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Libero Mapelli SAE Music Theory

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Libero Mapelli

on 18 November 2013

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Transcript of Libero Mapelli SAE Music Theory

Western music notation
based on 7 notes:
C or DO
D or RE
E or MI
F or FA
G or SOL
A or LA
B or SI
Keyboard layout:
Basic intervals:
1 key up/down:
Semitone (or half step)

2 keys up/down:
Tone (or full step)

12 keys up/down:
An octave interval is achieved by doubling or halving a given frequency
Notes to Hertz
Frequencies to remember:
Low E string on guitar

Middle C (usually called C4)

440 is the frequency of A4
n represents the number of semitones
away from A4
developed as a means of writing down music so that it could be played back at a later date
Musical notation
G clef (or treble clef)
12th century single line staff
F clef (or bass clef)
Major Scales
(or Ionian mode)
T-T-S-T-T-T-S: is the pattern for every major scale
Table of musical frequencies
In order to read musical notation fluently:
You need to be able to easily identify the notes on the staff
You need to be able to read the duration of the notes (rhythm)
You need to understand the time signature
Most used scales in western music
C Major
More about intervals
Let's give a name to each interval, analyze them and combine them to create chords.

When we listen to two notes simultaneously:
Consonance: fusion between the 2 sounds, stability, rest
Dissonance: separation between the 2 sounds, instability, tension
Using intervals to create chords
Major chord
Minor chord
Augmented Chord
Diminished Chord
In the most basic way, chords are made from 3 notes, placing thirds on top of each other.

There are two types of third:
Major third (4 semi-tones)
Minor third (3 semi-tones)

So we can make 4 combinations of chords
(4+3, 3+4, 3+3, 4+4)
Note + 4 steps + 3 steps
For example: C + E + G
which is called C Major chord
Note + 3 steps + 4 steps
For example: C + E flat + G
which is called C Minor chord
Note + 4 steps + 4 steps
For example: C + E + G#
which is called C Augmented chord
Note + 3 steps + 3 steps
For example: C + E + G flat
which is called C Diminished chord
Minor scales
The sequence of intervals to create a minor scale is the following:

T - S - T - T - S - T - T
The circle of Fifths
is a visual representation of the relationships among the 12 tones of the chromatic scale, their corresponding key signatures and the associated major and minor keys.

Major and minor keys that share a key signature are considered relatives.
Basics of rhythm
Time signatures
Note values and rests
To be able to write rhythmic notation, you will need to have an understanding of the following:

Note value and rests
Time signatures

Often expressed in beats per minute (BPM) but it can also be indicated on sheet music by few (often in italian) words such as adagio, presto.
Largo is 40-60 BPM
Larghetto is 60-66 BPM
Adagio is 66-76 BPM
Andante is 76-108 BPM
Moderato is 108-120 BPM
Allegro is 120-168 BPM
Presto is 168-200 BPM
Prestissimo is 200+ BPM
drum and bass averages a BPM of 160-180
dubstep is around 140 BPM
House varies between 118 and 135 BPM
hip-hop is around 90-115 BPM
Concert marches are typically ~120 BPM.
There are certain standard notes in musical notation which have their own values
There are also symbols telling you to be silent for a specific amount of time. These symbols are called ''rests''
Music is usually divided into groups of beats called bars
For any piece of music that features a regular pulse, bars are like building blocks
Rhythmically and harmonically they give a great deal of structure to any piece of music
Time signatures are found at the start of the written music, placed directly after the clef and key signature.
The time signature is made up of two numbers, one above the other.
The top number tells you how many counts or beats per bar.
The bottom number tells you what kind of rhythmic value is being counted.

The most popular time signature in contemporary music is 4/4 (also known as common time)
A 4/4 time signature means that there are four beats per bar and each count represents a quarter note or crotchet.
Sometimes a symbol for 'cut common time' is used; this also signifies 4/4 but with greater emphasis on the first and third beats.
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