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glossary

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glossary
Here is a listing of musical terms used within this text, simply defined and linked back into
the text. Many of the hyperlinks from within the text come to this page. The one / two / three
/ four choices to the right of each word entry are links back into the text where the term is
used. If there is a page titled by the term, choosing choice one will take the reader there. The
two choice tries to link the vocabulary term to a melodic application if applicable. The three
choice will link the term to a harmonic application of the term. The four choice to an artistic
concept or technique where the theory of the term is applied or to a hyperlink to a www. site
of the topic. Perhaps use this page as a search engine for finding discussions regarding a
particular musical term of interest. Oh, the definitions of the numerous slang terms included
here are of course debatable based on your own locale and degree of hipness.

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accidental

a symbol used to alter a pitch, usually by half step.


accidentals include the sharp ( # ) and flat ( b ) and others.

altered

when pitches of a scale or chord are changed from their


one two
diatonic identities, generally refers to upper structure
configurations of dominant seventh chords, could be used to three four
describe any non diatonic pitches.

ambiance

musical atmosphere, environment.

amen effect

my term, describes moving from the One chord to the Four


back to One, generally associated with gospel music.

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antecedent

the "question" or first part of a musical phrase.

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common with non chordal instruments whereby the artist


arpeggiating simply arpeggiates each chord in the progression, usually an one two
the harmony easy way to clearly outline the chords / harmonic
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progression of a song.
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arpeggio

"harplike", "broken chord." a musical phrase comprised of


chord tones.

arrangements

the format that the performance of composition will follow, a one two
"map" of the tune, i.e., intro, head, solos, head, tag etc.
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slang for working out the arrangement the band will play
arrangements immediately preceding the performance of the tune,
one two
while you
generally done while on the bandstand, although greatly
wait
increasing the risk of a train wreak, seasoned players do this three four
all the time, especially on "casuals" or pick up gigs.

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artistic filters

to pass an motif through an existing structure, style or


concept.

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artistic
license

artistically fitting round pegs in square holes, what an artist


might want to have when their ideas are a bit ahead of their

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two

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time etc., allows an artist to "stretch" conventional


guidelines, norms and standards.

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artistic
signature

aurally recognizable components of a particular players


artistic statement, i.e., tone, articulation, phrasing etc.

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atonality

music having no tonal center or sense of tonic.

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to enlarge or supplement, usually associated with musical


one two
intervals, melodically often associated with the whole tone
augment (ed)
scale, chordally we find the augmented term associated with three four
the 4th and 5th degrees of the dominant seventh chord.

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augmented
6th chords

more found in traditional or classical music, so named by the one two


interval between the root and one of the upper voices, which
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forms the interval of an augmented 6th.

aurally

to hear through listening with one's ears, to recognize


theoretical musical elements by ear.

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authentic

a type of chord cadencing using tonic and dominant chords.

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ax

slang term for instrument.

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backpedaling root motion counterclockwise to the cycle of fifths.

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backpocket

slang for something easily done.

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bag of licks

collection of your own favorite musical phrases or chord


changes.

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ballad

a style of song characterized by a slower, stately tempo with one two


an emotional content usually centered on the topic of love.
three four

Baroque

a style or period of European music and architecture


characterized by it's emphasis on ornamentation of line,
historically spanning the years of 1600 to 1750's.

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barre

a chord shape on stringed instruments whereby the index


finger of the fretting hand perpendicularly covers all of the
strings, in effect replacing the nut of the instrument.

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bass

lowest vocal register, lowest pitch of a chord, foundation of


the music.

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bebop

a rather complex style of American jazz historically from the


late 1930's to the 40's, pioneered by Charlie Parker, Thelonius one two
Monk, Dizzy Gillespie, Max Roach and many others,
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characterized by bright tempos, intricate melodies,


polyrhythms, extensive modulation and tremendous
excitement for the players and listeners alike.

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bending
pitches

the fine art of changing pitch by physically altering the


creation of the pitch, i.e., pushing or pulling a string, using a one two
slide on the strings, tightening the embouchure for horn
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players, bending pitches is often essential in delivering the
more elementary blues styles.

binary

usually associated with form in music, basically meaning


two parts making up the whole, as in the number 25 is a
binary number.

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birds' eye

slang for fermata, a symbol for suspending the forward


motion / time of the music.

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bitonal

two distinctly different aural colors used together.

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blowing

slang for soloing.

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blue notes

the third, augmented fourth and minor seventh pitches of the one two
blues scale.
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blueprint

in this text used to describe basic harmonic formulas or key

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two
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blues

musical elements that are often associated with or define a


popular musical style.

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the core of American music styles.

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my term for a musical device that can quickly retonally


blues anchor center our improvisations, regardless of how "outside" the
tonality we have ventured, in this case a blues lick.

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one two
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blurring

my term to obscure the clarity, in this text usually to obscure one two
the tonal direction and defy the tonal gravity of a musical
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phrase.

block

refers to voicing each melody note with it's own chord /


harmony.

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borrow

a slang term to describe the concept of how non diatonic


elements are sifted into the major and minor tonalities.

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bridge

slang for the "B" section of the A / A / B / A and A / B form.

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broken chord

sounding the notes of a chord in succession as opposed to


being struck together, slang for arpeggio.

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cacophony

seemingly unrelated combinations of sounds, oftentimes


using multiple tonal centers simultaneously.

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cadence

Two or more chords ending an event of musical tension,


commonly V 7 to I.

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cadenza

an open section where a player gets to play solo and


unaccompanied, usually found at the end of a song.

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call and
response

perhaps developed from religious services, whereby the


leader sings a phrase to which the congregation responds.

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called

slang for choosing a tune while on the bandstand. A callable one two
tune (standard) is one usually familiar to most players in the
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group.

capo

a device used by guitar players that "clamps" all the strings,


allowing open position chords to create other keys.

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career
musician

describes in this text a learner who has determined that


music will be their life work, to become a professional
musician, thus perhaps welcome a more demanding
curriculum from this text.

