Questions tagged [notation]

For questions about visual representation of music and its uses. If the question is about a specific type of notation like tablature, that should also be tagged. Questions about how to input specific notation are best served with the engraving tag.

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8
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3answers
572 views

Can a singer sing a song from its notation if he/she has not heard the song before? [duplicate]

Is it possible for a singer to sing a song just by reading its musical notation? A song which he/she has never heard before?
3
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4answers
158 views

How interpret 4 & 3 markings in these 2 bars? (Alkan - Prelude Opus 31 No 8 in A-flat minor)

Looking over this piece and I'm stumped trying to interpret the 4s in bar 29 and the 3s in bar 30. Also bar 30 is perplexing because there are 6 quarter notes. The piece is in 6/8 time. I don't think ...
2
votes
2answers
157 views

What is the duration of chords shown on top of a measure

In the image, there is an A Major over the first measure. Should it be also played over the 2nd, 3rd and 4th measures even though the chord is not written on top? Until the D chord in the 5th measure?
4
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1answer
43 views

Is it ok to use irregular key signatures for neutral scales?

So for 24-TET neutral scales is it correct to use irregular key signatures? or do I need to use a minor with accidentals or something?
10
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1answer
772 views

What are these sixteenth notes with left-right arrows beneath them supposed to mean

Specifically in this picture/piece This is the link to the whole piece, performed on piano with notation
2
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2answers
76 views

How would you notate an extra long note for strings in a way which allows it to be bowed multiple times?

When composing for strings, sometimes I'd like to write a note which is a combination of very loud and very long—something that can't be played on one bow alone. If I write a long note with ties, ...
4
votes
1answer
186 views

Custom rehearsal markings on an arrangement of a piece that already has them

I've arranged a 75 minute symphony for solo piano. This piece is obviously very long, as are its four movements, but it can in fact be relatively well divided into smaller, musically cohesive sub-...
7
votes
5answers
867 views

How do you exactly notate in 31-TET?

So I always wanted to compose a song in 31-TET inspired by a song I heard on musescore some months ago, the thing is that I didnt know how to notate in 31-TET, so obviously i want to learn.
4
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1answer
164 views

What is the best way to write a baritone vocal and piano part?

I am trying to figure out the most sensible way to write my music on a score as I compose and write music. I have little experience with scoring other than learning from sheet music of songs I like to ...
21
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5answers
1k views

Notation - when to use staccato vs rests

I'm arranging a piece of music I wrote for string quartet, and I'm not sure what the most practical way of notating the following rhythm is. I'm self taught and rarely use written music, so I'm not ...
4
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8answers
906 views

Any tips on writing the structure of a song for a band which does not read music?

I am starting to play some pre-written songs with a band. These are written by the vocalist and we are trying to make a demo out of them. We (as a band) are having a hard time trying to remember he ...
58
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3answers
6k views

Found in an 1800s newspaper--what kind of march notation is this?

Does anyone recognize this musical notation? It looks like a bunch of vertical bars. Is it supposed to be read by a machine? It was found in an issue of Scientific American from 1846. I'm guessing ...
5
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4answers
883 views

Precise rule(s) for calling a note sharp or flat in a given scale

Is there a precise rule (or set of rules) by which I can determine if a note should called sharp or flat? Consider the two scales below. In the first C#/Db is C#, and in the second it's Db. By which ...
5
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3answers
364 views

Chords as Roman Numerals: how to represent in-between chords?

In a piece that is in C-major, the chords in Roman numerals would be I for C, ii for dm, iii for em, IV for F, V for G, etc. Now let's say the piece also features a (rare) Eb chord. How would I ...
7
votes
2answers
123 views

A small note AFTER a normal sized note in a chord. How do I play it?

What are these notes called? It doesn't look like a regular appoggiatura notation, the tiny note is placed after the main one. How should I be playing them? Willie "Lion" Smith - ...
4
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2answers
122 views

Note and dotted note on the same line - Lilypond

I have a note here: What do these notes (a quarter note and dotted quarter note on the same line) mean? It's note a, in LilyPond, bottom of the bass clef. How is this coded in LilyPond? Full measure ...
2
votes
1answer
82 views

What are letters in parentheses (no chords)?

