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#2066402 - 04/18/13 07:32 AM Counting
soundofsilenc3 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/24/11
Posts: 103
I realized something the other day. After struggling for a long while to get a grasp on counting. I was all of a sudden able to count through a few pieces with relative ease or at least with a greater understanding than I ever had before.

It's almost as if for that few minutes of time, counting made complete sense. Not only that, but I could feel the improvement the counting was giving me .... and I liked it.

So now I really want to push forward and gain the deepest and most solid knowledge of counting beats that I can possibly work towards.

My feedback or observations so far .... It looks to me like if you can "count" a piece correctly, its almost like playing half of it .... except in your head.

I think of it like the counting is 50% of the piece, the "stamina and reflexes" to make the hands work accordingly is the other half of the equation. But the counting itself IS the piece. It's hard to explain but I hope for any other beginners reading this ... maybe it may help.

I've been doing a lot of reading into counting and rhythm because it was always something I struggled with and longed to understand. I read an article which suggested those who "don't count" or are proficient enough I guess to not need to count, can gauge up a measure with their eyes, and what they are looking for is simply where the downbeat falls. Once you know where your downbeats/upbeats are you'll always been in time.

But until that becomes second nature the counting (1 & or 1e&ah) enforces adherence to a "natural flow" By saying those stupid syllables your basically forcing yourself to keep "in a flow" It's the only way to actually get a solid feel for how those notes translate to sound. Nothing will actually give that information TO YOU. You have to extract that information from whats on the page for yourself.

But on the other hand, those syllables compartmentalize the piece for you. Almost like your mini road map to whats ahead. If you see the notes and can relate their values to (& or e&ah) than another thing being accomplished here would be breaking down the piece into small chunks which you can follow along from one to the next easily without becoming overwhelmed.

It feels like your "extracting" information out of the piece "as" you play it. By relating those notes to syllables your essentially "tightening" up the piece by subdividing the values. I figure once you know how each value relates to the next, when you see a series of notes, you'll immediately know there values and instinctively recognize how to subdivide the section to complete the measure correctly. This seems to be the beauty of counting.

One thing I found helpful was looking at just your major beats. ONLY 1 2 3 4. From there just count "around" those beats. Think of which values relate to which notes and how each denomination or "syllable" fits "together" to lead you through the measure. The counting should almost feel "continuous"

I still have plenty lot to learn but I'm optimistic. In the mean time I guess the real test will be fitting this all in with a metronome. Which I've had more success with but not as much as I would like.

I'd love to here other view points on anyone's own thoughts and suggestions. It can relate to what I've mentioned or otherwise. Any opinions are always appreciated.

I still struggle to count more complex or daunting passages. But in the mean time, I use the feedback above as almost like a "cheat sheet" for solving a new problem or thinking of a new problem in a different way.

I'll include a post I found in another forum (I forget which one) I'm not sure but something about it seemed to help me. Or at least helped make something click:

Re: How do you count these?
« Reply #9 on: June 06, 2012, 11:07:37 AM »


Quote from: williamraym on June 06, 2012, 11:00:34 AM

Question: It still confuses me on how to count and play them, because they if you count them normally you will be go beyond the time signature so how do you count them to make them fit the time signature?

Answer: You can take ANY unit in any bar as "the beat" and divide it into 2, 3, 4, etc. Then you remember how those separate snippets sound, put them together, and just forget about counting them. So if it says 4/4, but there are many quick notes in the music, then it may be useful to take 8th notes or even 16th notes as the beat until you've learned the sound result of what is written. You really don't want to sit and count until a hundred and thirty-two, at least - I'm too lazy to do that...

Paul



Re: How do you count these?
« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2012, 12:15:28 PM »

I think Paul explained it rather well...

One way to think of it: Make sure you know which notes are on the beats, learn to keep the pulse steady and learn to play all the necessary notes between the beats correctly as they are written, if triplets then make sure they are evenly spread. Since you don't have a teacher I think it would be good to record your playing to check that it sounds correct.

But to be honest when it comes to more complex rhythms I'm a bit lazy and if possible I just listen someone play it so I get it


---------------------------------------------------------------

I think the part about "taking any unit and subdividing" seemed to make something click in my mind. It made me want to look for and find any pieces my teacher had marked the counting on for me. And try to see how I could apply the idea of subdividing to the syllables themselves and figure out how those syllables carry across the note values. How do they change from one to the next.