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casual

a gig characterized as the name implies, casual, maybe once


in a while as opposed to steady, which happens on a regular

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basis.
slang for musician / player / artist.

cell

a term that describes a musical idea that is the core idea for one two
expansion and development in musical composition / artistic
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work.

changes

slang for the chords of a song.

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chart

slang for a written musical score.

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chops

slang for a players ability to execute musical phrases.

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chord

different pitches struck and sounded together.

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chord degree

numerical label for pitches within a chord or arpeggio, i.e.,


1st, 3rd, 5th, 7th etc.

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viewing any chord or harmony in one of three families in


chord family relation to the major tonality, chords in each of the families
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one two
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cats

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two

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provide one of three basic artistic elements, these are


stability (tonic), passing chord (two) and tension (five).

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chord
progression

specific cycles of chords.

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chord
substitution

replacing one chord with another, generally of the same


chord type.

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refers to a pitch used in the creation of a chord, the pitches


chord tone(s) used to create a particular chord, chord tones also create
arpeggios.

chord type

placing any chord or harmony in one of three categories, i.e.,


tonic ( I ), Two ( ii ) or Five ( V ) in relation to the major
one two
tonality, chords in each of the categories provide one of three
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basic artistic elements, these are stability ( tonic ), passing
chord ( Two ) and tension ( Five ).

chorus

one complete cycle of the entire form of a piece of music.

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chromatic

melodic or harmonic motion of consecutive half steps in


either direction.

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chromatic
simply to approach each of the pitches of a musical idea by
enhancement half step above or below.
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one two
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chromatic
helmet

safety device worn by musically adventurous folks.

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chromatic
scale

group of pitches created exclusively with the interval of a


half step, containing 12 pitches with one octave.

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in historical order, to understand a series events in the


historical sequence in which they occurred.

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chronologically

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church modes

a collection of scales from antiquity which were


incorporated into the system of equal temper.

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classical
literature

a term used to describe the entire body of European music


based on the equal temperament system, dating from the 12
century or so.

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clich

stereotypical musical phrase spanning generations of players.

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click track

recording studio term for a metronomical beat usually


delivered via headphones to the recording players to help
solidify the groove.

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climax

high point of solo, release of music tension.

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two
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closure

to bring a sequential group of elements back to it's starting


point creating a closed loop, also used pedagogically within one two
the text to bring a theoretical concept to a conclusion as part three four
of the learning process.

clusters

usually a group of 3 to 5 pitches or so that are sequenced into


a cool idea, then rapidly articulated. oftentimes they are then one two
pushed through a larger cycle, i.e., chromatic, fifths, fourths, three four
minor third / fourths etc.

coda

Italian for "tail", a section of music added on to common


musical forms to provide perfect closure to the artistic idea
of the piece.

color

my term for describing a musical sound, like using the color one two
terms red or blue to describe the major or minor tonalities.
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color tones

any pitch used in a chord that is not part of the 3 note triad,
common slang term for upper structure chord tones of
diatonic harmony, i.e., 7th, 9th, 11th, 13th etc. and all their
alterations.

common
practice

as the term implies what everybody does, oftentimes defined


one two
by an era of history whereby folks basically used the same
artistic elements to create their sounds thus creating and
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defining a style of music.

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common tone two musical components sharing a common pitch / pitches.

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comping

providing harmonic background for soloist, vocalist.

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composing

in this text, creating music, both spontaneously improvised


within musical time or written out.

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compound
intervals

intervals that exceed the span of one octave.

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connection

as the term implies, in joining all of the creative and


emotional aspects of artistic performers and their audience
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and the exchange of energies on so many different levels that
happens between them, i.e., the dynamics of a rewarding and three four
fulfilling performance for all involved.

consequent

the "answer" to the question or first part of a musical phrase, one two
see antecedent.
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consonant

the opposite of dissonant, describes a harmonious


relationship between pitches.

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constant
structure

simply moving the same chord voicing up or down in pitch.

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two

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contrary
motion

implies when two voices, as say within a chord, move in


opposite directions in regards to pitch, motion of chord
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voices in opposite directions, opposite of parallel motion,
which implies voices moving directionally together either up three four
or down.

contrasting
theme

in a musical composition containing two themes, the most


one two
important theme is termed the principle theme, while the
second theme is said to be in "contrast", thus the contrasting three four
theme.

to arrive at a destination or resolution, the morphing of one


tonal color to another, the theory which creates labels of the
convergence
colors as referred to in this text as "lines of tonal
convergence."

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one two
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cool jazz

style of American jazz that evolved in the 50's characterized


by more relaxed tempos, sparser harmonies and more
languid melodic lines, in part inspired from the M. Davis
one two
recording "Kind of Blue", the emergence of "cool jazz",
notably on the West Coast as pioneered by locals C. Baker, J. three four
Mulligan, and many others, today, late 90's and onward, also
used to define some contemporary and new age jazz.

could be

really means that I personally think so, my opinion in favor


of the idea postulated in the text, prompting the "could be."

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in the music world, literally point versus point, where the


points are pitches, the theoretical study of the evolution of
counterpoint
voice leading between two or more melodic lines, a style of
composing popular during the Baroque period.

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cover tunes

slang term for popular songs, many of which are often top
40, often found in dance band repertoires in any of the
American styles of music.

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cycles per
second

the frequency that a pitch vibrates at, i.e., the tuning pitch A
a minor 3rd below middle C on the piano vibrates at 440
cycles per second.

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a pictorial "clocklike" representation and way to organize the


one two
cycle of fifths 12 tonal or key centers of the equal temperament system,
/ fourths
based on the root motion of perfect fifths, usually clockwise, three four
or it's inverse, the perfect fourth (counterclockwise).

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dc / da capo

Italien for "head", denoting the start of the musical form or


song.

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deceptive
cadence

harmonic motion of the Five chord moving to Six in the


major tonality.

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default

in computer lingo, the original settings of the software, in


this text the "default" becomes various mainstays in
American music, it's performance and theories of
organization.

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my slang term for downright basic, simple in the mud blues


delta changes chord changes, to "play primitive" as i've heard it been
described, derived from the style Delta Blues.

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diatonic

using only pitches within the key signature.

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diatonic
harmony

building chords using only the notes contained within a


given key signature.

