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Originally Posted by Jeanne W
Just a quick note to correct something I said in my earlier post.

I thanked dogperson for offering the alternative notation that involves a duplet when in fact, it was mydp.

Thank you, Jeanne!
No offense taken! smile

Juan


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Hi, Again.

To everyone who has joined in here, thank you. I thought there would always be one "right" way to notate rhythms, I know now I was mistaken about that. Notation is not always "cut and dried". Certain rhythmic patterns may be notated more than one way. Juan (mydp), the fact that each of the two notation programs you use notated the rhythm I'm asking about different ways is further evidence that there's more than one way to "bake a cake."

Juan (mydp) & Charles: Thanks for commenting on the notation I referenced in those classical pieces of music that I thought did not comply with rhythmic rules. I now know why the notation is the way it is and also that it's not that unusual, is in common use.

Charles, your explanation and comments about the notation in Chopin's "Mazurka": "It's as if Chopin wants a 2 feel in the rh of bar one and a 3 feel in bar 2." and "Chopin is adapting his notation to clearly show how the music should be played." makes it easy to understand the logic behind the way the rhythm is notated.

You also discussed the slur that appears above the notation in the Mazurka and why it's there. I had noticed that, suspected it might have something to do with the notation and intended to ask about it but you beat me to it, confirmed what I was thinking. This is useful information. The notation with the slur may actually be the way to notate a passage or two in a few older compositions I struggled with, trying to figure out how to notate the rhythm/pulse so it would sound the way I intend it to.

Charles, I do still have a question about "syncopation" and "displaced accents". I think I may be misinterpreting something you said. I will follow-up in a bit.

Jeanne W

Last edited by Jeanne W; 02/11/22 07:45 PM.

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Originally Posted by CharlesXX
The Chopin Mazurka you mention is very interesting. It's as if Chopin wants a 2 feel in the rh of bar one, and a 3 feel in bar 2. Notice the slur over the three 1/8 notes in bar 1, 13 and 17. So he is alternating between a 2 feel and a 3 feel in subsequent bars. If you listen to a good performance of this piece, it can clearly be heard. Think 6/8 followed by 3/4.

Chopin is adapting his notation to clearly show how the music should be played. This is what composers do. Sure, as a 3/4 bar the 1/8 note grouping is wrong. But Chopin is trying to show that he does not want this bar played as a 3/4 bar in the rh, but like a 6/8. What else to do?

This notation is very commonly used in 18th and 19th century music. I'm pretty sure Chopin used this convention in all his mazurkas and waltzes. It doesn't usually indicate a 6/8 feel.

It's only later, in the 20th century, that it became the accepted convention to break the beam between the second and third beats in these cases.


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MRC: Regarding notation conventions having changed after Chopin's time, thank you for sharing that info. I'm aware of a few other notation conventions that have changed over time, but didn’t know this was one of them.

Charles: Regarding rules, I've been meaning to mention how much I like your earlier comment:

Quote
Originally Posted by CharlesXX

So, Bach and Chopin don't break the rules - they make the rules!! (I just made that up. Thought I was being quite the comedian.)

grin grin grin

Jeanne W


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Charles:

In answer to your question, when I have questions about notation I usually refer either to hard copies of web pages I printed out months or years ago or the instruction books on notation and composition I've collected over the years. I did not save web addresses nor web links for the info I found on the internet, therefore am not able to provide web links.

Now to follow-up, about my question regarding "syncopation" versus "displaced accents": I assumed all along that placing two dotted 1/4 notes in one bar in 3/4 time is syncopation, however, something you said earlier in this discussion has me wondering:

Quote
Originally Quoted by CharlesXX:

I didn't realise that syncopation is something you were concerned with. One of the sites I looked at quickly defined syncopation in terms of strong and weak accents on beats. This is incorrect and confuses what is called "displaced accent" with syncopation. That famous bit in our friend Stravinsk's "Rite" is displaced accent.

Syncopation is more correctly "a cutting of the meter." So in 4/4, a bar of 1/8 1/4 1/4 1/4 1/8 is syncopation. It's not about putting strong or weak accents on unexpected beats. Any Rag Time piece will give you an idea of what syncopation is.

I'm not entirely sure I understand how you mean syncopation is "... not about putting strong or weak accents on unexpected beats". I think I may be misinterpreting what you said.

My understanding is "syncopation" and "displaced accents" generally speaking " both involve putting strong accents on unexpected beats". By that I mean that both terms involve emphasized notes that do not correspond to the normally stressed beats of the prevailing meter; however, there is a further distinction between the two. According to the sources I have consulted:

** A displaced accent always involves an accent mark that is notated above a note; whereas "syncopation" does not. Syncopation occurs as the result of what I'll call "a different type of musical maneuver" and there is more than one way to introduce syncopation. An example would be the example you offered: in 4/4, a bar of 1/8 1/4 1/4 1/4 1/8 and also, as in my composition in 3/4 time, two dotted 1/4 notes.

It seems to me the difference between the two terms is helpful when discussing composition. It enables whoever is discussing it to drill down to the nth degree to exactly what is being referred to.

Does this sound right?

A side note of interest… Yesterday my husband, who I've also been discussing this topic with, told me the universe must be trying to get a message to me. He received an email titled: [i]Everyone loves an accent."[/i]

grin

(The email is from a furniture shop about how colorful accents can liven up a room's home décor scheme.)



Jeanne W

Last edited by Jeanne W; 02/13/22 02:53 PM.

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I think you are on the right track regarding syncopation.

So, putting an accent above or an sf below the 2nd and/or 4th beat in a 4/4 bar is not syncopation.

Your first syncopation example is good. However, your two dotted 1/4 notes in a 3/4 bar is perhaps closer to a dotted rhythm than syncopation.

There are many examples in popular music of syncopation. I am going to try and post a piano version of Eleanor Rigby with the music where there are numerous extended examples.

Eleanor Rigby

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