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Topic: A heated argument at last night's music practice. (Read 23652 times) previous topic - next topic

A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Good morning all,

This question is not specifically about Noteworthy, more a general question about music notation.

I have attached a NWC file which shows two staffs. The first one has 1 bar (measure) with the following entries; 1/4 rest, 1/8 rest, 1/16 note, 1/16 note, 1/8 note, 1/4 note, 1/8 note.

The second one has the following entries;
           1/4 rest, 1/8 rest, 1/16 note, 1/16 note, 1/8 note, 1/8 note tied to, 1/8 note, 1/8 note.

Which is correct?

I hope you choose the second option, as there is a pint of beer at stake here.



Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #1
It is likely to produce some heat here as well.  With NoteWorthy, you can have the way you want it, and not be hostage to some editor who probably has never played your instrument.
A good rule of thumb is: If it is correct to beam notes, it is correct to consolidate them if tied. This will often depend on the Time Signature. Cut Time beams differently than Common time.
Code: [Select · Download]
!NoteWorthyComposerClip(2.0,Single)
|Clef|Type:Treble
|Key|Signature:C
|TimeSig|Signature:Common
|Rest|Dur:4th
|Rest|Dur:8th
|Note|Dur:16th|Pos:0|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam=First
|Note|Dur:16th|Pos:0|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam=End
|Note|Dur:8th|Pos:0|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam=First
|Note|Dur:8th|Pos:0^|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam=End
|Note|Dur:8th|Pos:0|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam=First
|Note|Dur:8th|Pos:0|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam=End
|Bar
|TimeSig|Signature:AllaBreve
|Rest|Dur:4th
|Rest|Dur:8th
|Note|Dur:16th|Pos:0|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam=First
|Note|Dur:16th|Pos:0|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam=End
|Note|Dur:8th|Pos:0|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam=First
|Note|Dur:8th|Pos:0^|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam
|Note|Dur:8th|Pos:0|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam
|Note|Dur:8th|Pos:0|Opts:Stem=Down,Beam=End
!NoteWorthyComposerClip-End

Clearly, it is correct to consolidate the tied notes in measure 2 into one note.
Measure 1 will provoke debate.

Registered user since 1996

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #2
For me, as a non-expert, it looks like the measure is divided into 4 equal parts - at the beginning you have a 1/4 rest followed by a 1/8 rest, rather than a dotted 1/4 rest.

Because of this, I would tend to go with the second (tied 1/8 notes) option, rather than the first.

Just my tuppence.

Stephen

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #3
G'day Phil,
I wouldn't be in a hurry to drink that beer just yet, less ya wanna share it...  I believe it is more a matter of taste than "right or wrong" - both are "correct".  Certainly I've seen both in commercially produced scores.

Personally, I prefer the latter form as it helps with counting - you know where the beats are.  I mostly see the former in jazz scores, but lately I've seen it a bit in some of the new contemporary gospel we play in church.  IIRC I also used to see the former in the scores we played when I was a kid in the local Brass Band.

That said, I thought I'd see if I could find something in my Alfreds to help.

In the section on ties there is an example relating to tie direction on shared staves.  Obviously this is not referring to this particular issue but the example shows the first form - see attachment.

I hereby make a possibly silly assumption: It is unlikely that, even just for an example, a reference work with the reputation of Alfred's would use an incorrect example.

My AUD $0.02
I plays 'Bones, crumpets, coronets, floosgals, youfonymums 'n tubies.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #4
Thanks for your replies.

Laurie,
Your example is actually quite close to the piece of music I'm working with. In the example I attached, I simplyfied it by just showing bar 1. In the original piece, the last note in bar 1 is actually tied to the first (1/4) note of bar 2. I seem to remember when doing music theory (many moons ago) that when completing a bar, you should allways group notes (and rests) into equal beats. That's why I have wagered a pint of beer on the second format being correct. Again, your comments about knowing where the beats are were the cause of the argument - my vocalists were having a problem with where to start note 4. At a glance, it looks like beat three where in reality it is beat two-and-a-half.
The music in question is a modern worship piece - Matt redman's 'When the music fades'.

Again, thanks to you all for your time.
Every day's a school day!

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #5
G'day Phil,
seems your vocalists are better trained in theory than ours.  Ours sing very well, but most of 'em can't read a note - they listen to the recordings instead and learn the melody and phrasing from the original artists.

And how often does that not match the written music :(

Oh well, they're usually pretty good songs and like any good music team, we put our own stamp on 'em anyway.

