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Chapter 4 : Stringed Instruments

STRINGED INSTRUMENTS Image from Pixabay Fretted Stringed Instruments Lute Viola (6 strings) Cittum Mandolin (4 or 5 strings) Guitar (6 strings) Banjo (5 or 6 strings) Ukuelele (4 strings) Unfretted Stringed Instruments Lyre Violin (4 strings) Viola (4 strings) Cello Double Bass (4 strings) LUTE A plucked stringed instrument, the R.H. plucking the strings (the plectrum is NOT used).  It is an ancient and widely distributed family shaped somewhat like a half pear with its stalk, sliced in half, the stalk representing the finger-board which is fretted.  There is no bridge and each string is duplicated in unison – the number of strings varying at different periods and indifferent countries.  The head or peg box is bent back from the neck at an angle. The Lute Excerpt from Barbara Thomas' manuscript The ancient Thespotamia Lute dates bac to 2000 B.C.  The Lute with a few embellishments is still in use in Arabia and during the 20th c has seen a slight re
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Chapter 3: Keyboard Instruments

  KEYBOARD INSTRUMENTS These are a set of instruments possessing levers which enable the performer to play with both hands a series of simultaneous sounds (e.g. pianoforte, or harmonium) or 2 hands and the feet (organ) These sound combinations can be easier to control from a larger number of strings/reeds/pipes than would be possible by other families of instruments.  The keyboard family is tuned to semitone distances, which is the standardised progression of sounds at present.  Thought is being given to “microtone” progression which would necessitate a totally new adaptation of the keyboard instrument.     THE ORGAN The earliest keyboard was apparently that of the Organ melodic planning was in vogue.  The sounds are produced by inflating bellows which force air through pipes graduated as to length and bore which affects the pitch of the sound produced.   These pipes some of which are of (1) wood, some (2) metal, (3) whistle or flue pipes and (4) others supplied with a vibrat

Chapter 2- Notation & Instruments

NOTATION A method of recording music so that it can be read for performance. The use of letters of the alphabet to identify notes originated with the Greeks and was adopted by the Romans, although these systems do not seem to have been used by performers. The first systematic notation was based on “ neums” which were introduced in the 7th c.   A proportional notation   capable of recording time values began in the 10th c. using notes of different shapes, although bar lines were not introduced until the 15th c. The present Staff notation gradually evolved over this period and has been in use continuously for over 400 years. It is well adapted for music based on semitone intervals , but breaks down when microtones are used. A parallel Notation - “ tonic solfo ” was first introduced in the 11th c.  It was initially known as “solmization” but has been termed as “tonic solfa” from the 19th c. onwards. But this system has limited uses for teaching and in singing. A different type of notation

Chapter 1- Western Music

When man is under tension be it in battle , love ,  sorrow , prayer or joy, music is able to evoke something from him that he is unable to do by any other means. What is Music? Music is sound organised to rhythmic patterns and pitched into melodic and harmonious sequences. Name some of the aspects of music and the ancient philosophers /musicians who saw in music these attitudes: PYTHOGRAS -Mathematical PLATO  & ARISTOTILE – Ethical Preparation of the ear for the coming of a discordant interval and the passing of it to a smooth concord (i.e. RESOLUTION) The increase of the interest of singers and listeners to the occasional pauses (RESTS) of the voice so that it may re-enter with more effect. The taking up by one voice of some wisp of melody just uttered by another ( i.e. IMITATION) The close and EVEN exact melodic following of one voice after another ( a more complete form of imitation called “CANON or ROUND. To the close of the 16c. the phase of pure choral writing rose to its cli