I came across this joke while browsing the social medias of some piano dealers:

Image of music notation, described in text below

The picture depicts two staves: the one above with a G clef and the one below with the F clef. The time signature is 4 and 4. There is a bar line in the middle, meaning there is 2 measures. In the first measure, the treble and bass sections each have 2 whole notes/semibreves: F and B for the treble in the same octave as the middle C, and G and G for the bass section with one octave apart, in the octave below the middle C. In the second measure, both treble and bass also have 2 notes each: E and C, the octave above the middle C for the treble, and C and G for the bass, the octave below middle C. The text above the music sheet says: "My New Year's Resolution".

I'm guessing it means the musician's New Year's Resolution is to remain the same as last year, but since I'm still lacking in music theory, I'm not sure to actually understand the joke.

  • 8
    The picture is best viewed in 1920 by 1080. This is its optimum resolution. :-) May 16, 2023 at 10:01
  • 4
    @Tardisrepairman Wouldn't 2023 x 2023 be better — at least until next year?
    – Aaron
    May 16, 2023 at 14:52
  • 2
    I was hoping these were the last two chords of Auld Lang Syne for an extra layer of pun, but it looks like Auld Lang Syne is generally in the key of F or G, not C. May 16, 2023 at 21:24
  • 2
    @JounceCracklePop - And the last 2 melody notes of "Auld Lang Syne" are ^5-^1, not this diagram's ^7-^1.
    – Dekkadeci
    May 17, 2023 at 6:05
  • 3
    Related: Wikipedia - Resolution (music)
    – Andrew T.
    May 17, 2023 at 9:05

2 Answers 2


It's a pun on the word "resolution." The joke is that the two chords form a musical resolution, where the music moves from a point of tension to a point of (comparative) rest. In this case, it's the most cliche resolution: a V7 chord (G7) resolving to a I chord (C).


A resolution in music is rather different from a resolution at new year.

The New Year's Resolution is a promise to do something beneficial in the new year. A resolution in music is really two chords which represent the end of a section, or piece.

The one shown is a perfect cadence, G (or G7) to C major, known to musos as a perfect resolution. Hence the 'pun'.

  • 6
    So, very similar to the joke that my New Year's resolution is 1920x1080. May 17, 2023 at 16:28
  • @user253751 - not similar at all - resolution in NY - promise. Resolution in music - cadence, resolution in graphics(?) - definition. Same word, I'm resolute on that one...
    – Tim
    May 17, 2023 at 16:37
  • 2
    Perfect and authentic.
    – ibonyun
    May 17, 2023 at 20:55

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