I mean in honesty I was entirely like the poster above. I literally would have written the same response word for word. My counting was always "beyond the time sig" and I could never "count and play at the same time"

But for once I could finally count through some pieces. Although I still struggle alot when the information becomes overwhelming. I'd really like to know how to develop this skill. How does one truly take it to the next level. Or at least gain the understanding of what that "next level" is actually like to comprehend?


Edited by soundofsilenc3 (04/18/13 03:42 PM)

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#2066423 - 04/18/13 08:06 AM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
Morodiene Offline
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Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11353
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Part of the concept of counting out loud is that you are actually thinking about the rhythm, and yes as you pointed out, how it fits into the beats of the measure. There are strong and weak beats, and the counting forces you to place that, even if while you are playing and counting it doesn't necessarily have that flow. Because you work at it with the counting, it will get that flow because you will be accurately keeping the proportion in your mind. You know the counting should sound like '1e+a2e+a3e+a' and so even if you can't play that from the onset due to difficult rhythms or pitches, you will always be seeking that flow because you have something to compare your playing to. It's even better if you write in the counting and make sure all the notes line up with the correct beat you are writing down. Then you can visually see where the note should happen, hear yourself saying it and hear the note being played at the right time, and feeling it of course because speaking the counting is a physical thing as you play.

It's difficult, but like any skill, it takes practice and once you are good at it then it will have value.

Another side benefit of counting out loud is that sometimes when you have repeated notes it's easy to lose track of where you are - the counting insures you don't play too many or too little. Same goes for long notes, most people don't hold them long enough and they just guess. This makes sure that those notes aren't short-changed (and thus shifting the sense of downbeat).
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#2066465 - 04/18/13 10:05 AM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
raikkU Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/20/13
Posts: 73
Thank you. I started playing literally two days ago and I'm struggling with counting.

Bookmarking this thread so that I can read it again later when I have slightly better understanding of things.
_________________________
yamaha p-35. a piano neophyte since 04/13. my piano links

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#2066533 - 04/18/13 12:17 PM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
Charles Cohen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1117
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Only half in jest:

. . . Find a local drum circle, and play a djembe
. . . for a few hours, every week.

When you only have to think about "pulse", and "subdividing beats", and a bunch of people are playing around you, keeping you "in time", your brain develops skills quickly.

. charles

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#2066571 - 04/18/13 02:10 PM Re: Counting [Re: Morodiene]
soundofsilenc3 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/24/11
Posts: 103
Originally Posted By: Morodiene
You know the counting should sound like '1e+a2e+a3e+a' and so even if you can't play that from the onset due to difficult rhythms or pitches, you will always be seeking that flow because you have something to compare your playing to.


Isn't that the beauty of it smile You see I used to think that this is what the metronome is supposed to do. (Give me something to compare against) But when I thought about it, you can only rely on the fact that the metronome will tick repetitively without fail. If you make sure you start "with" the tick that metronome should be your guide ... or so I thought.

But the more I read about it, I'd come across conflicting view points. Mostly many people saying that the metronome will only keep you steady or "only ensure that the notes which land on the tick are in time" Others would say that when you play a piece "only listen to your metronome and nothing else" .... "that metronome will give you clues on how and when to play"

At first I was thrilled with this concept of the metronome. Because counting still made no sense what so ever, so I figured if I could completely understand my metronome than at least I'd be moving forward. (Plus having to just learn about the metronome was like saving a step because maybe I wouldn't need the counting)

I thought about it and realized that even with the metronome on, if the tick starts to feel like its speeding up or slowing down than you are NOT actually in time. It may sound right or feel right but if you can't count from the get go than you don't have a fundamental to base the use of that metronome on. The counting is what actually contributes to that metronome having real value.

If you can't "divide" the beat how can you truly fit it within a metronome accurately? That's what made me realize I NEEDED to learn to count. It wasn't really a choice. It had to be done.

So even though, Yes technically you may still be comparing your playing to a tick/metronome. That tick doesn't actually divide anything for you, if you can't count A.K.A "divide", by counting, than you won't know where your major beats land.
(What beat that tick should be on) I can only assume knowing where each beat is, like clockwork, every single time, will ensure that when you hear that tick you know what beat you are playing and can subdivide the rest of what you see accurately with the syllables and actually in sync with the metronome.