Blessya mate,
Lawrie
I plays 'Bones, crumpets, coronets, floosgals, youfonymums 'n tubies.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #6
The several commercially produced books I have with "Heart of Worship" by Matt Redman are entered using example 1.  That is how I transcribed it for my praise band at church.  There are times, however, when I'll split the quarter note into two eighth notes and tie them (as in example 2), but that is usually only when I need a chord symbol above the 2nd eighth note (and I'm too lazy to do hidden staffs or some other work around).

John

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #7
Please forgive my typo - Laurie should have been Lawrie.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #8
Please forgive my typo - Laurie should have been Lawrie.

You're cool, man.  Blame it on that keyboard what can't spell <g>
I plays 'Bones, crumpets, coronets, floosgals, youfonymums 'n tubies.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #9
Just out of curiosity, is there any particular pattern to those who took one side of the argument versus the other?  If this had been a band practice, I'd bet the brass and sax players took one view, and the clarinets and other upper woodwinds took the other.


Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #10
I'd bet the brass and sax players took one view, and the clarinets and other upper woodwinds took the other.

Hi David,

My wife, the piccolo player (upper woodwind?) hates unneeded ties. "Just give me the notes, I know the rythym", she says. She can also read a high C or D, sitting on 5 or 6 leger lines. How, I'll never know. Why is an even bigger mystery...
Registered user since 1996

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #11
I prefer the first (upper staff) example.
It just looks cleaner.
However, here's another sample to view.
The second bar has no “imaginary bar line,” making it trickier to read.
I have seen the Incorrect version countless times in published music, even engraved music.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #12
In PhilDixon's sample, I would suggest that both are correct - I have seen both in printed music.  The first looks neater, especially if the syncopated note needs to be accented.  The second looks more (how shall I describe it ?) "academic", as if coming from some kid's exercise.

K.A.T.'s example is more tricky.  K.A.T. seems to classify them into definitely correct and definitely wrong versions.  I ask: if there is general consensus that PhilDixon's samples are both correct, why not the K.A.T. samples as well ?  Perhaps the "imaginary line" suggested by K.A.T. has got something to do with it ?

Having said that, I support PhilDixons's second option even if only to help him get his beer ...

Melismata

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #13
Regarding the pint of beer, it seems to me that whoever pays for it, it's still a win-win situation.  :)

John

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #14
For me it's more likely to be first version.  My view is "make the music as readable as possible", which means getting rid of extra squiggles - such as ties - unless:
  • there is no other way to notate the music (such as when a note is held across a bar-line),
  • or if the tie obscures an important beat
So, if the 4/4 is fairly fast, beat 4 is quite unimportant, so the 8 4 8 pattern is easier to read.  But if the 4/4 is quite slow, then beat 4 is much more important, and 8 8_8 8 helps the player.

Also controversial is 8 4 4 4 8 in a bar of 4/4.  It appears in the sax parts for The Boyfriend, and at first drove me mad, but now it feels correct for the particular syncopated figure! 8 4 8_8 4 8 would just look cluttered.



Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #15
Warning -- this score hasn't been polished for NWC2, so there are rough edges!

Here is another example where ties are not used, due (I think, I'm no notation expert) to the syncopation.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #16
Love the piece - hate the name. Back then, there were lots of rules governing the structure of music. Everything was very even and precicely laid out. Even harmonies that didn't fall into a certain form were considered just plain "wrong". Today it seems that all rules have been abandoned and anything goes. It depends on what school of thought you are from I guess. The classical style is more heavily structured and modern more loose. I myself wish I had a better understanding of what is classically correct because I find that those who are trained in that school seem to have a hard time reading modern music. The problem is that todays music is not as formal as classical and its notation therefore reflects this fact. I have to agree with Ewan, "make the music as readable as possible." is a good rule even for modern music.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #17
Don't hate the name.  Dick was probably a dancing master, and "maggot" means "whim".

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #18
Well whatever he was, that's a great little tune! How did you come across it?

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #19
What does
Quote
Longways for as many as will.
mean (found in File Info - Comments)?
I'm just not getting it.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #20
Back at ya there KAT - I have no idea what your post is supposed to mean.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #21
What does  mean (found in File Info - Comments)?
I'm just not getting it.
My guess is that it is a line dance for as many dancers as you can get.
Registered user since 1996

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #22
It is a great little tune, and isn't it interesting that it is 300+ years old? 

I wonder about the tempo?  I would have thought it's running at twice what I would expect from that period - but I'm not an expert and it sounds really good at the half=105. 

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #23
David, here's another little gem from around the same time or even earlier. The name suggests the tempo but I'm only guessing. I don't know the name of the larger work it was extracted from, but I like it.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #24
Interesting piece, thank you Fitz.

I wondered about possible changing the instrument to harpsichord, but Wikipedia tells us Cristofori invented the piano possibly as early as 1698, and I guess definitely by 1700: 
Quote
"The first unambiguous evidence for the piano comes from the year 1700, and takes the form of an inventory of the many instruments kept by Prince Ferdinando. "
  So piano is not out of the question.

