Chapter 2: Rhythm and Meter: Musical Time
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Some of the musical selections below signaled by a require subscription access*. See below for listening assignments.
Duple meter: Ah! vous dirai-je, maman (Mozart), same tune as
Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star (children's song)
Triple meter: America (patriotic song)
Quadruple meter: Battle Hymn of the Republic (Civil War song)
Sextuple meter: Greensleeves (folk song, United Kingdom)
Swing Low, Sweet Chariot (African-American spiritual):
Try singing or speaking this song in time with a regular beat.
(Note that the words in the first measure come between the beats.)
Let's return to the song Tonight and note its rhythmic and metric concepts.
- Duple meter (strong beat, weak beat).
- Initial upbeat (To- NIGHT, last part of word is downbeat).
- Complex rhythms with offbeats and syncopations.
- Polyrhythms in accompaniment.
Duple meter: Camptown Races (Stephen Foster)
Triple meter: Lullaby (Brahms)
Quadruple meter: O Canada (Canadian national anthem)
Sextuple meter: Pop Goes the Weasel (traditional, United Kingdom)
Offbeat: Oh! Susannah (Stephen Foster)
Syncopation: Pine Apple Rag (Scott Joplin)
Shifting meter: El Cihualteco (Mexico, mariachi song)
Polyrhythm: Osain (Cuba, Santería)
Nonmetric: Kyrie (Hildegard of Bingen)
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