Friday, July 29, 2005

Our in-house notation style

The Tonics are a melodic bunch, and often they come up with melodic ideas when they don't have a tape recorder or music composition books. So how do they make sure they don't forget melody lines? Steven has used the following "Notepad-friendly" notation style for vocal melodies:


The "Lucy tricked me into something" melody would be transcribed like this:

1 2 3 4 1 2 a3 4

The top row tells you the pitch, followed by which octave it's in, so you can see that the Bb is the one that's below the C, not above. The bottom row shows the rhythm. Each number is the count that the note falls on. The syncopation happens on "-to some-"----the "-to" falls on the 2nd beat, and "some-" falls on the 'and' beat of the 2nd beat (hence the "a3"). Take a look at the following diagram if you are confused:
F2      E2      D2      F2      C2      Bb1 A1          C2
Lu cy tricked me in to some thing
1 2 3 4 1 2 a 3 4
You can make the notation even shorter by stating the octave only when it changes, and deleting the "3" beat that "some" doesn't actually fall on.

1 2 3 4 1 2 a 4

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