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Questions tagged [notation]

For questions about understanding notation and the use of it. 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.

4
votes
3answers
92 views

Why is there two notes in a row with more beats than the measure?

I'm relatively new to the piano and learning Pure Imagination. Here a part from early into the piece: In the 4th bar, there are 2 Ab's in a row and I'm not sure what I'm supposed to do at this point -...
2
votes
1answer
33 views

When was todays music notation standard of the grand staff first adapted into common practice? Some time in the 17th century?

When did the treble and bass clefs used together become common practice for music notation?
8
votes
10answers
909 views

Does the ability of reading and writing music on staff help with learning music fundamentals?

As I see it, notation on sheet music is a tool for translating musical ideas into something that can be read/interpreted by others and played back, given they understand the same set of rules. I ...
7
votes
1answer
68 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
68 views

Is there terminology to distinguish arpeggio as embellishment versus 'broken chord' figuration? [duplicate]

Embellishment... ...versus broken chord figuration... In written or spoken language the ambiguity is frustrating. EDIT Broken chord is an unambiguous term. Arpeggio is the ambiguous term. When ...
0
votes
4answers
97 views

Chord Recognition Training

I'm an amateur piano player trying to progress toward more difficult material and it seems what is slowing me down the most is identifying what chord I'm looking at on the sheet music, especially when ...
0
votes
2answers
58 views

Indication of general usage of piano pedal

Traditionally, "P" and "*" are used to indicate the use of sustain pedal for the piano, and the release of it, respectively. However, in composing my own piece, I often want to indicate the player ...
3
votes
1answer
48 views

Why did Scriabin notate the bass clef in Op 11 no 15?

Why didn't he just notate it with treble clef from the start?
3
votes
2answers
122 views

Strange type of 'grace note'?

I am currently working on transcribing an old SATB score (circa 1920) and I came across a type of note for which I have no name. It is the same size as a grace note, but it has a full note value, is ...
2
votes
3answers
197 views

Does it exist some kind of “1-bit” / “binary” / “one note only” musical notation?

Disclaimer: I'm a programmer and I know nothing about music. I connected a small electronic component to my computer, and I'm able to control it using a software I developed. This electronic ...
6
votes
2answers
867 views

Why are these quavers beamed this way?

I don't know why the quavers in the bass are beamed across barlines the way they are. Does it signify phrasing or is there another reason for it?
-2
votes
2answers
76 views

What elementary notation principles are there to provide a “PRE-NOTATION” state of a musical idea? [closed]

How can we help someone who doesn't know reading sheet music to design his own ideas or to interpret a musical score? I call this graphic design (something of a enhanced neumes of the gregorian ...
2
votes
4answers
378 views

Notation to return from piano or forte to regular intensity

With ppp, pp, p, mp, mf, f, ff, fff, sfz one denotes the transition from 'regular' intensity to pianississimo, pianissimo, etc. If I understand correctly placing one of those indicates playing with ...
1
vote
1answer
84 views

Are grace notes ever notated with notes of exact duration?

I’m learning a new piece of music that has a couple of Grace notes in it which has led me to wonder if it had a unique use or were there other ways of writing the piece using, for example, a one ...
1
vote
1answer
60 views

Half note and quarter notes that use the same stem?

Why is there a half note and quarter notes that use the same stem? How to play it on a violin? and What's it called? Thank you.
2
votes
3answers
182 views

“D.S., D.S. Al Coda, To Coda” Confusion

I'm having a difficult time grasping "D.S., D.S. Al Coda, To Coda" based on the online explanations I've come across. Below is the specific example that I'm attempting to play. Does the Dal Segno ...
3
votes
1answer
69 views

How to disable or limit compression of over-full pages in Lilypond?

