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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1answer
10 views

How should I notate an irregular key signature?

I want to have a key signature that has only the flats of Bb & Gb (I’m working with a Bb mode)
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1answer
323 views

Is it a mistake to write a “6” (sextuplet notation) over a grouping of three notes?

Like many guitarists I'm not great at reading traditional music notation. I just came across the following bar, and I'm confused: (If anyone cares, this is from the song Sequoia Throne by Protest the ...
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1answer
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which two of the elements of music are clearly given when playing from staff notation? [closed]

I have tried every website I can think of and this is my last hope. I need to know 'which two of the elements of music are clearly given when playing from staff notation' It is for my homework and i ...
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1answer
36 views

Confusing Bar (Multiple Voices)

I just started learning about composing with multiple voices on the same staff (using piano) and I am quite certain that I understand the basics of how that works, however, I came across this bar in a ...
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3answers
45 views

Ties - is there a distinction between these two notes?

How would you play this? I think I generally understand how ties work but I'm a bit confused by the marked articulation. Would you hear a distinction between the two notes?
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1answer
72 views

What does this number 3 next to the note mean?

This is a picture from my sheet for Chopin's Nocturne in F minor, Op. 55, No. 1. I don't understand what the number next to this note means.
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1answer
53 views

Notation for Equal Division of an Interval?

In an interview, Jacob Collier talks about microtonal voice leading (dividing a minor 3rd into 4 equal parts): June Lee notates this with a horizontal bracket and a ...
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1answer
39 views

What does tying an acciaccatura to the principal note with a slur imply?

Note that this is not a duplicate of this question, which asks for a grace note tied to the same principal note. This is more generally about tying grace notes (specifically acciaccaturas) to any ...
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2answers
61 views

Am I notating this 2 layered staccato right?

How should I notate syncopations happening at the level of the sixteenth note? I'm composing a piece and in the piano accompaniment, there are 2 layers of staccato, one being on beat eighth notes so 1 ...
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3answers
127 views

Should pickup measures have measure numbers?

I’m in common time (4/4) and I have a pickup measure with only a quarter note in it. Should it have a measure number?
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2answers
46 views

How to write a beat in a bar with 16th and 32nd notes?

I am trying to find the best way to write this bongo rhythm. I know bongo is usually written on two lines only, or even on one line sometimes, but my bongos are tuned to G so I just use normal music ...
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2answers
147 views

Harmonic intervals using identical notes [duplicate]

Could someone please tell me how the left hand for the final bar of this piece is played. The time signature is 3/4 and the piece begins with an anacrusis.
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1answer
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LiliyPond: Is it possible to create an instrument switch that goes from a Staff to a DrumStaff and back?

I'm typesetting a piece where a singer alternates between singing and playing maracas while never doing both at the same time. I would like to use a single stave and make an instrument switch using \...
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6answers
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Can one use a whole note to span a full 5/4 measure?

I'm transcribing a piano passage in 5/4 time here, and I think I'm doing well so far. I find myself mildly annoyed by having to notate the chords that span the whole measure (first in right hand, ...
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3answers
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Thoughts on Tuplets vs. Subdivision?

This was a point of interest brought up in the comments to my answer on Help with analyzing sus and add chords in this progression. In that question, the sheet music has a measure of 4/4 time written ...
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0answers
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notation: stems in different direction [duplicate]

Should I play G on the 🎼 twice or hold it ? I’m confused how to play the right hand. Help me. Thanks 🙏
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1answer
1k views

Notation: What Octave is This?

In a piece I am learning the sheet music suggests I should play in one octave, when the piece is performed in a different octave. I need help figuring out the notation. Consider the following piece ...
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6answers
1k views

What is the symbol for “is the enharmonic equivalent of”?

Say I want to write a statement like this, but in a more compact form: E♯ is the enharmonic equivalent of F♮ What symbol could I use instead of "is the enharmonic equivalent of"? It ...
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1answer
1k views

What does it mean when there is a slash through the stem of a note? [duplicate]

So, I am a middle school student and have been playing piano for 5 years now, but never have I ever come across something like this. I am learning how to play "River Flows In You" by Yiruma and while ...
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1answer
77 views

Time signatures [closed]

Can someone explain to me how to mix time signatures as a songwriter? iv'e read several articles suggesting to switch vary the time signature of a piece to give different sections contrast and ...
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2answers
65 views

B flat 6 arpeggio notation

I am trying to digitize an old piece of music, and I'm confused by a notation that says B♭ arpeggio (photo below). I'm used to apreggios being a wavy line next to the notes, so I'm not sure which note(...
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3answers
60 views

Notation for bowed instrument to play chord from high to low

On classical instruments like violin and cello a chord notated with three or more simultaneous notes is assumed to be bowed starting on the lowest string to the highest. However, at times chords ...
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1answer
51 views

Two questions regarding notation in Bach WTC Fugue in C major

Please can someone tell me what the a 4. circled in the image below means? Secondly, I am scratching my head over the following rest. My assumption is that if the treble stave is being played (or ...
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3answers
89 views

What to call groups of measures?

I'm making a music game. It's a dancing game to electronic music at 120ish bpm in 4/4 time (I'm assuming). I have beats, and 4 of those make a measure. But dancers yell that 5,6,7,8 before dancing, ...
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1answer
68 views

What is the meaning of S.H. in a harp score?

