective ear training methods has an excellent best answer. I'd like to zoom in on its conclusion: All of these skills, like playing an instrument, take time. ...
9
votes
4answers
8k views

How to use diminished scale over I IV V changes in blues

I want to spice up my solos over a Blues progression. I already can play a variety of scales but the Diminished scale is something I would like to add because of the particular sounds it creates. In ...
9
votes
2answers
702 views

Common names for sections of a piece of music

Generally, what is is the name for the non-vocal parts of a song that are not interludes or preludes and not a guitar solo or instrumental verse/chorus? For example, right after the acapella vocal ...
8
votes
6answers
14k views

Transcribing a Standard MIDI File to sheet music

I have a couple of nice guitar midi files that I would like the scores for; is there any software out there that can do this sort of conversion, and output it as a PDF file? Thanks
7
votes
4answers
2k views

What is the best way to start learning to play guitar by ear

I've been using TAB for a while but I want to transition to picking things up by ear. What is an effective way to do that? Please give answers about methods you have experience with and explain how ...
6
votes
3answers
416 views

What is the easiest/most popular way of figuring out the chords used in a song?

What is the best way for someone with a minimal amount of music theory knowledge to figure out the chords used in a song? I've used Chordify (chord recognition software) if someone hasn't published ...
6
votes
3answers
4k views

Why is it so hard to count beats and play at the same time?

I am just beginning to learn to play the piano on my own. I seem to have much difficulties keeping the beats and play the notes at the same time. For example, I have been practicing on this same ...
5
votes
2answers
4k views

Is it possible to use video games to help improve one's singing?

I've decided that I want to improve my singing. In order to give me incentive to practice (and regular feedback), I thought getting a video game might be of help. I know that it's no substitute for ...
5
votes
4answers
1k views

Backing Tracks for Practicing

Looking for Backing Tracks for Practicing on Guitar, I listen to Heavy Metal and Progressive Metal genre.
4
votes
1answer
205 views

How are keys in the circle of fifths related?

I know this seems like a basic question, and in the traditional sense, I actually know how their related. Though, whilst reading a book titled 'harmony for computer musicians', I've come across a ...
3
votes
3answers
105 views

How to read piano key signatures

I just started playing piano, but Im confused about reading key signatures. For example take a look at the first measure of this song: http://www.musicnotes.com/sheetmusic/mtd.asp?ppn=MN0130187, does ...
3
votes
2answers
347 views

Common patterns in music

When I asked my question on why do C7 chords contain a Bb and not a B, a user gave an example, how tonic chords transforms into a IV chord thru a dominant chord (C - C7 - F). I found this transition ...
14
votes
1answer
287 views

Locrian Harmony

I like utilizing modes in my the pieces I write, but there is one mode I've never been able to fully grasp and utilize and that is the Locrian mode. The chords that naturally occur in the Locrian ...
14
votes
6answers
460 views

How do you care for your guitar?

A guitar that is used regularly will sooner or later show signs of wear and tear. How do you best care for your guitar and make sure it stays as good as it is for as long as possible?
13
votes
8answers
17k views

Does 3/4 time signature differ from 6/8?

I've always wondered how time signatures were thought of- I got the question because I noticed that well in terms of 'fractions', 3/4 is just half of 6/8. Does that apply to music when counting beats ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

With sheet music, what happens with sharps and double sharps that are already sharped in the key signature?

For example, let's say the key signature has an f sharp and then also an individual f note has a sharp next to it. Are they just emphasizing the f sharp or does that actually become a g? Same ...
13
votes
8answers
10k views

How can I stop my electric guitar strings from rusting so quickly?

I suffer from hyperhyrdosis which means my hands sweat quite a lot. The problem is that because of this my electric guitar strings seem to rust quite quickly because of this. Is there anything I can ...
13
votes
1answer
2k views

What components make military music especially rousing?

If someone were going to compose a piece of military music to especially rousing, what components would they be looking to emphasize? Like is there a certain key or time that military music is often ...
12
votes
5answers
1k views

Is there a name for a chord which combines the major and minor thirds of the root?

I noticed while noodling on my acoustic guitar that playing Cm using the Am shape barred on 3rd fret, that opening the high E string gives a pleasingly discordant sound. I realised the E comes from ...
12
votes
2answers
3k views

Why do wind bands use a concert Bb for tuning?

Back when I was part of my school's wind band, we used to always tune to a concert Bb. Why do wind bands tune to a Bb rather than an A (as discussed here)? I recall our director once vaguely ...
12
votes
3answers
3k views

How do you know what beat to emphasize based on the time signature?

In learning the guitar I have run across various time signatures. In each time signature it seems as if you are supposed to emphasize different beats. Is this something that you just have to intuit, ...
12
votes
6answers
1k views

I need help understanding the concept of chord inversions.

This article from wikipedia, states: In the first inversion of a C major triad the bass is E—the 3rd of the triad—with the 5th and the root stacked above it (the root now shifted an octave ...
11
votes
10answers
2k views

What key could the progression Cm - G - Dm - Am be in?

I'm working on a song (my first ever actually) and I love the chord sequence: Cm - G - Dm - Am I started off working in C-Major, but borrowed Cm from the parallel minor key C-Minor. But really, in ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

Are there any enharmonic chords?

Will I even encounter any enharmonic chords? For example would an inverted variation of one chord be equivalent to the root variation of another chord?
11
votes
4answers
19k views

Putting steel strings on a cheap nylon guitar

I was trying to get back into playing guitar. I only took lessons for a few years with a nylon string guitar that was fairly cheap. When I pulled the guitar out of the attic it needed new strings so I ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

Learning 4/5 trills on the piano?

This has got to be one of the hardest technical things to teach your hands. I'm looking for advice from someone who's already surmounted this particular obstacle. To be clear, I'm talking about ...
10
votes
4answers
3k views

Why do I sing a lot better post intense workout?

I've been singing for years but I don't know why I sing so much better post intense workout. It's like I am truly ready to sing no matter what the notes are. I can hit all those high notes easily and ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Can I make Electronic Drums even more quiet?

I live in an apartment and recently bought a Yamaha dtxtreme III. Luckily I live on the bottom floor and have no one under me, however the drums are facing a wall that I share with my neighbors. The ...

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