Sometimes lilypond tries to use less pages for more music, which is not always wanted. This can be easily fixed by manually adding \pageBreak , but sometimes an automatic solution is needed. When ...
3
votes
1answer
76 views

Sibelius is playing the acciaccatura differently

I'm writing a piece in swing feel. When I use the grace note, Sibelius plays it differently than how I think it should sound but when I notate the same thing using a dotted 32nd, it plays the same ...
4
votes
2answers
120 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
75 views

How to make position/barre markers in lilypond?

I've recently started experimenting with LilyPond (Version 2.18.2 in case it matters). I've been fairly successful in creating basic scores, but I cannot figure how to properly make position/barre ...
3
votes
2answers
74 views

What do these extra strokes above and below the repeat signs mean?

The image below is taken from Haydn's 94th symphony, as published by Breitkopf und Härtel in 1855, from IMSLP page Symphony No.94 in G major, Hob.I:94 (Haydn, Joseph). My question: What do the double ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

Two whole notes next to each other in a bar? [duplicate]

How do you play two whole notes next two each other? They're not stacked on top of each other but rather one is slightly right of the first. It's in 4 4 time and so that means 1 whole note should ...
2
votes
2answers
202 views

Clefs used for pitched percussion

I know that unpitched percussion instruments use the percussion/neutral clef. However, I was wondering what clefs are used for pitched percussion instruments. Are treble, tenor, alto and bass clef all ...
3
votes
1answer
50 views

When and how to use finger and position markings?

I've been making my first attempts at writing some pieces for solo guitar, and I'm wondering how best to make use of finger and position markings when putting together a final score. I've looked over ...
15
votes
1answer
960 views

What do these square notes mean (in the left hand)?

What are this notes about? I had to learn this piece in 8-27-1963 in my first year at the music conservatory in Bern. The notes look like square notation, but the music was written in 20th. century....
16
votes
3answers
949 views

Reasoning for redundant “natural” (but not courtesy accidental)

I understand why you'd add courtesy accidentals, but I was browsing through some old sheet music lying around here and came across this, and can't seem to come up with a reason for this natural in bar ...
1
vote
0answers
51 views

What do these dotted half notes mean? [duplicate]

I've recently started playing the piano and I've been curious about a music piece. This is the only thing i haven't been able to figure out why it's there. Would appreciate some help, thanks!
4
votes
4answers
371 views

Why do we start from the bottom note when counting intervals?

Say if I play G to C descending, my intuition tells me to start from the note that came first. But I've been told that's not correct. You start from the bass note and count up no matter what.
3
votes
1answer
52 views

Eighth notes beamed over quarter note notation guitar part

Please could someone clarify what the highlighted note combination means? The source is the song "Paint it Black" sheet music for guitar and piano. Thanks
3
votes
1answer
53 views

How to suggest on a score that the dynamics are meant to be inconsistent?

I'm trying to get a drone-like sound on the bass that relies on relatively inconsistent dynamics for effect. I added "a resilient and ominous drone" to suggest that it's meant to appear to reduce ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Why accidentals are not additive?

This question asks if the accidentals are not "additive" (i.e. placing a sharp on F where the key signature already contains an F sharp would result in an F double sharp, and placing a flat on F in ...
1
vote
1answer
81 views

What does C.M. mean above a measure?

I'm playing Linus and Lucy and when it changes after the intro and the repeated chords to a different feel and rhythm, there is a C.M. above that measure where it changes. What does this mean?
1
vote
2answers
61 views

How to write a Swing Rhythm using tabs?

I'm tabbing out a song on bass, which consists partly of a swing rhythm. I'm wondering how to properly convey a swing rhythm (or more generally, triplets) using tabs. Here is the part as I've written ...
10
votes
3answers
212 views

What's this notation symbol?

