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Questions tagged [time-signatures]

Numeric ratio indicating the subdivision of measures according to groups of beats.

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What Time Signature Is This in Twelve Foot Ninja's “Sick”? [on hold]

In Twelve Foot Ninja's "Sick" there's a short section that seems to be in a different time signature to the rest (or is made up by changing between multiple signatures?) I've been trying to work out ...
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1answer
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How do I read 3/4 signature with “multiple instruments”

The following signature is a 3/4 but has notes that sum up to more than 3 quarter notes. After researching a while, I found out Time signature 3/4 seems to have more than 3 quarter notes in a measure ...
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1answer
41 views

Is dotted quarter note = 144 equivalent to quarter note = 96?

I have a piece to read that gives the tempo of dotted quarter = 144. Does that mean it's at a quarter note = 96? The piece has a time signature of 12/8, and I'm guessing each eighth note is played at ...
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2answers
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Does anyone know if this is notated properly, or how to properly notate this rhythm?

I wrote this little melody/riff here: And while it sounds correct, I'm not sure if it's notated properly, with the correct time signatures and all. Could both the first 3/4 bars and the 2/4 bar be ...
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1answer
31 views

Keeping time in a bell choir

How do I keep time when I don’t play all the notes (bell choir). I’m a beginner and have never played an instrument. Thank you.
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1answer
60 views

What’s going on with the rhythm in the first half of Spiral Staircase by Luke Vibert

I assume this is some sort of polyrhythm but my brain refuses to be able to count it. Can someone shed some light on whats going on? The song in question:
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3answers
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Metric accents in time signature

In my Tonal Harmony book by Kostka and Payne, it says: when rhythms are notated, it is customary to use beams,ties and dots in such a way that the metric accent is emphasized rather than obscured. ...
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1answer
97 views

Why go back and forth between 2 time signatures if they have the same feel?

I don't see this very often but I do see it in 1 of Chopin's nocturnes. In particular his F major nocturne op. 15 no. 1 It switches back and forth measure by measure between 3/4 and 9/8, well at ...
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4answers
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Can the rhythm of any music with a consistent pulse be represented through a time signature?

I tried this with a lot of world music (I myself am an Indian) and majority of it, that followed a consistent pulse or a well timed rhythm, could be expressed neatly using time signatures. Can this ...
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4answers
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Time signatures and verse

Recently I challenged myself to set a piece of religious text to music for SATB. However, I encountered timing issues caused by irregular numbers of syllables in verses, and when to break off phrases. ...
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4answers
114 views

Writing in 6/8 time for piano

I'm taking a beginner online piano class. When writing a song in 6/8 time for the piano, do all the notes in each measure both in the treble clef and bass clef have to add up to 6 beats and use eighth ...
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4answers
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4/4 corresponds to 12/8 but 4/4 =/= 12/8

How is it possible that a 4/4 signature corresponds to a 12/8 signature ? 4/4 is equal to 1 and 12/8 is more than 1 . If i try to divide a 1/4 in 3 notes i get 1/12, not 1/8 as the 12/8 should be.
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What is this old time signature (2 with a vertical line through it)?

On the fourth line of page 5 of the score of Fasch's Ouverture-Suite in F major, one reads a time signature that is the number 2 with a vertical line through it: What does it mean? I know some '...
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1answer
76 views

How to play notes over one and a half octaves/am I reading this music wrong?

I've been trying to play this piece: Focusing on the left hand for the highlighted bar, it looks like it doesn't fit in with the 9/8 time (7 beats in that bar I think). But if I try to play them ...
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1answer
45 views

Problem with understanding differentiating meters and time signatures

I am currently trying to attempt to transcribe the fourth movement of scheherazade by Nikolai Korsakov-Rimsky and around bars 30+ there is a time signature change which says: 2/8(3/8 6/16). In the ...
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1answer
109 views

What does this Time Signature mean?

In Debussy's preludes for piano, there is the number 5 entitled "les collines d'anacapri". It comprises the following Time Signature. One that I have never seen before, and was wondering what it meant?...
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4answers
148 views

4/4 vs 3/4 time signatures

I'm new to music theory so I'm sorry if my question is trivial. Is it correct to say that, in practice, the only difference between 4/4 vs. 3/4 time signatures is where the accents are located? To me,...
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5answers
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Are there situations where a time signature is unknown?