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digitron

Euro slang for a mathematical calculator?

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diminished

to make smaller, reducing an interval by half step.

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diminished
chord

stacking intervals of a minor third, i.e., C, Eb, Gb, A etc.

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diminished
interval

usually associated with reducing the size of the perfect


intervals by half step, also reducing the size of minor
intervals by half step.

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diminished
scale

adding neighbor tones to the diminished chord to create a


symmetrical scale group such as the whole step / half step
configuration of C, D, Eb, F, Gb, Ab, A, B, C etc.

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discern

to figure out by inductive reasoning.

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disguise

to mask or obscure one's appearance or intent.

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dissonant

combining aural sounds creating an unpleasant effect.

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divine

from the heavens above.

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dominant

term used to designate the pitch which is a perfect fifth


interval above the fundamental, as say in the major / relative one two
minor scales, chords built on this 5th scale degree are termed three four
dominant chords.

dominant
harmony

chords built on the 5th scale degree of the major / relative


minor scales ( and other scales that contain a pitch a perfect
5th above the root ), also used to describe the tonal
environment generally associated with American blues
music.

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dominant
seventh

in this text refers to any chordal color that incorporates a


tritone interval between the third and the seventh degrees of
the chord,

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refers to a quality within the harmony where one or more of


double (ing)
the chord tones is present twice ( doubled ) or more in
/ to "double"
the same voicing.

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double stop

articulating two pitches simultaneously, common for string


players, piano etc.

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doubletime

when the tempo of a song is increased to go twice as fast as


the original pace, improvising musicians will do this in
performance.

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drag

slang for playing slower than the tempo being employed, i.e., one two
"dragging", not keeping up with the tempo.
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drone

in music, often a sound of indeterminate or varying pitch that


pulsates through the music, usually associated with primitive one two
indigineous music, this drone has partly evolved into our
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well tuned, modern day pedal point.

the mixing of major and minor tonal elements as found in the one two
dual tonalities blues styles, that different tonalities exist within the same
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grouping of pitches.

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dynamics

refers to how soft or loud a note (s) is articulated, i.e.,


volume of sound.

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edge

slang for the top of the tune, form etc.

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two

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eighth note

division of the quarter note into two equal parts.

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elide ( d )

to supress or pass over in silence, to carry a musical sound


across the bar line.

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my term to describe the emotional quality created by the


one two
emotional
various musical elements within American music. Examples
environment
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of this concept include blues, major, minor etc.

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the sounds we use to create the various styles of American


entire musical
music, scales, chords, blue notes and all the pitches in
resource
between.

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encapsulate

surrounding the target pitch with other tones.

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environment

authors term to describe a particular musical setting for a


song i.e., usually major, minor, modal, blues etc.

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enharmonic

two labels for one pitch, i.e. "A#" or "Bb."

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episode

refers to one repetition of the basic motive within a

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two
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sequence.
system of musical organization based on the division of the
equal
octave into 12 equal pitches, as a system of tuning in
temperament
practical use from roughly 1722, Bach's "Well Tempered
system
Clavier."

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three four
one two
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EuroAmer

attempts top encompass and describe the migration of people one two
from Europe to America over the last 500 years or so, the
three four
history of their traditions and their ways of making music.

European
musical
ancestors

in historical sequence; Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven,


Brahms, Wagner, Debussey, Stravinsky and every one of
your "classical" favorites.

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explore

"crunching" down the theory.

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experiment

using theoretical concepts to generate new combinations.

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extended /
extensions

refers to chords that include pitches above the three notes of one two
the triad, see upper structure components / colortones.
three four

fake books

collections of lead sheets from various music publishers, also one two
known as "real" books.
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fermata

a pause, hold or breath in the musical performance, usually


conducted, commonly found at the end of a composition.

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filter

my concept and term of artistic creation whereby an artistic


idea i.e., a motif, is passed through a structured framework,
ex. to move a triad (motif) chromatically (filter).

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first inversion

a chord voicing where the lowest pitch of the chord is third


chord degree, i.e., C / E.

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five of five

a cycling of dominant chords, i.e., D 7 to G 7 etc.

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flat

a musical notation symbol ( b ) that lowers a pitch by half


step.

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form

definite patterns of musical compositions.

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formula

numerical equations that create various musical components.

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forward
motion

creating a sense of anticipation in the music.

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four finger /
four fret

a common technique for guitar players whereby each of the


four fingers of the hand fretting the pitches on the
fingerboard assume responsibility for articulating their
respective pitches within a span of four frets.

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fourth
inversion

a chord voicing where the lowest pitch of the chord is ninth


chord degree, i.e., C / D.

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function

how a particular chord type reacts within tonal gravity, chord one two
progressions etc., i.e. tonic, minor seventh or dominant chord
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types.

fundamental

the starting pitch from which an overtone series is created,


starting pitch of musical scales, the root of a chord etc.

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funk

a style of inner urban rock / blues popular during the late


70's and onward.

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gear

music slang term for instruments, amps, processors, reeds,


speakers, microphones etc.

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genre

a broad category or subject heading.

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gillion

slang for a lot.

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gig / giging

slang for where the music is happening, oftentimes a


professional musical job, i.e., "the gig."

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grace note

a pitch articulated as a quick lead in to another pitch usually


by half step, also a trill or turn of pitches.

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groups of pitches as used by the ancient Greeks; namely


Greek modes Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian and Mixolydian, we use the same
labels today with the more modern church modes.

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groove

slang for emotional and rhythmic content of a particular style one two
of music.
three four

groups of
pitches

my term describing musical scales, i.e., the C major scale is


also the C major grouping of pitches.

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guide tones

often sustained pitches creating a stepwise melodic line


within a series of chord changes, simple melodic lines that
help define the chord quality of the harmony.

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half cadence

cadential motion where the tonic goes to the Four or Five


chord.

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half
diminished
chord

diatonic Two chord in the minor tonality, diatonic Seven


one two
chord in the major tonality, basically a generic minor seventh
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chord type with a diminished fifth.
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half step

the smallest intervalic division within the system of equal


temperament, i.e., by half step or chromatic.

