I really need help figuring out the highlighted parts. How do I play these and what notes are those? I really need help, I am only a beginner. Thank You, Piano Woman enter image description here

  • 3
    I guess for such a fundamental question, it would be better to grab a book or take a lesson about how to read scores. You will have infinite questions if you simply rely on getting answers here.
    – hillin
    Sep 26, 2017 at 4:22

2 Answers 2


It seems to me that you are having trouble understanding the rhythmic aspects of the score. What you highlighted is simply just dots and beamed rhythms. I'll point out some of the basics that are tripping you up here, but if you are having trouble with this you should really take a step back and learn the basics first.

The dot adds half of the value of the note to itself so a dotted quarter note take up the length of a quarter note and an eighth note. Like so:

enter image description here

The beams are just like the flags for eighth notes and lower. One beam is the same as one flag which corresponds to an eighth notes. See the chart below for examples up to 64th notes:

enter image description here

For more information about basic rhythm see this lesson on musictheory.net and for information about dots and ties see this lesson on musictheory.net.

  • Great answer. I would probably add that the rhythms for certain songs often look really complicated when written but it is usually easy enough to play if you already know how to sing the song. I say this because it looks like a contemporary worship song. She could probably get away with getting the pitch from the notation and humming along for the rhythm. Sep 26, 2017 at 4:29

What you're looking at is an attempt to notate a relaxed style of performance where notes don't come strictly on the beat. It looks complex, is actually very natural. I'm not sure that a rigid approach to counting these rhythms out will be much use to you. It's more a matter of recognising that 'stand' is on the first beat of bar 2, but 'laid back' a bit. Hard to explain, easy to demonstrate. Can you find someone to do so?

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