I recenyly encountered a symbol in a Violoncello score which I was not able to identify. It is shown in the image below after the p (piano). I looked for it in the Musescore documentation and in the ...
2
votes
1answer
780 views

Are you still playing a scale if you don't include every note in said scale? [duplicate]

For instance, if you're playing C major, and instead of playing C D E F G A B, you play C D E F G A, or C D E F G, would that still be considered playing in that scale or key? Because I doubt that ...
5
votes
1answer
70 views

How to properly notate scales that are not heptatonic

As far as I understand Scales are defined on intervals. So, for example, the major scale is defined by the following intervals from the root: C - Root D - Major Second E - Major Third F - Perfect ...
11
votes
8answers
1k views

Why is printed music published with incorrect enharmonics?

I'm seeing more and more music that contains conflicting or erroneous information - for example, C°7 written with an A, (not B♭♭), or E7♭5 with A♯ (not B♭). Wondering if ...
7
votes
5answers
1k views

Do the notes in a scale have to be played in order?

Beginner here, it seems like a scale just defines a particular set of notes that don't have to be played in any order to me. But if you look at A minor pentatonic scale you have A, C, D, E, G, yet ...
4
votes
4answers
2k views

Bass clef looking like “double middle C” [duplicate]

I have a question about a note on a piano sheet (picture below). How would I play the note highlighted by the golden circle? I thought only middle C would be marked by a horizontal line crossing it. ...
17
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I notate a staccato on a unison note?

If there is a stem on either side of a note, or the stems are DOWN below ledger lines, where does the dot indicating staccato go?
15
votes
1answer
178 views

How do I interpret two notes in a tempo marking?

Is this the same tempo as (quarter note) = 90, or is it (half note) = 90? I know what tempo this is because of the marking next to the bar number, but what does the part below the number mean? Is ...
2
votes
2answers
133 views

Why are there two ways of expressing the octave treble clef which indicates to perform the piece an octave lower?

Why is it that there are two ways of writing the octave lower treble clef? Is there some sort of history behind this or are they used in different circumstances or something?
5
votes
4answers
590 views

Why were dynamic markings not really used in the Baroque and Classical period?

Why is it that dynamics only really began to be frequently used from the Romantic period onward? Also what was the first recorded use of dynamics because I read on Wikipedia that it was first century ...
3
votes
1answer
92 views

What are the numbers below the notes in this violin score?

In the following score, some of the notes have numbers both above and below the notes. The ones above I assume are fingering advice but what are the numbers below? Also, what does the III at the ...
15
votes
3answers
914 views

Chord stretched across treble clef and bass clef

I'm a beginner at piano, and struggling to understand what I'm looking at here, and how to play it. I've bought and downloaded some piano sheet music from musicnotes.com. It's in 12/8 time, and part ...
2
votes
4answers
107 views

Kruger Andante - What am I missing on how to play this dotted half note?

I'm in the process of learning to play the Piano and have some trouble figuring out how the part highlighted below in gray is supposed to be played (that is a Flowplay screenshot of this song: As far ...
9
votes
3answers
214 views

Unplayable turn in Beethoven sonata

Beethoven's piano sonata Op. 2 No. 3, first movement, bars 179-180 (Henle edition). The turn decorating each eighth note can be played literally. Except for the one on bar 179's A sharp, because ...
5
votes
3answers
109 views

Understanding Time Signature: How do I identify the time signature of a song?

I have played music for years and I still don't understand what a time signature actually signifies. I understand it from a superficial sense. If given sheet music I could tell you what time ...
1
vote
1answer
68 views

What does this exponent-like note notation mean? (e.g., “c^1, e^1, g^1, c^2, e^2, g^2”) [duplicate]

I'm a self-taught composer currently trying to make my way through Arnold Schoenberg's "Theory of Harmony." I'm unfamiliar with what the numbers super-scripting certain notes means- is it the octave?
30
votes
7answers
8k views

Why do E♯ and F♮ not sound the same (according to Wikipedia)?

I was just reading the Wikipedia page on the note F (as I do every evening) and was confused by this part where it says that even though F♮ and E♯ are enharmonic they “do not sound the same”: E♯ is ...