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half step lead approaching the target pitch or chord from half step above or one two
in
below.
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half step /
whole step

alternate interval approach to creating the diminished color.

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hardrive

slang for our mind, memory, instantaneous recall etc.

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harmonic

a "pure" pitch created by lightly touching a string at specific


divisions to produce "harmonics."

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harmonic
minor scale

a group of pitches which creates the minor tonality


distinguished by including a minor third, minor sixth and
major seventh above the root.

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harmonization to add chords (harmony) to support a melody.

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harmony

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chords used to support a melody.

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head

slang for the melody of a song, also denotes the top of the
form.

one two
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hipify

my slang term ( ? ) for making something hip or hipper as


the case might be.

one two
three four

hills in which
my slang term ( ? ) for our planet Earth.
we live

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one two
three four

hook

slang term for the main musical motif of a composition, that one two
goofy melody lick that gets stuck in the head, the one that
three four
won't shake loose, that's a melodic "hook."

horizontal

term that describes the basic shape created by the pitches of


a melodic line, generally implying step wise motion.

one two
three four

hue

used to describe a particular shade of a common color, i.e.


the various "hues of green", lime, kelly, neon etc.

one two
three four

hyperlink

perhaps the most important symbol / device ever devised by one two
humankind to record a word or concept, allowing ideas to be
three four
connected with other ideas with the click of a button.

imperfect

V to I harmonic cadential motion with the tonic pitch not in


both bass and lead of One chord, creating a less definite
sense of closure, the release of tension or coming to rest.

one two
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improvise

to spontaneously create solutions, in American music, most


commonly to mean the creation melodic lines.

one two
three four

in the lead

refers to the highest pitch in a chord voicing.

one two
three four

incomplete

a chord voicing where the lowest pitch of the chord or root is one two
omitted.
three four

indigenous

originating in a particular geographical area, native.

one two
three four

individualizing creating an educational curriculum for each person based on one two
instruction
their own needs and unique ways of learning.
three four

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indy

slang for music industry.

one two
three four

inside

jazz slang for diatonic musical ideas.

one two
three four

interval

term used to measure the musical distance between two


pitches.

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intervallic
symmetry

when the intervals used to create a musical component are


the same, could also be a combination of intervals which is
repeated (cell).

one two
three four

intonation

a term used to describe various properties of tuning.

one two
three four

intro

slang for the music that introduces a song.

one two
three four

inversions

chord voicings where the lowest pitch of the chord is not the one two
named root of the chord i.e, third, fifth, seventh degree as the
three four
bass pitch etc.

invert

reversing of a musical interval from ascending to descending one two


or vice versa.
three four

inverted pedal
diatonic common tone in top voice of a chord progression.
tone

one two
three four

jamm

to get together with friends and play music.

one two
three four

jamm loop

as used here within this text, a play along midi sound file.

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jam session

a gig where everybody gets to play.

one two
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jass

early historical label of the late 19th century for music


commonly known today as jazz.

one two
three four

jazz

style of American music.

one two
three four

jazz mantra

my tongue in cheek term for the degree of knowledge and


the exhausting of the resources that jazz players enjoy.

one two
three four

just
intonation

a system of tuning whereby the major 3rd and 5th are


perfectly acoustically correct while the other pitches of the
scale are derived from these two intervals and their
inversions.

one two
three four

kaboom

my term for when a learners existing knowledge of the


theory dramatically expands by the addition of one new
concept or element, creating a new musical horizon.

one two
three four

key

the tonal center of a musical composition, i.e., a song in C


major is in the key of C major.

one two
three four

term used to describe the number of sharps or flats


one two
key signature associated with each of the twelve major / minor keys, eases
three four
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the writing and reading of music by placing diatonic


accidentals at the beginning of the piece.

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lay out

slang term meaning "not to play", i.e., to lay out of the mix.

one two
three four

lead

refers to the highest pitch ( voice ) in a chord voicing.

one two
three four

leader

the person responsible for organizing the music and


musicians ( sideman ) for a musical event, also the artistic
focus of a recording session.

one two
three four

lead sheets

written music including the melody and appropriate chord


symbols.

one two
three four

leading tone

the pitch a half step below the tonic, the 7th degree of the
major scale.

one two
three four

leap

melodic motion of an interval greater than a major third


between two pitches.

one two
three four

learning
block

an obstacle to learning, often created by the learner based on one two


their prior educational and life experiences, obstacles to be
three four
identified and overcome.

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one two
three four

learning style

by what educational activity or environment an individual


best learns, by reading, writing, speaking, playing etc.

legato

a style of phrasing a melodic idea where the pitches of the


one two
line are smoothly connected, as little separation between the
three four
pitches as possible.

lick

slang for a musical phrase.

one two
three four

literature

the whole body of written music ever created and written


down.

one two
three four

localized
position

executing musical ideas in one area of the fingerboard.

one two
three four

loops of
pitches

my term to describe when a group of pitches or scale


intervalically closes onto itself, or in electronic music, the
virtual repetition of a phrase as say an 8 bar drum pattern.

one two
three four

lute

stringed instrument and ancestor to the guitar.

one two
three four

major scale

the group of pitches that creates the major tonality, also


known as the Ionian mode, one of two basic groups of
pitches used to create the system equal temperament.

one two
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major
tonality,
describes the color of music that is based upon the major
major tonal triad, major scale, Ionian mode etc.
environment

one two
three four

making the
changes

slang for when an emerging artist / soloist clearly articulates one two
the harmony ( changes ) in their lines.
three four

master of
disguise

describes a player who creates different illusions of the


storyline of a song while always retaining the emotional
essence of it's central theme, opposite of "master of the
obvious."

one two
three four

master of the describes music where an experienced listener can accurately one two
obvious
guess where the music is going.
three four

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measure
numbers

a counting number applied to each measure within a piece


written music to help locate one's place.

one two
three four

mediant

chord built on the third scale degree of the major / relative


minor scale.

one two
three four

melodic
minor scale

a group of pitches creating the minor tonality distinguished


by including a minor third, major sixth and major seventh
above the root.

one two
three four

melodic

superimposing different parent scales, often based on chord

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two
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substitution

substitutions.

