Art            Lip               Welcome                  to my universe
I‘m a: singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist/trumpetplayer, producer/performer, photographer/visual artist, science fiction writer
© All works and content under Creative Commons License BY NC ND

Tutorial

The Mainstream Soloist

Rhythm II

Beat - Offbeat The term "beat" is used twofold in the musical world: it stands for a musical- pattern or groove without lead melodies, that rappers or melodists use for over-dubbing. That's a modern interpretation of the word. In older and more important use it is the basic beat of a bar: e.g. the quarter notes of a 4/4 meter.   Referring to quarter notes, eighth notes - that don't fall on the quarter notes - are offbeats, more precisely: eights offbeats. Accordingly a Sixteenth note that doesn't fall on a quarter note or an eighth note is a sixteenth note offbeat. Here is an audible example for you : Triplets If you play beats in three-way units over a basic metrum that is based on two- way units - like 2/4, 4/4 - you get "triplets" (Sample Track "3 against 2"). A metrum based on two-way units is called binary. "Binary", like the  established binary system that is used in computers (as is well-known, computers use two digits - specificly 0 and 1 - for computing. Our commonly used system when we are shopping uses 10 digits and is called decimal). Instrumentalists should - drummers MUST master the following exercise: One hand taps 4/4, the other 3/4 - at the same time! (That's called "3 against 4", it's easier to do than "3 against 2" in my opinion and the exercise serves the same purpose. If you understand that better the other way - every brain is "wired" differently - then just practice "3 against 2". And - no worry - I won't start talking about duoles and similar refinements too. It is of no importance which hand plays which part for the average musiscian, but drummers and pianists should practice both variations and drummers additionally should master them with their feet plus the combination hands versus feet too. Hint: The whole exercises only work in the sense intended, if the two "1"s of the two parts allways hit the same beat (the "1" of the two parts is common and identical). One could say, that the triplets are timestretched in a sense - the 3 beats are running in the same time segment as the 4 beats. This is not an easy exercise for the beginner. My recommendation for the advanced player is, to master at least one combination, for drummers and pianists it is a must and guitarists also benefit from that. As a side-effect we just learned a new term now: binary. Its common counterpart is called ternary. I won't also explain quintoles, septoles and the like here. Here is an audible example of 3 against 2 for you :   Binary, ternary, swing , triolic We just learned: "Even" note values as part of two-way pattern are called binary (e.g.: a quarter note is divided into two parts and generates two eights notes), note values as part of a thre-way pattern are called ternary (e.g.: the quarter note is divided into three parts and generates triplet eights notes). In even other words: in binary rhythms the triplet is the special case, in ternary rhythms the "even" notes are the exception. In real existing music of today anyhow the standard is a mix of both forms. The naming convention, to name the quarter notes divided by three as triplet eights notes and not as "12th" has historical reasons (that I personally never liked very much). And this is even more disconcerting with regard to triplet sixteenth notes. Especially, since every musician with a computer (who doesn't have one actually?) can adjust them as "1/24" in the quantize grid of his music software. Then there is also the term Swing In swing the offbeats are also appearing later then in even playing. And they can appear earlier or later than the perfect triplets. If we look really close anyway , then these swing offbeats are not on some "mysterious" undefinable point - they are still part of a triolic grid. But the resolution of that grid is much finer than discernable by the average listener. The resolution grid of triplet sixteenth notes ("24ths") is the limit for most listeners and there are rappers mastering them perfectly. But of cause the "refining-the-resolution-game" can be played beyond triplet sixtyfourth notes - and this is actually done by jazz players routinely. Conclusion: You may not be able to discern the differences absolutely with your consciously counting  mind - but on an unconscious level one can do it - and that is why the outcome sounds more smooth when it is fitting in those fine grids. To master that as a player, it is important to handle the perfcet triplets precisely in slower tempi. Down to the triplet sixteenth notes if possible. I put example tracks to all cases and variations that I explained above here. The soloist has now gained enough knowledge for his needs in the field of rhythm by the above explained. Drummers might find it not enough still - they look somewhere else please for even more details and  explanations. Many people who own a software sequencer might have found the explanations banal in parts - but not every musician has access to such. I recommend to change that if it is so :) Here are audible examples of terms explained above for you: Even 8ths :  Triolic 8ths:   Swing 8ths:   Even 16ths:   Triolic 16ths:   Swing 16ths: Phrasing Phrasing means: the ability of the soloist to play riffs (let's say the riff consists of three parts to keep the amount of notes small) as well in relation to dynamics (view the chapter about articulation for details please) as in relation to rhythmical time design (some possibilities were already dealt with here) in a way that they get a certain characteristic - and that it is matching to the ruling context of course:)

