Questions tagged [j-s-bach]

For questions about the composer Johann Sebastian Bach. Do not use the tag for just his works.

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1answer
49 views

Can you help me analyse some Baroque playing?

im trying to make serious study of Ted Greenes Baroque improvisation lessons on Youtube, and am hoping someone more experienced can tell me the function of a particular two chords; The section of the ...
6
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1answer
878 views

Strange Ornamental Symbol on Bach Piece

This is from the marvelous andante from Bach’s organ trio sonata BWV 528. What does this symbol mean on the stave of the second keyboard? I am assuming it is ornamental. Is it just a strange version ...
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4answers
10k views

Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier Order

I have played a few pairs of pieces from this collection, however it was some time ago. I have the ambitious goal to work my way through the entire collection. It will obviously take me some time to ...
3
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4answers
511 views

Fingering for Bach's Toccata in E-minor BWV914

I am currently learning the Fugue of Bach's "Toccata in E-minor BWV914". My question is if I should play the first bar with the 5th finger or not. Meaning starting with "545 3423 1". I feel more ...
6
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1answer
183 views

Has the Bach Compendium been completed?

The Bach Compendium (BC) is a multi-volume attempt by renowned scholar Christoph Wolff and others to replace the traditional but obsolete BWV numbering system. It is my understanding that the first ...
4
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3answers
391 views

Bach Invention BMW 792 - Fingering Advice

I am currently practicing a Bach Invention (BMW 792). There is a bar I'm not quite sure how to play/finger. I've attached a screenshot of the bar I'm having trouble with. Would very much appreciate ...
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3answers
123 views

Where did JSBach study composing? Was he an autodidact? [duplicate]

We know that Bach comes from a family of musicians. But who was his teacher in composition?. Who did he study with? Or was he self-taught?
6
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4answers
2k views

Theory behind Bach's deviations from the scale

It's very common to see in Bach's work, that he follows a particular scale but then in a special moment, uses a chromatic alteration. What I have observed is that he usually does it when reversing the ...
5
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2answers
1k views

Harmonizing Bourrée in E minor

Out of interest and just to give myself practice in part-writing, I've been trying to harmonize the popular Bach Bourrée in E minor from his lute suite. It only has two voices, so there is a lot of ...
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3answers
165 views

Why do I hear a major key lament bass in Bach's Chaconne in D minor?

I noticed as I listen to Bach's Chaconne in D minor, that not only do I hear a lament bass when Bach is in D minor but also when he is in D major. But why? It isn't like the lament bass is normally ...
16
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2answers
3k views

Why does Brahms stand next to Bach and Beethoven?

I've often heard the expression, "Bach, Beethoven, and Brahms" as sort of a summary of classical music, or something. I feel that I understand why Bach and Beethoven should serve as pillars of ...
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3answers
618 views

Did Bach ever use melodic minor keys in chorales?

For example, E Melodic Minor would have C#, allowing for a ii7-V-I cadence.
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2answers
255 views

Bwv 639 Bach/Busoni note length and symbols

I am currently spending some time with this piece of music and I am a bit confused as to how long I should hold some of the notes and what some of the symbols mean. In blue: Should i repeat/hold the ...
2
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1answer
94 views

What are the “slight changes” Gounod made to Bach's The Well-Tempered Clavier when he wrote Ave Maria?

The Wikipedia page for Ave Maria (Bach/Gounod) says: The piece consists of a melody by the French Romantic composer Charles Gounod that he superimposed over an only very slightly changed version of ...
3
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2answers
212 views

How to realize a figured bass

I am arranging a Bach piece. I know, what the challenge it is to do it. But I have been able to successfully arrange Mozart and later, Beethoven, so I think I'm ready. But here is the challenge I am ...
5
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1answer
150 views

Are there J.S. Bach pieces that do not start with the tonic chord?

I know some simple pieces where the initial phrase starts in the IV chord or the V chord, but I'm wondering if Bach used to do that.
6
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2answers
409 views

Is 2 measures sufficient for a fugue subject?

