~ rhythm notation ~

~ understand written rhythms ~

~ clapping rhythms ~

~ subdivisions of the beat ~

'measure and record musical time with symbols ...'

~ review ~

In a nutshell. The goal here is to gain enough skill by ear to get the gist of a song's rhythm and timing. These 'theory translate' into time signature and subdivision of the beat. We need to be able to feel and find the downbeat of each measure. Count the song's heartbeat and pulse from downbeat to downbeat between two measures. And then count consecutive measures to find the length of the phrases that shape its melody.

These music notation symbols have been around in European musics for a 1000 years or so now, so most of the bugs have been worked out. That said, most of us capture our mojo by 'feel.' Especially so in the blues, as the power of the blue notes is hard to capture with pen and paper. Folks can do it though, both read and write the blues with standard notation symbols.

How do we measure the rhythm of a note ? So how long is a note held in time ? That's what we're measuring here. The easiest math of all of this is with the 'big 4', the 4 / 4 time march time / the indigenous heartbeat, the basis of the swing. Then all we do is divide up the four beats a couple of different ways. So, 4 /4 is ...

top 4 = number of beats per measure

bottom 4 = what note value gets one beat

How do we measure the rhythm of a note ? Simply by the number of beats it gets. Thinking 4 / 4 ...

Whole note gets all four beats of one measure.

Half note gets two beats, so two per measure.

Quarter gets one beat. So four per measure.

Eighth notes get a half of a beat, so two 1/8th's per beat.

Here's the above in symbols. Clap along and rote learn 1000 year old symbol magic. Example 1.

 

 

Try this one. Clap along and rote learn 1000 year old magic. Example 2.

 

Cool ? Not really too rocket science is it ?

Subdivision of the beat. The whole tamale really in 4/4 time, clap along as best U can :) Example 2.

'In four.'

. The whole tamale really in 4/4 time, clap along as best U can :) Example 2.

'In three.' The whole t

Might as well jump right on at the apex and struggle to hold o, once in a while anyway. Rote this jazz waltz in 3.

Example 5.

Toots Theileman's song "Bluesette" is a standard, that sets a standard, for songs that want to be a 'jazz waltz.' In rhythm, feel and time, this description of a 'jazz waltz in three' usually means; a walking base line, a cycle of chords by fourths, a sure form with a clear top, and melody and lyrics that reflect this song's title. Probably any tune can go up the top 40, but doesn't necessarily mean it's a standard. So we keep writing.

remember this title, and learn more of this song. Its a gem beyond many gems while chock full of cool theory.

'In two.'

. The whole tamale really in 4/4 time, clap along as best U can :) Example 2.

'In one.'

. The whole tamale really in 4/4 time, clap along as best U can :) Example 2.

'6 / 8.'

. The whole tamale really in 4/4 time, clap along as best U can :) Easy count on the six note symbols between the bar lines of a measure. Can these be groups of three notes? So, a triplet? Sure, why not :) Example 2.

The triplet. Coolness built right in just pushing the buttons of a core shape, to create a looping sequence of Mixolydian color? How did you resolve the line? Can these be groups of three notes? So, a triplet? Sure, why not :)

'12 / 8.'

. The whole tamale really in 4/4 time, clap along as best U can :) Example 2.

'5 / 4.'

. The whole tamale really in 4/4 time, clap along as best U can :) Example 2.

Review. These seven modes go way back in our history, four go all the way back, and as such, we each potentially have countless melodies in our memories to be rediscovered and explored through grouping up the pitches these seven ways. Throw in the 'hypo' versions and we've another set of seven to explore. There's just a ton here really for those so inclined.

time signatures
evolution of the 1/8 note
the gallop
metronome markings
subdivision
forward motion

"Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones, you'll start having positive results."

wiki ~ Willie Nelson