three

four

melody

a series of musical tones that expresses an emotional


thought?

one two
three four

metronome

mechanical device for practice which creates consistent


clicks to represent the beats of music, the rate of which is
adjustable from fast ( allegro ) through slow ( largo ).

one two
three four

midden

the pile of detritus material created by squirrels from


munching the seeds of pine cones, it's an Alaskan thing.

one two
three four

middle
register

the center pitches of the overall range of a musical


one two
instrument, usually consisting of the pitches with the span of
three four
a major 10th.

the interval between two pitches of a minor 7th, a minor


one two
minor seventh triad with a minor 7th, a tonic 7th chord in the natural minor
three four
tonality and a Two chord type in the major tonality.
minor
tonality,
describes the color of music that is based upon the major
minor tonal triad.
environment
mix

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one two
three four

the combined blend of all the instruments in the group when


one two
sounded together, often concerned with setting volumes,
three four
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electronic setting.
modal blues

a blues performance format whereby the performance is


basically a four bar phrase based on the tonic V 7th chord,
not following the traditional 12 bar blues form.

modern

as mostly used in this text, either implies a historical idea or


one two
that the musical components used to create the music are
well advanced into the upper structure parts of the arpeggio, three four
polytonal sounds etc.

modes

ancient term for scale, also deriving a scale from within a


scale, i.e., the older church modes from the present day
major scale, the original Greek modes, Dorian, Phrygian,
Lydian and Mixolydian.

one two
three four

modulate

to change keys, tonal centers or emotional environments.

one two
three four

mon ami

French for "my friend."

one two
three four

one two
three four

one theme, artistic creations with one theme, like a theme


one two
monothematic park with just one ride, that you want to keep going on again
three four
and again, i.e., the blues.
monster

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slang for a musician with tremendous musical abilities.

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used within this text to describe a change of tonality, i.e.,


major to minor, tonic family to dominant family etc.

motif /
motive

a re-occurring artistic idea which is developed throughout an one two


artistic piece.
three four

Motown

style of American pop music from the 1960's, the Supremes,


Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder on and on. one two
Motown from motorcity perhaps?, is slang for the city of
three four
Detroit, Michigan.

movable
shapes

usually applied to guitar, where a scale or chord shape can be one two
moved intact up and down the fingerboard, as opposed say to
three four
open string shapes etc.

multiphonics

articulating two pitches simultaneously, used usually to


describe an effect with horn players.

one two
three four

music
software

the music software to create the musical examples in this


text is created by Coda Corporation, it is Finale 2001a,
which is very excellent indeed.

one two
three four

musical
evolution

the continual quest by artists to expand the existing musical


forms and resources so as to better portray the triumphs,
struggles and philosophies of humankind.

one two
three four

that the numerical equivalents given to the pitches also


musical math perfectly close upon themselves or "proof" themselves by
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one two
three four

morph

one

two

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perfectly closing back to their starting point.

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three four

musicologist the scholar of music history.

one two
three four

musical
intervals

one two
three four

measuring the distance between two pitches as defined by


the number of half steps between them.

natural minor from the Aeolian mode, also major / relative minor.

one two
three four

nature /
nurture

one two
three four

instinctual or learned, that is the question ...

neighbor tone closely related pitches by physical proximity.

one two
three four

n'est pas?

from the French, translated here as "isn't that so?"

one two
three four

non diatonic

in analysis of music, implies pitches not part of the tonic


parent scale used to create a piece of music, can be melodic
or harmonically identified.

one two
three four

note

term to describe a musical sound or tone, i.e., a pitch.

one

two

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octave

a pitch created by dividing the fundamental pitch or string


length in half, a 2 : 1 ratio, so as to make the upper pitch
vibrate twice as fast as the lower, the interval range
containing the 8 diatonic tones of the major scale.

octave
closure

the principle by which a seven note scale becomes 8 with the one two
inclusion of the root's octave to create the looping closure of
three four
equal tempered resources.

offbeat

in European music and analysis, the offbeat is said to be the


2nd and 4th beats of 4 / 4 time, the 2nd and 3rd beats in 3 / 4 one two
time etc., opposite of onbeat or the 1st beat of the measure in three four
4 / 4 time.

open chords

refers to stringed instruments whereby chord shapes include


pitches from unstopped strings, open chords are usually
found within the first 3 frets on the guitar.

one two
three four

oral

by word of mouth, passing along ideas through the spoken


word, an ancient teaching style of passing along ideas from
one generation to the next.

one two
three four

organic

used to describe the diatonic origin of musical components,


when one's musical evolution happens from within.

one two
three four

ostinato bass this term is borrowed from the European classical cats and
simply implies a simple rhythmic figure that is repeated
figure
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one two
three four

one

two

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many times, a great way to build musical suspense.

three four

outro

slang for improvising a musical vamp used to end a song


while performing, intro / outro.

one two
three four

outside

non diatonic musical ideas, sounds and colors.

one two
three four

overtones

the pitches contained within a vibrating column of air, a


plucked string etc., similar to the different colors in the
breakdown or "white light", i.e., the colors of the rainbow.

one two
three four

overtone
series

mathematical breakdown of a vibrating string or column of one two


air into parts, which become different musical pitches termed
three four
overtones.

palette

platform for mixing colors.

parent scale

refers to the main group of pitches used to create a song, a


chord or emotional environment, i.e., the C major scale is the one two
parent scale of a song written in the key of C major whose
three four
tonic chord is C major 7.

parallel
motion

describes moving one chord voicing up or down in pitch.

one two
three four

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parody

usually meaning to creating different words to a popular


melody, a musical satire if you will, kids do this a lot.

one two
three four

partials

term used to describe the overtones created from the


sounding of a fundamental musical tone.

one two
three four

passing tones

essentially non chord tone pitches which are within the


rhythmic range of a harmonic structure or chord.

one two
three four

passing chord

transitory chord between principle chords, as defined by era


and style.

one two
three four

pedagogy

the study of how we undertake the process of learning


something, the development of a curriculum of study for a
topic or subject.

one two
three four

pedal tones

sustained pitch within the fabric of the music, usually in an


outer voice, i.e., bass or treble.

one two
three four

surely the worst thing about being a teenager, don't submit,


peer pressure strive to be yourself and develop your natural talents, then
share the magic of your music with those you love.

one two
three four

pentatonic
scale

one two
three four

ancient musical scale containing five pitches creating both


the major and minor tonalities.