I was looking for guidance on tempos in common usage arond 1700, and came across this fascinating discussion of time signatures, particularly mensural:
  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Time_signature#Mensural_time_signatures

I got there from here, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tempo
where we're told:
Quote
In Renaissance music most music was understood to flow at a tempo defined by the tactus, roughly the rate of the human heartbeat. Which note value corresponded to the tactus was indicated by the mensural time signature.

Often a particular musical form or genre implies its own tempo, so no further explanation is placed in the score. Thus musicians expect a minuet to be performed as a fairly stately tempo, slower than a Viennese waltz; a Perpetuum Mobile to be quite fast, and so on. The association of tempo with genre means that genres can be used to imply tempos; thus Ludwig van Beethoven wrote "In tempo d'un Menuetto" over the first movement of his Piano Sonata Op. 54, although that movement is not a minuet.


Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #25
"Longways for as many as will" specifies a line of couples, facing each other, extending down the hall.  Looking from the head (usually where the musicians are) the men are on the right, the ladies on the left. 

I haven't danced this particular dance, but the tempo is typical for English Country Dancing.  Note that the tune is from ca. 1700, but the arraignment is from 1922 or there about.  Cecil Sharp was busy reviving English Country Dancing at the time.

Note also that, contrary (pun intended) to some opinion, the French Contredanse is a corruption of Country Dance, from when the style was introduced to the continent.  A number of authorities claim the reverse, but check the Oxford English Dictionary.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #26
David, pretty interesting stuff. I am sure that back then when communication was not so good that there were different usages, and standards didn't exactly exist like they said. It's like reading the KJV 1611 version. You get a glimpse at how our language has evolved over time and a much better grasp of word derivitaves and associations as in "Longways for as many as will" (want). That sounds as English Country Dance as you could get now that it was so nicely explained by Cyril. Thanks for that.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #27
Thanks, Cyril, for the explanation.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #28
Cyril, I too want to say thank you.

About tempos in old dances - I sort of think of minuet speed but do you happen to know if it was common to have faster dancing too?  I think it's possible, although perhaps more outside the stately environment of the nobility, since Celtic music of today seems to be fast, but must have ancient antecedents.

I could see slow dancing being necessary when the ladies wore long gowns with wide skirts, and the men wore tight britches that would cause them injury if they moved too fast, but in the village public houses, etc., I would think there'd be music that was a lot more fun or at least less disciplined.




Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #29
Personally, as to tempos, I'm just thinking of my own experience in a contemporary ECD group in the US.  In his arrangments Sharp doesn't specify tempos for the Playford dances.  (These are the tunes from the Country Dancing Master, published by John Playford from 1651 until 1709 - the latter being the 14th edition.  I'll have to check to see if there were any later editions, I don't know off the top of my head.)   I will give a few links on the matter, probably more than you want to know about ECD.  I'm also attaching an image of a CD booklet, to give an idea of what the dancers (may have) looked like.

http://www-ssrl.slac.stanford.edu/~winston/ecd/history.htmlx

http://www.bobarcher.org/dance/uk_us_comparison.html

Finally, a set of "abc" notated dances with the modern tempos used by one dance group.  I don't really know how to read "abc", but the tempos are the "Q:" item.

http://www.larkcamp.com/MEEnglishDanceTunes.abc

Enough!

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #30
One correction, and one additional link.

The only edition to be called "The English Dancing Master" was the first, 1651.  All others were simply "The Dancing Master".  The last was in 1728 and was the 4th edition of volume 2, preceeded by the 18th edition of volume 1 probably in the same year.  See "The Dancing Master" in Wikipedia.

Also, to see what the playford books looked like, see:

http://www.shipbrook.com/jeff/playford/index.html

The music is scanned, the text transcribed, but there is a full page scanned from the original here:

http://www.shipbrook.com/jeff/playford/original.html

(I know, I said one link, but they are both to the same site.)

CNA

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #31
In my experience, English dances are very fast.
Take Country Gardens, for example.
It's enclosed at the bottom.

By the way, have you noticed how off topic this thread is getting?
Supported by The Brotherhood of Pandas

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #32
Off topic, a bit, but it is about music.  Besides, that is an old and hono(u)red custom around here.

As to the speed, I've danced quite a few, and some are moderately fast, and some are not.   Some are quite "stately".  I'll attach a few of different tempos, all as I have been used to dancing them.

Re: A heated argument at last night's music practice.

Reply #33
The first version is better because its easier to read.  It would not be so good tied over the middle of the bar.  The second version is not technically incorect, just clumsy.  (A violinist)