Questions tagged [meter]

The rhythmic organization of music into regularly recurring measures dictated by a time signature.

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Notation question: Adding half a beat to a bar?

I've run into a quirk in a piece I'm writing, something I've never had to deal with—any ideas?: The piece is in 4/4. One bar has an extra half-beat (with 18 sixteenth notes rather than 16). 4.5/4 = 9/...
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8 votes
4 answers
891 views

Gnossiennes and Free Time

I'm looking at Erik Satie's Gnossiennes, specifically Nos. 1-3, but for simplicity let's just consider Gnossienne No. 1. Most editions (see IMSLP) are engraved without a time signature nor with any ...
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7 votes
3 answers
587 views

Eliminate ties via additive meter?

I'm making a piano arrange of 裸の勇者. Many times, I put ties in the middle of the bar: These ties are noisy; I'd like to remove them. But I placed them there in the belief that they're required for ...
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8 votes
5 answers
703 views

How are beats divided in simple/compound/odd meters supposed to sound different?

This is a question somewhat difficult to explain, in music theory it is said that simple, compound and odd meters subdivide into beats that are grouped into 2s for simple, 3s for compound and 2s 3s or ...
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3 votes
1 answer
98 views

Is there such a thing as back beat hypermeter?

The idea of hypermeter is that there is a metrical structure at the level of the measure. In other words, instead of counting 1–2–3–4 as beats in a measure of 4/4, we can actually count "1" ...
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3 votes
3 answers
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How can you tell the difference between 3/4 time and 6/8 time? Or 3/2 time and 6/4 time?

When given any sheet of music without the time signature and you are given the choice of 3/4 and 6/8, how would you know which one would be the appropriate choice?
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0 votes
1 answer
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The Actual Purpose of the Bottom Number in Time Signatures [duplicate]

I understand that 4/4 time signatures mean that there are 4 beats per measure, and that those beats are quarter notes. However this is the point where I get confused as I’ve listened to and have seen ...
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-3 votes
2 answers
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Add bar lines with the beats below each measure

Hello, I need to complete these exercises. I need to add bar lines and label the beats.
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7 votes
2 answers
1k views

What time signature should I use with partial triplets?

Say I have six groupings of eighth note triplets, 18 total notes. I want to play 16 eighth note triplets, leave off the last two notes ("partial triplet"), and repeat the section. To my ear, ...
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9 votes
2 answers
432 views

Orchestral score has inconsistent time signature changes and note lengths

I'm learning music notation and as both a fan and enthusiast I bought the Star Trek: The Motion Picture film score from Omni Music Publishing. Unfortunately, I've encountered a confusing bit of ...
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0 votes
2 answers
110 views

Adding missing rests to 9/8 meter

I am trying to figure out the missing rests in the time signature. I think for the first bar there will be a dotted quarter rest. I am not too sure about the next one. Any hints or directions ...
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What's the best personal practice technique to improve performance of rapid meter changes?

In UK Brass Band music it's very common to have rapid meter changes in close succession, e.g. one bar of 5/8 then one of 7/8, then 2/4 then 9/8 and so on. When we're rehearsing these in person, the ...
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3 votes
4 answers
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How do lyrics differ from prose?

Lyrics don't require meter as does poetry so what separates lyrics from prose? Reputation? Rhyme? Does meter even matter? Example: lines 2 and 4 vary quite a bit in length
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4 votes
2 answers
137 views

How does one indicate time for a melody without a consistent meter? [closed]

I wrote a melody. I have trouble figuring out which time signature it belongs to. I tried different rhythms, this rhythm sounds the best. It is safe to say, this is the rhythm of this melody. But this ...
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10 votes
2 answers
490 views

What is it called when a sequence of notes lands on a different beat every measure?

Meshuggah does this a lot, where they will have say a 5 note sequence in 4/4. It will look like this if each note is given a number: 1234|5123|4512|3451|2345|1..
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8 votes
3 answers
404 views

Fracanapa tango meter and how to write it

This is the first measure of the accordion part of Fracanapa, a Tango from Astor Piazzolla (you can easily find it on YouTube). In the first 19 measures the meter of the accordion part is 3,3,2 and ...
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12 votes
6 answers
1k views

How does the bottom number of the time signature affect counting?

I have learnt all the complicated mathematics subjects in my school, but that bottom number, I can't understand. Ok, the notation will be different, and it will say what kind of note gets the beat, ...
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1 vote
0 answers
61 views

Can someone tell me the meter of the verses, chorus, and bridge in "A Night in Tunisia" by Ella Fitzgerald [closed]

I have a project for my music class where I need to analyze a song and I am having trouble figuring out the meter of each section. Could someone help me out?
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2 votes
1 answer
86 views

Is there a name for arranging a triple-meter piece into quadruple meter?