I have piano sheet music (~100 measures). At two bars, there's a letter in parentheses added - (a) and (e). Due to the context, I don't think it's chord symbols. My first guess was, it's additional ...
9
votes
3answers
351 views

Meaning of a left bracket at the beginning of a chord

I've come across this notation in the score of Gershwin's second piano prelude: a left bracket at the beginning of a chord. I have also seen it in the score of Rachmaninoff's C-sharp minor prelude, ...
9
votes
2answers
302 views

What is the correct placement of portato marks in relation to phrase marks?

I'm engraving an orchestral score, using Musescore. The following two bars, in the oboe part, don't look "right" in terms of engraving aesthetics: Another example, this time in the flute ...
4
votes
1answer
72 views

How can i add 5 grace notes before a note, when only one grace note can fit in? (GuitarPRO)

Here's a part (measure 3) of "Tango En Skaï" (Roland Dyens) I am trying to write out. You can see there are 5 grace notes before the A, how would I add this in GuitarPRO? Here what it ...
21
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7answers
3k views

Is there a legitimate reason why a C-Clef could ever be used in piano music?

I'm working on a composition that I can't help but to use the C-Clef because it renders neater on paper. This one switched to treble clef twice. But this would be a mess with bass clef and treble clef ...
12
votes
1answer
462 views

What does ( ) = D.S.x mean?

As shown in the second bar of the third complete system (fourth system on the page), I guess it tells me to play like this on first/second time or something. What is the name of notation? I searched ...
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0answers
32 views

Music notes longer than a maxima [duplicate]

I have been studying music since now, and since, I have been wondering if there was a note longer than a maxima. I know a dotted maxima, but what other note is longer than that? That was the most ...
7
votes
1answer
96 views

What is this weird two-notes-in-one-note notation? Scriabin Piano Sonata [duplicate]

I was looking at sheet music for Scriabin's Sonata No.2 in G-sharp Minor, and came across this interesting notation I'd never seen before. The piece is written in three-halves time signature. I was ...
6
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3answers
66 views

How do you set the number of measures per line or page in LilyPond / Frescobaldi when you have a score with multiple instruments?

As I am doing an arranging project, I was wondering how to set the number of measures per line and therefore page as it is a score with a rhythm section and five horns. I have seen these pages (line ...
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2answers
100 views

Why do most lead sheets have no rest notation? [closed]

All of the Mel Bay books, My Gene Autry songbook, and I'm sure many others do not indicate rests for the entire song. At the end of a four bar lyrical line they just place a whole note when it is ...
2
votes
7answers
188 views

How does one know the implied difference in time signatures? [duplicate]

I have always been told that the difference between 3/4 time and 6/8 time is that 6/8 time has two beats per measure and 3/4 has three beats per measure. However, other than people telling me this, I ...
9
votes
1answer
120 views

Defining new commands in Lilypond (for koron symbol)

I am trying to write a simple, minimalist script in LilyPond to create the koron symbol (used in Persian music). I came up with the following solution, with satisfactory results, but my code is not ...
10
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6answers
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, ...
3
votes
1answer
80 views

Transcribing a PDF to Guitar Pro

I am very new to Guitar Pro and music theory/notation in general. I have a pdf with some music that I want to input into Guitar Pro, but it seems like the time signature doesn't match with the notes ...
5
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1answer
1k views

What is this circle?

Can someone tell me what this circle below a measure is?
2
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4answers
394 views

Can someone tell me what this is?

So a couple of things: first is how, at the start of the measure, after the third note, like what beat is it? Is it 16, 8, ( triplet ) 16, 16, 16? And what is the line below the top measure?
3
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1answer
93 views

What is the meaning of an 8 followed by a dotted line? [duplicate]

There is a 8 and a bunch of dots going over the notes. it doesn't look like octave lines, though.
10
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2answers
453 views

When should the last ending bracket(volta) be closed and when should it be open?

