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What is purpose of the crochet (quarter note) rest that is shown between treble and bass clef in the fourth measure, and how do I play it?


This answer is coming from my experience as a former chorister but I think it would still apply here...

Think about a tenor and bass singer in a four-piece SATB choir. If the lower singers shared a clef, the bass singer might sing the notes with the staves pointing down, and the tenor would then sing the notes with the staves pointing up, in order to differentiate which notes should be sung by each part. If you think about the bass clef as written in two parts, it is saying that in 3/4 the rhythm for bars 5 & 6 for the two parts is:

[beat in bar]: |     1      |      2     |     3      |
[tenor]:       |   {rest}   |         {minim}         |
[bass]:        |         {minim}         | {crotchet} |

It is a way of singling out melodies or distinct parts without having messy held notes all over the place, and is common in SATB transcriptions and also in fingerstyle guitar transcriptions.


That part is written effectively in three voices. The bass clef has stems up and down. The up stems, the D and E notes, are preceded by the crotchet rests, partly to put the notes into their correct timing, on beats 2 and 3.

When you play the piece, actually there's nothing to do, as you will 'play' the rests by not playing anything until you play the notes with up stems.

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