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24 votes
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Anacruses, Bar Lines, and Line Breaks

It's great that you're thinking about where your line breaks should go, and putting them at natural "punctuation" points is generally a good idea. Breaking mid-measure though is pushing this too far. ...
MattPutnam's user avatar
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24 votes
Accepted

Do you play the upbeat when beginning to play a series of notes, and then after?

The upbeat is where the song starts. Imagine starting the song "Happy birthday to you" without the upbeat; then you would start singing "birthday to you". When you reach the end you don't play the ...
Lars Peter Schultz's user avatar
17 votes

How to write a score that begins with a pickup note and repeats

You can do this two ways. Do the first. It really is clearer. (How many verses are you going to make the singer(s) perform without a few bars rest though?)
Laurence's user avatar
  • 93.4k
16 votes

Do you play the upbeat when beginning to play a series of notes, and then after?

This is also called pickup note, pickup measure or anacrusis. You can read about it here: Wiki You can find them in a lot of songs, like Happy Birthday for example: Of course you don't have to use ...
Andy's user avatar
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15 votes
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Why does this piece in 3/4 have 3 crotchet beats in the last bar despite starting with an anacrusis?

In the distant past there was a convention that the last measure should be shortened by the length of the anacrusis. Nowadays this 'rule' is largely ignored unless there is a repeat that goes back to ...
PiedPiper's user avatar
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15 votes
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Why is "Für Elise" written in 3/8 when there are a few bars in 2/16?

The first measure that you highlighted in red is called a pickup measure (or anacrusis) and the bracket enclosing the second measure is called a volta bracket. The combined length of the pickup ...
GratefulDisciple's user avatar
13 votes
Accepted

Should pickup measures have measure numbers?

No, a pickup measure will not be counted as measure 1 in a score. Instead, the first full measure following the pickup will be labeled as measure 1. But it's not that this pickup will never be ...
Richard's user avatar
  • 84.7k
12 votes

Rests in pickup measure (anacrusis)

The lower version is right, definitely. You write the pickup measure with the actual note durations, not like "read all staves and try to figure out if this is a pickup bar or not". Think about if ...
piiperi Reinstate Monica's user avatar
11 votes

Anacruses, Bar Lines, and Line Breaks

What you're doing is doubling up on the phrase marking, which is there just for the purpose you propose. Is there any extra point in breaking up bars? Not for me. It seems an amateur thing to do, as ...
Tim's user avatar
  • 194k
11 votes
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Full bar rest at the end of piece

Analysis The idea that the piece is in ternary form comprising three eight-measure phrases is correct. It just needs to be taken further. First, note that if one counts from the anacruses to the notes ...
Aaron's user avatar
  • 89.7k
11 votes

Why is "Für Elise" written in 3/8 when there are a few bars in 2/16?

You are correct that they complement each other. The first notes are called "pickup" notes or, more formally, they are an anacrusis: "one or more unstressed notes before the first bar ...
Aaron's user avatar
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10 votes

Why does this piece in 3/4 have 3 crotchet beats in the last bar despite starting with an anacrusis?

The core idea of the final measure plus anacrusis creating a full bar — leaving aside repeats — is to create balance in the music. One supposes that the listener will retain the opening anacrusis in ...
Aaron's user avatar
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9 votes
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What's the meaning of a note before the time signature?

It's an engraving mistake. The time signature should come straight after the key signature, before the first note. Here's the opening of the Ricordi edition, from IMSLP. The f indication is in ...
Laurence's user avatar
  • 93.4k
9 votes
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Notes and Beat "slashes" in the same measure

Since slashes are a more recent addition to the world of music notation the conventions are a little less etched in stone. The main thing is to make sure what you write is logical and clear, which it ...
John Belzaguy's user avatar
8 votes

Notation of last measure of a song with a pickup measure

It doesn't matter how you end the piece. Centuries ago there was a convention that you compensated for the pickup measure at the end. But nowadays nobody is going to complain. I see pieces all the ...
PiedPiper's user avatar
  • 21.4k
8 votes

Rests in pickup measure (anacrusis)

Actual note duration for the rest. What should happen at the other end of the piece is a part bar containing the two 'missing' beats - often as rests - but increasingly forgotten, sadly. So if there ...
Tim's user avatar
  • 194k
7 votes

Anacruses, Bar Lines, and Line Breaks

I would consider breaking measures like this, but only when: the music starts with an anacrusis (say one quarter note for the sake of this example) and there's a repeated section which requires you ...
Brian THOMAS's user avatar
  • 11.6k
7 votes

Anacruses, Bar Lines, and Line Breaks

There is a convention that scores for music theater (particularly on Broadway) are always written with four bars per line. Of course that only makes sense because the music is rhythmically boring with ...
guest's user avatar
  • 71
7 votes

Why does this piece in 3/4 have 3 crotchet beats in the last bar despite starting with an anacrusis?

I think it's worth noting the origins of this "rule" - if a piece consistently uses anacruses in its rhythmic structure, then we might consider the final beat of each measure to consistently ...
Ken Williams's user avatar
6 votes

Do you play the upbeat when beginning to play a series of notes, and then after?

Upbeats (as written in the OP) are played as if they were the last beat(s) of the pickup measure. In the posted piece, one can imagine (but not play) the 3-beat rest before the quarter note. The point ...
ttw's user avatar
  • 25.6k
6 votes

Should pickup measures have measure numbers?

No. Pickup measures by definition are partial measures and do not count as "bar no. 1" or the "first measure." However, if your "pickup" measure is actually a full measure with rests in the first ...
NickGrooves's user avatar
  • 1,657
6 votes

Why does this piece in 3/4 have 3 crotchet beats in the last bar despite starting with an anacrusis?

Were there a repeat sign after the last bar, it would be essential to have only minims in that bar, but since the piece is there in its entirety, it really doesn't matter that it's a full bar. 'Rules' ...
Tim's user avatar
  • 194k
6 votes

First measure with shorter than others in MuseScore

When the first bar of a piece is shorter than the normal bar length, it is called an anacrusis or a pickup. To add an anacrusis, you can change the measure properties (which is what you did), or you ...
Zephyrix 818's user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

Time signature issue in MuseScore

It's called an "anacrusis" or pickup measure. 1/ Easiest way is to add one when you start a new score, just tick the checkbox and add the value: 2/ Another way, e.g. if you already have ...
Creynders's user avatar
  • 3,024
5 votes
Accepted

Ignored rest at the beginning of a section

You can change the time signature for that single bar. Something along these lines:
Aaron's user avatar
  • 89.7k
5 votes

Is there a name for the incomplete measure completing the anacrusis?

The simplest way to describe it would be to use its bar number. As for an actual name of this kind of incomplete bar; I don’t know of one. Incidentally, a pickup bar at the beginning of a piece is bar ...
Bob Broadley's user avatar
  • 21.4k
5 votes

Counting in an anacrusis

Who does the count? The drummer would be best-placed for this. All it should need is 'nod, nod, fill'. I'd be worried with any band that needed two bars to grasp the timing. Bear in mind, a tight big ...
Tetsujin's user avatar
  • 27.9k

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