My understanding is that a time signature like 4/4 time is known because certain beats are emphasized, for example: ONE, two, three, four. But let's say someone created a song with tempo alone (ie ...
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1answer
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Time signature problems in Debussy's “Clair de lune”

Clair de Lune by Debussy is in 9/8, but this bar doesn't look like 9/8 to me at all. Can anyone help?
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2answers
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Is there a typo in this exercise, or am I not counting correctly?

I have this set of right hand open string exercises for classical guitar. Many are in 4/4 but some are in 6/8 (see pic below). The notes are grouped in 6 but there is no tuple notation. Reading as ...
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1answer
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Time signature change?

I'm using yousician to play acoustic guitar. These 3 images are from the same song. Every bar contains 3 quarter notes (the signature is 3/4) but at the part 3 of the song it becomes 4/4 then 7/8 ...
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5answers
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Can a time signature of a song be changed to a different time signature?

As an example, can you change a time signature from standard 4/4 time to waltz 3/4 and can you change a waltz to standard 4/4 time? Or more generally, can ANY time signature of a song be changed to ...
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2answers
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Time signature of Goldberg Variation 8

I can only hear it as 1-and-ah 2-and-ah, which would (I thought) make it 6/8, but it’s labeled as 3/4. Actually, if I’m counting in quarter notes, I can only hear 2/4 (1-and 2-and). (I heard it ...
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1answer
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Converting passages written in non-dyadic time signatures into dyadic time signatures

Can passages of music written in non-dyadic time signatures such as 4/6 be written in dyadic time signatures, such as 4/4, or is there a fundamental difference that cannot be reconciled, or would this ...
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1answer
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Is there any way at all to tell if these measures are 6/4 vs. 3/2? [duplicate]

It's once again time for everyone's favorite game, "why is this wrong on my test?" This time, it's a "name that time signature" question that got marked wrong. In short, the only other answer that ...
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1answer
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How might I transition from a sad sounding 4/4 time signature to a more upbeat 12/8? [closed]

i am currently writing a song, and I need to pass between a very sad sounding 4/4 time signature, to a 12/8 time signature, which is a more happy sounding time signature. I am not willing to change ...
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2answers
109 views

How to deal with constant time signature changes?

So I am going to learn Mariage d'Amour on the piano, but the sheet music constantly changes time signatures. It jumps between 4/4 and 5/4. I even saw 3/4 and 3/8! Is there a way to learn this piece ...
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1answer
197 views

What is this “time signature”?

Piece: Nuper rosarum Flores - Dufay What does this "time signature" mean? I've read that it's about the taleas but I've read different stuff too, please help :)
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5answers
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Why do we always call a quarter note a **quarter** note? [closed]

Edit: After a lot of discussion I try to restate my question so that it becomes easier to understand: A concise version of my question, suggested by Stinkfoot: Why do we always call a quarter note a ...
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3answers
245 views

How long does a sound take that corresponds to a note at a certain tempo? What notations / conventions do influence it in detail? [closed]

I am just starting to get familar with the meaning of notes and already read some related questions. Lets assume I have a speed s of 60 "beats per minute" (bpm). Then one beat occurs during a time ...
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6answers
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Songs that move between 6/8 and 4/4?

I am trying to do this for something I've written (4/4 in verse, 6/8 in chorus) but it's difficult to get in and out of smoothly, so I'm wondering how other people have tackled this. For my song, if ...
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4answers
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Can this notation be considered either 3/4 or 6/8 time?

When I gave a worksheet today, 2 of my students labeled this notation as 3/4 time, simple triple. Are they wrong or is this acceptable? If it's not acceptable, why? Is it simply because it wouldn't ...
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1answer
83 views

How should I conduct a double time tempo change?

I am working on a pop arrangement. It starts out in a simple 4/4 quarter note equals 90 and then a tempo change doubles it. Now it's eight notes = 90 and quarter = 180. Do I change the time signature ...
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2answers
82 views

Is there no time signature in this mahler's piece?

