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Apr
30
comment Why do people sometimes write notes as E♯ or C♭?
@alephzero: Such enharmonic substitutions should not be made without cause, but in some cases it may be entirely reasonable. During tricky modulation passages, I'd consider it more important that individual parts make sense when read sequentially than that chords make sense when read vertically.
Apr
28
comment Why do people sometimes write notes as E♯ or C♭?
@NReilingh: How about Bx to Dbb? Would that be an "upward" quadruple-diminished third [even though the second pitch is lower]?
Apr
25
awarded  Necromancer
Apr
22
answered Can you play two guitars through the same amp?
Apr
17
comment Why is it called the chromatic scale?
A wavelength-based color visualizer should have notes in lower octaves as red, those in higher octaves as blue. The colors of light don't repeat with every doubling of frequency the way the keyboard picture does.
Apr
17
comment Why is it called the chromatic scale?
A more interesting color coding assigns adjacent colors to notes which are seven half-steps apart. If C is a neutral color, a C major chord will contain 0 +4 +1, while C minor will contain 0 +3 +1. A C7 chord will contain 0 +4 +1 -2, with the +4 and -2 being six colors apart (a tritone). A music visualizer that uses that approach will only work well if it is tuned to match the music it's responding to, but given that constraint will make two notes a fifth apart appear as very similar colors rather than wildly different. A tritone will represent opposing colors using either approach.
Apr
3
awarded  Nice Answer
Mar
31
answered Why are key signatures like E# and B# necessary?
Mar
31
answered Are ties necessary?
Mar
31
answered What does a grid with dots above the staves mean in a piano sheet music?
Jan
29
comment Piano vs Guitar Strings? Tension vs length?
With regard to thicker strings sounding richer, I'd say that the "thin-string" model predicts that the string will only vibrate at frequencies which are exact integer multiples of the fundamental; stiffer strings have overtones which are not exact multiples. The fact that overtones frequencies are shifted slightly is not subjective.
Jan
21
awarded  Yearling
Jan
20
comment What is the relationship between the melody line and the rhythm chords?
@Nachmen: Some melodies stand alone just fine, but there are some songs where the melody line really would be nothing without the backing chords. The song "I got lost in his arms" [Annie Get your Gun] has a melody which (key of D) starts "d d D, d d D, d d D d E, e e E, e e E, e e E e e F#, g g G, g g G, g g G g A" [each letter is one syllable; uppercase letters mark chord changes]. I can't imagine Irving Berlin having composed such a melody without having a harmonization in mind because there would be nothing to it--just a bunch of syllables on the first five notes of an ascending scale.
Jan
20
comment What is the relationship between the melody line and the rhythm chords?
@Nachmen: A good composer should generally have in mind an intended pattern of tension and release. Some melodies have strong patterns of tension and release built into them, but many are fairly weak in the absence of surrounding chords.
Jan
6
awarded  Notable Question
Dec
15
comment “slash” chords, e.g. B/F♯ - are these only for inversions, or can any note be the bass note?
I'd say an effort should be made to play the indicated bass note in the bass, and to play the whatever notes of the marked chord can reasonably be played in addition to the bass note. If playing all the notes isn't practical, however, one may have to do with less.
Dec
15
comment Thick fingers create problems sometimes
@EJP: My tuning is G-D-d-f-g#-b, with the fifth string being the lowest. I started out just using the top four strings in minor-thirds tuning, but thought chords seemed wimpy. Adding an octave below the fourth string made chords sound better except for the second-inversion chords which were too heavy on the fifth; tuning the sixth string to provide the root of such chords makes them sound much better.
Dec
14
comment “slash” chords, e.g. B/F♯ - are these only for inversions, or can any note be the bass note?
I don't think the Music Police will arrest someone for neglecting to have any G outside the bass when playing an Am7/G chord, but the chord without any G above the bass could just as well be notated Am/G. In most cases, when practical, the 7th should be a note which is near a note which is played in the following chord. For example, if Am7/G is followed by a standard-guitar-tuning D chord, that would suggest that it would be very desirable for the chord to include a high G which could resolve down to the D chord's F#.
Dec
3
comment Are there any plain nylon bass strings for classical guitar?
I presently use a g string tuned down to d for my fourth string and it's workable, though a little looser than I'd like; it may not be possible to go down another octave without using a wound string, but I'd think it should be possible to have an unwound string that was a little heavier than a normal g string.
Nov
30
comment What characteristics of a single-coil (Telecaster) sound to consider for simulation?
Many cheap pickups have one magnet, but six ferromagnetic pole pieces which direct the magnetic field along six essentially-independent paths.