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Understanding Music Notation

Understanding Music Notation

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Published by Voog
A basic guide explaining the symbols, etc. of music notation.
A basic guide explaining the symbols, etc. of music notation.

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Published by: Voog on Mar 21, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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05/06/2013

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Understanding Music Notation#
Play the note 1/2 step
up
(Sharp)Play the note 1/2 step
down
(Flat)Play the note normally: pay no attention to the keysignature.
The above three symbols can also appear at the beginning of each line ofmusic affecting the whole line. Moreover, if they are included in anindividual measure, they override each other and carry through ties orslurs.
Compressed rests. The number on topspecifies how many measures of rest.
Fermata 
. Hold the note until cut off.Repeat. Play through normally until secondsymbol, then go back to first symbol and playagain, this time ignoring the second symbol.Begin and end: marks the beginning and endingof a piece.Tie. Make each note flow into the next. (Donot break them up.)Common time, same as 4/4 time.
 
Cut time, same as 4/4 but everything is cut inhalf.Example: a half note = 1 quarter note, a wholenote = 1 half note.
Loud
ff 
Loud loud
fff 
As loud as possible
 p
Quiet
mp
Medium quiet
mf 
Medium loud
 pp
Quiet quiet
cresc.
Louder
Clefs
Treble clef (or G-clef)
 
A bar line or measure line
The bottom number in the time signature normallydetermines what kind of note gets one beat. This number iscommonly 4, which means that a quarter note gets one beat.It may also be 2, which means that a half note gets one beat,or 8, which means that eighth notes are used to determineBass clef (or F-clef)Natural signs cancel aflat or a sharp.The top number normally determines howmany beats are in a measure or bar (ameasure is defined by vertical lines, orbar lines, that run perpendicular to thestaff). For instance, if the time signatureis 3/4, there are three beats in ameasure.

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