I know what a fugue is. I also have been reading up on the form of the fugue and how to write in counterpoint. I wrote a canon and I have written a sonatina using sonata form. So theoretically a fugue ...
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3answers
126 views

At what tempo would J.S.Bach play his fughettas?

As the title says, I'd like to know at what tempo should J.S.Bach's fughettas be played. I specifically speak about BWV 704 Fughetta: Lob sei dem allmächtigen Gott, but I believe it's applicable in ...
3
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1answer
94 views

What does the author mean in these examples of chorales & harmony?

This is an example in G major. I am learning about Bach's chorales & how he uses modulation. I came across a page online (choraleguide.com), & in one example given, I couldn't understand what ...
4
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1answer
105 views

Tenor part written higher than the Alto part in SATB

I have read that Bach in his chorales wrote the tenor part high (frequently using ledger lines for this). Another source said that the Tenor part would be written higher than the Alto part - for ...
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3answers
48 views

How can one use theory/harmony in order to learn BWV anh 114?

How can one use theory/harmony in order to learn BWV anh 114? I am only talking about theory/harmony in order to be able to play and memorize this piece.
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1answer
118 views

Modulation or passing through different keys in the following Bach chorale [closed]

This is Bach's chorale R.80. I want to know if the music has modulated to a particular key in certain, or is it only passing through different keys (and hence not a fixed modulation to only one key)?
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2answers
90 views

Chord in Bach's chorale

This is a part of Bach's chorale R.311. I am unsure of the starred chord. It uses a passing note in it as well. According to me, I think this chord is A°/C, with the D as an accented passing note. ...
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4answers
3k views

A♭ major 9th chord in Bach is unexpectedly dissonant/jazzy

Measures 21-24 in Prelude VII from Bach's Well Tempered Clavier I I was looking at the Prelude VII by Bach and noticed that on the measure 23 Bach ended that phrase with a A♭ maj9 chord. I was ...
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4answers
326 views

How can I learn thoroughbass?

I've done some reading and I've discovered that our modern system of music theory (I'm looking at you Roman numeral analysis) is not the same system that most of the great composers, including the "...
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2answers
251 views

In one of Bach's works the score forms a cross on the page [closed]

In one of Bach's works the score forms a cross on the page. I think it's a major choral work. As far as I remember, the crucifixion is being referenced in the words at the same time as the the notes ...
4
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1answer
116 views

was the 12/16 measure usual in the time of Bach?

We met today this work by Bach with this strange time - strange to me as I've never met before this meter. Of course it is possible ... but I ask if someone knows another composition with this meter, ...
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1answer
156 views

Labelling chords in Bach's chorale

The image is a part of Bach's chorale BWV 94.8 or R. 291 (image taken from www.bach-chorales.com). I want to confirm the harmony of the 2 chords marked with a star. Is the chord with a blue star A7/C# ...
11
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2answers
122 views

Notation of triplets in Bach’s *Orgelbüchlein*

In the following piece from J.S. Bach’s Orgelbüchlein, the nearly constant triplet line seems to be incorrect: The time signature is 3/2, but there are 9 eighth-note triplets per measure rather than ...
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3answers
180 views

BWV 1004 - Is there a pause by the end of Ciaccona or is it staccato?

I'm working on a project to set Bach's music on lilypond files (so that people can share and enhance to better match manuscripts). I just uploaded BWV 1004 to the repo but I'm wondering what's the ...
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3answers
229 views

Music theory for Bach's Inventions

I just got a piano and want to start working on Bach's Inventions. I have sort of managed to play 2 and 14 some years ago, but my knowledge of music theory pretty much consists of being able to work ...
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5answers
2k views

Bach's Toccata and Fugue in D minor breaks the “no parallel octaves” rule?

I notice in his BWV 565, more well known as Toccata and Fugue in D minor, what looks like a lot of parallel octaves in the fugue. I have studied counterpoint before and every counterpoint resource I ...
2
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2answers
296 views

Is it true that Bach had no concept of suspended chord?