So in essence counting makes the metronome that much easier to use because it will give you something to fit that metronome in with.

I read some opinions which said "always use a metronome" But if you can't count how can you really use it correctly. The counting is what actually teaches you or rather "shows you" how to apply that metronome accurately. So when you do practice with it you actually KNOW how to use it because by knowing the counting you are "understanding" the rhythm. Then you can work on applying that to the tick and making sure each syllable matches up and leads you into that next tick or "beat" of your metronome. (Which is essentially like "comparing" except it is infact the "counting" that is teaching you how to make that comparison)


Edited by soundofsilenc3 (04/18/13 03:36 PM)

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#2066573 - 04/18/13 02:15 PM Re: Counting [Re: raikkU]
soundofsilenc3 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/24/11
Posts: 103
Originally Posted By: raikkU
Thank you. I started playing literally two days ago and I'm struggling with counting.

Bookmarking this thread so that I can read it again later when I have slightly better understanding of things.


Aww thanks so much smile That means a lot smile I'm glad this thread helped you. smile

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#2069125 - 04/23/13 05:29 AM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
Randalthor Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/22/13
Posts: 35
Loc: UK
Originally Posted By: soundofsilenc3

Bookmarking this thread so that I can read it again later when I have slightly better understanding of things.

[/quote]

So true... very useful information...

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#2069637 - 04/23/13 10:58 PM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
JosephAC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/23/12
Posts: 168
Loc: Melbourne Australia
Hi There,

I am absoluetly confused after reading this thread.

I understandg the subdivisioning part and that each unit in the measure gets a count.
After penciling the counts, I end up with sequences of say 1+2+3+ 1 2 3+ 1+ 2 3 ...)

Is counting the piece simply voicing these counts (say 1+2+3+ 1 2 3+ 1+ 2 3 .... )?

How woud you clap a grand stave (with both bottom and top stave) ? Will you clap on the count?

Where does the beat come into it? ( I understand the subdivision must add up to a multiple of the beat count(upper number) of the time signture). Does now each count represent a(subdivided)beat ?

I always thought that rhythm is the feeling underneath the music and not a logical entity that you count?

Please help.





Edited by JosephAC (04/23/13 11:00 PM)

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#2069733 - 04/24/13 03:15 AM Re: Counting [Re: JosephAC]
Charles Cohen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1117
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Originally Posted By: JosephAC

I always thought that rhythm is the feeling underneath the music and not a logical entity that you count?

Please help.


Let's start there . . .

That "feeling" underneath the music involves how the flow of the music relates to time.

Our musical world (most of it) revolves around subdividing time. It divides into "bars" (many drum-circle people call this the "pulse" of the music), And within each bar, it divides into "beats".

The top number in the "time signature" (at the beginning of the piece) tell you how many beats there are, in each bar. By and large, those beats are counted "1 2 3 4 " (if it's a 4-beat bar).

The bottom number in the time signature tells you what note value (in North America: half-note, quarter-note, eighth-note; in Britain, quaver, semiquaver, etc) corresponds to each beat.

In a fully-defined piece of sheet music, there will be a notation something like:

.. . quarter-note = 100

which means that (for that piece!) there are 100 quarter notes in a minute of time. Each quarter-note is 0.600 seconds long.

That's what ties the pulse, or the 1-2-3-4 count, to physical time.

So "rhythm" -- as we use it in sheet music -- _is_ something that you count.

. Charles

PS -- forgive me if this seems formulaic and impersonal. I'm trying to use minimum words to define fundamental concepts. And I'm not a music teacher.

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#2069808 - 04/24/13 08:26 AM Re: Counting [Re: JosephAC]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11353
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By: JosephAC
Hi There,

I am absoluetly confused after reading this thread.

I understandg the subdivisioning part and that each unit in the measure gets a count.
After penciling the counts, I end up with sequences of say 1+2+3+ 1 2 3+ 1+ 2 3 ...)

Is counting the piece simply voicing these counts (say 1+2+3+ 1 2 3+ 1+ 2 3 .... )?

How woud you clap a grand stave (with both bottom and top stave) ? Will you clap on the count?

Where does the beat come into it? ( I understand the subdivision must add up to a multiple of the beat count(upper number) of the time signture). Does now each count represent a(subdivided)beat ?

I always thought that rhythm is the feeling underneath the music and not a logical entity that you count?

