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  • 1. Music is propelled forward by rhythm
    • Rhythm: length, or duration, of individual notes
    • Beat: regular pulsation
    • Accented beats are stronger, providing rhythmic pulse
    • Meter: patterns into which rhythmic pulses are organized
    • Measure: in notation, a unit of a fixed number of beats
  • 2. Metrical patterns
    • Musical time is organized in recurring patterns
      • Typically 2, 3, or 4 beats grouped in a measure
    • Downbeat: first accented beat in a measure
    • Duple meter: two beats per measure—strong, weak
    • Triple meter: three beats per measure—strong, weak, weak
    • Quadruple meter, or common time: four beats per measure—strongest, weak, strong, weak
  • 3. Describing Meters
    • Simple meters: each beat is subdivided into two or four
    • Compound meters: each beat is subdivided into three
      • Sextuple meter: six beats to the measure
        • Strongest, weak, weak, strong, weak, weak
    • Syncopation: deliberate disruption of regular patterns
      • Accent is shifted to a weak beat or offbeat (in between the beats)
    • Polyrhythm: simultaneous use of different rhythmic patterns
    • Additive meter: irregular grouping of beats in a larger pattern
      • Example: 10 = 2 + 3 + 2 + 3
    • Nonmeteric: music without a strong sense of beat or meter

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