Musical Symbols And Their Meanings

in Music
Music is a language in itself. It is very much like learning to speak and read a foreign language because each musical symbol stands for a very specific musical meaning. Take the time to carefully read through the music definitions in this article to give you some frame of reference as you begin music training on any instrument, including the human voice!

Begin your musical study by becoming familiar with these very important musical terms:

BAR LINE - A vertical line which separates notes into groups

DOUBLE BAR LINE - A set of two (2) vertical lines which stand for the end of a piece of music

REPEAT SIGN - Double bar with two dots at the end of a section or piece of music which indicates that section will be played twice.

MEASURE - The distance between two bar lines.

TREBLE CLEF - The S-shaped symbol which stands for notes played with the right hand. This is also referred to as the G cleff since this inner curve of the symbol rests on the G line.

BASS CLEF - The reversed C-shaped symbol which stand for notes played with the left hand. This clef is also referred to as the F cleff since the two dots beside the clef surround the F line.

STAFF - The five lines and four spaces of both the bass and treble clefs.

QUARTER NOTE - Musical symbol with solid note head and stem which gets one count of sound.

QUARTER REST - Musical symbol resembling a sideways W which gets one count of silence.

HALF NOTE - Musical symbol with hollow note head and stem which gets two counts of sound.

HALF REST - Solid half block sitting on third line of the staff which gets two counts of silence.

DOTTED HALF NOTE - Musical symbol with hollow note head, dot and stem which gets three counts of sound.

WHOLE NOTE - Musical symbol resembling a circle on the staff which gets four counts of sound.

WHOLE REST - Solid half block hanging from the second line on the staff which gets four counts of silence.

CHORD - Two or more notes played at the same time.

BLOCKED CHORD - Two or more notes from the same chord played at the same time.

BROKEN CHORD - Two or more notes from the same chord played in sequence.

INTERVAL - The distance between two notes on the musical staff.

FINGERING - Refers to which finger number is used to play a particular note

CURVED FINGER - Refers to playing with a rounded finger and on the tip of each finger. This is the best position of the fingers for playing piano or keyboard because it develops finger strength and independence.
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For a Complete Directory of free piano lessons, videos and sheet music, visit Adult Piano Lesson at http://www.AdultPianoLesson.com. Jan Durrant is the owner of the Free Piano Lesson Guide, a directory of free high quality piano lessons for older beginner piano students.

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Musical Symbols And Their Meanings

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This article was published on 2010/11/11