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penultimate

the second to last in the hierarchy of a group of tones.

one two
three four

perfect

Five ( V ) to One ( I ) cadential motion with the tonic pitch


in bass and lead of the One chord.

one two
three four

perfect
intervals

the first three intervals derived from the overtone series, the
octave, perfect 5th and perfect 4th.

one two
three four

perfectly
invert

when the numerical measurement between pitches is the


one two
same whether moving up or down, i.e., as the tritone interval
three four
splits the span of one octave perfectly in half.

in this text implying preparing for performance, whether


performance preparing to spontaneously improvise our music, work out
every pitch or a combination of both.

one two
three four

performance the mood, form, tonality and rhythms of a particular piece of one two
vehicle
music, creating categories such as a ballad, swing Latin etc. three four

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period

a European term used in the discussion of form in music,


one two
whereby a musical phrase becomes as a sentence in prose,
also a historical era of musical style, such as the "swing" era. three four

permutation

recombining existing combinations into new configurations.

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phrase

term for a musical or verbal statement, expression of an idea.

one two
three four

phrasing

describes how a particular player articulates their phrase or


ideas, part of a person's artistic signature.

one two
three four

Picardy third

using the major third in cadential motions in the minor


tonality, usually the last chord of the piece.

one two
three four

pick up note

one or more notes or chords used as an intro into a melody,


verse etc.

one two
three four

pivot chord

a term used to describe the chord used to move from one key
one two
center to another, most often a dominant type chord which
contains pitches of the key center the music is modulating
three four
towards.

plagel

originally from the Greeks, who used this term to describe a


"mode within a mode", in modern times often referring to a
chord cadencing with the tonic and subdominant chords.

planing
(plane - ing)

describes moving one chord voicing by half step, whole step one two
etc.
three four

pocket

slang to describe when the groove / rhythm is locked in


among the players creating it, the place where cool grooves

one two
three four

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hang out.

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polyphony

two or more musically significant melodic ideas played


simultaneously without chordal accompaniment.

one two
three four

polytonality

the simultaneous use of more than one key center.

one two
three four

popular

term used to describe melodies that every listener of


American music might recognize and perhaps hum the tune
from memory, also famous players and established musical
styles.

one two
three four

position

usually for players of stringed instruments, position


generally refers to the placement of the 1st finger (index) of
the hand fretting the strings.

one two
three four

post bop

a period in jazz history after bebop, the music characterized one two
by more complex cycles of chords and modulation to distant
three four
key centers.

pour moi

French for "for me."

one two
three four

pour toi

French for "for you."

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pre-knuckle

my term to describe a concept that goes way back in the


history of our evolution, from "knuckle-dragging."

one two
three four

principle
triads

the One, Four and Five triads / chords of the major and
minor tonalities.

one two
three four

public

used to describe music that we hear incidentally in public


places, an elevator, the grocery store etc.

one two
three four

quarter note

rhythmic designation of one beat in 4 / 4 time.

one two
three four

quartile

refers to melodic motion and chordal harmony created in


fourths.

one two
three four

quote

generally means to play part of the melody of one song in


another.

one two
three four

range

describes the available pitches, from the lowest to the


highest pitches, on any given instrument.

one two
three four

realization

the actual music created from musical symbols,


philosophically, what a player thinks when they see G 7.

one two
three four

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real book

collection of published songs, also called "fake" books.

one two
three four

real time

refers to "as it is happening"

one two
three four

registration

refers to the pitch range of a particular instrument.

one two
three four

reharmonization

working out a new set of chord changes for a melody.

one two
three four

one group of pitches that creates two tonalities based on their


intervalic formula i.e., C major / A natural minor. There are one two
relative major
12 different major keys, 12 different minor keys, all created
minor scales
from two distinct shapings of the same intervalic formula, so three four
24 possible tonal centers.

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relative minor

the minor tonality balance as found within the major scale,


sharing identical key signatures thus pitches.

one two
three four

resolve

to release musical tension.

one two
three four

retrograde

implies a reverse or backward motion.

one

two

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rhythm
changes

a set of stock chord changes used for writing tunes such as "I one two
Got Rhythm and "Oleo."
three four

ride

slang for soloing, to take a ride, to improvise musical


dialogue in real time.

one two
three four

ride time

slang for the amount of time a player gets to solo.

one two
three four

riff

slang for a short musical phrase.

one two
three four

ritard

slowing down the pace of the music for dramatic effect,


often found at the end of performing a song.

one two
three four

right on it

slang for starting a song directly with the melody, i.e., no


introduction.

one two
three four

roll

term used to describe a definite picking pattern on a stringed


instrument, often associated with the banjo, i.e., a banjo roll, one two
perhaps the earliest of the popular American stringed
three four
instruments, also a series of drum strokes.

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Roman
numerals

symbols used by theorists to denote a particular chords


location within a key, based on the scale degrees of the tonic one two
scale, upper case ( IV ) denoting major sounds, lower case ( three four
iv ) , the minor colors.

root

fundamental pitch of a chord, also used in naming the chord, one two
i.e. C is the root of a C major chord.
three four

root position

a chord whose identifying pitch is the root or lowest pitch of one two
the chord.
three four

rubato

to "rob", displacement of musical time within a given tempo one two


to accommodate interpretive phrasing.
three four

running

slang term for executing a musical idea through various


filters, permutations, chord changes i.e., "running changes."

one two
three four

rush

playing faster than the tempo being employed.

one two
three four

samba

Latin flavored dance groove based on a two or four


subdivision of the beat.

one two
three four

scales

groups of of selected pitches.

one two
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scale degree

putting a numerical label on pitches within a scale in relation one two


to a tonic pitch.
three four

scat

slang for the vocalization of musical phrases.

one two
three four

second
inversion

a chord voicing where the lowest pitch of the chord is fifth


chord degree, i.e., C / G.