Is there a technical name for when a piece originally in triple meter is arranged into quadruple meter? (Usually this is done by doubling the first a beat.) For example, the quadruple-meter ...
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14 votes
3 answers
733 views

Just how specific is the term "hemiola"?

In Name and structure of staggering beat in Ramones' “Merry Christmas,” the rhythm in the second measure of the following example is described as a hemiola: But to me, these are just triplets and not ...
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7 votes
4 answers
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Is 7/8 an example of measured rhythm or metrical rhythm?

Wikipedia provides the following definitions: Metrical rhythm, by far the most common class in Western music, is where each time value is a multiple or fraction of a fixed unit (beat, see paragraph ...
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2 votes
1 answer
75 views

Can irrational meters use any positive integer or only certain integers?

As I understand it, an irrational meter is when the bottom number on the time signature is not a power of 2, i.e. 1,2,4,8,16, 32, etc. An example irrational meter that I've seen is 5/24. According to ...
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8 votes
3 answers
595 views

Can beats in fractional meters be grouped? If so, are the groups integers or not?

I learned recently that time signatures can be fractional in the top number. For example, 2.5/4 meter. For normal time signatures, they have integer grouping structures. For example, 4/4 meter has a ...
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3 votes
2 answers
130 views

Can 15/8 meter be regrouped into 3 beats each with 5 eighth notes? If so, what kind of meter would this be?

Suppose I was in 15/8 meter, so compound quintuple meter. This would be a grouping of 3-3-3-3-3. But suppose instead I wanted to group my meter 5-5-5. This would not be simple or compound. I was under ...
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4 votes
1 answer
100 views

Is there any evidence that humans perceive meter using a metrical grid?

I have been perusing Ray Jackendoff and Fred Lerdahl's book A Generative Theory of Tonal Music. In this book, they propose some rules for meter and one of their assumptions is basically that musical ...
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2 votes
1 answer
114 views

Are the correct Takadimi syllables notated in these exercises?

Did I put write in the correct takadimi syllables for these two exercises? Some of the syllables I wasn’t sure. Exercise 350: And this one number 371:
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4 votes
2 answers
194 views

Counting 2+3 and 4 over a beat of 4 at the same time

I'm rearranging a piece of mine from 12/8 to 4/4. This works pretty fine for the harmony since those were arpeggiated chords, 4 groups of 3. But I notice the melody is rather complicated to transfer ...
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4 votes
2 answers
988 views

Why does "Modern Man" from "The Suburbs (2010)" have missing beats?

I used to feel "Modern Man" from "The Suburbs (2010)" by Arcade Fire had an interesting "beat skip effect". But now when I really count the beat, there are indeed missing ...
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2 votes
3 answers
179 views

Rewriting in Compound Meter

I am confused on how to rewrite a piece in compound meter. Here are a few examples I have which I need to change to compound meter. I think I need to just compound 2 measures together?
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1 vote
1 answer
149 views

3:2 polymeter in a single 6/4 time signature, which accent pattern would be which meter?

I've noticed that 6 allows me to have a 3:2 polymeter in a single time signature. I've thought of perhaps doing it for the Saturn movement of my Planets Suite, where some instruments have a 3/4 ...
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8 votes
2 answers
921 views

How to write a pickup measure with 5/16 duration in Lilypond?

I'm trying to write sheet music for a piece with a pickup measure of 5 sixteenth notes. Lilypond has the \partial command for this, but it only accepts a single duration. That duration may be dotted, ...
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0 votes
3 answers
319 views

What meter is it when the accented beat is the fourth beat out of six? (one-two-three-FOUR-five-six)

In this song when the drum comes in, the accented pulse is the 4th beat out of 6 in a measure. 6/8 has the accented beats on the 1st and 4th beat, but there is no accent on the 1st beat in this song. ...
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0 votes
1 answer
119 views

What's the time signature for "Son of Flynn" and "Recognizer" in the TRON: Legacy Soundtrack by Daft Punk? [closed]

What's the time signature for "Son of Flynn" and "Recognizer" in the TRON: Legacy Soundtrack by Daft Punk? It seems to me that "Son of Flynn" is clearly in a mixed meter: ...
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4 votes
3 answers
749 views

Rhythmic/Metric Stress Patterns

The attached images are a page from Jack Perricone's Melody in Songwriting. I am familiar with the concept of stress patterns in music, but, honestly, have no idea what the hell he's on about here. ...
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1 vote
2 answers
264 views

Problem with Tempo in the Adagio from Violin Sonata No.1 in G minor, BWV 1001 from Bach

I'm starting to studying the Adagio from Violin Sonata No.1 in G minor, BWV 1001. Normally I have some rhythm problems, and in this case I don't feel the pulse, my teacher has told me to study with 16 ...
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6 votes
3 answers
457 views

What is the name of this notation in this example by Couperin?