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© All works and content under Creative Commons License BY NC ND

Tutorial

The Mainstream Soloist

Rhythm II

Beat - Offbeat The term "beat" is used twofold in the musical world: it stands for a musical-pattern or groove without lead melodies, that rappers or melodists use for over-dubbing. That's a modern interpretation of the word. In older and more important use it is the basic beat of a bar: e.g. the quarter notes of a 4/4 meter.   Referring to quarter notes, eighth notes - that don't fall on the quarter notes - are offbeats, more precisely: eights offbeats. Accordingly a Sixteenth note that doesn't fall on a quarter note or an eighth note is a sixteenth note offbeat. Here is an audible example for you : Triplets If you play beats in three-way units over a basic metrum that is based on two-way units - like 2/4, 4/4 - you get "triplets" (Sample Track "3 against 2"). A metrum based on two-way units is called binary. "Binary", like the  established binary system that is used in computers (as is well-known, computers use two digits - specificly 0 and 1 - for computing. Our commonly used system when we are shopping uses 10 digits and is called decimal). Instrumentalists should - drummers MUST master the following exercise: One hand taps 4/4, the other 3/4 - at the same time! (That's called "3 against 4", it's easier to do than "3 against 2" in my opinion and the exercise serves the same purpose. If you understand that better the other way - every brain is "wired" differently - then just practice "3 against 2". And - no worry - I won't start talking about duoles and similar refinements too. It is of no importance which hand plays which part for the average musiscian, but drummers and pianists should practice both variations and drummers additionally should master them with their feet plus the combination hands versus feet too. Hint: The whole exercises only work in the sense intended, if the two "1"s of the two parts allways hit the same beat (the "1" of the two parts is common and identical). One could say, that the triplets are timestretched in a sense - the 3 beats are running in the same time segment as the 4 beats. This is not an easy exercise for the beginner. My recommendation for the advanced player is, to master at least one combination, for drummers and pianists it is a must and guitarists also benefit from that. As a side-effect we just learned a new term now: binary. Its common counterpart is called ternary. I won't also explain quintoles, septoles and the like here. Here is an audible example of 3 against 2 for you :   Binary, ternary, swing , triolic We just learned: "Even" note values as part of two-way pattern are called binary (e.g.: a quarter note is divided into two parts and generates two eights notes), note values as part of a thre- way pattern are called ternary (e.g.: the quarter note is divided into three parts and generates triplet eights notes). In even other words: in binary rhythms the triplet is the special case, in ternary rhythms the "even" notes are the exception. In real existing music of today anyhow the standard is a mix of both forms. The naming convention, to name the quarter notes divided by three as triplet eights notes and not as "12th" has historical reasons (that I personally never liked very much). And this is even more disconcerting with regard to triplet sixteenth notes. Especially, since every musician with a computer (who doesn't have one actually?) can adjust them as "1/24" in the quantize grid of his music software. Then there is also the term Swing In swing the offbeats are also appearing later then in even playing. And they can appear earlier or later than the perfect triplets. If we look really close anyway , then these swing offbeats are not on some "mysterious" undefinable point - they are still part of a triolic grid. But the resolution of that grid is much finer than discernable by the average listener. The resolution grid of triplet sixteenth notes ("24ths") is the limit for most listeners and there are rappers mastering them perfectly. But of cause the "refining-the-resolution- game" can be played beyond triplet sixtyfourth notes - and this is actually done by jazz players routinely. Conclusion: You may not be able to discern the differences absolutely with your consciously counting  mind - but on an unconscious level one can do it - and that is why the outcome sounds more smooth when it is fitting in those fine grids. To master that as a player, it is important to handle the perfcet triplets precisely in slower tempi. Down to the triplet sixteenth notes if possible. I put example tracks to all cases and variations that I explained above here. The soloist has now gained enough knowledge for his needs in the field of rhythm by the above explained. Drummers might find it not enough still - they look somewhere else please for even more details and  explanations. Many people who own a software sequencer might have found the explanations banal in parts - but not every musician has access to such. I recommend to change that if it is so :) Here are audible examples of terms explained above for you: Even 8ths :  Triolic 8ths:   Swing 8ths:   Even 16ths:   Triolic 16ths:   Swing 16ths: Phrasing Phrasing means: the ability of the soloist to play riffs (let's say the riff consists of three parts to keep the amount of notes small) as well in relation to dynamics (view the chapter about articulation for details please) as in relation to rhythmical time design (some possibilities were already dealt with here) in a way that they get a certain characteristic - and that it is matching to the ruling context of course:)

Next

Art Lip                Welcome to my universe