I have a question about the last volta(ultima volta, last ending bracket). When should it be closed and when should it be open? I have found a document about that topic, which can be found here on ...
18
votes
1answer
1k views

What is this upside down square fermata?

I was wondering what this marking means, it looks like an upside-down square fermata or an upside-down down bow marking with a dot. I found it in a piece for cello by Nadia Boulanger.
4
votes
1answer
43 views

How do I draw ghost notes in ABC notation?

Fairly straightforward question. I can't seem to find it in the standard or the docs. Perhaps it's just a matter of terminology. Basically, what I'm looking for is this: Or, more precisely, the ghost ...
6
votes
1answer
191 views

What is the Root/Quality chord symbol for this note cluster?

I am just starting to learn the music for Leigh Harline's song : "When You Wish Upon A Star" In measure 5 the LH notes are C, D, and E and the RH notes are G♭, A♭, B♭ and C. The beginning ...
6
votes
1answer
127 views

What do (P5) and (P6) mean? (Guitar)

Nocturne (Noturno) Op.9, No. 2 by Chopin. Tarrega's version, revised by Edson Lopes. In bars 18 and 19. P(5) and P(6) are written below the music. They are repeated throughout the piece with the same ...
9
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4answers
929 views

How should I read this tab?

What does this mean, is it an hammer-on? Is it a pull-off? What is it?
28
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5answers
4k views

How do I know when the next note starts in sheet music?

I can't understand the note duration notation very well. In the image below, the highlighted A in the second measure seems to start half a beat between the first and the second beat. But shouldn't we ...
4
votes
2answers
67 views

How should tuning systems / temperaments be notated in modern scores?

Similar to this question: How were tuning/temperaments indicated on scores (if they ever were)? In modern musical notation how should the use of something other than equal temperament be notated? See ...
5
votes
2answers
804 views

What is the meaning of “M. M.” in this tempo mark?

The music is Shostakovich's 7th symphony, the orchestral score; sadly not publicly available as it's under copyright but there are a few versions floating about online. At rehearsal mark 141 the tempo ...
6
votes
2answers
478 views

How to notate multiple keyboard parts for the same player in a rock song?

I'm working on a transcription of a rock song with three parts that would be played on keyboard: piano, organ, and strings. One keyboardist would play all of these parts on multiple keyboards. In some ...
4
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3answers
230 views

Percussion duration notation issue

As I understand it: For most percussion instruments "notes" don't really have durations in the same sense as other instruments. Percussion instruments are struck, and thus usually sound ...
6
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2answers
102 views

Sudden note end notation

I've been studying musical notation for some time now and I decided to take a shot at writing my own piece. It's going pretty smooth, but I have a question to make sure I follow common practices and ...
6
votes
3answers
320 views

Does the chord-symbol spelling of a polychord have musical meaning?

The chord C Eb G Bb D F A would typically be notated Cm13. However, it makes a convenient example for this question. Suppose I want to write that same Cm13 chord as a polychord. I have two choices: ...
1
vote
3answers
128 views

When using Functional Chord symbols, how can we distinguish between a Dominant 7th chord and a Major 7th chord? [duplicate]

In the key of F major (for example), we can have the chords C7 and Cmaj7. C7 = C-E-G-Bb and Cmaj7 = C-E-G-B Using Functional Chord symbols, the basic tonic chord is "I", and the basic ...
1
vote
1answer
94 views

note with stem above and below [duplicate]

What is the meaning of the following type of notation? All I know regarding the stem location is the common rule of going down below the third line and up otherwise, but I'm not familiar with the one ...
4
votes
2answers
142 views

Hand duplication in music notation

I'm writing a montuno two piano ensemble and primo has its melody in the right hand completely duplicated by the left, an octave lower. How could this be abbreviated in the score? I can't find any ...
3
votes
2answers
145 views

Drum chart standards

I'm currently notating a drum chart in Sibelius. The song is "Best to You" by Blood Orange. It's an R&B/Electropop/Afrobeat song. I am not a drummer, and I have only just figured out ...

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