Consider following excerpt from the beginning of the 2nd leçon of Couperin's Leçon des ténèbres pour le mercredi saint: As you see, it uses a rather strange notation where, for instance, a bar of 3/2 ...
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3 votes
1 answer
211 views

Why do notes not add up to the bar in this example by Couperin?

Consider following excerpt from the beginning of Couperin's Leçon des ténèbres pour le mercredi saint: I noticed that the note values don't always add up in a bar. Cases (indicated in the figure): ...
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  • 1,213
-1 votes
3 answers
228 views

How could you notate a measure where you have "cut-off" triplets? [closed]

So, let's say you have a measure of 3/4. Like the following: Then you have a triplet in the next measure, like this: How would I "cut off" the last quarter rest from that triplet? I was ...
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5 votes
3 answers
275 views

Fractional phrase length in Chopin's Nocturne Op. 62 No. 1

The main subject in Chopin's Nocturne Op. 9 No. 1 consists of two phrases that each begin with "B A# G# F# D#". However, they are not aligned relative to the barline, because it seems that ...
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1 vote
2 answers
63 views

How can I improve the agogic qualities of my midi playback?

In my quest for ever more realistic midi modelling, I keep coming up against questions and issues relating to the subtle rhythmic and tempo changes involved in good musical phrasing. After quite a ...
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1 vote
1 answer
213 views

Making a lead sheet to practise transcription - have a few queries

I'm fairly new to music and have been transcribing melodies in the name of ear training and becoming more fluent with standard notation. I'm presently creating a lead sheet for this song: ...
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3 votes
6 answers
453 views

Understanding Rhythm with Time Signatures

Trying to follow the rules, yes I am trying to learn my instrument, watching YouTube videos, and trying to learn from looking at sheet music... It seems I "learn" about something it feels like it ...
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4 votes
2 answers
285 views

Stressing the third beat more than the first in 4/4: is it syncopation?

The definitions of syncopation I've come across generally talk about stressing the offbeat (see, for example, Wikipedia) where "offbeat" sometimes refers to placing the accent in between beats (on the ...
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31 votes
8 answers
4k views

Aldous Huxley and 5/4 Meter in Music Predating "Take 5"

Background: "Take 5" by Paul Desmond (and famously recorded by the Dave Brubeck Quartet) is one of the more famous jazz standards out there, and one thing any analyst would point out ...
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0 votes
2 answers
2k views

How to understand the meter and pulse of lyrics in songwriting?

I've been learning many different concepts as a beginning songwriter and have been working on applying them in my work. However, I can't seem to full understand how to control lyric meter and lyric ...
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1 vote
4 answers
160 views

Did the music of the common practice period always end with a full measure?

If there are pieces which end with an incomplete measure, then what would be some examples? And is there a term for an incomplete measure at the end? Something that would be the opposite of anacrusis.
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  • 529
2 votes
3 answers
295 views

What besides a fast tempo is causing this Measure - Beat equivalence?

I have noticed something with the scherzo from Beethoven's Ninth and particularly the beat. If I just listen to the scherzo and try to feel the beat, I feel an Allegro, say around 130 BPM at the ...
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  • 6,140
8 votes
4 answers
717 views

Metric Modulation: Length of 'swing' notes

I just exported a Piano score from Sibelius with a swing feel: I wanted to edit the MIDI in my DAW and noticed, that the notes actually weren't in a triplet duration. The second note was always off ...
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6 votes
5 answers
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Is 5/4 simple or compound?

I have seen 3 major ways of subdividing the quarter notes in 5/4. 1 is treating it as a simple meter and 2 others treat it as an irregular compound(or technically speaking, complex) meter. I have seen ...
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  • 6,140
11 votes
7 answers
6k views

Why is 3/4 a simple meter while 6/8 is a compound meter?

These two meters sound very much alike to me and they can often be used interchangeably. For example: it's a trivial thing to change the meter of "An der schönen blaue Donau" from 3/4 to 6/8. ...
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