The timing is 4/4, so first the E-B-G chord is held for 1+1/2 beats, then the tied EBG chord is held for a combined 1 beat, I think, but then what does the little squiggle in front of the fourth lower G note mean? My best guess is it’s a F sixteenth note so you hold it for 1/4 beat, and the third EBG chord is also made of sixteenth notes, but honestly I’m not sure.enter image description here

  • Hi Roy. It's an acciaccatura: a 'crushed' note. It's brushed on your way to the G. So you play it a fraction ahead of the G and it lasts NO TIME! You're right about the lengths of the notes up till then. Then your 4th and 5th fingers play the Db/Eb and hold them for a beat and a half while your thumb and second finger play the crushed note, and the G, F, Eb, all three of which are eighth notes. – Old Brixtonian May 2 at 20:08
  • Thank you for your help! – Rory May 2 at 21:19
  • You're welcome Rory. Sorry I got your name wrong! – Old Brixtonian May 2 at 21:59

Ah, the counting of this measure is easier than you think. That small note is just a grace note. A grace note is a note that is played very fast right before the next note. For example, this

enter image description here

is in reality just this:

enter image description here

So, to address you counting issue, let us count the eighth notes as 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + in 4/4 time. So we can count your music like this:

enter image description here

I hope that helps! Let me know if you need any extra clarification

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  • No, that’s more than sufficient. Thank you for your help! – Rory May 2 at 21:18
  • No problem! Any time – cbracketdash May 2 at 21:29

That's a grace note. The slash indicates that it's acciaccatura so it's pretty much as brief as you can make it with the note borrowing from the duration of the G that follows it.


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  • Thank you for answering my question so fast! – Rory May 2 at 21:17

I'd start by not even playing that acciaccatura - a grace note which has no real time value of its own. So the count for the main notes would be 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &.

When the timing is good, think about the acciaccatura as a small mistake, just as you were supposed to play the & after beat 3. Thumb on the F♯ for a brief moment, sliding onto the G as you play the D♭ and E♭ maybe with ring and pinky (fingers 4 and 5).

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