one two
three four

secondary
dominant
chord

creating a dominant chordal color on a scale degree other


than Five in the major tonality, when one dominant chord
precedes another, i.e., D 7 to G 7 etc.

one two
three four

segue
(segway)

a compositional component that is used to smoothly connect one two


sections within arrangements or one song with another,
three four
creating a continuous flow of the music.

sequence

an ordered series of events.

serialist

a method of musical composition whereby the parent scale is


one two
created from all of the 12 pitches and can be modulated to
any of the tonal centers of the chromatic scale, often termed three four
12 tone composition.

seventh chord

generally implies a chord containing a triad and seventh


chord degree.

one two
three four

one

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shape

in this text a slang term used to describe a chord voicing as


created on a guitar or other chordal stringed instrument.

one two
three four

sharp

in tuning, to create a sound slightly above the desired pitch.


in notation, the # symbol to raise the written pitch by half
step.

one two
three four

shedding

slang for practicing.

one two
three four

sheets of
sound

originally a music critics term used to describe the physical


effect of rapidly articulated arpeggios, originated by John
Coltrane during the 60's.

one two
three four

usually the last chorus of a song being performed whereby


all of the players involved turn the passion of their part up a
shout chorus
notch or two, i.e., to shout. Common in the blues and
Dixieland styles.

one two
three four
one two
three four

shred

slang for the sound of tearing up steel, associated with the


various types of overdrive / distortion sounds for guitar.

shuffle

slang for a blues groove usually in 12 / 8, using a triplet feel one two
to motor the basic groove.
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sideman

industry slang for accompanying member of a musical


group.

one two
three four

single

slang for working a gig as a solo performer.

one two
three four

simple
intervals

those intervals found within the span of one octave.

one two
three four

sittin in

bringing your instrument to a musical performance or jamm


session and playing with the band.

one two
three four

slide

creating a smooth motion between pitches, the sound of


which includes the pitches in between, also usually a glass or one two
metal bar device used by guitar players on the strings to
three four
achieve this effect, a favorite of blues players.

softening /
softer

my slang for the gradual obscuring of a musical color and it's one two
tonal direction by the addition of various color tones.
three four

softening
process

in this text applies to the lightening of color from the darker


diminished color towards the pentatonic, and all points in
between.

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soloing

implies one musical voice playing or creating the melody.

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sonority

clarity of resonance in chords, where each pitch within the


chord is clearly distinguishable.

one two
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staccato

Italian for detached, refers to a style of melodic phrasing


whereby each of the pitches is separate from each other.

one two
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staff

template of lines and spaces for notating music.

one two
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stand

slang for bandstand, stage etc.

one two
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standard

slang for important jazz compositions, songs of American


music that have withstood the test of time.

one two
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standard
tuning

refers to centering all pitches from the 440 A, also refers to


the conventional way to tune a guitar, E,A,D,G,B,E, or
violin, G,D,A,E, bass E,A,D,G etc.

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static

"unmoving", in music, often used in describe a harmonic


situation where one chord is used for extended periods of
time, i.e., "static harmony."

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stepwise

consecutive melodic / harmonic ascending or descending


motion using the pitches of a select melodic grouping of
pitches, i.e., scale.

one two
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stoptime

usually an alternating between short bursts of music and


silence, as in early rock or between choruses / soloists in
traditional up tempo jazz arrangements.

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storyline

in this text used to describe the spiritual content and


emotional environment of a song.

one two
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stretch out

extended soloing.

one two
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strength of
player

slang to describes a players ability to build and manage


musical tension.

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subdivision

common term used to describe the division of a musical beat one two
or pulse into smaller units.
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subdominant

the diatonic fourth scale degree of the major / relative minor one two
groups of pitches, harmony built on the fourth scale degree. three four

substitution

simply replacing one musical component with another.

one two
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sussing out

an Alaskan slang term meaning to figure something out by


one's own effort.

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swing

description of a particular style / era of jazz music, slang


term implying a powerful music of any style, i.e., swings
hard, an elusive rhythmic concept based on playing one
rhythmic feel against another, creating boundless joy, good
vibes and big smiles.

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symmetrical
scales

usually non diatonic groups of pitches that are based on a


perfectly repeating intervalic formula.

one two
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tag

slang for cliche ending of song, to tag, add a repeated


harmonic / melodic cycle to extend the performance of a
song.

one two
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taking it out

slang term used to describe the moving of a musical idea


from inside ( diatonic ) to outside ( non-diatonic), also used
to describe the ending of a song during performance.

one two
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target chord

term for the the final destination of a series of chords or


chord progression, i.e., the target chord of the Two / Five /
One chord progression is the One chord.

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tear it up

slang for when players aggressively approach the music.

one two
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techno

a modern way of making music from synthesized sounds


which are looped together, there are a few subgenera within
this style, most all of which are associated with dance.

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slang for the common harmonic motion of 1 / 6 / 4 / 5 in the


teenager in
major tonality, after the pop hit of the same title from the
love changes
50's.

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tempered

tuning adjustments associated with the equal tempered


system of tonal organization.

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tempo

the pulse rate of the music, the rate at which the musical
sounds move through time, i.e., fast or slow etc.

one two
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tensions

artistic energy that seeks release, also the upper structure


chord tones, i.e. 7, 9, 11, 13, #15 and their alterations.

one two
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tertian

refers to harmony (chords) constructed in thirds.

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testimony

the cleansing of one's musical soul through impassioned


performance.

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tetrachord

used to describe the two four note groups created by simply


dividing the 8 pitches of the major scale in half, i.e., in C
major, the lower tetrachord C D E F and upper G A B C.

one two
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text

tonal resources for the creative musician is a music theory


one two
text that helps expand the readers vocabulary of musical
terms providing a greater awareness and understanding of
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the musical resources used to create American music.

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third and
seventh

the two pitches within a seventh chord that determines chord one two
quality.
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third degree

the pitch that determines whether a scale or triad is major or


minor.

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third
inversion

a chord voicing where the lowest pitch of the chord is


seventh chord degree, i.e., C / B.

one two
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timbre

term to describe the various hues of musical colors, musical


instruments, sound quality etc.