Please help.





I would not leave out the 'and's at all. You want to count them even if it's a quarter note or half note or dotted half. That way the space between the beats doesn't change - it keeps you honest. So the counting throughout is always "1+2+3+" Sometimes there's just bank space above the counting for held notes or rests.

If you clap the counting, you can only do one staff at a time. However, you can tap RH & LH beats on the piano or your lap. You aren't clapping the beats, you are clapping/tapping the rhythms which are the individual kinds fo notes being played, over top the beats being counted.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher - full time
MTNA member
www.valeoconservatory.com
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

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#2069815 - 04/24/13 08:43 AM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
raikkU Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/20/13
Posts: 73
I just started and I find that tapping every second beat with my foot in 4/4 helps me stay in rhythm. I didn't learn that everywhere just started doing it intuitively.
_________________________
yamaha p-35. a piano neophyte since 04/13. my piano links

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#2069829 - 04/24/13 09:05 AM Re: Counting [Re: Morodiene]
JosephAC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/23/12
Posts: 168
Loc: Melbourne Australia
Originally Posted By: Morodiene

If you clap the counting, you can only do one staff at a time. However, you can tap RH & LH beats on the piano or your lap. You aren't clapping the beats, you are clapping/tapping the rhythms which are the individual kinds fo notes being played, over top the beats being counted.


I agree that I should not be leaving the 'and'. All measures will be repeated with the same count.

Will I use the same counting when clapping either staff ?
Can you elaborate more on clapping the beat vs clapping the rhythm ? Is the same count in each each ?


When I am learning a new piece, which clapping I am supposed to do? The count ? The beat ? The rhythm ? How to do the latter 2?

Thanks you in advance.

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#2069880 - 04/24/13 10:32 AM Re: Counting [Re: JosephAC]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11353
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By: JosephAC
Originally Posted By: Morodiene

If you clap the counting, you can only do one staff at a time. However, you can tap RH & LH beats on the piano or your lap. You aren't clapping the beats, you are clapping/tapping the rhythms which are the individual kinds fo notes being played, over top the beats being counted.


I agree that I should not be leaving the 'and'. All measures will be repeated with the same count.

Will I use the same counting when clapping either staff ?
Can you elaborate more on clapping the beat vs clapping the rhythm ? Is the same count in each each ?


When I am learning a new piece, which clapping I am supposed to do? The count ? The beat ? The rhythm ? How to do the latter 2?

Thanks you in advance.







The words you say are always "1+2+3+" (if you are in a 3 beats per measure time signature wink ). What you clap is the quarter note, 8th notes, doted quarter, etc. that is in your music score. The clapping is the rhythm of the notes, the counting is just like a metronome keeping the beat going.

I'm afraid I can't make it any clearer than that with words. Do you have a teacher? If so they can demonstrate it for you.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher - full time
MTNA member
www.valeoconservatory.com
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

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#2070040 - 04/24/13 03:48 PM Re: Counting [Re: Morodiene]
JosephAC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/23/12
Posts: 168
Loc: Melbourne Australia
Originally Posted By: Morodiene
What you clap is the quarter note, 8th notes, doted quarter, etc. that is in your music score.


Thanks Morodiene for your explanation and your patience. It makes sense to me to clap a music score with a single stave. This is how I do it.


My confusion is clapping a grand stave and not a single stave. Will I clap the notes on the top stave only? What about the bottom the stave? Will I need to clap them separately ? If I only clap the top stave, why not the bottom stave?


Edited by JosephAC (04/24/13 03:49 PM)

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#2070075 - 04/24/13 04:38 PM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
PianoStudent88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/16/11
Posts: 3147
Loc: Maine
JosephAC, you can clap the top staff and the bottom staff separately, to get familiar with each of them. Often the top staff has the more complicated rhythm, which is perhaps why people tend to talk most about clapping the top staff.
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#2070417 - 04/25/13 03:36 AM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
Charles Cohen Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1117
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Quote:

Will I use the same counting when clapping either staff ?
Can you elaborate more on clapping the beat vs clapping the rhythm ? Is the same count in each each ?


When I am learning a new piece, which clapping I am supposed to do? The count ? The beat ? The rhythm ? How to do the latter 2?


Ah -- confusion!

There are two different things going on:

1. When I count "1 2 3", it's always an _evenly-spaced_ count, one count per beat. That is, in "4/4" time signature, a count on each quarter-note. In "6/8" time signature, a count on each eighth-note.

It's the same count for either staff -- they both have the same time signature.

2. "Clapping the rhythm" usually means clapping with the same rhythm as the melody.

[I tried to illustrate this, but I can't get things to line up right. Need a graphics program, or score-writing software.]

You can't clap and play at the same time. But you _can_ count and play at the same time. So when playing, you just keep the counting (with your mouth) steady, and play the notes at the correct time with your fingers.

If this is still confusing to you, it's time for a teacher. . .

. Charles


Edited by Charles Cohen (04/25/13 03:42 AM)

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#2070422 - 04/25/13 03:54 AM Re: Counting [Re: Charles Cohen]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7413
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: Charles Cohen
That is, in "4/4" time signature, a count on each quarter-note. In "6/8" time signature, a count on each eighth-note.

The beat in 6/8, especially a fast 6/8, is the dotted quarter, NOT the eighth note.
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Polyphonist

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#2070437 - 04/25/13 05:12 AM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
raikkU Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/20/13
Posts: 73
_________________________
yamaha p-35. a piano neophyte since 04/13. my piano links

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#2071708 - 04/26/13 05:19 PM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
raikkU Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/20/13
Posts: 73
How does one count this aloud?



Fourth and eighth notes, dotted or not are pretty simple to just count 1 and, 2 and etc.


Edited by raikkU (04/26/13 05:21 PM)
_________________________
yamaha p-35. a piano neophyte since 04/13. my piano links

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#2071718 - 04/26/13 05:33 PM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
PianoStudent88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/16/11
Posts: 3147
Loc: Maine
I count sixteenth notes as "1-e-and-a 2-e-and-a 3-e-and-a etc." (where "a" is pronounced "uh").

A. One strategy is using count to the smallest subdivision: in this case, a sixteenth note. So you could count:
Quote:
1-e-and a 2-e-and-a-3-e-and-a-4-e-and-a

2. If you can keep a steady beat in your counting, you can pare it down and count (with 2, 3, 4 each taking a full beat):
Quote:
1-e-and a 2-3-4

3. Once you know the rhythmic feel of a dotted sixteenth followed by a sixteenth, you can count:
Quote:
1 ah 2-3-4

Here the "1" will be slightly elongated, just enough to fill up a dotted sixteenth note, and the "ah" will still be short, just the length of a sixteenth note.

Notice that in all of these you are in various places using several counting words on one note.
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#2071727 - 04/26/13 05:48 PM Re: Counting [Re: raikkU]
JosephAC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/23/12
Posts: 168
Loc: Melbourne Australia



Thanks raikkU. I concur these links make it very clear. I am very obliged. I was confusing the counting of the beat and the clapping of the rhythm.


Edited by JosephAC (04/26/13 05:49 PM)

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#2072573 - 04/28/13 01:09 AM Re: Counting [Re: raikkU]
soundofsilenc3 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/24/11
Posts: 103
Originally Posted By: raikkU
How does one count this aloud?



Fourth and eighth notes, dotted or not are pretty simple to just count 1 and, 2 and etc.



If the half note gets the beat. Wouldn't this be 1 & 2 &?

What confuses me here is the dotted notes.

If a dotted 8th = 1 + 16th note

Than a dotted 8th + another 16th note = 1 + an 8th note ( or 2 16ths)

But if your supposed to "hold" the dotted notes would that make the count 1 & ah - (1 & on the dotted 8th) ("ah" on the 16th) 2 (on the half note) OR 1 (on the 8th note - "and" (on the 16th note) - 2 on (on the half note)

Are we simply applying the "shorter counting" being("1 and 2") because the note will be held regardless when you're playing over the measure? (Because you know to hold/sustain it when you see the dot?)

This is about the part where the whole "gets the beat" thing starts to make no sense. If you count or hold the "dotted values" is that not going over the 2 beats?


Edited by soundofsilenc3 (04/28/13 01:12 AM)

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#2072658 - 04/28/13 07:28 AM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11353
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By: soundofsilenc3
Originally Posted By: raikkU
How does one count this aloud?



Fourth and eighth notes, dotted or not are pretty simple to just count 1 and, 2 and etc.



If the half note gets the beat. Wouldn't this be 1 & 2 &?

What confuses me here is the dotted notes.