On this page of Marcel Tournier's Vers la source dans le bois, one sees S.H. in the 8th bar. What does this mean?
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1answer
44 views

Reading strumming patterns for sheet music

Ok I am not sure how close or far off I am here and IF I am explaining this correctly... When reading sheet music is strumming a down stroke a single note line, and a UD strum when you see both notes ...
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2answers
156 views

What does the “S” mean?

At first I thought "S" was similar to a glissando, but then there's a spot with an S and a glissando. What does the S mean?
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2answers
256 views

Series of semiquavers vs staccato quavers

What is the difference between (a) a series of semiquavers with a semiquaver rest in between every pair, and (b) a series of staccato quavers where sound/effect is concerned?
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2answers
1k views

What is this note? [duplicate]

This is in key of F# major or D# minor, there is a D# in this key, but the D# in this picture has a double sharp sign beside it, so is it a D#(##) (which is an F)?
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2answers
35 views

How to add rests on top of notes and finger roll notations in Guitar Pro 7?

Please help, i'm really lost and still learning the basics.
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2answers
1k views

How to interpret this two voice timing? It looks like there are only three notes in 4/4 measure

I am trying to play a song with two voices and something is not adding up in the time signature. In the image below: in the first measure, I see a half note rest (circled in red in the upper left) ...
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1answer
41 views

Write tenor and alto sax Score along piano

please ! someone help me understand this. I am writing a score for piano and tenor sax in C Major, simple. Now, how do you write the music on the sheet for both instruments In this example, is the ...
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2answers
487 views

What does this dot and bemol mean?

I am really cofused. Thank you for your answer by now.
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1answer
192 views

Notation for depressing piano keys without sounding them

This question was inspired by playing around on the piano. I held some keys gently in one hand without letting them sound: sometimes one, sometimes two a fifth apart, and sometimes a major triad. I ...
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3answers
327 views

Should the “a” in “poco a/à poco” be accented in the original Italian?

This one’s mostly for language nerds: I usually see “poco a poco” spelled without an accent on the “a”, but now and again I see it spelled “poco à poco” – it’s written that way in some scores, and ...
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1answer
91 views

What is this type of ornament, and how should it be played?

An appoggiatura is a grace note type ornament, that precedes main note it slurred to. When it is played, it takes some time from the main note. An appoggiatura looks like this : and should be ...
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1answer
2k views

Why was the common time symbol created?

Was it just created to make an easier alternative to writing 4/4?
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3answers
4k views

Small Notes in Sheet Music — NOT grace notes — written AFTER the main note and beamed with it

Can anyone explain the significance of the small notes in the following music? An otherwise identical arrangement in a different "easy" song book shows only quarter notes without the smaller notes. ...
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2answers
70 views

Correct abbreviation for “niente”?

“Niente” (“nothing”) is used to start a crescendo from silence or end a diminuendo with silence. Some scores spell it out fully (from “Titanic Suite”, published by Hal Leonard): Other scores ...
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5answers
116 views

Is there a 2/3 time signature, or “cut-time” equivalent for 3/4?

Here's a passage written in 3/4 time: (The composer uses an ambiguous shorthand after the first measure, but assume that where he wrote dotted-half tremolos he intended for the passage to be played 3 ...
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1answer
75 views

What is the internal harmony of this Liszt melody?

This is an exercise taken out of Walter Piston’s Harmony (4th ed). Let me know how you would change my progression. Thanks!
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2answers
67 views

Scoring for the Trumpet Part of a Larger Work

I want to score parts to for two trumpets, but have only a little experience in music notation. Fairly simple parts I can edit in Cubase Score editor, but how do I indicate different places where the ...
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1answer
331 views

staff, grand staff, staves? what does it mean?

I've understood that staff is one system of 5 note lines and the term for both systems (l. & r. h. keyboard) is grand staff, is this correct? ... while in a full score would be several staves?
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1answer
75 views

lilypond bug with octave change/whole note

I'm using lilypond with Frescobaldi to notate a piano score. My time signature is 4/4, and I just did a clef change, changing the bottom clef to treble for a few notes. I returned the clef to bass, ...
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1answer
62 views

How do you write ghost notes in stop time?

From my example I have a rhythmic slashes notation (stop time), how do I change some of them to a ghost notation? I know in regular notation you do an X, I think in slashes you do brackets, is that a ...
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2answers
75 views

Downbeat moves to beat 4 for a bass clef solo, should I insert a 3/4 bar or just keep it in 4/4?

So, I ran into a bit of an issue related to time signatures. In this orchestral piece I am working on(still writing down the piano solo version but I am thinking about the orchestration every step of ...
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3answers
131 views

Minor Key (and other key?) Roman Numeral Analysis

What is the general standard in RNA for the natural minor key, as well as keys that are neither major nor nat. minor? So in studying RNA, I found the major key pretty straightforward: I ii iii IV V ...
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3answers
85 views

Roman Numerals and VII#

The following is an excerpt from this Wikipedia article: [The Lydian cadence] is so-called because it evokes the Lydian mode based on its final chord as a tonic, and may be construed with the ...
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1answer
112 views

What do the written instructions in Satie's 1ère Gnossienne mean?

I'm a beginner or early intermediate piano player, and picked up the score to Erik Satie's Gnossienne no. 1 from IMSLP. It contains some textual comments in French, which I presume are from the ...
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7answers
3k views

Beginner question about how to understand chords in musical notation

I have a question about how to interpret musical notation involving chords. In the first picture, I can see D minor chord but do I play it with right or left hand? And what notes do I play with the ...

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