74

Pretty basic and simple. Each key has 7 notes, with a different letter name for each. A B C D E F G but not always starting on A!! Let's take Gmajor G A B C D E F G - except the F needs to be F#. So far so good with your idea. Let's take Fmajor. F G A A# C D E F. Oops, there are two A notes - and no B. Try writing it out on the lines and spaces we call ...


44

I'm assuming that you're talking about the one that looks like a blocky X.....this is a double sharp. Instead of shifting the tone up one half step, it shifts the tone up 2 half steps (i.e. 1 whole step). This image shows G double-sharp in the treble clef, and E double-flat in the bass clef. G double sharp is enharmonic with A natural, and E double-flat ...


40

It is related to "chunking", once you are used to keys, it is easier to quickly understand the single chunk "This piece is in G major" instead of having to see and interpret each of the individual sharp signs. This aids sight reading. With the way keys are conventionally notated, the presence of accidentals is actually informative: it tells you when the ...


35

Wikipedia has it right. An accidental that is written in, as shown in the example above, only applies to the note in that octave until the end of the measure. You may be confusing it with the accidentals in the key signature which do apply to every octave. It's also possible that in the pieces you are playing you are seeing a courtesy accidental instead of ...


34

There are a few general rules. Most accidentals should be of the type found in the key signature. For example, in G Major, use G# -- not Ab. In F# major, use A# instead of Bb. If the accidental is in a chromatic scale, use sharps ascending and flats descending In any other scale, use the accidental that typically goes with the scale. For example, Bb and Eb ...


34

1. Bias against "unorthodox" notes Western music tradition (and some others) was, and to a large extent still is, based on heptatonic scales, that is, seven unequal divisions in an octave. So, in a given musical context, all twelve notes are not created equal. For instance, in a musical phrase in C major, natural notes (ones with no accidentals) are the ...


34

It can be depending on the context . If you were using the F♯ major scale, you would have the notes F♯, G♯, A♯, B, C♯, D♯, and E♯. Another common example is in a C♯ major chord you would have the notes C♯, E♯, and G♯. The E♯ is an enharmonic equivalent to F. F is used a lot more though, since it is a naturally named note. In the same way, F♭ can ...


34

Historically, keyboards didn't always work that way. So an A# and a Bb used to actually have different pitches. Our musical notation is older than enharmonic equivalency that you get with "well-tempered" keyboards. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Well_temperament) Just speaking as an amateur classical composer, different spellings of notes have different ...


29

Hmm. Lets take an example of how this would work in practice. Currently, when I see a sharp sign in front of a note (lets say F as an example) I know that the note required is an F sharp. It may be in the key signature already but that does not matter: it is an F sharp, always - no question. Under your system when I see a sharp sign in front of an F ...


28

The natural sign next to the C is a "courtesy accidental". It is there only to make it absolutely clear to the player that the C is not to be sharp. It is correct that an accidental only carries through the bar, and thus that the one here is not necessary. But were it not there, though the note would be a C-natural, it would be easy upon sight-reading to ...


27

Actually it depends on the instrument. Some instruments can produce different notes for A# and Bb, others can not. There are different ways to intonate. On one side you have a just or harmonic intonation which is built on harmonics scale (each tone has a a matemathical relation between the base tone), this makes each tonality have its own intonation; on the ...


27

When we are writing or playing a piece in a key, we are pretty much choosing a set of notes to play. Out of the 12 notes used in "Western" music, we want to mainly focus on 7. That means we are choosing not to play 5 notes. When we are choosing not to play C natural and we want to play the black key in between C and D, we say we are playing C# instead of ...


23

I'm not sure why you'd have any reason to question why it's real ... it's not really related to G Major though, no more than C# major is related to C Major. It's enharmonically equivalent to A♭ major, just like C# Major = D♭ Major or F# Major = G♭ Major. As for pieces involving it, Wikipedia mentions some. In general, keys with double-...


22

It wouldn't be easier to read. Firstly, most instruments are not tied into any particular key signature. A simple sequence like someone singing/playing a scale in E major and someone else singing a third above feels very natural but actually is a complex walk resulting in an unregular sequence of major and minor thirds. This makes sense and can be done in ...


20

No, it is still a B♭ as the accidentals in the key signature and measure are never additive. The flat is just reminding you that the B is flat. This is known as a courtesy accidental and is typically done if the previous measure uses a B that was different then the one in the key signature or if there was a different quality of B used in the measure it is ...


20

Your #2 thought is the convention. Yes, this means you'll need to write lots of accidentals. That's okay. Contemporary players, especially those who regularly perform new music are used to reading lots of accidentals. A fair number of people (including myself) actually prefer reading accidentals over key signatures. In addition to writing in every ...


19

TL;DR: Backwards compatibility, and the predominance of seven-note scales. We're going to take a musical walk through history... Let's say you're inventing music, and you start out with a single string playing a single note. That gets boring after a while, but you realize that you can play more notes by shortening the string length, so with a bit of ...


19

The harmony of the given chord in the 1st 2 bars is in E (major chord), the accidental in front of g you consider (minor third!) is referring to this Chord of E.


18

A natural sign always completely cancels any accidental that may be or have been on a note, and the note is played natural. A G natural that comes after a G# is played as a G natural. A G natural following a G double sharp (Gx) is also played as a G natural. Note that all the accidental symbols are treated the same way: they are absolute. A G# written ...


17

The accidental will apply to following notes in the same measure / bar but not after that. If it is needed to cancel the effect before then another accidental (maybe a natural sign) will be required. Oddly, although a sharp or flat in the key signature affects the same note in other octaves, an accidental does not. An extra point thanks to Arthur. In ...


15

The G minor key signature is written with two flats, but the scale, as you noted, has a sharp in it. The G melodic minor scale has E natural and F sharp going up, and F natural and E flat going down. The key signature is one thing; the scale is another. Some folk music uses scales very different from the major and minor we are used to. I have seen music ...


15

C♯ and D♭ are enharmonically the same. This means that they are played by the same key on a piano, but they have a different musical meaning and they actually should sound a tiny bit different (although the difference is minimal). However, string or woodwind instruments might be able to play them slightly differently and thus correctly. In Pythagorean ...


14

You retain the accidental. In this case, it is pretty unambiguous since the lead note is immediately preceding the note (baroque trills would even start with the upper note). If there is more of a distance to the preceding use of a changed pitch, one would lean towards adding a reminder accidental to the trill.


13

An accidental is not the note as you describe it. That word does refer to the sign itself, not the note. The question remains whether it is correct to use it in the context of a key signature as well. Personally, I don't have any problem with the phrase "accidentals in the key signature," but would typically just say "sharps or flats," since you're never ...


13

Sometimes indeed it HAS to be E#. It will depend on what key you're in as to what it is called. If a key has 6 sharps, the order is F#, C#, G#, D#, A# and E#.It's a technicality, but as far as writing it down is concerned, E# would be found on the 'E' place on the stave. It won't be found in the 'F' place, because that would signify an F note, which is ...


13

'Off key' often means 'out of tune', so if the singer is singing an accidental properly, they may well be 'in tune', but 'out of key'. The accidental D# isn't diatonic (meaning a note from the key) so it could be thought of as 'off key', but a more apposite term would be 'out of the key'.


13

Since these are sample fugue subjects, here is my take: Because these are all examples of motion from scale-degree 5 up to scale-degree 1 in the key of C, they seem to be showing that, in choosing a lower neighbor to G, you can have either F or F♯. Since using F♯ in no way alters the local tonality, you are welcome to use either option. One reason why this ...


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