Hi i looked at the score could not figure out what is the time signature it looks as though each bar is different and that there is not one. Am i correct?
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1answer
158 views

How does bpm change affect the timing of notes?

I have a note format with beats represented as measure fractions that I want to convert to actual time (seconds). So given this data: number, title, measure, position 1 NOTE 2 0.0 2 NOTE 2 0.25 3 ...
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2answers
752 views

Is a whole note in seconds equal to 60 divided by BPM? [duplicate]

Say we have a BPM of 60. Does that mean each one of my whole notes is 1 second long? Because 60 beats per minute means I have 1 beat every second. (60/60 = 1) Or if I have a BPM of 120, then each one ...
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3answers
241 views

Can I ignore the bottom number in a time signature if I know the BPM? [duplicate]

I never remember what that bottom number means, can I just stick to the top number and call it a day? So in a 6/8 I could just know that it's 6 beats per measure (ignoring the 8). If I know my BPM (...
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1answer
90 views

How do I explain a time signature switch from 2/2 to 4/2?

I am presently studying Nathaniel Dett's Chariot Jubilee, and the time signature switches from 2/2 to 4/2. What are some suggestions on how to approach explaining to singers.
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2answers
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What is the difference between changing a songs beat unit and its BPM? [duplicate]

A song in 3/8 is typically twice as fast as a song in 3/4, so what is the difference from doubling the BPM? EDIT: I am aware of the difference between 3/8 and 3/4, but then what is the difference ...
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1answer
188 views

What is this time signature with only one number?

I have recently come across a time signature I've never seen before. It is in a Baroque piece of music. Each bar has a minim crotchet minim crotchet which I think should indicate 6/4 compound time, ...
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What are the parts of a time signature called? [duplicate]

I'm wondering what the top and bottom numbers in a time signature are called. In math, the top number and bottom number in a fraction have specific names (numerator and denominator, respectively)—are ...
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1answer
406 views

Hearing the time signature switch of a cover of the “Mission Impossible Theme”

The original 1966 score of "Mission impossible" was written entirely in 5/4 time (you can listen to it here). For the first movie staring Tom Cruise, the theme was rewritten by two U2 band members, ...
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1answer
82 views

LilyPond: Subdivided beam grouping for compound time signatures

I'm trying to write a 12/8 drum score in Lilypond, with a lot of 32nd note phrasing, and the default beam grouping looks a bit ugly to me: (Here's the above example in LilyBin: http://lilybin.com/...
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2answers
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Important to be aware of time signature 12/8 switch to 6/8?

When you have a piece with the time signature 12/8 that switches to 6/8, is it important to be aware of this change? Or do you just play the notes? I understand that when 3/4 switches to 6/8 this ...
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4answers
2k views

What can one do to understand time signatures?

I am struggling with the basics of Time Signatures. For one, I see it as more of a 'beat' signature. Notation is old, and time signatures are of an age where there was no clock, or way of keeping time ...
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3answers
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Confused by time signatures

I know people ask about time signatures often, and I've read some of the posts, and haven't seen an answer to what confuses me. I know that : 4/4 means 4 quarter notes. 3/4 means 4 quarter notes. So ...
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1answer
72 views

Transcribing Es Ist Ein Ros Entsprungen

Why is this transcribed like this It seems much more obvious to me to fit it into 3/2 time: Maybe the clue is in the 'split common-time' symbol? But perhaps it didn't have the same meaning in those ...
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2answers
221 views

What is this time signature?

I am working through an exercise which has me determining the time signature of measures, and I'm stumped on this one: In determining the value of the septuplet, I need to first determine whether the ...
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1answer
110 views

What should an almost empty measure look like in 5/2 time?

I am working on an exercise where I am given a few empty bars along with a time signature; and I am to fill it in with rests following the standard rules. In 5/2 time, I am given 4 measures, each ...
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1answer
116 views

Tapping Hybrid meters

Let's say I have the hybrid time signature given by 5/4 = 3/4 + 2/4. Would I tap this as 5 evenly spaced pulses? or is it two evenly spaced beats divided respectively into 3 and 2 evenly spaced ...