If a dotted 8th = 1 + 16th note

Than a dotted 8th + another 16th note = 1 + an 8th note ( or 2 16ths)

But if your supposed to "hold" the dotted notes would that make the count 1 & ah - (1 & on the dotted 8th) ("ah" on the 16th) 2 (on the half note) OR 1 (on the 8th note - "and" (on the 16th note) - 2 on (on the half note)

Are we simply applying the "shorter counting" being("1 and 2") because the note will be held regardless when you're playing over the measure? (Because you know to hold/sustain it when you see the dot?)

This is about the part where the whole "gets the beat" thing starts to make no sense. If you count or hold the "dotted values" is that not going over the 2 beats?


I would count it as if you were in 4/4. Despite it being Cut time, it looks for all purposes like 4/4 and it's easier to count. You use '1e+a2e+a3e+a4e+a' Where the dotted 8th gets '1e+' the 16th get 'a' and the dotted half note gets all the remaining counts.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher - full time
MTNA member
www.valeoconservatory.com
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

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#2072888 - 04/28/13 03:17 PM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7413
Loc: New York City
In cut time, half notes are counted 1212, quarter notes are 1+2+1+2+, eighth notes are 1e+a2e+a1a+a2e+a, and so on; the beat is the half note.
_________________________
Regards,

Polyphonist

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#2072942 - 04/28/13 04:52 PM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
PianoStudent88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/16/11
Posts: 3147
Loc: Maine
I missed that the excerpt is in cut time. While usually I would count cut time the way polyphonist says, I would still count this as if it were 4/4. The reason is the sixteenth note. I don't have a syllable or practiced rhythm for that when counting 1 number per half note. (Same as I don't have a syllable for thirty-second notes in 4/4 time.)

So I count it as if it were in 4/4 time, but remember that the pulse of the beats are just on 1 and 3, not on 1 2 3 and 4. In general, while it might be usual to count with one number on each beat, you can count assigning the numbers to any length of note that is convenient. The goal is to get the proportions and the pulse right.
_________________________
Ebaug(maj7)

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#2077473 - 05/05/13 02:50 AM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
soundofsilenc3 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/24/11
Posts: 103
I just thought I'd post a helpful link on subdivisions. It came off a guitar website but the substance seems to be very useful.

http://totalguitarist.com/lessons/rhythm/reference/counting/

The bottom chart details common 16th note subdivisions. I'm still troubled when trying to apply these exact countings. In each and every piece, precisely, and each and every time.

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#2077522 - 05/05/13 07:20 AM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
zrtf90 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/29/12
Posts: 2308
Loc: Ireland (ex England)
The one-e-and-a has never appealed to me and never really helped much.

The one-trip-let, two-triplet, idea is better but we have been looking at using words in a couple of related threads this weekend. Sixteenths can be verbalised as huckleberry, rockabilly, Piccadilly, cemetery and so on.

Instead of counting it might be worthwhile picking some words with appropriate 'feet' to suggest the rhythm better.

Picking words that are obscene, colourful, funny and, for me, alliterative seems to improve remembering them.
_________________________
Richard

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#2077594 - 05/05/13 10:58 AM Re: Counting [Re: zrtf90]
zillybug Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/11/11
Posts: 122
Loc: USA
Hi Richard,
I also never found the one e and a helpful. I just couldn't seem to get the subdivisions in my head. You mentioned using words and that's how I was able to finally get the rhythm for 16th notes. When I went to Summer Keys, a summer music program for adults in Maine last year, the teacher and director, Bruce taught us using words like elderberry and I finally was able to get 16th note runs that had been giving me all kinds of problems. Now whenever, I have 16th notes, I count using elderberry and it works.
Judy

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#2077599 - 05/05/13 11:10 AM Re: Counting [Re: soundofsilenc3]
zrtf90 Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/29/12
Posts: 2308
Loc: Ireland (ex England)
That's great, Judy!

My dad used to make elderberry wine and I found that helps too! <hic>
_________________________
Richard

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#2077677 - 05/05/13 02:04 PM Re: Counting [Re: zrtf90]
Mark... Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/27/06
Posts: 4373
Loc: Jersey Shore
Originally Posted By: zrtf90
That's great, Judy!

My dad used to make elderberry wine and I found that helps too! <hic>





You reminded me of this Elton John song from:
Don't shoot me. I'm only the piano player... smile

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