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time signature

numerical fraction describing the rhythmic groove of a


musical composition.

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tonal

as pertains to sound, audible sound, things we can hear.

one two
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tonal
my term for the overall feel and color created by a piece of
environment music.

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tonal
resources

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the "nuts and bolts" of our music. Pitches, scales, chords,


drums, the theoretical systems etc.

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tonality

term used to describe overall musical effect of a particular


musical idea, i.e. major / minor / dominant seventh etc.

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tonal center

theory term for the key of a particular piece of music.

one two
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the force in music created when one pitch is designated as


tonal gravity the center of the music, the tonal force used to create and
release artistic tension in the music,

one two
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the degree to which any given chord color creates the aural
tonal stability sensation of being at rest, oftentimes created by tonic
function chords.

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tone row

using all 12 pitches of the chromatic scale to create the


parent scale for composing music.

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tonic

a theoretical name for the first degree of any scale or chord


that is the predominant key of a given piece of music,
usually determined by the key signature i.e., the tonic of
"blues in A" is A.

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tonic chord

a theoretical name for the chord built on the first degree of


any scale or mode.

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top

slang for the beginning of a new chorus, the first measure in


a song, the beginning.

one

two

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three four
the current listing of the 40 most popular songs in America
at any given second.

one two
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slang term for an arranging technique whereby improvising


musicians each take turns four bars to create an idea, often
trading fours
done with the drummer, the solist takes 4 bars, then solo
drums for 4 bars, following the form of the tune etc.

one two
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traditional
harmony

term used to describe a perspective of the theory as derived


from classical literature, i.e., the European masters of equal
temperament.

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train wreck

slang for when the players in the group make a series of bad
choices while performing, usually resulting in unplanned,
one two
temporary musical chaos, train wrecks are oftentimes found
at the end of performing a musical piece, see "arrangements three four
while you wait" from above.

transcribe

to transfer the music from a live performance or recording


into musical notation, to one's instrument.

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transpose

to respell the music exactly from one key center to another.

one two
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treble clef

symbol used to denote the second line of a musical staff as

one

top 40

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the pitch "G" natural.

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triad

three note chord comprised of a root, a third and a fifth.

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triplets

a rhythmic division into groups of three.

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tritone

musical interval of the augmented fourth / flatted fifth


comprised of three whole tones, which divides the octave in one two
perfect halves, the essential color within the dominant chord
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created by pairing the major 3rd and minor 7th, among the
most dissonant pairings of pitches available.

tritone
substitute

a common slang term usually identifying a dominant type


chord that is built upon the tritone of the chord it is being
substituted for, i.e., Db 7 is the tritone substitute for G 7.

one two
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tune

slang for a musical composition, musical piece, song,


melody etc.

one
three

turn

the way a player or composer shapes a musical idea,


one two
oftentimes a melodic twist of pitches into a line or the target
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pitch, part of a players artistic signature.

turnaround

musical idea located at the end of a musical section usually


followed by repeat sign, the Two / Five / One cadential

two
four

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motion and it's variations, any kind of cadential motion.


12 keys

the # of different tuned pitches from which we create


one two
American music, as found on a piano etc., also represents 12
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major keys, 12 minor keys etc..

two chord

harmony built on the second scale degree.

up front

slang term used in performance by improvising musicians


that usually implies something is going to happen before the one two
melody of the song gets sung, i.e., like an intro, pedal tone, three four
drum solo, etc., we count off a tune "up front."

upper
structure

in this text, chord tones found above the seventh, i.e., the
9th, 11th, and 13th chord degrees.

one two
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one two
three four

slang for a repeated musical phrase, usually in a blues


one two
coloring, commonly used for beginnings and endings of
vamp (lines)
tunes as well as a background figure behind a soloist, can be three four
chords or a melodic line.

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vanilla

slang for any generic realization of a musical element, i.e., a one two
chord voicing of root, third, fifth and seventh, scales right
three four
out of the box etc.

vehicle

my term used to describe the artistic elements of a musical


style / form of music. i.e., Latin, Rock, Bebop, 12 bar blues,

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A / A / B / A song form etc.


verbiage

using words to describe abstract artistic concepts.

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vertical

term that describes the basic shape created by the pitches of


a melodic line, implying arpeggiated or non step interval
figures.

one two
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vibrato

adding a slight vacillation to the pitch which can increase the one two
emotional expression of the players statement, i.e., warming
three four
up the tone.

a term used to describe how the pitches (voices) of one chord one two
voice leading merge into another, derived from the early music of voices,
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soprano ( top ), alto, tenor and bass ( lowest ).

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voicing

arrangement of pitches for a particular chord.

one two
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walking

mostly step wise bass line using quarter notes.

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waltz

instrumental or dance music in 3/4 time.

one two
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whammy bar

mechanical device on the modern electric guitar that allows


changes of intonation with the push or pull of a lever.

one

two

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well

"well" as in water well, used as a cliche / slang term for


where a player might go to get a musical idea when things
run a bit dry.

western
music

in this text, slang for any and all music created with the
equal temperament system of tonal organization as it's
basis,this term is often applied in music as is the term
one two
western civilization in historical contexts, meaning all of the
history and peoples that date back to the ancient Greeks and three four
forward from there, through the settling of Europe and onto
America.

western
harmony

chords based in the equal tempered system.

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whole step

combines two half steps together i.e., the interval from C to


D is a whole step.

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whole tone

combining two half tones together to create a whole tone,


i.e., the interval from C to D is a whole tone, the whole tone
scale is created exclusively with whole tones.

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whole tone
scale

the whole tone scale is created exclusively with whole tones.

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wolf tones

originally named to describe some of the harmonies created


in "just intonation" or non tempered tuning, that resulted in
sounds similar to those made by howling wolves, today,
often used to describe a overly strong sounding pitch on an
acoustic instrument created by the physics of the materials
used in it's construction.

one two
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woodshed

slang for a place where one sheds, also to review a difficult


musical passage, i.e., to practice.

one two
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"I got no dime but I got some time to hear a story." Robert Hunter /
Jerry Garcia

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