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Questions tagged [phrase]

For questions related to the smallest unit of musical form, often defined as a musical unit ending with a cadence.

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What is the origin of this stock phrase to end a piece in a humorous way? [duplicate]

This phrase is often used for comedic effect: The melody is characterized by the movement in half steps around the dominant. But it is recognizable by its rhythm alone. For example, it is used by ...
mkrieger1's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
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Is there a compositional term for an introductory variation on a larger theme?

I’ve noticed that in some music spaces, specifically entertainment and gaming, composers rely heavily on character or main themes as recurring motifs. One such instance I’ve heard recently involves ...
CIFilter's user avatar
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1 answer
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What are common pop/rock cadences and metrical stresses [closed]

I'm going through Joe Mulholland & Tom HijNacki's "Berkelee Book of Jazz Harmony" Chapter 1 and I have a few questions... I see the various plagals, half cadence, deceptives, etc...Are ...
user2738206's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
272 views

Identifying Period Type

I've attached a music excerpt that's been stumping me. Is the attached passage a parallel period or a contrasting period? The rhythmic repetition makes it seem parallel, but the chord progression and ...
Wgw327's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
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How is a phrase pattern subdivided and measured?

I am studying a song by the Beatles called We can work it out, and reading along Notes on the Beatles by Allan Pollack. He says: "The verses are indeed 16 measures long but are divided into ...
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3 votes
1 answer
125 views

Phrasing in "Melodie" by Robert Schumann

I took this piece by Schumann (Melodie) and am trying to identify the cadences. I have already started to try and identify the phrases first. I am unsure if the first system is one phrase. Any help ...
user88559's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
52 views

How to set off musical phrases in Schoenberg Op.15 and atonal lieds in general

I've been reading a great dissertion on vocal melody in Schoenberg's Op.15; as far as I understand the author prefers the word 'gesture' rather than 'phrase'. From the writers words; '(...) Moreover, ...
Orhan Torun's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
271 views

Is this phrase ending a half cadence, imperfect authentic cadence, or neither?

I'm working on this for a music theory class. By my analysis: Song is in key of A major The chord for measure three uses the 4th scale degree, or IV The chord for measure four is the tonic, or I I'...
Xavier J's user avatar
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2 answers
142 views

How do you "think of" notes in groups which consist of a sequence of repeating notes which are in separate beams?

The title sounds awkward (please feel free to modify it); what I mean is: When you see the bars such as Bar 40 below (similarly Bar 37), do you think of it as DDD AAA FFF DDD (orange marking, grouped ...
GrandAdagio's user avatar
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5 votes
5 answers
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How to tell the beginning and ends of phrases when there is no significant rest in the music?

I can't figure out where the phrases are in this piece of music and I am expected to draw brackets over them. There is no real rest or pause so I looked at where there is an end on the tonic note and ...
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5 votes
5 answers
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Can an offbeat note be loudest when playing Bach?

My primitive understanding of Bach's music tells me that an offbeat note cannot be the most accented or the most important note in a phrase. But in the last gesture of the ubiquitous C major prelude, ...
Wynne's user avatar
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1 answer
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Highly irregular beaming in this Liszt piece - is phrasal beaming a no-no or not?

The piece is Liszt's Heroischer Marsch im Ungarischem Stil, S.231, and the passage is this (measures 57-64). Notice how irregular the beaming is in the right hand, going across barlines and grouping ...
KeizerHarm's user avatar
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5 answers
182 views

Questions on Fundamentals of Musical Composition by Arnold Schoenberg

I am reading this book and I need help to understand this line on page 4 (Construction of themes): "Nearly always the phrase crosses the metrical subdivisions, rather than filling the measures ...
grnprplrngyllw's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
350 views

Definition: Three ascending half steps as a phrase?

Is there an official definition used to describe a phrase constructed by playing three ascending half steps in quick succession, e.g. for a bass fill? I hear this used by a lot by John Taylor from ...
Jamie Butterworth's user avatar
7 votes
4 answers
375 views

Avartan in Western music score

What is the term closest to avartan of Indian classical music in Western music score? Is it a phrase, or is it a bar? Or is there another term which denotes the cyclic ticking of musical time? How is ...
sinhayash's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
383 views

What are the horizontal lines in this renaissance piece?

In one of the scores of Byrd's Ave verum corpus on CPDL, one notices horizontal lines : What do they mean? Are it a kind of phrasing marks? Were they added by the editor? Edit The Misa de Notre ...
Karlo's user avatar
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1 vote
3 answers
814 views

How can I analyze some parts of this excerpt?

I have two questions about this excerpt. In measure 1 (don't include the pickup note as a measure), there is an Eb tonic chord in the bass staff. How would the F in the melody line be analyzed as a ...
Lennon_Ashton's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
369 views

What is the music theory behind the ending to this Chopin Etude?

Chopin Etude Op. 10 No. 3: I'm wondering about how to best analyze the final 3 measures. This piece simply ends on the I chord over the final 3 measures. Would ...
Lennon_Ashton's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
293 views

What is the smallest difference in note lengths that an average listener can still perceive?

Approximately speaking, what is the smallest temporal difference, expressed in milliseconds, in note lengths (for consecutively sounded notes) that an average, untrained listener can still (semi)...
Kim Fierens's user avatar
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5 votes
5 answers
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Motifs in melody writing

I read in many books/teachings etc. that the first step for creating a melody is to come up with a motif, and use that for further development. Are all melodies created like that? I hear melodies that ...
Alex P's user avatar
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3 answers
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Legato and staccato in Mozart?

I'm not sure what this means in Mozart's K 545 but it is that same movement in which the left hand is almost 100% Alberti bass, that is the second movement. I see twice a passage of 8 16th notes ...
Caters's user avatar
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1 vote
3 answers
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Does every phrase in music end with a cadence?

I'm just wondering if every phrase in music ends on a Cadence? Much like every sentence in English ends with a period? I am mainly talking about common music such as pop, rock, classical, traditional,...
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2 votes
1 answer
1k views

Chord Succession vs. Chord Progression in Douglass Green's "Form in Tonal Music"

Douglass Green defines "chord succession" as a movement of chords that starts in a certain area and reaches the same area (I believe "area" means the classification as tonic, mediant, submediant, etc ....
Allan Felipe's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
8k views

Understanding and distinguishing piano slurs and phrases

I'm learning piano and recently encountered slurs and phrases. I'd like clarification on the following that relate to these two ideas. The book[1] I'm using introduces the idea of phrases, then later ...
Steven Maude's user avatar