In an answer to a question in SE I read the sentence with the pretension above. Chord in the Bach d-minor prelude I think this can be easily be counter-proofed by many examples of Bach’s music and ...
12
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5answers
2k views

Chord in the Bach d-minor prelude

I'm playing the prelude in Bach's d-minor suite. My teacher and I were wondering what the third to last chord is. We didn't find that A, E and D form a chord, but do they? Is the D maybe a "queuing" ...
1
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1answer
193 views

When would Bach start an ornament- just before the beat, or right on it? [duplicate]

In his table (see below) , all examples seem to start ON the beat, not before it. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/1e/Bach-ornamentguide.jpg
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0answers
59 views

How would J.S. Bach execute a trill sign that is written over an eighth note?

If Bach's recommendation (as found in his table of ornaments) is to play the first 6 out the possible 8 1/32nd notes for a trill sign written over a quarter note, then should one try to achieve the ...
4
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2answers
223 views

What is this chord in Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 2? [closed]

Can anyone tell me what chord Bach notated in the second half of measure 91 in the score below? I can see that the first chord in this measure is FMaj7, which is the end of a circle of fifths chord ...
15
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1answer
512 views

J.S.Bach's organ tablature notation

Is anyone familiar with some freely available guide explaining in detail how to read Bach's organ tablature notation? Apparently, Bach was very comfortable in using the tablature notation, ...
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3answers
720 views

Should I practice some J.S. Bach for piano technique and where should I start?

I want to know if playing J.S. Bach would improve my overall piano technique. I look for pieces that help me to become better. I usually play romantic composers. I have played pieces such as Chopin'...
4
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2answers
123 views

How to realize the figured bass of the second movement of BWV 1014?

I am planning a performance of the second movement of Bach's violin sonata BWV 1014 in B Minor. The beginning of second mvt, Allegro is shown below. As you can see there are some figured bass below ...
3
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0answers
76 views

Relationship between “Erwäge” aria of St John Passion and final Chorus of St Matthew Passion

The "Erwäge" aria of Bach's St John Passion is harmonically extremely similar to the final Chorus of Bach's St Matthew Passion (to the extent that when listening to the former, I keep waiting for the ...
3
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0answers
181 views

Difference between baroque and classical keyboard concertos

I'm trying to compare a Baroque Harpsichord Concerto with a Classical Piano Concerto. But I'm just wondering in what aspects that the Baroque Concertos influenced the Classical Piano Concerto. I am ...
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2answers
260 views

Boy alto or counter-tenor?

This is a video of Stefan Kahle singing “Erbarme dich” from the Matthew Passion: My question: How old was he when this recording was made? Is he here still ...
4
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2answers
192 views

What does +- mean in piano music?

Attached is a picture of one of my piano students' Bach Inventions (BWV 785). What does the +- mean? I've never seen it used before. A precursory search online revealed nothing. Sometimes a + ...
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2answers
166 views

How does Bach harmonise chromatics?

The top line is soprano and the bottom line is bass. Is there supposed to be some sort of harmonic function used by Bach by the use of C#? The key signature is Bb Major, though this passage could ...
4
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1answer
270 views

Do Bach Chorales in minor keys ever modulate to the dominant major?

I am wondering if any of you are able to help me with this question regarding modulation. An example would be E Minor to B Major. Does Bach ever use this? Thanks, Jack
2
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2answers
106 views

Limits of interpretation in timing in a Bach piece

This is a question about a short part in Bach's Partita for Violin (BWV 1004) as played and interpreted by several different artists/instruments, which can be heard at 19:56 on this Youtube upload. ...
4
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1answer
193 views

Regarding the beginning of Gould's B minor fugue, WTC 1, performance

I've listened to Gould's performance of this piece many times, sometimes following the score, and I've noticed that maybe Gould plays this piece wrong at the beginning. Unfortunately, I am unable to ...
4
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2answers
410 views

Should I use the sustain pedal when playing Bach fugues?

I'm Practicing Bach Prelude & Fugue in D . There is no pedal markings since it from Baroque eras , but i found in Youtube many Concert pianist Performing Fugue with Sustain Pedals. Am working for ...
3
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2answers
205 views

On Bach' fourteen canons

I read from this article that The discovery of the Fourteen Canons (BWV 1087) on the inner side of the back cover of his own copy (hereafter referred to as the ...