Transcript Week 1-Review
SC 1: The course enables the students to master the
rudiments and terminology of music: notational skills,
scales, keys, intervals, chords, meter, and rhythm.
Pitch: A tone sounding in a particular octave (scientifically refers to the specific sound wave
frequencies that occur to create that sound)
Pitches are named with the first seven letters in the alphabet- A, B, C, D, E, F, G
Forward in the alphabet=moving upward in pitch; backward in the alphabet=moving downward in pitch
Skipping in pitch (A-C, for example) is counting in Thirds
Notes that have the same letter name but sound slightly different (higher or lower) are an
Notes a perfect octave apart are in the same Pitch Class.
The keyboard is divided by sets of two and three black keys. The white key immediate to the left of the
set of two black keys is pitch class C.
You can count from C (forward to the right, backward to the left) in the alphabet, giving each white key
the next letter name.
Black keys stand for the “flats and sharps” of the keyboard. A black key immediately to the right of a
white key takes the white key’s letter name and adds a sharp (#). A black key immediately to the left of
a white key takes the white key’s letter name and adds a flat (b).
The symbols # and b are called accidentals. A third accidental, called a natural ( ), is used to return a
sharped or flatted note to its natural (white key) state.
Black keys simultaneously have a flat name and a sharp name. These are called Enharmonic notes.
Not all enharmonic notes occur on black keys. We can raise B to the nearest key and call it B#.
However, when we look at the keyboard, we see that B raised to the nearest key is actually C. B# and C
are enharmonic notes. Cb and B are enharmonic notes, as well as E# and F and Fb and E.
In addition, a white key may have a name other than it’s natural white key name. Notes can be double
flatted (bb) or double sharped (x). These accidentals lower the pitch by a whole step rather than a half
step. For example, Abb is also G. Dx is also E.
**When writing accidentals on the staff, the accidental is written before the note. When speaking, the
accidental is said after the letter name.
The accidental is written in front of the notehead on the staff (on the line/space of the letter name)
Whole Steps and Half Steps
Interval: distance between any two notes; Intervals come down to half steps and whole steps
Half Step: Interval between a note and the next closest note on the keyboard
Usually between a white key and a black key, with the exceptions of B-C and E-F
Whole Step: Two half steps
Usually between two black keys or two white keys, with the exceptions of B-C#, C-Bb,
Pitches are represented on paper using a Staff. A staff is made up of five lines and four spaces. Notes
that appear higher on the staff sound higher in pitch. Notes that appear lower on the staff sound lower
The letter names of the lines and spaces are determined by the clef. The three clefs we will use in this
class are the Treble Clef, Bass Clef, and C Clef.
Bottom Line starts on E, Bottom Space starts on F
Lines: E G B D F
Spaces: F A C E
Bottom Line starts on G, Bottom Space Starts on A
Lines: G B D F A
Spaces: A C E G
The C clef is the only moveable clef. The middle point of the clef, where the two curves meet,
denotes C on the staff.
A helpful way to become fluent in C clef is to practice saying the alphabet in thirds. (C E G B D).
Registers and Ledger Lines
A register denotes which octave a letter named pitch falls in. The first C on the (full size) piano is C1, the
second C2, the third C3, middle C in C4, etc.
The rest of the notes are named after C. So the D directly beside middle C is D4. The B directly under
middle C is B3.
To extend the staff, ledger lines are used. Ledger lines are small lines that appear above or below the
staff to create “more lines and spaces” on which to write music.
Ledger lines follow the alphabet up and down, just like the regular staff. Ledger lines can be seen as
“placeholders” for notes between the staff and the note outside the staff.
We can use ledger lines to show the connection between the treble and bass staff. When we put these
staves together, treble on top, we have a Grand Staff.
The Grand Staff
Dynamics are markings in music to indicate how relatively loud or soft the music should be performed.
Other dynamics indications are crescendo (gradually get louder), and decrescendo (gradually get softer).
They are notated with these symbols: